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ABC Confirms Alderson's Exit!

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A GENERAL HOSPITAL spokesperson has confirmed that Kristen Alderson(Kiki) is, indeed, leaving the show. Although a reason for her exit was not provided by the show, Alderson's real-life beau, Chad Duell (Michael), tweeted that "it was her decision."

Alderson, now 23, has been a fan favorite since she debuted as Starr Manning on ONE LIFE TO LIVE when she was just seven years old. Her exit will be felt by fans who watched the Emmy winner grow up before their eyes for the next 16 years on ABC Daytime. How Alderson will be written off remains to be seen. Will Kiki be killed off? After all, her mother is on the Mob hit list and her boyfriend is the son of a Mob kingpin. Although killing Kiki would benefit Port Charles' bad guys, ABC could actually be pulling "a Robin" -- you know, saying she's leaving for dramatic effect, only to have her somehow resurrected when viewers least expect it.

Another possibility that has some fire behind it is that the role of Kiki will be recast. In mid-December, a casting breakdown was put out for a woman in her early 20s said to be "beautiful, dynamic, charismatic." At the time, the contract role caused some to speculate that it was a casting call for Scott Baldwin's daughter, Serena, or a newly-created daughter for Nina and Silas. But could it actually have been for Kiki?

The "new" character is set to begin taping in early February.

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GH Recap: Is Fluke About To Be Unmasked?

FlukeLukeBat.jpg Fluke's ears must be ringing these days because just about everyone in Port Charles is talking about him!

While meandering around the abandoned yet fully furnished (laundry basket and all) Elm Street house where Luke and Bobbie grew up, Fluke chatted it up with Helena, who was calling from the comforts of Wyndemere. Fluke was set on getting the Julian situation "handled" out of concern that he'd spill what he knew, which was everything! Helena, however, had bigger fish to fry, like putting a cork in Sam, who was hot on the train of uncovering the identity of "our soldier boy."

Forgetting she was in Nikolas' home, Helena was surprised to turn around and see him staring at her. He overheard her threat to Sam and didn't like it one bit. Realizing his granny didn't want Sam asking questions about the gunman that helped Faison escape. Nik pushed her for answers, asking if Faison was impersonating Luke on her request and threatened to bring her down if he didn't like what she had to say. She shoved him right back. "If you do, you and Spencer will lose everything," she warned. "Just play ball, and your son will survive. He won't suffer. In fact, he will be far, far richer." With that, she handed Nik a folder containing ELQ stock certificates!

Meanwhile, Bobbie and Michael headed to the Elm Street house to scope it out as the possible new sight of the A.J. Quartermaine Clinic. The minute Bobbie stepped on the porch, it was like she was surrounded by ghosts of a troubled past. She shook it off, and they went inside. They weren't aware that Luke was bound and gagged in the basement, and Fluke was on a hostile rampage about her! Upstairs, one by one, Bobbie pulled the sheets off the protected furniture and she was flooded with memories, some which brought her to near tears, none of which brought a smile to her face.

And then the name Patricia came up again. Her and Luke's rarely mentioned sister. Michael asked what happened to her but before he could answer, they heard a crash in the basement. Was it a raccoon, a squatter, a poltergeist? No, it was Fluke taking a bat to a ceramic jug. "That felt so good," Fluke said, toying with Luke. "It's gonna feel even better when I use this to crack Barbara Jean's head open." Michael told Bobbie to be ready to call the police as he casually walked to the basement door to check it out. On the other side, a tied up Luke and a bat wielding Fluke!

At Pentonville, Sonny ragged on Julian, for confessing to killing Anthony Zacchara when everybody knew it was of Johnny's doing. Julian wasn't going to tell Sonny who was after him out of fear they'd go after his family. But prison wasn't the safest place for him either. Two of Johnny's goons approached to finish the job Carlos started. Sonny came up behind one of them, stabbed him. Then more surrounded them. Julian and Sonny took them all out, kicking and punching them till the collapsed on the cold ground. Sonny set the tone, telling a grateful Julian, "Zacchara is after us both now. So that makes us an ally... for now." But Johnny wasn't the problem. "I don't know his name," Julian told Sonny. "All I can tell you is that he has Luke Spencer's face."

