I’m sure that I’m supposed to say General Hospital’s decision to have one of it’s most iconic anti-heroes accidentally run over his own four year old grandson is shocking!, bold! and daring! Or some other variation thereof.
And I suppose those things are true… but as much as I rail against predictability on this show, doing the opposite of what’s predictable doesn’t automatically mean whatever you’re doing is a good idea.
Credit where credit is due, the core Spencers have really stepped up their game for this. Jonathan Jackson has always been good at sincere histrionics, and lord knows Tony Geary is actually capable of chewing scenery with the best of ’em when he decides the material is worthy of his attention. So Lucky’s screaming, crying, begging confrontation with Luke was — if not entertaining (because I wouldn’t call any of this really entertainment) — at least compelling.
Then there’s Lulu: helpless in the face of Lucky’s grief, wanting to reconcile with Elizabeth but not sure how, completely shutting down over the enormity of learning Luke was the one responsible… all of her scenes have rung emotionally true.
But overall? This is such a cold story. It has no heart.
I’m the last person in the world to ask for more Sonny scenes, but his oldest friend just killed his best friend’s child. For once, his presence in a story actually makes sense. What doesn’t make sense? The decision to have him learn about Jake off screen, act as if cutting his honeymoon short to comfort his grieving friend is a huge burden, and then give them a stilted scene where they act like colleagues who barely know each other. I mean, really. Would it have killed them to actually hug or something?
Most of the story has played out the same way — weirdly rushed and hitting the wrong emotional beats. On any other show, if a man was responsible for the death of his own grandson, he’d be upset not just at the damage done to his relationship with his own child, but because he actually loved the child he killed. On this one, I’d be surprised if Luke could have picked Jake out of a lineup.
Meanwhile, Bobby’s absence from this story — which recreates the death of her own daughter, features an emergency organ transplant for her granddaughter, and involves her brother accidentally killing her nephew’s son — has now passed beyond egregious straight into some nebulous land where ridiculousness has ceased to have any meaning. Don’t even get me started on Laura.
(And seriously, where the hell has Ethan been all this time? Would it be so hard to insert two lines of dialog about him being out of town and unreachable for some reason?)
(Yes. Yes, it would. Because this show is ASS.)
Another reason this show is ass? Because in the midst of what should be a devastating family drama, we’re forced to sit through pages and pages of dialog with various characters (including a cop!) speculating on whether or not Jason will murder Luke.
LUCKY: Look, Sam, I’m serious. I don’t want Jason to hurt my dad.
SAM: Lucky, I’m happy to use whatever influence I have, but I’m warning you. Jason is in a lot of pain over Jake’s death.
(I love Sam’s blasé reaction to Lucky begging for his father’s life — like he’s asking to borrow Jason’s motorcycle or something.)
And seriously, Jason’s in a lot of pain? Jason, who couldn’t be bothered to give up his life of KILLING PEOPLE FOR MONEY to be a father to his child, is now going to get high and mighty and morally indignant over someone else’s vices? And everyone else just accepts this with a shrug, all:
“Hey, what can you do? I’ll ask him not to murder your dad, but you know, no promises. Even though you actually put in the time and the effort to raise this kid and now you’re dealing with the horror of knowing your own father killed your child and you probably need the extra grief of dealing with your father’s death on top of all this like you need a hole in the head. But Jason’s in pain, you know.”
Also, there’s this:
I hate this show.