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News for the week of 11-Feb-2013

by Carol Banks Weber

Genie Francis (Laura Spencer) celebrates her GH return with some live tweeting, February 11, 2 p.m.-3 p.m. EST. Tweet the actress with #GH.

Nice try, Access Hollywood. At the very bottom of their celebrity interviews is copyright legalese forbidding the redistribution (… rewriting) of contents. Too bad it’s not legal and everybody’s paraphrasing anyway, including Michael Fairman February 8.

It’s not like Francis told Access Hollywood anything earth-shattering, just that she, too, turned 50 while GH will do so later this spring. She also tried to nail down the reason for her and Tony Geary’s (Luke) amazing on-screen chemistry. “Some of it is just our chemistry as people… There’s a tremendous amount of history, both personal and professional between the two of us, so all of that comes to the stage with us. We don’t have to work for it.  It’s just coming with us… Also, part of it is what we created as Luke and Laura is really important to both of us so when we come together on the stage, we both have a very high bar.”

Genie Francis (Laura) isn’t the only GH vet to return. Jackie Zeman (Bobbie) will too, starting March 21. She’s happy to do so, as are her legions of fans who’ve been asking for years. For the longest time she had nothing positive to tell them, simply because TPTB never called on her return. Zeman had hoped, with GH’s 50th anniversary looming on the horizon, that maybe. Sure enough, her manager Michael Bruno said it’s on. “He called me like a week ago and said, 'I think they are going to give you some dates, but nothing's firm.' I've learned over the years, until you have a booking date and you're in a script, people can talk all they want, but you're not on TV [laughs]. Then yesterday he called with, 'Okay, we have three shows with firm dates for you!' It was a complete shock that I had firm shows booked. [Soap Opera Digest]”

Kelly Thiebaud (Dr. Britt) went from recurring to contract player recently. The Southern girl “livin’ in the lights” is really nice in real life and trying her best to bring something to the role every day. Go check her out on Twitter.

Access Hollywood’s Jolie Lash was on hand to witness the coming together of the 1980s power couple, Frisco & Felicia, circa 2013. Frisco’s Jack Wagner — who was married to Kristina Malandro IRL and has two sons with her — marveled at the recent return’s magnifying effects, especially for him. It took a few beats for Wagner to get back into the swing of things, but he’s starting to feel ease in the role now. It blew his mind to go back in time with the soap couple’s flashbacks. During rehearsals, the former husband and wife would break character to naturally talk about their kids or worry about Wagner taking care of himself after catching a cold. Wagner had only loving words for the woman who bore him two beautiful children, remarking at how beautiful Malandro still looks. He can’t wait to really get into the character trying to make up for lost time with Felicia and daughter Maxie.

Kin Shriner (Scott Baldwin) made his returns wish list clear in a February 7th interview with TV Guide’s Michael Logan: It’s time for Ricky Dean Anderson (ex-Jeff Webber) and John Stamos (ex-Blackie) to reprise their GH roles, right along with him. What’s clear is that Shriner will most assuredly mix it up with Lulu and Laura in his definitive return. Shriner still marveled at the stir he and pal Francis make in public. Back in 1979, their popularity began its upward rise when they saw fans milling about in a restaurant outing. Cut to present-day with them at a grocery story in Calabasas. Nothing’s changed. “They were asking us, ‘Hey, wow, what are you two doing together? Are you guys a couple now?’ And I'm, like, ‘No, Genie just needed a couple of melons for the morning and I tagged along. Really! There's nothing going on!’ Of course the people recognizing us were all in their fifties. They enjoyed those times back then. We remind them of their college days and smoking pot. (Laughs) Because that's what everyone was pretty much doing in 1981!”

Back when Wendy Riche was executive producer, Kin Shriner was told by her that his character would be Scott now not Scotty. When he asked her why, he was never given a definitive reason. Maybe it sounded more mature. Regardless, Shriner said, “It's Scotty who's coming back!” now. Riche helmed GH during the controversial but productive 1990s-early 2001.

Ian Buchanan (Duke) didn’t realize it at the time — those glorious ‘80s — but he and Finola Hughes (Anna) really made an impact on a then-child actor named Kimberly McCullough (Robin). When Buchanan met up with McCullough again in recent scenes, she showed him just how much of an impact their care, devotion, and regard made on her. He was blown away by everything she remembered of them to this day. To him, they were just “including her in everything” and she was this cool kid. He couldn’t believe what a remarkable woman this little kid had grown into. –Soap Opera Digest, February 4, 2013

Jon Lindstrom (Kevin) and Lynn Herring (Lucy) didn’t take long to jump into their GH/PC relationship on-screen. Not long at all. “Lynn and I just go, ‘Wow, we really know how to do this with each other. It’s almost too easy!’” Lindstrom counts himself very blessed and more than a little surprised to be placed in the popular supercouple bin by fans. With this call back, he realized it’s true. –Soap Opera Digest, February 4, 2013

Curious about Molly/Connie’s new novel, “Love In Maine?” Take a preview of the first chapter on The rest of the book hits the marketplace March 12.

