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Soap Hub GH Performer Of The Week: Kathleen Gati

Kathleen Gati showed that Leisl Obrecht is still mourning her daughter’s loss on General Hospital.

Kathleen Gait brought the emotion this week on General Hospital.Kathleen Gati

“Obrecht is in an angered state” read my DVR’s description of a recent General Hospital episode. No kidding. Kathleen Gati tapped into the fury her character felt over her daughter Britt Westbourne’s needless and untimely death and let it explode on Elizabeth Webber. As Dr. O earned our sympathy, Gati has earned our praise.

Kathleen Gati – Performer of the Week

As sad as we are to see Britt (Daytime Emmy-winner Kelly Thiebaud) go to that great soap opera in the sky, GH is mining all the drama that has come from the character’s passing. When Leisl (Kathleen Gati) learned that Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst) had kept quiet about Esme (Avery Kristen Pohl), preventing the police from searching for the Hook (AKA Heather Webber), she rightfully blew up at the nurse.

During her tenure as Dr. O, Gati has taken what could have been a two-dimensional character and made her a fully fleshed-out human being, a woman capable of giving great love and feeling enormous pain. Leisl slapped Liz across the face during their confrontation at General Hospital. But the pain from that slap was nothing compared to how Leisl made Liz feel after she unloaded her feelings verbally.

Right or wrong, Leisl is convinced that if Liz hadn’t stayed silent then her Britta would be alive. Liz said that if she could go back…”You can’t!” Leisl angrily informed her. While the Leisl of the past would have extracted a painful revenge on Liz, today, she’s not that woman. “I wouldn’t wish my pain on anyone — not even you,” the suffering mother said.

However, Leisl isn’t that different. She won’t shed any tears if karma pays a visit to Liz. “You reap what you sow,” Leisl snarled. Then, she stood there, almost helpless to move away as if her grief had paralyzed her. Niece Nina nicely took her aunt’s arm and removed her from the situation.

The show’s writers have characters say things to Leisl hoping that she’ll respond a certain way. Instead, Leisl will take the remark literally and respond in a way that’s purely logical — for her. Each and every time this occurs, Kathleen Gati sells the line brilliantly.

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Case in point: Nina told Leisl she knows that she wants to have someone to blame for Britt’s death. “I have someone!” Leisl snapped. “Nurse Baldwin is the reason my Britta is gone! I demand justice for my daughter.”

Leisl then turned her fury towards Scott (Kin Shriner) — Liz’s protective former father-in-law. Scott’s choice to take Liz’s side which has forever altered his romance with Leisl. She believes that Britt’s blood is on Scott’s hands as well. (Alas, we don’t see a wedding in the park with Elizabeth Barrett Browning poetry being recited for these two anytime in the future.)

Dr. O might be feeling she doesn’t have much to live for with not only her daughter but also her son, Nathan/James (the always missed Ryan Paevey). Upon learning that she’s a potential donor candidate to save Willow’s (Katelyn MacMullen) life, she couldn’t help but be affected. Tears filled her eyes, and we suspect at least some joy filled her heart. She tearfully agreed with Nina that they were indeed “lucky” that Willow’s life might be saved. Kudos to Kathleen Gati who never fails to entertain by infusing predictable unpredictability, passion, and heart into Dr. Leisl Obrecht.

Honorable mention: How are you supposed to look when the police are about to open a door that you have ever reason to believe your dead husband’s corpse is rotting behind? Clearly, Ava Jerome Cassadine (Maura West) wasn’t sure. Bravo to West for displaying a myriad of facial reactions as Ava kept trying to figure out what a convincing reaction should be. The situation was tense but that didn’t stop the talented West from successfully interjecting some comedy into the high-stakes situation.

General Hospital airs weekdays on ABC. For an in-depth look at the show’s history, click here.

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