We admit we were a little taken aback to learn that General Hospital (GH) was bringing Mike Corbin back on the scene–and not with Ron Hale playing the role he brought to life for 15 years.
But, we knew the reason Mike was written off, to begin with, was because Hale chose to retire from acting, so we believed Mike was basically retired from the soap.
We were a little wary of actor Max Gail as we remember him so well as Detective Wojciehowicz on the iconic sitcom, Barney Miller. We knew he could do comedy, but had no idea until now that he could also completely break our hearts.
It was clear from his first scenes that GH was headed towards an Alzheimer’s story with Mike and wondered why the show chose a character who had been off the canvas for years to play this out.
And now, well, we frankly don’t care because Max Gail is so absolutely wonderful it doesn’t matter what the show’s motives were because IT WORKS.
Watching Mike wander through his old stomping grounds in Port Charles and wonder why so much has changed–and running into people he once knew well and now doesn’t recognize, has left tears on our cheeks and a pit in our stomach. But, this is what soaps are all about.
As Mike has had to deal with the reality of his diagnosis–from denial to slow and painful acceptance–we can see Gail’s Emmy reel coming together. When he shared scenes with Rebecca Herbst’s Elizabeth this week after the earthquake that were so real and raw, we couldn’t look away.
Sometimes you doubt a soap’s plans, but when you see those plans coming together so well, you just come along for the ride and know it will be something great.
General Hospital (GH) airs weekdays on ABC. Check your local listings for airtimes.