Monica Quartermaine

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Monica Quartermaine
MonicaabcpromoMar-2007.png
Leslie Charleson as Monica Quartermaine
General Hospital character
Portrayed byPatsy Rahn (1976–77)
Leslie Charleson (1977—)
Duration1976—
First appearanceNovember 1976
Created byEileen Pollock
Robert Mason Pollock
Introduced byTom Donovan
Book appearances

Robin's Diary

The Secret Life of Damian Spinelli
Spin-off
appearances
Port Charles
General Hospital: Night Shift
ClassificationPresent; recurring
Profile
OccupationCardiologist
Residence
 
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Monica Quartermaine
MonicaabcpromoMar-2007.png
Leslie Charleson as Monica Quartermaine
General Hospital character
Portrayed byPatsy Rahn (1976–77)
Leslie Charleson (1977—)
Duration1976—
First appearanceNovember 1976
Created byEileen Pollock
Robert Mason Pollock
Introduced byTom Donovan
Book appearances

Robin's Diary

The Secret Life of Damian Spinelli
Spin-off
appearances
Port Charles
General Hospital: Night Shift
ClassificationPresent; recurring
Profile
OccupationCardiologist
Residence

Dr. Monica Quartermaine (née Bard; formerly Webber) is a fictional character on the ABC soap opera, General Hospital. She is a member of the Quartermaine family, a long-running family on the series. The role was originated by Patsy Rahn in November 1976. Rahn was supposedly fired in the summer of 1977, and was replaced by Leslie Charleson on August 17, 1977.[1] Charleson has appeared continuously since 1977 making one of the longest-tenured actors in American soap operas. According to Ms. Charleson in an interview, she claimed she had to introduce herself to the cast as the new "Monica" and inform them that Ms. Rahn had been fired and that she was her replacement.

Character and casting[edit]

Monica is Chief of Staff with a specialty in cardiology at the eponymous General Hospital, an original and on-going setting of the serial. Her various affairs, primarily with fellow doctors Jeff Webber and his older brother Rick Webber, as well as her quarrels with husband Dr. Alan Quartermaine and their dysfunctional family, were all major stories on the show throughout the late 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

In her time on the show, Monica has battled breast cancer, dealt with the loss of three children, her son adopotive son Jason Morgan's amnesia and decision to become a mob enforcer, and death in 2012. She is the owner of the Quartermaine mansion, which she often reminds her family of when they begin quarreling, which is an often occurrence in the Quartermaine quarters. She has been known to throw them out of her house.

In 2006, she only had rare appearances; however, new storylines developed in 2007 (an investigation into the murder of Rick Webber, the deaths of her husband Dr. Alan Quartermaine and adopted daughter Emily Quartermaine), and she is being featured more prominently.

With the returns of Denise Alexander (Lesley Webber), Genie Francis (Laura Spencer), and Kin Shriner (Scott Baldwin). Monica remains to be the fourth oldest character on "General Hospital" ([2] and Charleson is the show's most tenured performer.

On August 24, 2010, it was announced that Charleson was being demoted to recurring status.[3][4]

In May 2011, newly appointed head writer Garin Wolf expressed his interest in having Charleson appear on a much more frequent basis.

On June 13, 2011, Charleson announced that after making only one appearance so far in 2011, she would be returning to the front burner. Her first air date was set for July 27, 2011. However, Charleson appeared ahead of schedule on July 13.


Storylines[edit]

Background[edit]

Monica grows up off-screen in an orphanage and was fostered by Dr. Gail Adamson Baldwin. However, Greg, Gail's husband took advantage of Monica and raped her. Gail remained unaware of this for many years but the two were able to reconcile once the truth came out. Monica was able to use her experience with Greg to help Laura Spencer when she was raped.

Monica later had an affair with David Langton and gave birth to a daughter, Dawn, whom she gave up for adoption.

Just prior to her arrival on GH, Monica had been engaged to Rick Webber. However, he had broken up with her and flew off to Africa where he became caught up in a civil war and was presumed dead. Monica turned to Jeff Webber, Rick's brother, for comfort and married him, not knowing that Rick was still alive.

