Friday, I'm In Love
I'd be a much happier person if General Hospital ran a "NO AWESOME WRITERS WERE HURT FOLLOWING THE FILMING OF THIS SHOW" disclaimer following a good episode. Because I worry about the repercussions our dear, brave Awesome Writer faces for outsmarting the show's state of the art security system, evading capture by armed guards and distracting Bob Guza with a well-timed "Is that Steve Burton over there, shirtless?" in order to bring us a good show.
And after Friday's episode, which featured multiple (!!!) genuinely great moments, who knows what kind of punishment Awesome Writer was given?! I keep imagining Awesome Writer being forced to replicate Franco's JASONMORGANJASONMORGANJASONMORGAN blackboard, or having to repeatedly watch Emily and Georgie's murders in slow motion, or something so sadistic that I can't wrap my brain around it. Because you just know that they won't let a show as good as Friday's slide without revenge.
Lucky hitting Liz and Nikolas with some knowledge was, obviously, amazing, but it wasn't the only amazing part of the end of Friday's show.
Dominic: If you ever wanted to take over the Corinthos organization, you can forget about that. The job is mine.
Johnny: That's quite the coup, huh?
Dominic: Yeah. Surreal, man. Sonny offering me the organization when he steps down. I mean, not that that's happening anytime soon, but still.
Johnny: Well, you're good.
Johnny: I'll give you that.
Dominic: I felt honored. Really. I mean, for a second there, I almost forgot that I was a cop, that I'm not gonna take over for Sonny, that I'm sending him to jail.
And Michael overheard the entire thing, because Dominante was stupid enough to tell Johnny this story in public, complete with a needless recap of his true motivation to someone who was already in on the secret (seriously, I can't tell if Johnny's facial expression was more "I already know all of that, dumbass" or Brandon Barash thinking, "How did I all of a sudden become pretty much an extra?")
But whatever, as silly as the setup may have been, I am completely excited to see what happens on tomorrow's show. I think I may have mentioned before, repeatedly, that I have grown to love Dominic Zamprogna and Drew Garrett and their interactions with each other. I was going to make a statement like, "I'd watch the two of them read the phone book", but that's sort of unnecessary because I watch them on GH, which is quite often as boring as watching them read the phone book. Either way, it should be good. I am not saying it WILL be good, because I don't want to get my hopes up, but the ingredients for good are there.
I am really looking forward to Michael's reaction to this, especially, because now all of his paranoid, jealous and completely off-kilter actions and comments to and about Dominante are justified. Will this push him completely off of the deep end? Because he's getting there!
Even Sonny is unsettled!
Michael: I took a bullet that was meant for you. I protected mom and Morgan when Dominic pulled a gun on them. I killed Claudia, and I went with the cover-up. If Dominic would have done any of that stuff, you'd probably let him take over the business right this second. I'm not perfect, you know. I've made a lot of mistakes. But I've been completely loyal to you and Jason my entire life. Why can't you be loyal to me?
"I've been completely devoted to you for the eighteen slash twelve years I've been on this earth!"
Sonny: Dominic hasn't even agreed to takeover. And even if he does, it's not gonna be for years from now, right?
Michael: Maybe. Unless somebody takes you out first.
IF FREAKING ONLY, MICHAEL. I speak from experience when I tell you not to pin your dreams on that star.
Michael: I mean, why won't you just admit that you don't want your brain-damaged son around? I'm an embarrassment to you.
I'm impressed with how Michael, when he's not getting his way, completely hits below the belt and tries to guilt Sonny into giving his high school student son control of his mafia empire. He played the "You got me shot" card AND "Sonny Corinthos doesn't care about brain damaged sons!" card in the same conversation! He has the makings of a truly skilled manipulator*. While his paternity may have been in question all those years ago, his maternity never was.
*I have faith in all of you that you read that in your head as ma-nipple-ator.
Speaking of Michael, it's amusing to me how horrified Sonny was that Maxie holds the key to the Claudia murder investigation.
Sonny: So, you're telling me that Michael's entire future now depends on Maxie Jones?
It physically pained him! I find that to be hilarious.
It's less amusing that Maxie is so blithely going along with making the world a better place for mobsters. But Mac coming in to question her was a nice twist.
