This week in Port Charles, NY felt a lot like an old James Bond movie. From the docks to the mansions sprawled uptown, the city was entrapped in plans set by some dastardly denizens. There was a hefty helping of mind control and the triumphant return of a few good sociopaths. General Hospital had fallen back into its own stagnation of mob overload these last few weeks but hopefully the ending of this week is a picture of the wild excitement to come and without too much talk of territory and hits.
Planet of the Law Enforcement Apes
Now these were by far not some of my favorite scenes of the week, but I felt they perfectly illustrated my points that Nathan West and Dante Falconeri are bland, flat characters. In soaps, and especially on GH lately, we’ve seen a lot of characters who straddle the fence between good and bad, but these two cops are desperate to remain on the good side even if it makes them look like idiots to everyone else around them. PCPD is already a laughing stock, why make things harder on yourselves, partners?
Lulu Spencer-Falconeri has clearly been bored out of her mind for the last few weeks, living in domestic “bliss” with Dante and their son, but spending her downtime fantasizing about Maxie Jones’ sex life with Nathan and longing for her party girl days. It was this week that Dante gave her all the more incentive to break out of her monotonous everyday when they fought over Johnny Zacchara’s involvement with The Haunted Star. Like the simple man we’ve come to know him to be, Dante more or less forbade Lulu to work with Johnny who owned half of the boat, putting her on the spot by suggesting she sell her shares of her family heirloom. Though no one really believed his reasoning, he claimed that he just didn’t want Lulu involved in any criminal activity Johnny was sure to bring. Of course trying to tell someone as headstrong as Lulu what to do would only end badly so the situation blew up, so much so that Lulu had to seek counsel from her mother-in-law Olivia Falconeri. Olivia admitted that she has no room to give guidance considering she’s fallen for too many mobsters’ charms. The talk seemed to help as Lulu accepted Dante’s apology later that day, insisting that Johnny was out of the mafia and that working with him would be fine. Of course it’s not going to pan out that way. There’s no such thing as sunshine and roses co-existing in Port Charles, but it’ll be fun watching Dante come undone, sweating over Johnny’s undeniable charm working over his wife. Something tells me that those two won’t just be working on that boat together soon.
Nathan too showed his Neanderthal side this week. Aside from only wanting to see his girlfriend when she was naked and in his bed for the last few days, we got to witness another rare personality trait of his (other than stoic, confused, etc.) and that was jealousy. It’s been hinted at for a while now that Nathan is pretty possessive like when he got a little miffed at Maxie’s innocent yet saucy girl talk about Jake Doe with Lulu, but he was definitely jealous when Maxie explained her history with Johnny to him. They were in bed, of course, relaxing after one of their marathon sex sessions when the topic of Johnny came up and Maxie mentioned seeing him and knowing that her boyfriend and Dante both went to intimidate him as well, throwing Nathan off a bit especially hearing that they’d been in touch. Now I don’t think Nathan is possessive to a dangerous degree, but I can foresee him messing things up with Maxie down the line. It’s apparent that he’s a little uncomfortable with other men having a history with his girlfriend, maybe because his is so tortured and bleak, they’ve barely had time together unlike she’s had with Johnny or Spinelli. To me these were a bunch of very uncomfortable scenes, I felt bad for Maxie, especially when she had to reaffirm her feelings to make Nathan feel better. Either way, she popped on screen during her scenes with Johnny, the chemistry of the off-screen couple transferred to the fictional pair so seamlessly especially when they were gushing about a potential baby Harper, the name of their real life daughter! I hope Johnny gets to charm the pants off of one or both of these women because they need a smart man with confidence in their lives; plus, I’d really like to see those simple guys at PCPD shaking mad.
The private eye who cried phoenix
I’m not sure if this is a recent development or if things have always been so, but Sam McCall is an extremely meta character on General Hospital. Whenever something big goes down in town and Sam is in the middle of it, she always seems to know exactly what happens and says exactly what the audience is screaming at their TVs but no other character hears her out. In fact, they always think she’s a little crazy whenever she goes on one of her spiels. We were treated to just that this week when during her romantic evening with new beau Patrick Drake. Jake Doe slipped into her apartment armed like a US soldier with a mission to take her out. Also unknown to him, Jake is Helena Cassadine’s “soldier boy,” brainwashed to do her dirty bidding only to forget it as soon as she whispers for him to do so. She wants him to kill his wife from another life because she’s getting too close to uncovering the truth about him. Since Jake is still no Jason Morgan, following these orders is easy but as soon as he’s in he begins to have flashes of memories gone by – including Robin Scorpio-Drake appearing as his subconscious telling him to not go through with Helena’s quest. What impeccable timing she has too as her husband’s upstairs giving the business to another woman! Robin’s gone as soon as she’s come (as usual) and Jake is on the move again with his gun at the ready. He’s about ready to pop both Sam and Patrick off as they enjoy a post-coitus shower but more memories flood back. Fuzzy flashbacks of Sam and Jason posed on a bed come through as well as the swapping of the cheap Chinese figurines of a phoenix and a dragon. Those memories are strong enough to get Jake fleeing the scene, but not before he swipes the phoenix figurine.
Remarkably, only Sam hears Jake leaving which sets the scene for another crazy Sam situation. She notices the next day that the phoenix is missing and stresses its importance to Patrick who understands and tries to assure her that no one could have taken it. After searching the room, they give up and go their separate ways for the day. Jake’s hauled into General Hospital after being found out cold at the docks, near freezing to death. They recovered his duffel bag, but leave behind the phoenix figurine at the docks. It spends a whole day sitting there in plain sight as character after character looks right at it yet passes it by. It’s not until Lucas Jones is on the docks with his nephew Michael Quartermaine that the phoenix finally gets picked up. That figurine is the only thing Jake can really recall about that night, not even why he sputtered out on the docks, so when Carly Corinthos-Jacks comes to visit he asks her to look for it for him. But when she digs through his duffel bag she finds much more. Inside is incriminating evidence proving that Jake is the one who held Sam hostage. As usual, Carly promises to cover up someone else’s criminal activity (because Jake’s a good looking man) and keeps the contents secret from his doctors. But how long can she keep covering for these dangerous men until she’s the one getting directly hurt?
With the phoenix figurine still in play, Sam is likely to not give up until she finds out exactly what happened which will surely lead her right to Jake. With each week he seems to be getting closer to discovering his true nature, let’s hope Helena doesn’t give him a refresher conditioning course to wipe away all that progress! I’m happy that things are actually moving with this storyline. Hopefully it’s not just a tease to get us excited before heading into months of doldrums like with the Fluke storyline.