Kelly Sullivan (Connie/Kate) adjusts the background small talk depending on the severity and seriousness of the scene. If she’s a part of it, then she must stay in character. If the scene’s a big deal for another major character, she must stay respectful. But if neither, then “you just kind of go, ‘So what are you doing this weekend?’ [Soap Opera Digest, February 4, 2013]”

Erik Valdez (ex-Trey) found keeping his character in a death coma was extremely hard, because he, as an actor and a person, felt incredibly moved by the deep, heartfelt emotions expressed by his co-stars through their characters. Trey was supposed to be brain-dead, but Valdez was on the verge of crying. “…you have other characters coming in and they are saying these beautiful, wonderful monologues and they are reminiscing and the difficult part there is not breaking down during it — not from a character standpoint but from a real-life standpoint, because people are saying good-bye to Erik, their castmate. [Soap Opera Digest, February 4, 2013]”

Gossip for the week of 11-Feb-2013

by Carol Banks Weber

It occurred to me that whenever Caleb’s shown himself to Lucy, it’s in a dream form. Could this pave the way for Michael Easton to do his own DID story? Is John McBain suffering from multiple personality disorder?

TPTB should ask Adrienne Barbeau (ex-Suzanne; Argo) back. After all, this actress-turned-author penned the 2010 “Love Bites… A Vampyres Of Hollywood” novel that depicts the blood-sucking and werewolf scene quite accurately, as if she were one of the creatures herself. Her love story within a horror movie humanizes and grounds the supernatural while bringing to the forefront a strong but vulnerable female hero juggling the hunt with a love affair. The well-received novel is available in ebook form now (and makes “Love In Maine” read like a Nancy Drew series).

John Stamos (ex-Blackie) visited the GH studio last week to visit with his pal Kin Shriner (Scotty). How long before he’s asked to make a brief cameo?

A great many GH stars will make it back to the soap in time for the 50th anniversary in April, or even earlier, including possibly, maybe Stefan Cassadine, Nikolas Cassadine, Brenda Barrett, Robert Scorpio, Holly Sutton, Emily Bowen Quartermaine. Look for head writer Ron Carlivati to bring back the legendary Spencer v. Cassadine feud and that curse Helena put on Luke and Laura for starters, as well as a giant cross-promotional push, with the GH stars making TV appearances on The View.

Robin Scorpio Drake’s story is on hiatus until her portrayer can make room in her directorial schedule for another return, maybe by March.

Livvie and Caleb will not survive after Sam and John get through with them. The two star-crossed vampire lovers from PC are just guest stars, returned as a nod to the 1990s spinoff, nothing more. This week, Sam’s baby will go missing. Two guesses who has Danny.

Everything culminates in the April Nurses’ Ball. But don’t expect just hearts, flowers, and Lucy in her skivvies. The villains will drop in, causing mayhem, murder, and mass chaos, just as Jerry Jacks did for the March 2005 Metro Court massacre.

The hunt for the missing Quartermaine heir might turn up twins. –Happy New Years, Daytime Dish, January 31, 2013

Friends, my ass. Elizabeth and A.J. will go there. Laura catches the two of them in a liplock. According to Happy New Years, Elizabeth and Maxie may have another go around at each other, reviving their enemy status.

GH may very well survive its 50th anniversary showing in April to see another fall season. ABC Daytime is so impressed with the improvements overall, and all under budget, that it’s okay with keeping its last soap around for the interminable future. “If ABC drops them mid 2014 PP is going to pick them right up. GH is about as safe as any soap can be into 2015. [Daytime Dish, anon drop, January 27, 2013]”

What does Tequan Richmond (T.J.; Everybody Hates Chris) think about the new boy in town wooing Molly away from his character? Hop on Twitter and ask. Me, I think it’s foul they don’t even develop this T.J. recast and his story more. Of course the Great White Hope will steal Golden Princess away.

Jon Lindstrom (Kevin) may feel looser with his current GH return, but fans are seeing another character entirely, Kevin’s psycho brother Ryan. If rumors are correct, Lindstrom will soon play the twins in their entirety, just like Michael Easton will with Caleb and John.

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