Commentary GH

Soap Hub Performer Of The Week For GH: Denise Crosby

Denise Crosby brought Carolyn Webber to General Hospital for an uneasy reconciliation.

Denise Crosby General Hospital Performer of the WeekDenise Crosby

Initially, the long-absent Dr. Carolyn Webber appeared a bit too distant towards her daughter Elizabeth but her portrayer, Denise Crosby, showed that there was room for growth in the familial dynamic. For her turn as a mom capable of change, Crosby earns this week’s Soap Hub Performer of the Week honors for GH.

Denise Crosby – Performer of the Week

Oddly, Elizabeth’s parents (Jeff and Carolyn Webber) had never come on to Port Charles to see their daughter through any of her traumas or joys over the last quarter century. So, the current GH creative team came up with a reason for that — Jeff (William Moses) and Carolyn sent “Lizzie,” as Carolyn calls her — away so she wouldn’t remember she had pushed Finn’s wife and Jeff’s mistress down a flight of stairs.

When we first met Carolyn, she seemed distant toward her daughter. Didn’t she care about her? It turns out the answer is a resounding yes. Nikolas (Adam Huss) brought Carolyn to Port Charles to see if she could work her mind control techniques on another young woman — the problematic Esme (Avery Kristen Pohl). Soon, Carolyn realized she had a choice to make. Would she go down this path again or make another decision?

Carolyn visited General Hospital to warn Lizzie about Nickolas. She knew she would have a difficult time reaching her daughter, so Carolyn informed Lizzie with what she assumed would be welcomed news — Carolyn said she was leaving Port Charles. She chose not to keep Lizzie in the dark as she’d done in the past. Carolyn came clean, revealing her interactions with Nikolas and how he asked her to help him control Esme.

In denying Nikolas his request, Carolyn was indicating an awareness that she made the wrong call with her daughter. Elizabeth (Rebecca Herbst — who has been solid throughout this story) couldn’t help but be affected by her mother’s declaration that she wouldn’t again play mind games. (“It’s too bad you didn’t feel this way about me” her face seemed to read.)

“I know Nikolas Cassadine has been in your life since high school and he’s been around for some very important events that your dad and I missed out on. But trust me — he is not your friend,” said Carolyn, imploring her daughter to listen. “I don’t believe he’s got your best interests at heart.”

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This moment of honest communication turned out to be a turning point for mother and daughter. “I wish, well, so many things,” added Carolyn, calling her daughter “Elizabeth,” her preferred handle. “I hope one day I earn your forgiveness.” As Carolyn started to exit, Elizabeth thanked for mother for calling her by the name she requested she uses. “You’re very welcome, Elizabeth,” a teary-eyed Carolyn as she walked away but hopefully not out of her daughter’s life.

The absence of Jeff and Carolyn from their daughter’s life was criminal. However, as both William Moses and Denise Crosby play doctors as well as Elizabeth’s father and mother, their returns would be welcome anytime at General Hospital — both the show and the hospital.

Honorable Mentions: Brook Kerr and two-time Daytime Emmy-winner Vernee Watson-Johnson were compelling as their respective characters, Portia and Stella, went dress shopping for the wedding. Stella couldn’t help but be deeply affected by Portia’s desire to bring the family together. But it was clear that Stella wanted to address the unresolved issue of Trina’s paternity.

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

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