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'General Hospital' fan recap: Schemes and secrets

Season 54 | Episodes 84–88| Aired Aug 1–5, 2016

It’s fascinating to watch General Hospital’s Jordan Ashford. Despite a less-than-stellar record as an undercover agent and as police commissioner, her favorite thing to do is declare that police will handle things and glower when “someone” (okay, it’s usually Jason) takes things into their own hands. Between that and her indignation when Curtis or Andre disagrees with her, it becomes difficult to take her seriously. But then again, would it be Port Charles if we took law enforcement (Valerie, Paul, Mayor Lomax, etc …) seriously?

The Scooby Doo Island gang survives their plane crash, looking no worse for the wear. They’re pretty quickly rescued and head back to Port Charles. Jordan’s first order of business is to slap cuffs on Jason for Nikolas’ murder. She doesn’t believe Jason’s story that Nikolas faked his own death and didn’t die on Cassadine Island. Luckily, Lulu and Dante are on hand to confirm the events, but Jordan still ponders charges for Jason for fleeing the jurisdiction.

Meanwhile, Valentin has made his way to Port Charles and almost instantaneously comes across an inebriated and lovesick Nina. Adding to her unlucky-in-love laundry list, Nina and Valentin hook up and spend the night in her Metro Court room. Valentin hears a voicemail message from Spencer, away at drama camp, and heads out of the hotel, leaving Nikolas’ burner phone behind. Nina and Curtis check the phone out and both somehow recognize Spencer’s voice. They bring the phone to the police, where Jordan issues a warrant for Valentin.

But fear not for Spencer, because Uncle Sonny is on the case! Valentin shows up at Spencer’s camp, offering to take the young heir away from his performance of Richard III and bring him to his father. But just as the two are about to leave, Uncle Sonny arrives and puts a kibosh on the plan. Sonny sends Spencer off to the stage, and he and Valentin proceed to have a very brief confrontation. Sonny immediately fingers Valentin, thanks to his forearm tattoo. Valentin pulls his gun, knowing Sonny won’t pull his for fear of harming innocent children. Just as Valentin thinks he has the upper hand, Jason arrives and sucker punches his newest nemesis. This is, of course, followed by Jordan’s arrival and her dismay that Jason didn’t alert the PCPD to his plans. Valentin is arrested for an illegal firearm, and charges are expected to be filed in Greece.

Julian is still sitting in custody, focused on the destruction of his marriage. Ava is stunned to find out that Julian did indeed try to kill Alexis for wearing a wire. Julian’s big plan is for Ava to help him escape custody. But what Julian doesn’t count on is that Ava is feeling a bit more law-abiding than usual following her brush with death, and wants to put her daughters’ well-being ahead of criminal activity. His next visitor is Sam, who makes it perfectly clear that she is done with her father. Julian plays the Danny card, pointing out that severing their relationship will be an issue if Danny needs more bone marrow in the future. Sam is disgusted by the perceived threat, but gladly points out that Jason has been tested and is a perfect match, so it’s a moot point. Sam turns to leave, but collapses before she reaches the door.

Morgan decides to surprise Kiki … by having Lucy (who is now in real estate) find them an apartment. Kiki is justifiably freaked out by her only-recently-reconciled-and-bipolar boyfriend springing such a huge step on her without discussion. Instead of the happy response Morgan was hoping for, Kiki’s first inclination is to ask if he is off his medication. Morgan insists that he is just excited, not manic, but one can’t really fault Kiki for not being able to tell the difference. Morgan still wants things to be like the old days, when he impulsively married and lived life without a plan, but Kiki is ready to grow up and act like an adult. The first order of adult business? Group STI (STD?) testing for MG (Mycoplasma genitalium) after Darby tells Dillon she has tested positive.

To Carly’s great surprise, her ex-husband Jasper Jax arrives in Port Charles, ready to tear into Carly for digging into Josslyn’s kidney donation. It seems obvious that Jax may have been the one that arranged the whole thing, but that doesn’t stop him from taking a snide position about Carly respecting her daughter’s wishes. Honestly, from a perspective of logic and science, it’s difficult to find a reason not to find the donor. Carly swears up and down that she’s done with the search, but Nina continues to look and messages Carly about a promising leads. Jax sees the text and threatens to take Carly to court for custody of Josslyn.

On a more rational note, Jax pays a visit to his BFF Alexis. It’s nice to see that he’s there for her, especially as Alexis has just received notification of her hearing on possible disbarment for her Julian/Carlos–related actions. Alexis is distraught, having defined herself by her career for so long.

Franco’s stay with the PCPD as the suspected hospital killer is short-lived. While it’s always nice to see father and son time between Franco and Scotty, viewers are surely glad that they didn’t have to sit through another trial. Elizabeth comes to his rescue, verifying that Miss Prescott’s monitors were on when Franco came out of the patient’s room, and he was long gone from the hospital by the time she died with the monitors turned off. But the Franco-Elizabeth pairing hits a bump: Franco’s feelings are hurt because Elizabeth didn’t try and reach out during his brief incarceration. Thinking she doesn’t believe in him, Franco opts to walk away from their burgeoning relationship, starting now, to the surprise of a speechless Elizabeth.

After their stroll down memory lane (overnight in Nathan’s car), Claudette and Nathan make their way to the hospital. Claudette’s knee injury is apparently real, although the accompanying limp seems to vary based on the presence of an audience. Maxie (welcome back Kirsten Storms!) arrives and is relieved to find her fiancé in one piece, but she’s understandably uncomfortable when she learns of his evening accommodations. Nathan repeatedly reassures Maxie, but Claudette delights in needling her. Nathan’s response is to offer a quickie elopement, which morphs into him and Maxie pushing up their wedding date. Meanwhile, Griffin steps in to exam a patient and is stunned to find Claudette in the exam room. Claudette, for her part, seems equally shocked, yet thrilled to see her former clerical lover. Griffin doesn’t share her enthusiasm — he wonders why she’s in town, based on her past disdain for Nathan. Claudette stuns Maxie and Nathan by announcing she’s staying in Port Charles.

There is one question that continues to beg an answer: Who is murdering patients at General Hospital? Nurse Amy seems to be the current obvious suspect. But is it possible that Valerie, who’s ever-present at the hospital, is acting out because of her late mother’s years of suffering? Or is Griffin a possible suspect, for no other reason than being new-ish to town? Or could it be some random day player who has yet to reveal themselves?

General Hospital airs weekdays on ABC.

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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