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'General Hospital' fan recap: Brace for impact

Season 54 | Episodes 79–83| Aired Jul 25-29, 2016

Franco is such a polarizing character for General Hospital viewers. Although it was during James Franco’s tenure that Franco was a murdering sociopath, Roger Howarth’s Franco still bears the scars of that legacy. There’s little doubt that the current Franco is pretty much One Life To Live’s Todd’s personality. To be clear, that’s original Todd, not Victor-Todd.

So the question begs: Is Elizabeth going to be Franco’s “Blair”? He has failed relationships with Carly and Nina under his belt. While the Nina pairing could easily recur, Carly is definitely in the rearview mirror of his life. Right now, all of Franco’s eggs are in the Elizabeth basket. Elizabeth, albeit with trepidation, is starting to embrace the idea of dating Franco. Of course, every time she moves an inch in his direction, something seems to happen to pull her back.

At the hospital, as Franco arrives to pick up Elizabeth, Amy alerts Valerie that she saw Franco in a patient’s room, holding a flower and a vial. Valerie aggressively frisks Franco, finding both of the items Amy mentioned. While the flower is for Elizabeth, Franco claims he found the empty vial on the floor of his art therapy patient’s room and was merely throwing it away. Valerie sends the vial to be tested.

Franco and Elizabeth do go on their date, but Franco’s idea of something secluded raises Elizabeth’s guard, so they head to the Floating Rib. Franco wonders if Elizabeth was uncomfortable being some place private with him, and instead Elizabeth comes clean about her conversation with Ric, who prompted her to go out with Franco. Franco puts it on Elizabeth to decide if she trusts him. Deciding she does, the two head to his old art studio, where Elizabeth noticeably flinches when he locks and chains the door.

Back at the hospital, the patient Franco had visited suddenly dies just as the vial tests positive for derisifol. And while Amy jumps to the top of viewers’ suspect list, it’s clear that Franco is now at the top of the PCPD’s. Will Elizabeth believe in Franco’s claims of innocence enough to stand by him?

Back on Cassadine Island, Lulu is horrified by the corpse she has discovered in the tunnels. Seeing a bracelet and an earring, she wonders if it could be her absent father, Luke. Hearing one of Valentin’s henchmen approach, Lulu knocks him out and takes his gun. Returning to the living room, she manages to put a pause on Valentin’s plan to kill everyone by training the gun on him. But Lulu’s not exactly an imposing figure, even armed, and she is quickly disarmed. Luckily, Jason and Sam mange to elude their captor in time to come down and take out the guards, causing Valentin to flee.

The next thing for the Scooby Doo group to do is to plot their island escape. Jason and Sam look for an out, while the rest stay with a bleeding Kevin, whose condition is deteriorating. Laura, following Kevin’s instructions, removes the bullet with MacGyver-level skills, but he soon becomes febrile. A mysterious island girl, Daphne, arrives and offers antibiotics—though Lulu is more amazed at Daphne’s address, 13 Amiklon St., which was the return address on the empty envelope that Helena willed her. Ava is on hand for comic relief, rolling her eyes at Lulu’s self-absorption. Lulu, for her part, does keep her suspicions about the body being Luke’s a secret. Jason and Sam return, having found an airplane. Jason has no memories of piloting a plane but is assured he does have the skill set. Unfortunately, in mid-flight, the plane runs out of gas and the group has to brace for impact.

Having spied Kristina and Parker’s kiss, Sonny quickly makes his presence known to his daughter. Sonny is dismayed to learn that Parker was Kristina’s professor, but has no negative response to the possibility that his eldest daughter may be gay. Kristina still worries that Sonny won’t love her if she is gay. Sonny promises that Kristina is his daughter, no questions, no matter what. Alexis also disapproves of Parker’s involvement, and running into Parker at the coffee shop, Alexis asks Parker to back off so Kristina won’t be hurt. Alexis also drops a hint about the dean finding out, and Parker writes Kristina a goodbye letter. Kristina is devastated, enough so that she comes clean to Aaron about sleeping with Parker. Aaron is okay with the sex, since they never declared themselves exclusive, but realizing Parker’s gender causes him to ask Kristina for space.

Speaking of Alexis, she was front and center for Julian’s arraignment. Scott is Julian’s lawyer, and all of the tricks in the book—including Julian’s idea to be released into Alexis’ custody—don’t win Julian bail. It’s a laughable concept, as generally defendants aren’t released to people they’re accused of attempting to murder. Julian never expected it to work, but he does declare that he still sees love in Alexis’ eyes. At this point, Julian’s repeated declarations of love are becoming uncomfortable and a bit unstable. Is Julian going to plead insanity?

Maxie’s suspicions get the better of her and she enacts a typical Maxie plan to exile Claudette from Crimson and Port Charles. Knowing there needs to be cause to fire Claudette, Maxie sends a Spinelli virus to Claudette’s computer. Meanwhile, Claudette is over at the apartment, batting her wide-eyed innocence to Nathan and telling him she is only after closure. Nathan believes her and calls Maxie to stand down, but it’s too late. The virus works and corrupts all of Claudette’s graphic designs, but a savvy Claudette has reverse-malware already installed on her computer. The virus is tracked back to Maxie’s computer. Claudette announces she is resigning and leaving Port Charles, an obvious ploy for sympathy. But Nina secretly compliments Maxie for doing the right thing. Both of them urge the other to forgive themselves for past misdeeds.

Claudette heads back to the apartment to say goodbye to Nathan, who offers to drive her to the airport. On the way, the car breaks down, Claudette feigns a dead cell phone, and then—whoopsy daisy—trips and falls. Fearing a possible nearby bear, she and Nathan retreat to the car, where they share fond memories of their life together as their old song plays on the radio. Meanwhile, Maxie looks for Nathan and ends up having yet another chat with Griffin, curiously managing to leave the name Claudette out of the entire conversation.

In other happenings about town:
-Jordan asks Curtis to be the man T.J. needs in his life. After some back and forth, Curtis agrees. Neither mentions that T.J. is fully grown and capable of deciding his own life.
-Naomi continues to learn more about Elizabeth, getting clarification that Franco and Elizabeth aren’t related via Heather Webber. Speaking of whom, Naomi pays a visit.
-Finn is still upset that his research was destroyed, acknowledging that his medication controls symptoms but isn’t a cure.

And, in unsurprising, yet exciting news, it looks as though Tyler Christopher is headed back to town!

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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