The Truth About General Hospital’s Holly, How Things Were *Supposed* to Play Out and When We’ll See Emma Samms Again
We know Holly’s alive… but when will her loved ones be clued in?
If things had gone differently, General Hospital‘s Holly might be spending this holiday season with friends and loved ones. It’s easy to imagine a Christmas party at which she, Jackie and Olivia are making pointedly polite conversation despite all having their minds set on claiming the heart of a certain sexy former superspy.
Instead, Holly is being held at an undisclosed location by person (or persons) unknown. And like so many other things, we can thank that change of plans on 2020’s unwelcome intruder. “The mechanics of telling several of our stories changed as a result of the unexpected shutdown,” admits co-headwriter Chris Van Etten. “We had to rethink a bunch of stories, and we had to change a few because of actor availability.”
Credit: ABC screenshot
One glaring example? Emma Samms falling ill just as the show was prepared to unroll big story for Holly. “That’s why we wound up seeing Holly on a remote camera feed for one scene,” Van Etten sighs. “We had intended to bring her back more or less full-time. But we had to stop and change gears on that story.”
The scribes debated letting the audience continue to believe that Holly was dead and play the big reveal at a later date, when Samms was able to return. “Ultimately, we thought it was very important that we confirm for viewers that Holly was alive, out there somewhere,” says co-headwriter Dan O’Connor. “It was never our intention to let people believe that Holly was really, most sincerely dead for any amount of time.
“So when we realized we were going to have to put this story on pause, we knew we had to let the audience in on the secret,” he adds. “We couldn’t have them thinking that we would ever dream of killing a character as iconic as Holly off screen!”
In the end, the unexpected delay created a downright delicious cliffhanger. “There are occasions when you’re given the opportunity to plant a seed for a story that you can play at will,” shares Van Etten. “It might be two months or six months or two years down the line. Thanks to the fact that Emma was able to help us produce that scene of Holly being held captive, we now have that in our back pocket.”
For now, life goes on in Port Charles, with Holly’s loved ones none the wiser to her actual fate. “When circumstances allow us to bring Emma and Holly back to the canvas, we can do that,” says O’Connor. And if we know these writers, they’ll do so when we’re least expecting it!
While we wait for Holly to resurface, why not take a look at the below gallery in which we speculate as to who might be holding the heroine captive. Then visit the comments and share your own theories.
<p>Wherever there is a plot being hatched or a scheme being concocted, you can expect to find Valentin’s Daddy Dearest. So we’re a little surprised, honestly, that he hasn’t been tied to Holly’s captivity yet. If he’d go so far as to spirit away his own granddaughter, he would think nothing of imprisoning Robert’s true love. Maybe even less than nothing.</p>
<p>Yes, yes, we know that she’s supposed to be dead. So is Holly. What of it? The Englishwoman’s investigation into Cassandra’s casino could’ve brought her close enough to the truth that she had to be <em>stopped</em> — but not <em>killed</em>. Because someone as well-connected as Holly would be far more valuable to Cassandra alive than dead. If nothing else, she could fetch Cassandra a refill of that bubbly!</p>
<p>We know — <em>she’s</em> supposed to be dead, too. But let’s face it, as populated by “zombies” as Port Charles is, death has ceased to mean much in this town. (We half-expect Mike Corbin to have bounced back by Thanksgiving!) In any case, assignations with the Grim Reaper have never slowed down the Cassadine clan’s demented matriarch, who regards routine abductions like Holly’s as “all in a day’s work.”</p>
<p>We’re not even going to <em>discuss</em> the fact that Peter’s father is also “dead.” Instead, we’re just going to point out that there’s never been a low to which he wouldn’t stoop. And, in this case, that low might elevate his status in Port Charles, were he to cast himself not as Holly’s kidnapper — despite the fact that hello! He is! — but her rescuer, thus paving the way for him to emerge from the shadows a free man.</p>
<p>We’ve seen the Mafia donna make some big moves lately in Port Charles. But who’s to say that, before we became aware of just how major a player she was becoming, she wasn’t <em>already</em> making big moves? Given her fondness for rigged card games, the lady gangster seems like exactly the type to want to have up her sleeve an unbeatable ace — i.e. Holly.</p>
<p>Shortly before Robert received that garbled phone call from Holly, Anna’s twisted sister reached out to her sibling in hopes of arranging a, er, family reunion. So if Alex is only as dead as Robert and Anna were once presumed to be, we wouldn’t put it past the conniver to use Holly as a bargaining chip to warm her twin to the idea of helping her, as she put it, “come in from the cold.”</p>
<p>This is <em>not</em> actually a picture of Peter demonstrating the technique that he would have used to kidnap Holly. But if her investigation into the casino led to her discovering yet another of Henrik’s secrets, it would make sense for him to have had her removed from the equation. And we already know that Peter wanted Robert “distracted.” But, since the villain is dead, who would have been holding Holly captive since his demise? He couldn’t be alive, too… could he?</p>
<p>The Mob boss is as cunning as he is ruthless — and he’s an <em>expert</em> at pulling his nemeses’ strings. Right, Jordan? So perhaps, thinking two steps ahead as he tends to do, he had Holly abducted so that, should he need leverage against D.A. Robert, he’d have it at the ready. If that were the case, though, wouldn’t Cyrus have played his Get Out of Jail Free card by now?</p>
<p>If Luke’s dark passenger emerged once again while he was off globetrotting with Tracy Quartermaine, there’s no telling what diabolical schemes he might’ve cooked up. And since Fluke was never one to think small, it would make sense for him to target Holly, whose “death” and/or captivity would so upset Port Charles D.A./WSB superspy Robert that he might be slower than usual to connect the dots.</p>
<p>If “Fluke” is back in action, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine Frank Smith’s daughter taking advantage of that fact to score some quality time with the closest thing she could ever get to the actual object of her obsession. And, as batty as she and Luke’s alter ego are, they’d probably regard the kidnapping of his old flame as mere fun and games.</p>
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