1970s[edit]

Monica, originated by Patsy Rahn, as a new character in 1976, with her first husband, Jeff Webber (played by Richard Dean Anderson)

Monica arrived in Port Charles in 1976, having recently married Jeff Webber. Steve Hardy, who had been recently appointed as Chief of Staff at General Hospital, invited the couple to take part in his Mr. and Mrs. Intern Programme, believing that the couple had an idyllic marriage. However, the truth was that Monica had only married Jeff on the rebound. She was still deeply in love with Jeff's brother, Rick, who had been presumed dead in Africa. Thus, the marriage collapsed when Rick was revealed to be still alive and Monica cheated on Jeff with Rick, while Jeff cheated on Monica with Heather Grant, with whom he had a son, Steve Webber. Jeff and Monica divorced in 1977.

Throughout this time, Rick had grown close to Lesley Faulkner and planned to marry her. Monica was devastated, and tried to put a stop to it, blackmailing Lesley into turning down Rick's proposal. If Lesley didn't, Monica would tell the hospital board of Monica's affair with Rick, denying him the opportunity to become Chief of Cardiology at General Hospital. During the argument, a pregnant Lesley fell down the stairs and miscarried. Lesley was despondent, and called off her engagement to Rick, hoping to save Rick's career. Meanwhile, Monica and Rick talk about how important the promotion is to Rick, and Monica realizes she cannot go through with her threat, but doesn't tell Lesley as much. Monica's found out when Lesley's daughter Laura's tape recorder is found to have caught Monica's threats to Lesley. Lesley and Rick are married in October 1977.

Rick and Monica's relationship becomes embittered, and Monica nearly loses her job, though Lesley sets aside her personal feelings and vouches for Monica's talents as a doctor to Steve, saving her job. Monica claims to be moving on, but she and Rick are forced to work together with Dr. Alan Quartermaine on plans for a new wing at the hospital. Monica makes a last-ditch effort to bed Rick while trapped in a remote ranger station overnight during a storm while working on the project, but is turned down. While Monica continues to antagonize Lesley and Rick, she soon begins a relationship with Alan, though she's still very much attracted to Rick.

Monica had doubts about her relationship with Alan, but these were soon overshadowed when Monica's foster mother Gail Adamson discovered that Monica had slept with Gail's late husband Greg. Gail did not believe Monica's explanation that Greg had forced her into the affair and cut ties with Monica. Monica turned to Alan for support and agreed to marry him.

After their 1978 wedding, Alan bought a mansion for Monica as a wedding present, and his family ended up living there as well. However, within a year of her second marriage, Monica once again fell into Rick's arms and the two had a one-night stand. Monica was pregnant and didn't know who the father was. Monica gave birth to a son, A.J. Monica believed that Rick was the father and Rick and Lesley divorced so Rick and Monica could be together. Alan was enraged by this turn of events and made several attempts to kill Rick and Monica, but was thwarted at every attempt. Eventually, both Monica and Alan realized that A.J. was indeed Alan's son and not Rick's. Monica attempted to hide this fact from Rick, but Alan eventually exposed the truth. Rick, disgusted with Monica's continued manipulations, left her and went back to Lesley. Monica felt that she had no other alternative but to stay with Alan.

1980s[edit]

Following their 'reconciliation', Monica refused to sleep with Alan and insisted on separate rooms. Alan grew frustrated and in 1981, he embarked on an affair with Susan Moore, who became pregnant and gave birth to Alan's son, Jason. In 1983, Susan was murdered and Alan fought Susan's cousin, Heather (the same Heather whom Jeff had cheated on Monica with seven years earlier) for custody of the baby. Susan was a niece of Alice Grant who was Heather's mother. Monica was not pleased at having her husband's illegitimate offspring in the house at first, but eventually grew to love Jason as if he were her own. She later legally adopted him as well.

In 1986, Monica had an affair with Sean Donely, and kicked all the Quartermaines out of the Mansion. Alan concocted a bizarre scheme to frame Sean for his 'murder' and even went missing for several months as part of the plan. Eventually, Sean left Monica for Tiffany Hill, and Monica reluctantly reconciled with Alan and let the Quartermaines back into the mansion.

