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'General Hospital' fan recap: An indecent proposal

Season 53 | Episodes 58–62 | Aired Jun 22–26, 2015

It’s difficult to pick a place to start discussing this week’s General Hospital episodes. Do you start with the insanity of Jennifer Smith? Do you start with the seemingly inevitable destruction of Lulu and Dante? Do you start with the increasing ruthless behavior of Nikolas? Do you start with melodrama of the Michael/Avery storyline? Or do you bite the bullet and go with the frippery of the Nina/Franco/Rick/Madeline/”Denise” situation?

Let’s just get the latter out the way. If you recall, Nina came on the show as a big ball of crazy-pants. And while her revenge list may have dissipated, Nina has not displayed the most coherent thinking. Her impetuous marriage to Ric is giving her doubts, but Nina is far too fixated on Franco to truly question Ric and discover his ties to Madeline. Franco plays the fake-dating card with “Denise” in order to make Nina jealous. “Denise” is happy to go along to take her mind off of Morgan.

Their shared kiss, complete with lipstick and gum-sharing (and spoon-gum-removal) was humorous, but even “Denise” wants to know what Franco is up to, so the sham clearly has a short lifespan. Meanwhile, Nina is poised to discover her husband has just bedded her mother, but her poor perception skills will surely drag this out until her money actually comes in to play. Ric and Madeline’s plan to re-commit Nina is curious, considering she was (somehow) recently given a clean bill of mental health.

Moving on to the ELQ drama, Nikolas’ plan comes to fruition—ironically, through no actions of his own. After Lulu and Dillon help connect the dots, everyone realizes Nikolas is Rosalie’s secret boss. Jake uses a fake tape of Rosalie’s conversation (actually a Taylor Swift album) to get the traitorous assistant to spill all (except her eternal secret). Tracy and Michael work together to nullify Nikolas’ 50 percent voting share by using the always-in-play 1 percent share of Lucy Coe. But Lucy shocks everyone when she firmly sides with Nikolas, ousting Michael in the process. Lucy calls out Michael for being young and inexperienced (true), Nikolas having more business experience (apparently true) … but then loses any logic points by bringing the custody situation into her reasoning. Lucy, whom Tracy points out blackmailed and married Alan, thinks that Michael went too far with using judicial influence. Because, uh, Sonny is a model citizen? Whatever, Lucy.

With Nikolas in control, his first order of business is to blackmail Rosalie into recanting her police statement against him. When Rosalie’s secret is finally revealed, will it have been worth all of these duplicitous deeds she has committed in its name?

Lucy’s reasoning gives Michael pause. In a lengthy conversation with Sabrina, he admits he has started to miss his family. His conflict is real, as Sonny did kill A.J. and serve minimal prison time. Michael also knows Avery is safer with him. But Michael is well aware he did go after custody out of revenge. Sabrina flat-out suggests Michael return Avery to Sonny. Wouldn’t, oh, visitation be a smaller step? Michael isn’t sure, as it might send the message that he is okay with everything that his parents did. The radio silence he’s given them since Halloween might suggest otherwise. But Princess Sabrina works her magic, and by week’s end, Michael, Sabrina, and Avery are gracing Sonny’s doorstep.

Lulu and Dante are apparently headed for the classic soap-opera trope — a couple torn asunder by secrets and misunderstandings. It’s minimally possible Lulu is in the right by keeping Lucky’s perilous situation from her husband. Of course, if she really wanted to keep a secret, meeting with Dillon at her apartment and carrying on a conversation in a hallway weren’t the brightest moves. Then again, Valerie could have cared more about her cousin Lulu than her cousin-in-law Dante and kept her mouth shut. It took Valerie all of three seconds to run to Dante and drop the bombshell that something was going on with the two ex-paramours. Lulu ends up digging her hole of lies deeper, especially after Dante follows her and sees her meeting up with a towel-clad Dillon at the side doors of the Quartermaine mansion. What adult wanders around his multigenerational family home in a towel? It’s not like it’s a one-room above Kelly’s. They’re called robes.

It only worsens when Lulu decides to follow her parents to Canada to help with the Lucky rescue mission. She offers Dante a lame cover story about caring for Grandma Leslie in Italy, and Dante doesn’t let on that he’s not buying a millisecond of it. Instead, he throws his phone and tells Valerie there’s only one reason for Lulu to be out of town with Dillon. He concedes a second reason being to help her parents, but without knowing how right he is, his first reaction is to plant a kiss on Valerie. The question is, will Valerie act on her obvious crush?

The Canadian hijinks of Luke and Laura are no more clear. First, Jennifer Smith (original actress Holly Gagnier) reappears, claiming to be responsible for Lucky’s disappearance. For the multitude of viewers who probably went “Wait, who?” here’s a quick refresher on the character’s history.

Jennifer declares Luke her “great white whale” and offers Lucky’s safe return in exchange for one night with her ex-fiancé. Jennifer likens it to Indecent Proposal, the movie that starred that actress who looked like Jackie Templeton (both Demi Moore, for the uninformed). Laura calls a spade a spade, and tells Jennifer that sex via coercion is rape. Jennifer throws Luke’s rape of Laura into play, but Laura is unruffled by the remark. Luke, despondent, agrees to the offer, but when morning comes, it turns out that he drank himself unconscious and nothing happened (despite the ripped shirt and the nylon restraints).

But it’s all a moot point, as Jennifer is just a player in the confusing ordeal, not the mastermind. It seems someone sent her there to mess with Luke and Laura, but Jennifer doesn’t know who is behind it either. Luke and Laura are dismayed to find themselves no closer to saving their son. The arrival of Lulu doesn’t help matters, as Laura basically sends her daughter to her (hotel) room with orders to stay out of it. But as the week closes, the next throwback player is introduced, as Holly Sutton, gun in hand, makes an appearance.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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