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Credit: ABC screenshot

“She is going to be on a quest to reclaim her mantle as a legal eagle and leader in Port Charles.” But it ain’t gonna be easy!

Now we know the answer to the question, how low can she go? In the January 28 episode of General Hospital, a soused Alexis plunged a syringe into Dante in a misguided attempt to protect daughter Sam from “Bad Franco.” If that isn’t rock bottom, we shudder to think what is!

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“Can I look for the answer in here? No? Are you sure?” Yeah. We’re sure.

Credit: ABC screenshot

Sobering Up and Getting Down to Business

But where does Alexis go from there? Where can she go? You would hope that the only way is up. “She has been incredibly hurt and heartbroken over the events that happened over the last year,” headwriters Chris Van Etten and Dan O’Connor observe to As she reeled from the one-two punch of Neil and Julian’s deaths, she used “her drinking as a coping mechanism, but it’s outlived its usefulness.”
You can say that again.

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However, even if Alexis acknowledges that she’s got a whopper of a problem, that’s only step No. 1 on her journey. Says Van Etten: “She is going to be on a quest to resume her mantle as a legal eagle and leader in Port Charles. But in order to get there, she she’s got to get over her illness.

“And that will take some time,” he adds. “She’s going to face some more trouble before she starts to pick herself up, dust herself off and start kicking ass like the Alexis that we know she is at heart.”

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“Parts of my anatomy may have had a slight lapse of judgment. A slight major lapse.”

Credit: ABC screenshot (2)

The Marriage She Upended

As she fights her way back, Alexis will also have to deal with the ramifications of her hookup with old flame Ned. He was so convinced that wife Olivia had cheated on him — when hello, she hadn’t — that he went and cheated on her! “I think what makes the story so intriguing,” says Van Etten, “is that, for one thing, despite their differences, there are a lot of similarities between the characters of Alexis and Olivia.

“Both are unafraid to say what’s on their minds. Both do not suffer fools gladly. And,” he continues, “both have no problem sticking up for themselves and, more importantly, sticking up for the people they care about. And so to have these two women in a storyline together, it’s very exciting to us.”

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O’Connor seconds that emotion, and then some. “At the same time, at least for me — I think I speak for Chris as well — Alexis and Ned were this really enjoyable couple when I first started watching the show,” he says. “She had this wonderful Cassadine element to her. And there was the period when she and Ned were married to the wrong spouses, and she was the runaway bride…

“And in recent years, Olivia and Ned have become this amazing couple that we love as well,” he goes on. “They’ve become the matriarch and patriarch of the Quartermaine family and have won over the audience in the process.”

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Somewhere, Edward is scowling. But in a more amused than usual way.

Credit: ABC/Courtesy of the Everett Collection

Past Imperfect, Future Tense

Van Etten and O’Connor know (and love) their General Hospital history — and you can bet they’ll be incorporating it into upcoming story for not only Alexis but Ned and Olivia, too. “There’s something very interesting in the idea of playing the past, present and future of these characters all at once in the story,” says Van Etten. Alexis could delve into her Cassadine side (perhaps with Valentin to guide her?), Olivia could cling tightly to her role as mistress of the manor, and Ned… his trajectory could turn out to be the most fascinating of all.

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“He’s always been the Quartermaine who has resisted much of the family’s influence,” reminds O’Connor. Nevertheless, “he has slowly but surely become more and more like [late grandfather] Edward over the last few years.” Will that make him more or less attractive to his missus — and his ex-fiancée? And what will he himself think of Ned 2.0 when he looks in the mirror and sees a man who reminds him more of his incorrigible forebear than Tracy’s son?

While you ponder the possibilities, perhaps you’ll enjoy perusing the below photo gallery, a collection of portraits of the cast of General Hospital.