Soapdom.com can confirm that Finola Hughes, who played fan favorite character Anna Devane on General Hospital on and off since 1983, is indeed returning to the soap for a recurring role that will be front and center just in time for February sweeps.
And darn that Michael Logan of TVGuide, who always seems to get the exclusive! (Hi Michael. We love you! Hope to see you soon.)
According to Logan's exclusive story this AM on TVGuide.com, Hughes will help usher Kimberly McCullough (who plays Devane's daughter, Robin) off the canvas. McCullough announced a few weeks ago that she would be leaving General Hospital to pursue her dream of directing, something she's done a bit of in the past and hopes to make a career of in the future.
Just how McCullough will exit remains a mystery. As any General Hospital fan worth their salt knows, McCullough suffers from HIV. She was infected years ago by her boyfriend, Stone, who succumed to full-blown aids. His deathbed scene is one that made us all weepy. It was a powerful storyline and a powerful message.
Several years ago, McCullough's character, Robin, got pregnant. Her HIV status again became frontburner as it could have compromised the birth of a healthy baby. But all worked out well and the baby was born unscathed.
As McCullough is now leaving the show, speculation is mounting as to whether her character will just leave Port Charles, to be recast another day, or if she will die off as a result of her HIV infection.
The show is staying mum. "The writers are still working that out," says the show spokesperson to TVGuide. "Everyone is very aware of Robin's history of living with HIV and wants to do the right thing. I will leave it at that."
That very same show spokesperson confirmed the TV Guide story with me just seconds ago.
So, yes. Finola Hughes is coming back to General Hospital. Although the return is recurring, it will be frontburner. Whether it will involve Robin's HIV status remains to be seen.
With Robin leaving, Anna returning, can Robert Scorpio (Tristan Rogers), Robin's dad, be far behind? Rogers is available since he is no longer on the Young and the Restless. Time will tell.
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