Yes, we write a lot about Nelle Hayes/Nelle Benson/Janelle Benson here at Soap Hub and we just love to hate her. For one, she is the center of almost everything on General Hospital (GH) right now, so of course we’re going to write about her.
Second, an Emmy-winning actress is playing the role and is taking whatever crazy thrown at her and running with it.
Chloe Lanier’s golden statuette was well-deserved in April. While Nelle’s story has rubbed us the wrong way since it was revealed she was only the duped daughter of Carly’s adoptive father who abandoned Carly as a toddler, Lanier has kept us tuning in day after day.
If it wasn’t for this talented young woman, the character would likely have never made it after such a lackluster “secret reveal” – but Lanier never missed a beat. When the soap decided its just better off playing her as an off-kilter young vixen a la Heather Webber of the early 1980s, things got a whole lot better.
Sure, her current story requires us to believe that half the town is stupid and can’t see through someone with a pretty rotten reputation, but we’ll take it because watching Nelle talk to her baby with maniacal glee then threaten Ava (AVA!) with smooth ease is glorious.
Fans will always gripe about the bad girls because they get away with so much and it’s our instinct to want to see them pay, but fans also keep tuning in because the best bad girls make us do that.
And if an actress wasn’t doing her job to perfection and making the character one we love to hate, what would there be to even gripe about? You just keep doing what you’re doing, Ms. Lanier, and enjoy your perch as a bona fide soap villainess. (And yes, we want your hair.)
General Hospital (GH) airs weekdays on ABC. Check your local listings for airtimes.