On the Birthday of a General Hospital Legacy Character, We Lay Out a Plan to Bring Her Back With a Vengeance
Michael Germana/Courtesy of the Everett Collection, Jill Johnson/JPI, ABC screenshot, ABC/Courtesy of the Everett Collection
December 7, 1993, marked the introduction of Scotty Baldwin’s daughter with late wife Dominique.
Currently, General Hospital viewers are reeling — and who could blame them? In a boom, no clink, Dev and Dustin were killed, Julian’s fate was seemingly sealed, and Lulu — the younger child of supercouple Luke and Laura, no less — was so badly injured that she had to be shipped off to a longterm-recovery clinic. But we have a feeling we know what would make fans feel better.
ABC’s one and only soap — at least until the network comes to its senses and runs with our idea to combine All My Children and One Life to Live into a new show called All My Life — should reintroduce the character of Serena Baldwin, last seen in 2017 when original portrayer Carly Schroeder reprised her role for a tribute to the late, great Peter Hansen, who’d played her grandpa, Lee. Why is this such a good idea? Uh, let us count the ways.
Viewers Already Love Serena.
From 1997 to 2003, the little girl that Lucy Coe carried to term for on-again/off-again love Scotty and his doomed bride was front and center on the General Hospital spinoff Port Charles. So our relationship with the character is much like the one we have with Robin Scorpio, whom we watched grow up before our eyes along with Kimberly McCullough.
In other words, we’re invested.
And not for nothing, but Serena is tied to two characters — Scotty and Lucy — who are as much a part of Port Charles as Kelly’s Diner, the hospital or… Fine, we’ll just say it. At this point, the Mob.
There’s Room at the Inn for Serena.
Nobody’s dancing a jig over the recent exits from Port Charles. (You can review them here, if you can bear it.) But if there is an upside to the departures, it’s that it paves the way for some entrances. One of them seems likely to be Vanessa Marcil as Brenda Barrett. If another one was Serena, she could be just the person to befriend Dante as he tries to cope with the loss of Lulu.
Serena could even be just the person to help Dante get over Lulu in the days immediately preceding her miraculous recovery. (And we all think that that’s gonna happen, right? Didn’t her mom all but promise it to us?)
Serena Could Give Fans What They Want.
Were Serena to relocate back to Port Charles, we might finally get to see more of Scotty, too. For years, the audience has been clamoring for an increase in its Kin Shriner fixes. Serena could make that happen. Imagine, for instance, if she decided to play matchmaker for her father and Ava — a coupling fans have long been behind — only to seal the deal by falling herself for Nikolas.
Can you fathom how fabulously awkward family dinners would be that included Scotty and Ava, together at last, her ex Nikolas and his new girlfriend, Serena? Save us a seat already!
Serena Could Serve as Reassurance.
We love, love, love the fact that the current writing team of General Hospital never ceases to surprise us. The cast cuts hurt, sure, but they also speak to a creative daring that makes watching the show a thrill ride. We want to be scared. We want to be worried. We want to feel like anything than can happen — and that’s Dan O’Connor and Chris Van Etten’s stock in trade. They slay at it.
But… we understand that not everybody is so thrilled by the thrill ride. To calm them, at least a little, we’d bring in Serena, a reminder that life in Port Charles is a marathon, not a sprint, and proof that even when a character has been off screen for so long that they can have emerged from the other side of puberty looking like they could be walking the runway on The Bold and the Beautiful, they can always come back.
Heck, look at Julian! Decades passed before he was recast and reintroduced as Derek Wells.
What do you think, General Hospital fans? Would you like to see Serena return and give Scotty a more prominent place on the canvas? On your way to the comments, stop off at the photo gallery below and review actors like Schroeder who grew up before our eyes.