‘General Hospital’ 2015 Year In Review: Critical But Stable Condition

Jacklyn Zeman, Dee Wallace, Jane Elliot, Anthony Geary "General Hospital" Set The Prospect Studios ABC Studios 03/03/15 © Howard Wise/jpistudios.com 310-657-9661 Episode # 13274 U.S. Airdate 04/01/15

The Couples Who Defined The Year

It was a puzzling year for General Hospital in the love department. The sudser has a ton of couples but that didn’t necessarily translate into a lot of romance. With only a few exceptions, GH’s pairings had the prerequisite subjective levels of chemistry, but necessary creative support was various levels of inconsistent, non-existent and sometimes both. It’s important to note, these selections are not our picks for Best/Worst Couples of 2015, but they are the couples that defined GH’s 2015 — for better or worse.

Brad and Lucas

MISSING: Have you seen this promising couple? Last seen discussing a secret no one cared about. Photo Credit:(ABC/Rick Rowell)
MISSING: Have you seen this promising couple? Last seen discussing a secret no one cared about. Photo Credit:(ABC/Rick Rowell)

You’re probably wondering why Brad and Lucas made it on the list when their story vanished months ago. Well the fact that this couple’s story has been so absent says a lot about GH’s lack of follow through with its romantic stories in 2015. How can fans truly invest in any story if we don’t feel guaranteed that we’ll get a beginning, a middle and an end in a timely matter? Parry Shen has made a fanbase for himself with the help of his awesome personality. Ryan Carnes is one of the best looking actors in daytime. Together they have an easy chemistry and fun story line…when we see them.

The couple did provide some of the sweetest moments of the year with Brad’s impromptu proposal at the Nurses Ball and Lucas’ declaration of love on top of General Hospital’s hub. A lot of fans wanted to watch the shenanigans of their wedding planning and see them walk down the aisle but didn’t get that.

Morgan and Kiki

Morgan and Kiki were heavily played, given more love scenes (only one or two which sadly is a a lot by GH standards) than other couples and provided some major conflict. Yet they’ve never really been that popular of a pairing and, despite the effort, they still aren’t.

Their journey this year started out with some very poor story telling choices which included them drugging Michael and Morgan cheating on Kiki with her mother. Both characters have much better individual stories now that have improved them as a pairing. Morgan is dealing with his bipolar disorder and dysfunctional family. Kiki became a hot mess and is now working to climb her way out of rockbottom. Though it’s still hard to buy into Morgan and Kiki as a great love story, it is possible with some continued character development that their romance could eventually flourish. But at a certain point, GH may just need to cut their losses and move on.

Julian and Alexis

#JulexisIsLove as our editor likes to say. Great couple, lacked consistent story follow up in the first half of 2015. Photo Credit: © Howard Wise/jpistudios.com. U.S. Airdate 03/24/15
#JulexisIsLove as our editor likes to say. Great couple, lacked consistent story follow up in the first half of 2015. Photo Credit: © Howard Wise/jpistudios.com. U.S. Airdate 03/24/15

One would think Julian and Alexis would have received a better story than they did in 2015. #Julexis spent the majority of the year treading water with no real semblance of direction. Sure, they had a lot of sex scenes, but William DeVry’s nice physique isn’t the only reason why fans like Julexis. Set up as each other’s “great potential love that got away until fate intervened” there’s a lot of story to tell that doesn’t involve role playing games. What made the pairing a popular one was their great story. Julian and Alexis had a one night stand a long time ago, end up finding each other years later and falling in love. They provide a more mature perspective on relationships with challenges such as juggling an extended, blended family. Like Sonny and Carly (see below), there were plenty of small moments here and there, but inconsistencies in storytelling led to lots of non-happenings.

Things have started to move in a different direction for them. Julian is out of the mob (again) and they have moved into a nice new home together. The Davis Girls have been reunited and Julian interacts with his sister and daughter more (though there’s still room for improvement with Lucas). In December, with the blessing of her daughters, Julian popped the question to Alexis at the Nutcracker Gala. It was a great way to end the year for them, and hopefully 2016 will bring about an interesting journey on the road to the #JulexisWedding.

Duke and Anna and Sloane

I’d say this was one of the worst triangles of the year but I’m not sure if you can call what happened with Duke, Anna and Sloane a triangle or not. It’s really unclear where the writers were going for with this one. When Duke was brought back from the dead in 2012, fans were expecting to see a lot of his classic super couple pairing with Anna. Story instead focused on dividing them further apart and 2015 was the final nail in the coffin.

For some reason, Duke had chosen Sonny, a man he barely knew, over his lady love. Then Anna’s former colleague Sloane showed up in Port Charles to caused trouble for her or try to seduce her (it’s still rather unclear). With an unstable foundation, Anna and Sloane’s confusing romance did not gain fanfare as anticipated, regardless the recast. Duke became a mob war causality, Anna became a cold-blooded murderer and Sloane became fish food. The only thing this story line accomplished with a mess to clean up and a pissed off fanbase.