Monica went away to a spa resort and ended up sleeping with one of the workers there, a young man named Ward. To Monica's surprise, Ward turned out to be Ned Ashton, the son of her sister-in-law, Tracy Quartermaine, and thus, Alan's nephew. The two agreed to keep the affair a secret, but soon another secret of Monica's would come out. Monica's secret daughter, Dawn Winthrop turned up and began dating Ned. These two secrets proved at last to be the deathblow to Monica and Alan's marriage and the two divorced. Alan later married Lucy Coe in 1990.

1990s[edit]

Dawn was later murdered and Monica was devastated by her death. After Alan's marriage to Lucy also proved a disaster, Monica and Alan were drawn back together by their son A.J's rebellious behavior. In 1991, the two remarried and the next three years of their marriage were relatively calm, although the return of David Langton (Dawn's father), A.J.'s relationship with David's daughter Nikki and Alan's friendship with Rhonda Wexler did give the couple some cause for concern.

Monica's life was changed forever when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1994. Monica became despondent and began pushing Alan away, though Alan fought hard to give Monica the support she needed. During this time, Monica befriended Paige Bowen, a fellow sufferer of the disease. Monica was devastated when Paige died, but ended up adopting Paige's daughter, Emily. Finally, Monica went into remission, but she and Alan were drifting further and further apart.

By 1995, A.J.'s alcoholism, which had been developing for several years, culminated in family tragedy when he and Jason were in a serious car accident. A.J. escaped relatively unhurt, but Jason was left with amnesia and brain damage. The family's attempts to make Jason remember alienated him from the family and he eventually rejected all of them including Monica in favor of working for local mob boss, Sonny Corinthos. As a result of all the tragedy in her life, Monica separated from Alan and longed to make herself feel better. Monica embarked on an affair with Dr. Pierce Dorman, which predictably ended in disaster when Dorman made false allegations of sexual harassment against Monica. In court, Dorman's lawyers brought up Monica's past indiscretions, including her affair with Ned and ended up winning the case. Monica was fired from General Hospital as a result. On top of this, Monica had to deal with both A.J.'s alcoholism and Emily's drug addiction. Monica snapped and kidnapped Dorman, and threatened to give him a lobotomy. Only Jason's intervention stopped her from doing so. Eventually though, Monica was vindicated when Dorman was murdered and revealed to have been a drug dealer.

More family drama ensued in 1998 when Carly Roberts claimed that her son Michael was Jason's. Monica's father-in-law, Edward Quartermaine, wanted to gain custody of Michael and thus Jason, who had been growing close to the Quartermaines was alienated from the family once again. Eventually, it was revealed that Jason was covering for Carly and that he was not Michael's father, but rather A.J.'s. During this time, Alan had become addicted to painkillers, which caused another brief estrangement between Alan and Monica.

2000s[edit]

Alan and Monica eventually reconciled and briefly considered trying for another baby. In 2001, they decided to renew their vows only for Skye Chandler to turn up and claim that she was Alan's daughter. While Monica and Skye clashed at first, they eventually established a cordial relationship and Monica even allowed Skye to stay at the mansion after Tracy revealed that she wasn't Alan's daughter after all. Alan and Monica stayed stable for several years, even as drama occurred amongst their children. A.J. lost custody of Michael to Carly and her new husband Sonny Corinthos, while Emily was temporarily paralyzed in an accident and later diagnosed with breast cancer.

In 2005, A.J. faked his death as part of a complicated plot to frame his ex-wife, Courtney Matthews, for murder and eventually kidnap his son Michael. Alan and Monica blamed each other for failing to show A.J. enough love and attention and once again a rift began in their marriage. When A.J. turned up alive and was subsequently murdered, Alan and Monica separated. Monica also believed that she had witnessed Michael kill A.J. and helped in the cover up, though eventually it was revealed that her grandson was not to blame. Monica and Alan eventually patched up their differences and decided to remain married.

As of 2006, Monica spends most of her time at the hospital, or being amused by the various dramas that have been occurring in her family. In February 2007, she was devastated by the death of her husband Alan, followed in November 2007 by the death of Emily. Monica blamed Jason for Emily's death. Even though he was her only child left, she would not have anything to do with him, and turned to alcohol. Her drinking led to her being sued for medical malpractice by her sister-in-law Tracy Quartermaine after a botched surgery that Monica performed on Tracy's husband Luke Spencer. Monica also drank while driving, and hit Sam McCall in a hit and run, but since Sam decided not to press charges and spoke up on her behalf, Monica was sent to a rehab facility instead. She continued to blame Jason both for her grief and her drinking problem because his job had cost her Alan, A.J. and Emily.