I already went on the record as stating that the Friday cliffhanger was outstanding, and that the last line of the day ("You don't love me, Elizabeth. Otherwise you wouldn't be screwing my brother behind my back" OMFG) had me literally gasping with glee over the pure soapiness and then immediately groaning with pain when the scene, and the episode, faded out. Everything that led those three characters to that scene was equally compelling.
I contemplated filing legal paperwork to ensure that Awesome Writer always writes for Lulu. The rest of the writing staff far too often dips into the "shrieky, judgmental and awful" well, but not Awesome Writer! And when she has good writing, Julie Marie Berman is much more likely to tone down some of her tics and turn in a great performance, like she did on Friday.
Elizabeth: Ok, look, Lucky knows he's an addict. He's responsible for his own choices. We didn't force him to pick up that drink.
Lulu: Oh, yeah, just talk the talk. I mean, do you guys seriously believe that Lucky would be drinking if he hadn't found out that his brother was in love with his fiancee?
And the scenes with Lulu and Dominante were so, so good. I haven't been invested in Lulu's love life since the first eight minutes of her relationship with Logan (I guess you could say, then, that I was invested in exactly 75% of it), but I really like the two of them together. She broke my heart a little bit, with her sadness, bitterness and guilt about the clusterfuck that her brothers are in.
Lulu: I don't know why I'm so upset. I think this is gonna be better in the long run. Lucky's finding out what I've known all along, that love doesn't last.
Dominante: It does sometimes. People in my family been married for centuries.
Lulu: Like your mom? You don't even know your dad. And my parents' great love crashed and burned, and now Lucky's has, too. And I just don't want him to use it as an excuse to be a drunk the rest of his life.
Dominante: You are way too cynical.
Lulu: No, I think that this is a reality check that I needed. I was starting to get sentimental about us, but I think you're right about us getting too close. You came to Port Charles to bust Sonny at any cost, and I think you need to finish the job and move on.
So very good and so very sad. Fingers crossed that this is the start of a consistently well-written Lulu.
I'll give you all a few minutes to point and laugh at me before I continue.
Then there was Nikolas and Elizabeth scrambling to figure out how to handle the news of Lucky's drinking.
Nikolas: God, I feel like such a hypocrite.
Elizabeth: Yeah, you and me both. But what happened between us will never happen again, right?
Elizabeth: Right. We can help him get back on track. 'Cause I know Lucky wants a life with me and the kids more than he wants a drink.
A) "Hypocrite" does nicely describe Nikolas, but it is far down on a list that includes "skeevy", "gross", "disloyal" and "terrible".
B) Becky Herbst has done a really nice job of portraying Liz's desperate scrambling to keep her secret hidden.
The writing for her has been weak, to put it mildly, but she's trying her hardest to make it work.
C) If Tyler Christopher were temporarily replaced by a Tickle Me Elmo with headshot of his taped over Elmo's face, it would take me a while to notice that anything was out of the ordinary, and I am willing to wager that I'd only notice because I'd be taken aback by how surprisingly realistic Nik's laugh was all of a sudden.
His expression this week has ranged from "Open mouth blank stare" to "closed mouth blank stare"! The rest of the people in his orbit are making an effort, so it's all the more glaring that he is spending his scenes doing long division problems (confusion over the answer is what I am assuming leads to the open mouth blank stares).
I'd normally gush for about three hundred words about how great Tony Geary is in scenes with Jonathan Jackson and how both of them innately get their characters and the only way that their scenes together could have been any more awesome would be if Laura were involved somehow but we all know that ABC security staff has a "Shoot to kill" order should they see Genie Francis within 500 feet of the GH lot, and all of that is true but I had to watch these scenes twice because I kept getting distracted by Tony Geary's hair.
How, when, where and why is that acceptable for television?
Once I got past the insane hair, I really loved these scenes. I wanted to post every single bit of dialogue here because I loved it so much, but I will settle for saying that they work incredibly well together.
Interestingly, you know what's happened since Jonathan Jackson came back? History has changed! Lucky's fake death and brainwashing at Helena's hands isn't hilarious anymore!
Luke: Hmm. I trashed your room once after the fire when everybody thought you were dead.
Just a few short months and a different actor ago, he was LOLing over Helena's brilliance. Huh.
I toyed around with the idea of doing a Performer of The Week post every week and choosing Jonathan Jackson this week, because from start to finish, he was SO good, but then I realized that it would just be a rotation between Peter Bergman, David Canary and Jonathan Jackson, so maybe it wasn't such a great idea after all...