Sonny and Carly

No on-screen journey for this supercouple. Rich history, no follow up for most of 2015. Photo Credit: (ABC/Todd Wawrychuk)
No on-screen journey for this supercouple. Rich history, no follow up for most of 2015. Photo Credit: (ABC/Todd Wawrychuk)

It’s no surprise Sonny and Carly were one of the defining couples of 2015. With a huge fanbase (spanning nearly two decades and three recasts), it’s a nice reward for the viewers still holding a torch for this dynamic pair that their love is back in track. Unfortunately, the story presented for them ignored their history. While definite “must see TV” in the past, the two hadn’t been romantic (one night stands and limo sex aside) in nearly ten years. The biggest issue with revisiting CarSon after all these years is the journey leading to their fifth (and allegedly final) marriage was non-existent and inconsistent. Carly sleeps with Sonny ahead of her almost wedding to Franco; Sonny goes to jail and suddenly Carly realizes she can’t live without Sonny? Sonny realizes it’s always been her who’s owned his heart?

The sorta beginning was followed up with no middle and then they were the loves of each other’s lives again. It would have been nice to see a chase, an attempt at not making the same mistakes that doomed their previous relationships and actually see them fall in love again. Keep in mind, this isn’t a criticism of Sonny and Carly as a couple, but the failing of the former creative team to give us the story of watching them rekindle their romance rather than telling us. Bar a handful of nice moments (like Sonny’s proposal), the on-screen journey for this supercouple was less than super.

Michael And Sabrina

GH really needs a new young super couple and this pairing could have been that. The actors look adorable together and have a very sweet, almost innocent chemistry. But then they were quickly given a poorly constructed obstacle based on a rewrite and the whole thing unraveled fast. Both these actors are talented but they need better writing than what they have been given. In theory this who’s the daddy/love triangle mashup that has been set up should be good but it asks for too much suspension of belief from both the audience and the characters.

Sam and Patrick

The TVSource Magazine staff loved this pairing so much that we named them one of the best couples of 2014. Their courtship brought some much needed sizzle to GH when they first moved out of the friend zone. But former leading man Jason Thompson was pushed into a supporting role instead being given a major story line, a huge misstep that ended up costing the show dearly. Sam and Patrick’s relationship eventually received more screen time after months of missed opportunities, though their journey was oft derailed to involve Sam in the never ending non-existent search for Jakeson’s past. Of course, when the real follow through came to fruition, it was just in time to blow up the couple for the Jake is Jason reveal. After Thompson’s departure, I can’t help but feel like we were given too little, too late.

Franco and Nina

When the figurative knife in her back becomes a literal knife in his 20 years later, and you find love anyway. #WasteHisTime2015 Photo. Credit: © Sean Smith/jpistudios.com. U.S. Airdate 08/03/15
When the figurative knife in her back becomes a literal knife in his 20 years later, and you find love anyway. #WasteHisTime2015 Photo. Credit: © Sean Smith/jpistudios.com. U.S. Airdate 08/03/15

Franco and Nina went through a lot this year – trips to the jailhouse and looney bin, LSD hallucinations, sudden marriages to Ric Lansing, murderous mothers, dead ex-husbands, etc. Despite all that though they were one of the more stable couples in Port Charles in 2015. Unlike many of the pairings on GH, it didn’t feel like Nina and Franco’s romance had an expiration date. Their fans could just relax and invest in the story line.

Michelle Stafford and Roger Howarth are some of the biggest stars in the business and can create some smoking hot chemistry. They know how to sell the material they are given even when it’s a little out there. It would be amazing to see what they could do with a firmly structured story line. Their year was pretty crazy and at times too campy but for the last few months they’ve been finding a bit of normalcy. I feel like 2016 is going to be a very good year for them and their fans.

 

 

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About the Author

Jenn Bishop was TVSource Magazine's Soap Editor. She's a thirty-something fan girl of soapy television and anything involving Joss Whedon. She began sharing her views on daytime soaps in 2012 with her blog Save Our Suds. A former philosophy major, she loves discussing different view points with fellow TV addicts and aficionados. When not watching television, she enjoys art, live music, exploring the Midwest food scene, and drinking too many lattes. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceJenn.

4 comments

  1. Ironic that they trashed Sonny and Carly’s reunion and relationship when their marriage is still going strong more than 2 years later. One of only 2 couples on this list who are together today. Brad and Lucas being #2.

  2. Yes. Overall I enjoyed your recap of the year. GH is the only soap I watch. Always here for it and glad to see it moving forward at a more rapid pace with story lines. Thanks.

  3. Sam/Jason/Liz as well as Lulu/Dante were including in the story line section of the article. Thanks for reading!

  4. Is there another page? Feels like this article ended suddenly. All those couples but not Jason & Elizabeth?

Comments are closed.