Jason wanted to tell Monica about her grandson Jake, but Elizabeth insisted that he not do so, reminding him that they had agreed not to tell anyone about Jake's true paternity. After Monica's drinking landed her in a horrific car accident, Jason insisted that she go into rehab for her drinking problem or he would turn her in to the police. However, Monica finally chose to get help and decided to tell the police herself. Monica subsequently reconciled with Jason, apologizing for the way she had treated him and reassuring that, no matter what, he was her son and she loved him. Jason told he would help her and promised to be a better son in the future, and hired his lawyer Diane Miller to defend Monica. She pleaded guilty to Sam's hit and run and driving while under the influence. Though both Diane and Alexis were content with having Monica attend rehab and six months of the community service, the judge insists that Monica deserves a more severe punishment, stating that Monica's grief did not give her an excuse to endanger people's lives and that she should have sought help for her condition sooner. However, Nikolas and Sam's testimonies convinced the judge to accept Monica's plea bargain.

In November 2008, Monica Quartermaine resumed her position as Chief of Staff at General Hospital. In January 2009 Monica, along with the rest of the operation room's surgical staff, were infected with an airborne toxin that Earl Braggs had placed into his stomach. She was taken to the ICU at Mercy, but was quickly released. Monica immediately took to newcomer Rebecca Shaw, Emily's twin sister, and shared with her own breast cancer struggle.

Monica once again became a key player in the reconstruction efforts for General Hospital, which re-opened on April 23, 2009. In December 2009, she stepped down from her role as Chief of Staff, contacting former physician Dr. Steven Webber (illegitimate son of her first husband Jeff Webber) to take over for her so that she could re-focus on her specialty of cardiology.

2010s[edit]

The Quartermaine Mansion became a full house once again in 2010 when Skye & Brook Lynn Ashton returned, as well as the arrival of Edward's great-granddaughter Maya Ward. Monica, Edward, and Tracy later tricked Brook Lynn into stealing from them, which prompted them to throw her out.

When Luke Spencer faked a heart attack to get back into Tracy's good graces, Monica held the information over his head, threatening to kick him out of the mansion.

Monica was absent from the 2010 Thanksgiving festivities at the Quartermaine Mansion. Edward told Michael that since Alan's death, the holidays are rough on Monica, so she was spending the holiday at a spa. Monica was also absent from Luke & Tracy's Christmas wedding.

Monica made her first 2011 appearance on February 22 when she made a comment to Elizabeth Webber on how much Aiden Cassadine looked like Lucky Spencer when he was that age, causing Elizabeth to wonder if Lucky really was the father of her baby and not Nikolas Cassadine.

After a 5 month absence from the show, Monica returned on July 13 to find Tracy going through Michael's office at ELQ. The two traded insults, and Tracy accidentally let it slip that Jake was Jason's son. Monica leaves the office in tears but not before telling Tracy about the last time she saw Jake and ignored him. She later confronted both Jason and Elizabeth separately for keeping Jake's true paternity a secret from her.

In August, Monica offers advice to Robin about being Chief of Staff and saving her marriage and family. She admits that while she didn't appreciate all of the noise, chaos, and bickering, she hates it that now it is all gone. She goes on to say that she & Edward would do anything to have the house filled with Quartermaines again. Later that night, Jason is brought into the ER after being in a car accident. Monica calls Sam and the two tell off Carly several times throughout the evening. Skye arrives with Edward and it slips that Sam & Jason are engaged. Once again, Monica is annoyed that she is the last to know. After arguing about whether Jason should or shouldn't have surgery, Monica & Sam agree that he should, with Monica admitting that Sam has more right to the decision than she herself does because she (Monica) barely knows anything about Jason. While Jason is still recovering from his surgery, Sam gives Monica a picture of Jake. Monica subsequently admits to Sam that she regrets everything she did to drive Jason away after the original accident.