Monday on GH, Helena has a shocking new task for Jake, Julian explains the terrorizing by Luke's doppelganger and Michael meets Fluke head on! Don't forget: 3:00 ET and 2:00 PST/CT on ABC. Be there!

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Together Again... On Television!

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Hallmark Channel announced yesterday that when the second season of their original series, WHEN CALLS THE HEART, returns in April, soap vets Jack Wagner (ex-Frisco, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Nick, THE BOLD & THE BEAUTIFUL) and Kristina Wagner (Felicia, GH) will join the cast as regulars!

Jack Wagner had made his debut in the last few episodes the period drama's first season -- HEART is set in a 19th century mining town -- playing forensic investigator Mountie Bill Avery, series star Lori Loughlin's love interest. At this time, there are no details regarding Kristina Wagner's character. But Season 2 promises that a secret from Bill's past could jeopardize his future with Loughlin's Abigail. Might Kristina's character have something to do with that? She'll make her debut in the third episode, and we can't wait to find out!

The second season of WHEN CALLS THE HEART will premiere on April 4 with a special two-hour episode.

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GH's Valdez Goes Pro!

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On USA's GRACELAND, Erik Valdez (ex-Trey, GENERAL HOSPITAL) plays the son of a cartel member whose volatile behavior sends people racing for their lives. This weekend, Valdez is hitting the fast track himself in the International Motor Sports Association's Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge at the Daytona International Speedway.

Valdez, who was pursuing a love of racing long before taking up a career in acting, will be making his pro debut at this weekend's test race, The Roar Before The 24, when he co-drives the No. 88 Rebel Rock Racing Porsche Cayman with his partner, Grammy Award-winning producer, Jim Jonsin. "I've raced everything from shifter karts to Formula Fords to sports cars, which is what I'm getting back into now," Valdez reveals. "[But] I've never set foot in the race version of the Cayman, so it'll be fun to drive some test laps this week."

Just mention "Daytona" to any racing enthusiast, and they light up like Christmas — Valdez is no exception. It's not a bad place to be making your pro debut! "I've never driven Daytona, either," he confesses, adding that he's thrilled to be going head-to-head with some of racing's greats there. "So yeah, I'm getting thrown to the wolves so to speak, but willingly so. Extremely willingly!"

Tune in on Friday, January 23, to catch Valdez's participation in the big event: the exciting, Rolex 24 race, and then follow him on Twitter (@erikvaldez) for news about the rest of his season. For more about the actor's other projects, check out Valdez's Keeping Track feature in an upcoming ABC Soaps In Depth.

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Luke And Bobbie Have A Sister?

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Let's have a show of hands — or a show of clicks in this case. Who was surprised to hear Bobbie mention not once but twice this week that she and Luke had a sister? GENERAL HOSPITAL's headwriter, Ron Carlivati, is pulling a little-known factoid from the depths of the show's history to get viewers talking! So, here's the deal with the mysterious Spencer sibling...

Patricia aka "Pat" Spencer has never been seen in GH's 51 years on the air and has only been mentioned a few times. Thanks to a clip from a 1978 episode, what we do know about her is that she is Luke and Bobbie's older sister and grew up in the same Elm Street house where Fluke is currently holding Luke captive. The Spencers had a rather deprived upbringing on "the other side of the tracks," which Bobbie has made clear she'd rather forget. But why forget an entire sibling? Hmm.

With the mention of Patricia after all these years, you can bet Carlivati has something cookin'!

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Soap Vet Joins GH!

