monaco hartley sam
Credit: ABC, ABC screenshot

“Thank you for the support.”

Ask any actor, and they’ll tell ya: It’s tough to step into someone else’s role. Perhaps even more so when, as in the case of Lindsay Hartley, you’re not really taking over, you’re just filling in for a bit. But we suspect that pretty much all General Hospital viewers will agree that the alum of Passions, All My Children and Days of Our Lives spectacularly rose to the occasion as she once again spelled Kelly Monaco as Sam.

And you know how rare it is for a whole audience to agree!

On February 5, Hartley shared that she had “one epi[sode] left as Sam” and reached out to the colleagues and fans who’d cheered her on as she undertook her daunting task. “Thank you for the support,” she began, “and thank you, Kelly Monaco, General Hospital [and executive producer] Frank Valentini for trusting me to step into a character that Kelly has so beautifully created.

“I appreciate you all,” she added.

It was just earlier this week that the news broke that Monaco would be taking a brief hiatus from the show. At the time, we were even able to report that the fan favorite was already back at work. Considering what a bang-up job Hartley has done as Sam, here’s hoping that the soap finds a way to create a new character just for her; she’s a keeper!

As you await Monaco’s return to the role she originated back in 2003, check out the below photo gallery of some of soaps’ all-time best and worst temporary recasts.