Actors Genie Francis, Jeff Kober and Michael E. Knight offered General Hospital viewers standout performances in the episode that aired on Friday, December 18, 2020.
This article contains spoilers so if you haven’t seen the General Hospital episode that aired on Friday, December 18, 2020, please do not continue reading.
Mayor Laura Collins (Genie Francis) vowed to rid her city Port Charles of drug kingpin Cyrus Renault (Jeff Kober). After his latest threat left her daughter Lulu (Emme Rylan) comatose, Laura had enough…the man had to be brought to justice.
A chance discovery of Police Commissioner Jordan Ashford (Briana Henry) and her husband P.I. Curtis Ashford (Donnell Turner) at a house in Oregon provided Laura with a lead: Cyrus Renault kept a patient with a mysterious illness there, who turned out to be Florence Grey, the wife of Laura’s biological father Gordon Grey. Curtis and Laura travelled to Vermont to Mountain Landing Long Term, a care facility where Florence was placed. Laura posed as a patient and Curtis her doctor to gain access.
After being caught in his mother’s room, Laura explained to Martin Grey (Michael E. Knight) she was his half-sister. She wondered why Cyrus Renault paid for Florence’s medical treatment all these years…was she his prisoner? The full story of Laura’s Grey family tree came to light when Cyrus entered carrying flowers and welcomed her to Florence’s birthday celebration and the family: Since she was Martin’s half-sister and they were brothers, that made her his sister too. Laura wasn’t happy to share DNA with Cyrus. She confronted Cyrus about knowing her identity all along.
The tale of Laura’s connection to the Grey family provided an interesting insight into Cyrus’ backstory. Gordon Grey’s roving eye and affairs were a constant source of embarrassment for Florence. To give the family a fresh start, the Greys moved to Shreveport. However, a teen Cyrus found it difficult adjusting to life in Louisiana and soon fell in with a bad crowd. He began skipping school. Sadly, this lead to an deadly altercation between Cyrus and Gordon resulting in the elder Grey’s death. Cyrus insisted it was an accident (Cyrus ran Gordon over with his car). Sadly, neither Martin nor Florence believed his claim. Florence ended up putting her son’s belongings on the front lawn and threw Cyrus out of the house. Alone and without a high school diploma, Cyrus eventually got his GED and odd jobs. The worst ramification of his estrangement from his family was the start of Cyrus Renault’s crime empire.
Laura listened to Cyrus’ story and the brothers response to one another and couldn’t help but feel a tinge of pity for Renault.
When watching the scenes unfold, I felt the same. Yes, Cyrus Renault is a drug overlord responsible for death and destruction. His actions can’t be excused or forgiven. But with this delving into past, viewers were given a glimpse of the man behind the public facade. Would he turned out differently with the love and support of his family? It’s hard to say for certain. But it was easy to see Cyrus still craved his mother’s acceptance.
Jeff Kober and Michael E. Knight’s skill and talent as actors easily conveyed the tumultuous relationship of the Grey brothers. Martin was the good son who doted on his mother. Cyrus was the bad son who broke his mother’s heart. The bond of their siblinghood was forever torn asunder.
Genie Francis’ Laura was more of an observer then active participant. But that didn’t lessen her role in the story. Francis is a master when it comes to facial expressions. With her, a look says more than a word ever could. I wonder whether this new information will cause Laura to view Cyrus in a different light. I doubt whether she’ll ever trust him. But she may understand him better.
Kudos to General Hospital writers for exploring its rich history by reaching into Laura’s past and creating a compelling connection to the new characters of Martin Grey and Cyrus Renault.
Photo and Video Courtesy of General Hospital Official Twitter
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