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GENERAL HOSPITAL fans were surprised by news that Robb Derringer was let go from the soap considering that his character, Agent Sloane, had just started throwing off sparks with Anna. But now it seems viewers will get to see exactly what comes next because the role has been recast with soap vet Grayson McCouch!

Derringer shot his final episode on Friday, December 19, and should continue to air through to the end of January. Look for the alum of AS THE WORLD TURNS (as Dusty) and ANOTHER WORLD (as Morgan) to make his debut in early February.

Do you think McCouch's Agent Sloane will have as much chemistry with Finola Hughes' Anna? Sound off in the comments!

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Who Is Bill Eckert?

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GENERAL HOSPITAL's Bobbie struck a nerve in Fluke with the mere mention of the name Bill Eckert. Unaware that it wasn't her big bro Luke she was talking to but rather his dead ringer (just like Billy was) set Fluke off on a defensive, angry tirade? So who was this lookalike cousin of theirs? We'll fill you in!

Bill first arrived in Port Charles in 1991 as a crewmember aboard the Quartermaine's ship, SS Tracy. Harlan Barrett hired him to salvage it when it sank and was later asked to run a cannery alongside his daughter, Julia Barrett. After receiving an inheritance from his father, Bill and his young son, Sly, moved into an abandoned lighthouse. What Bill and Julia didn't know was that Harlan was part of a cartel that manufactured a substance that they planned to use to overtake the global economy! And where was it manufactured? You guess it — the cannery!

Because Bill was running the cannery, the cartel thought it important to bring him in on the deal. However, Faison, who was part of the whole scheme, demanded Bill first prove himself by killing Robert Scorpio! Bill and Robert had become good friends, so that was not going to happen. Instead, they faked Robert's death. When Harlan found out, he decided to off Robert himself but Bill killed Harlan first.

Later on, Bill and Holly became involved, and together they investigated an art heist. That romance quickly ended when Holly found him in bed with his former flame, Victoria. With the cartel having disbanded and its members either dead or having escaped, a mobster named Frank Smith was running the crime scene in Port Charles. Luke and Laura were up to their ears in Mr. Smith chaos and Bill offered to help them get out of it. Unfortunately for Bill, the fact that he looked like Luke cost him his life when Smith's goons attacked and killed Bill, thinking he was his cousin.

But did Bill really die all those years ago? Could the reason Fluke got so bent out of shape at the very mention of the name be that its his true identity? Or might this be just another red herring? Sound off with your opinions in the comments!

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Giggle With Grahn On GH NOW!

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GENERAL HOSPITAL fans, are you ready to get your funny bone tickled? Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis) has something up her sleeve that is sure to do the trick! She will be launching a six-part original digital series on ABC.com called GENERAL HOSPITAL NOW! Part talk show, part sketch comedy show, part man-on-the-street interviews, part quiz show, it's got a little something for every soap fan who likes to chuckle about the genre they love the most!

"We have so much appreciation for the fans and this industry," Grahn says. "A friend of mine and I have this saying, 'I know that you know that I know that you know.' And that is kind of what I'm saying to the fans with GH NOW! It's a wink to them about soap operas. They are a good, wonderful form of entertainment and we are so lucky to be doing it and so lucky to be a part of it and so lucky to have this loyal audience. It's a celebration!"

Among the fun antics are behind-the-scenes fun, crazy outtakes, comedy sketches, quizzes and guests that include Jason Thompson (Patrick), Tyler Christopher (Nikolas), Kirsten Storms (Maxie), Lisa LoCicero (Olivia), Ian Buchanan (Duke) and Sebastian Roche (ex-Jerry)!

"I wanted to do this show because I wanted to have fun, and," Grahn says, "if I'm having fun, hopefully, that laughter, fun and good, positive energy translates!" You can count on it!

GH NOW! can be found on ABC.com and WATCH ABC, which is accessible from ABC.com or via the WATCH ABC app, which is free on select Android and iOS devices via Google Play and the App Store. Its first three episodes debut on Monday, January 12, followed by another three on Monday, February 2. And you can watch a preview below!

