The People vs. Tony Geary
I liked life so much better when I operated under the assumption that everything bad about General Hospital was solely the fault of Bob Guza, and that the lack of rioting by the cast was just an example of their professionalism. When a certain daytime icon began being destroyed in a systematic faction and became history-denouncing and unlikable, my first reaction was, "For the love of Xenu, Guza, will you stop at nothing in your quest to be terrible?"
Except it turns out that while Bob Guza ruins most things, he doesn't ruin everything and cannot be fully blamed for the curious case of Luke Spencer, since Luke's portrayer is the story's biggest cheerleader and has taken to the streets (or, more accurately, the soap mags, but the image of Tony Geary roaming the streets proselytizing about Luke's story arc is the only amusing part of this debacle) to chastise viewers who are unhappy with the way Luke has been written.
If you are perplexed by a Luke who cheats on Laura and chooses a mumbly grifter over his own children, prepare to get schooled after the jump!
"Luke has faced his mortality, and that changes people...[we've] reinvented him as a fuller, more mature man facing the end of his life...whenever that may be"
I literally cannot comprehend this version of Luke being described as mature. It does not compute. Unless he is using "mature" as "older". That I can see, especially since the average Port Charles lifespan is shockingly low.
"Through Ethan, who is so like him and who shares his demons and dreams, there seemed to be a perfect opportunity to really take a hard look at what he's accomplished, what he's failed at and what's left for him"
Dude, you don't need Ethan for that! Here, I'll sum it up for you:
What he's accomplished: ruining one of the most beloved legacies in daytime
What he's failed at: entertaining the ever-dwindling number of GH viewers
What's left for him: poorly written shenanigans
There you go! You can send Ethan back to wherever he came from now.
"It's interesting that fans have never been angry with Lucky for the way he's talked to Luke," Geary says in his character's defense.
That IS interesting! It's COMPLETELY interesting that my mind went to "sympathy" and "affection" before anger when discussing a character who has done little more than dare to be mad at the father who blatantly disrespects him, judges him, dismissively refers to him as having a dead-end life in which he raises other men's children and has a hearty chuckle at that time Lucky was kidnapped and brainwashed.
I completely love this justification, and by "love", I mean "can't compute because my brain exploded". "All of these people are mad at Luke for being a douche, but what about Lucky?!?! He's the mean one! He's mean and disrespectful and...he's mean! To Luke! Make him stop!"
"Whether or not Ethan turns out to be his son, the fact remains that Luke had an affair on Laura," Geary acknowledges. "Of course, fans aren't happy with that."
I could almost feel him rolling his eyes dismissively in that last sentence, perhaps because I am paranoid and have an overactive imagination.
"But you know what? It doesn't make him love Laura any less. This is the way life is. I've always known that Luke has had women on the side."
This is me speechless. Literally, all I could muster when I first read that was a shocked "...". I know he has mentioned Luke visiting hookers before and I either repressed it or wrote it off as some sort of hallucination. "This is the way life is"? If life means having one of the best couples in all of daytime set on fire for a tawdry and stupid, and boy is it stupid, story, I want no part of it. In fact, to quote one of the worst movies of the late 90s, I DOAN'T WAHNT YOUR LAHF, MR. GEARY.
"He grew up in a whorehouse."
Is this the new "Deke locked Sonny in a closet when he was younger, so please excuse the ensuing decades of terrible behavior"?
"I've said for years that he has successfully separated sex from love all his life."
"I've said it so many times! Why do I still have to explain this to you? God, you guys are lame."
"That doesn't mean he wasn't totally devoted to Laura."
Um...that is actually exactly what it means.
"I have always embraced challenging the fans"
Thank you for taking time out of your day to do this community outreach, Mr. Geary, and doing your best to educate the poor, dumb fans who don't get the genius of your new, dark version of Luke Spencer!
"But they have a tendency to want to freeze you in time. They want to keep that character what he was when they were happy."
This is highly reminiscent of Julie Hanan Carruthers accusing people who were unhappy with All My Children of rewriting the show in their heads and imagining stories that never actually took place. Like, what GH is doing with Luke is just too good and we, the fans, are just being selfish by not recognizing that. We're living in the past and it is totally cramping Tony Geary's style!
"But life changes. People change. I think if they stick with it, they're going to be okay with it. If they're not, they're not and that's okay, too. I'm thrilled that they're going to be challenged."
"If the viewers we have right now are idiots who don't recognize sheer brilliance when they see it, that's okay. I pity them for living such sheltered, sad existences, but it's okay."
On Luke's ongoing battle with his son Lucky: "Lucky carries Luke's rage and his sense of justice," Geary says. "It's not the same sense of justice that Lucky has, because they come from different worlds. But they both have an inability to get on with things when they face something unjust"
That answer was a convoluted, unintelligible mess of vagueness. I especially like how quick he is to point out that Lucky doesn't have the SAME sense of justice as Luke, as if a shared sense of justice would mean that Luke caught Lucky cooties.
On What Luke has learned from Ethan: "To love life again", states Geary. "Luke has been looking at life as if it were over, the best years gone. He's not kicking it with the relish that he used to. Ethan is reacquainting him with the reasons he loves life. They're so amazingly connected."
First of all, the phrase "kicking it" brought to mind a host of terrible middle school memories wherein teachers would try their hardest to use slang they thought was in, and was invariably hopelessly outdated and cringe worthy. Stop trying to make fetch happen, Tony!
Secondly, if only there was something in Luke's life that he could love! It's such a tragic shame, isn't it, that he is unmarried, with no children and no siblings in Port Charles for him to love. No wonder he glommed on so quickly to this mysterious con-man. Childless, single orphans are very easy marks and obviously Luke was no exception!
Thirdly, his discussion of Ethan in this interview, and others, is always spoken in the most breathless and reverent tones. It makes me uncomfortable and reminds me of nothing so much as Bob Guza's relentless worship of Jason Morgan.
On Luke's attraction to Holly: "He'll always have feelings for her", nods Geary. "She's a con woman. She seduces men to get their money. He loves that about her. It's a turn-on".
RIP, The Real Holly Sutton. I'll always like you more than your Guzafied, poorly-written 21st century incarnation. At least we'll always have YouTube to remember how you used to be!
On what makes Luke and Tracy's marriage work: "She's his constant and is the best challenge Luke ever had," Geary remarks. "And I do believe that they have great, rough sex. I think they slap each other around and love it. Why do you think he calls her Spanky?"
I imagined a variety of horrifying explanations for the Spanky nickname and yet none of them managed to be quite as disturbing as the one offered here.
I think it's clear that my hatred of Luke is not going to end and is, perhaps, amplified by the fact that Tony Geary is so damn giddy about the direction Luke has taken, even if that direction is terrible.
Special thanks to Beth R., Simone and Charles for alerting me to this crime against humanity!