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Robert & Anna:  In Sickness, Health, and Crime Fighting
by Janet Di Lauro, Soap Opera Weekly 7/2/91

robertanna2.jpg (47362 bytes)Friends, family, and even a group of Australian aborigines gather around for a major event in Port Charles this Friday, June 28- the long awaited wedding of General Hospital's Anna Lavery (Finola Hughes) and Robert Scorpio (Tristan Rogers). The happy couple's afternoon nuptials will be set outdoors on Lila Quartermaine's (Anna Lee) country estate.

While Hughes says the ceremony will be quite romantic, she says, "I think there are going to be a couple of 'whammies' that will happen. Gloria's (Monty, the show's executive producer) got a couple of things up her sleeve that are going to be kind of weird... nothing ever goes off smoothly [on daytime]," she laughs. 

Robert's brother, Mac (John J. York), will stand up as his best man, and Robert and Anna's teenage daughter, Robin (Kimberly McCullough), will be the maid-of-honor.

After over 13 years apart, Monty believes "the timing is right for Anna and Robert to 'I do'- it again. Their story has been going magnificently. We're getting a wonderful reaction to it," says Monty, who decided to reunite this couple upon returning to GH's helm in January. "When I came back to the show, we [aired] a week of complete flashbacks; almost a miniseries of how Robert and Anna met, and what their backgrounds were."

Monty terms the reunion "the big romance of the season. For me it's always been the only true romance Robert could have, because Anna was his first love," she notes. 

Hughes supports Monty's philosophy about Anna and Robert's romance. However, she notes that both character's previous marriages- Anna's to Duke and Robert's to Holly- also played a major part in their lives.  

"They had to be there to have [Anna and Robert] come to the place they're at now," Hughes explains.   "It's sort of like any experience in life. I think there's been enough time [apart] on both their sides, and that they are each other's true loves."

In comparing Anna's relationship with Robert to the torrid one she once shared with Duke, Hughes explains that "They're very different. With Duke, it was a lot more of a romantic-obsessive kind of thing. I think that relationship was a lot darker than the relationship Anna has with Robert, because Duke was a darker character. The relationship made Anna possibly-weaker.  She didn't know where she was at any given time, because of what [Duke was about]. Anna's more secure with Robert Scorpio, because he's this solid guy."

Hughes also takes pride in the fact that Robert and Anna are portrayed as equals. "I get in a really bad mood when I have to bring coffee into the room or straighten Robert's tie. I'm always pointing it out and won't do it.  I think the [writers] forget sometimes, because it's such a normal thing to do. But it just doesn't have any bearing on what the two characters are about," she says. "Tristan's really good about that.  He'll go out of his way to change it so that we are equal in a scene. There are enough of the pretty kind of sidekicks.  It's important that [Anna and Robert] are partners. I hope it remains like that."

Hughes says the main attraction between Anna and Robert is based on a lot of things. "They have the same dry outlook on life.  They see things the same way in a lot of respects.  Their child plays a huge part in their lives. If it weren't for Robin, maybe there wouldn't have been so much feeling between the two of them throughout their lives."  

Now that "that feeling" has reunited Robert and Anna, Hughes is ready for the next turn in their storyline.   She isn't worried about the cliche that marriage is the kiss of death for soap couples. "I'm sure in some respects that's true, because what do you do after that, serve breakfast?" she laughs. "But I think Gloria wants us to be partners [fighting] crime.  We've always worked together as private investigator and police commissioner.  It's not one person doing one thing and another person doing another. Hopefully, we can continue to fool around and do some stupid things, too."

"I'd like to see [Anna and Robert] work on a realy cool case together.  I'd like to see a lot more of the comedy we've started to work on," adds Hughes. "Anna and Robert have both suffered so bloody much that it certainly will be nice to have some fun."


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