Jason was revealed to have a piece of A.J.'s dashboard lodged in his brain ever since the accident where he lost his memory. Monica, in hopes that Jason would regain his Quartermaine memories after surgery, went home to await any news. While there, she had a fantasy where A.J. had died in the accident, Alan was alive, and Jason was just about to become Chief of Staff. When her fantasy has Jason turning to drugs, Monica tells Edward that she has to be careful of what she wishes for.

A few days before Jason and Sam's wedding, Monica visits Sam and gives her Alan's wedding ring to give to Jason.

Monica and Edward attend Jason and Sam's wedding only to find out they have already secretly married. At the reception, Monica reads a fortune cookie that says, "Love lives on," implying Alan.

After Elizabeth is pushed off a boat by Lisa Niles and washes up on shore with hypothermia, Spinelli brings her to the hospital where Monica treats her for her condition. Despite Elizabeth's poor condition, Monica goes on to criticize her for the way she has parented her kids. Monica goes on to criticize Elizabeth when Aiden is brought into the ER with bruises.

Monica invites Jason, Sam, and Michael to Thanksgiving 2011, which they all agree to attend. Things do not go as planned and Tracy's insults cause Jason to flip a table over and storm out of the house, much to Monica's dismay.

When Robin Scorpio-Drake is named a suspect in the murder of Lisa Niles, Monica steps in as Chief of Staff. That same day, Monica slaps Luke over killing Jake. Robin is cleared of murder charges a few weeks later, but tells Monica that she does not want the job back and that Monica is the only one experienced and qualified enough for the job.

Jason's recent anger issues have Monica and Edward both concerned on Christmas. Monica mentions that the bracelet she is wearing was the last Christmas gift Alan gave her and that he planned to give her one every year so it would eventually be a band. Tracy sends Alice to the store to buy a bracelet for Monica, but the store closes before she can get there. However, Monica receives a mysterious present under the tree, and it is a bracelet identical to the one Alan bought her.

In early February 2012, Monica learned that Jason and Sam are expecting a baby, and that she is going to be a grandmother again. She was delighted when Jason told her that he wants her and Edward to be in his child's life. Later in the month, Robin was killed in an explosion at the hospital while trying to find a cure for Jason's head trauma. Monica and Sam agree not to tell Jason until he is better about Robin's death, that way it won't cause him to have a setback. In May 2012, Monica finds out that Sam's baby is the son of Franco, a crazed artist who was obsessed with Jason, as the result of rape. Jason also tells her that Franco was his fraternal twin, but was sold at birth, and his mother, Susan, never knew about him. Monica tries to convince Jason that he will learn to love the baby the same way she grew to love him. Jason, though, isn't sure he will be able to do the same.

In October 2012, Monica meets her grandson, Danny Morgan, and encourages Jason to make amends with Sam so they can raise Daniel together. Jason takes her advice and reunites with Sam. Soon after, Jason is presumed dead when he is shot in the back and drops into the harbor. Monica is devastated when she hears about this. Afterwards, her supposedly dead son A.J. returns to comfort Monica after Jason's death. It is revealed that Monica, with help from Dr. Steve Webber, faked A.J.'s death and sent him overseas. Monica tries to convince A.J. to leave, but after seeing Michael, A.J. refuses, saying he wants a relationship with his son.

A.J. is arrested soon after when Carly finds him alive. Tracy also has Monica and Alice arrested when they knocked her unconscious after she discovered A.J. was alive. A.J. is released on bail after Monica puts the house up as collateral. Meanwhile, Edward is ailing, and Monica takes care of him in his bed. On November 20, Michael, Sam, and Danny come over to say goodbye to Edward. Monica comes in just as Sam tells Edward that Jason is actually Danny's biological father, and Monica is overjoyed when she hears this. Soon after, Edward passes away, and Monica says his last word was "Lila." In his will, Edward left 5% of his ELQ shares to Monica.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Newcomb, Roger (August 17, 2013). "Today in Soap Opera History (August 17)". We Loves Soaps. We Loves Soaps LLC. Retrieved August 22, 2013. 
  2. ^ http://web.archive.org/web/20080326104340/http://abc.go.com/daytime/generalhospital/episodes/1976-77/1976.html
  3. ^ Leslie Charleson dropped to recurring status
  4. ^ "Leslie Charleson taken off contract at GH!". Michael Fairman Soaps. michaelfairmansoaps.com. 2010-08-24. Retrieved September 15, 2012.