I’ve blown through two weeks of General Hospital in the last few days, and there is good and bad to report. The good is that the focus on relationships, both familial and romantic, continues strongly, and I enjoy the slower pace for a lot of it, giving plenty of time for sweet moments and actual character development rather than plot, plot, plot. However, my enthusiasm for General Hospital has not picked up as much as I want it to, but I think I’ve pegged the problem: Other than Dante and Lulu, most of the romantic relationships currently being highlighted do not appeal to me. Let me share with you why.
Jason and Sam: There’s been a lot of them lately, and I’ve run hot and cold on them in the past, with lukewarm being my most common feeling. I came to appreciate their dynamic more before and during their wedding and reception. Deciding on a spur of the moment wedding in that random Chinese restaurant was pretty darn romantic, and the side characters were awesome.
Seriously, I dug all those actors, especially the hot grandson who doubled as an officiant. It was very, very them, with relaxed vows and an easy love felt between the two. Plus, Sam was absolutely gorgeous—Kelly Monaco definitely has the look of love down, complete with glow. That whole unexpected road trip made me excited for future possible adventure storylines for Jason and Sam. I promise writers, if you take Jason from a mob focus, I will try very hard to enjoy him again, and lovey dovey Jason is a great start. However, all good things must come to an end, and after weeks of after-wedding motorcycle rides and lazing around on a Hawaiian honeymoon, my goodwill toward the couple is running out. This is an example of slower pacing gone wrong, and that faucet has been turned back to lukewarm.
Kate and Sonny: They are sure spending a lot of time together quickly, aren’t they? As you may recall, I was hopeful about Kate being the one to help Sonny out of his misery this time, but their conversation have turned boring pretty darn fast. There are a few reasons why: 1. Sonny moved on from harassing Kate for her changes from Connie to Kate Howard years ago; there’s no reason to retread that ground. 2. The actress, Kelly Sullivan, is not growing on me. Part of that is because of how much I enjoyed Megan Ward, and no small amount of it is due to the continued excessive use of smudged eyeliner. But the biggest reason for it is that she’s fairly low energy and doesn’t suck me into her scenes. In combination with Maurice Bernard, who’s always low energy when he isn’t yelling or throwing things, it’s not a captivating dynamic. 3. This reason is the most important one to me. Kate is already excusing Sonny’s actions to others, rising to his defense, and contributing to covering up his activities—that is NOT Kate Howard.
First of all, Sonny does not need another woman supporting him; he needs one willing to speak truth to him. Secondly, Kate insisted that Sonny quit the mob for her when they were an item; I cannot accept her covering up for him or Michael—who needs to stop having anyone cover things up for him, by the way. He’s an adult! Any romantic interest for Sonny is far more interesting to me when she is not letting Sonny’s despicable side slide. That’s why I applauded when Brenda left him again, and that’s why I hoped that Kate would be the right person to help him out now, because she has a record of not standing for his illegal activities and power trips. I’ve never thought of Kate Howard as a mob moll, and I don’t like to watch her act like one.
Olivia and Steve: I do like the pairing of Olivia and Steve, but this—
—while her son’s in the hospital? I don’t think so. That was such inappropriate timing, and that’s all I’m going to say about that.
Ethan and Kristina: My dreams for these two, of course, are now never going to happen. Well, at least, not this incarnation of Ethan and Kristina.
With so few scenes between them the past few months, my anticipation was already being challenged, but I can’t help but be sad that it won’t be realized at all now. As a fan of Lexi Ainsworth and Nathan Parson’s chemistry, I’m hesitant about her release from the show, but I also understand it—a lot of you have commented on past columns about her looking too young to be a realistic romance interest, and I’m pretty sure that played a big part in recasting the role. Looks like those of you who wanted it will get your wish to see an older Kristina at some point! I’ll keep my fingers crossed that it’s a change for the better, but it’s incredibly odd to me that General Hospital has now twice replaced Emmy-nominated younger actors and actresses, likely because of how unconvincing the powers that be thought they’d be as romantic interests. I can’t help but point out the massive success that young-looking, Emmy-winner Kimberly McCullough has always had in romantic pairings, making me wish they gave both Drew Garrett and Lexi the chance to try. Speaking of which . . .
Robin and Patrick: I’ll end with a pairing that continues to make me happy. Robin and Patrick are sexy, fun, romantic, and Robin’s looking pretty darn good, lately, no?
Is it me, or has she been sporting a more professional look these days? I don’t recall her dressing up right away for the chief of staff position, so this is a new wardrobe change, right? Regardless, the suits do wonders for making Kimberly McCullough look more authoritative, older, and pretty at the same time. I’m glad that Robin and Patrick are connecting so well, and that Patrick’s hitting all the right notes as a supportive husband. I look forward to the reintroduction of Lisa and whatever havoc she will wreak on them. I’m pretty sure they will weather the storm all the stronger for it.
Prescription for better soap: Continue taking a slow pace that allows for simple relationship moments, but don’t let it go quite as slow as Jason and Sam’s scenes have been recently. Never film another sex scene involving a stripper pole while the stripper’s son is in the hospital, recovering from a gunshot wound. And break Kate Howard free of her recent mob mollish behavior; it really, really doesn’t suit the character.