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GH Friday Recap: Who's Sleeping With Whom?

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Were they serving oysters at Metro Court's New Year's Eve party or did someone sprinkle Love Potion No. 9 in the champagne glasses? Something must have been going on because just about everybody in the room got frisky when the clock struck midnight! Shawn and Jordan kissed, as did Nikolas and the chick he had met only a couple of hours before. Duke kissed Lucy on the cheek but then planted a serious one on her lips! A battling Sloane and Anna kissed, only for them to squabble about who leaned in first.

Ned and Alexis puckered up, as a nearby Julian and Olivia attempted to ignore them (and each other). And then they kissed. Boy oh boy did they! In fact, Julian went in for seconds! Ned warned Olivia that Julian was a tool, while Alexis accused Julian of being childish. She and Ned headed to a room, where they popped a bottle and talked about his feelings for Olivia and her feelings for Julian. They agreed to give their relationship another try and made love.

Meanwhile, Julian suggested he and Olivia also get a room, to which she replied, "Not if you were the last man on earth." But the next thing they knew, they were in a room, playing cards and downing tiny bottles from the mini bar. She extended her hand for a hardy goodbye shake, but they instead kissed. A lot. And fell onto the bed while ripping their clothes off!

Jake looked on as Ric and Liz kissed and Sam and Patrick did the same. Carly grabbed Jake by the collar and pulled him into a passionate smooch. She had a mini conniption when she saw Liz leaving with Ric. She hit Ric right between the eyes with a zinger about the panic room, and he tossed a doozy right back at her about Michael no longer acknowledging that she was his mother!

Carly's insults didn't effect Ric or Liz's libido because they retreated to a room and, in a passionate frenzy, tore off their clothes. The amount of time that it took Jake to pour Carly a drink is all the time it took for Ric and Liz to make love. And it was still better than Liz had remembered! She gave him back his watch and he gave her a hint that he'd like to make her Mrs. Lansing for the third time!

Sam and Patrick's midnight kiss led to her asking him to spending the night. He so wanted to but wasn't sure she was ready. She was ready, all right! With their kids taken care of for the night, they agreed to go back to his place. She told him about the sexy dream she had of him when they were in Amsterdam but how she woke up before "finishing" it. They were both getting a little hot and bothered, only for their phones to ring with news that their kids needed them.

While Carly lovingly told Jake all about Jason and offered him a hotel room until he got his feet planted, Maxie and Nathan were back at their apartment celebrating "the year of us," as he called it. After a little bubbly and some chatter, they made their way to the boudoir, which was covered in white rose petals and lit with candles. They slowly undressed each other, crawled onto the bed and etcetera, etcetera, etcetera!

Monday on GH, Sonny learns the paternity of Ava's baby and a tense moment arises between Bobbie and Fluke. Don't forget: 3:00 ET and 2:00 PST/CT on ABC. Be there!

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Cast Your Vote #03

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Once again, it's time to express your opinions for our Readers' Poll. In the comments section for this article, please respond to the question, and feel free to explain your answer, but remember that any comments here may be considered for publication in the magazine. Any extra comments you have that have nothing to do with this week's poll question should be directed to the Message Boards section of our Web site!

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Should Nikolas pursue a relationship with Elizabeth again?

Please note that the cut-off date for your votes to be counted will be Thursday, January 8. And please, only one vote per person!

To vote on your favorite actor, actress and couple currently appearing on an ABC, CBS or NBC soap, please mail your choices to:

ABC Readers' Poll
c/o Soaps In Depth
270 Sylvan Ave.
Englewood Cliffs, NJ 07632

Multiple mail-in votes during the same voting period will not be counted, so don't waste our time, your time, or the postage!

VOTES FOR ACTORS, ACTRESSES AND COUPLES CAST IN THE COMMENTS TO THIS ARTICLE WILL NOT BE COUNTED.

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