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Helena Cassadine (Constance Towers)

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Helena Cassadine
HELENA1
Constance Towers as Helena Cassadine
General Hospital
Portrayed by Elizabeth Taylor (1981)
Dimitra Arliss (1996)
Constance Towers
(1997-present)
Current status Recurring
Duration 1981, 1996–2006, 2009-13, 2014-present
First appearance November 10, 1981
Created by Gloria Monty
Thom Racina
Leah Laiman
Introduced by Gloria Monty (1981)
Wendy Riche (1996)
Jill Farren Phelps (2009)
Book appearances The Secret Life
Profile
Nickname(s) [The] Dragon Lady
Gypsy Princess (by Luke)
Grammy Hella (by Spencer)[1]
Gender Female
Born 1933
Age 81
Occupation Socialite
Terrorist
Residence Paris, France
Helena-ElizabethTaylor2
Elizabeth Taylor as Helena Cassadine
Helena3
Dimitra Arliss as Helena Cassadine

bitch ischaracter on the American soap opera General Hospital, famously originated by film actress Elizabeth Taylor on November 1981.[2][3] The character reappeared 15 years later in 1996,[3] and returned, for periods of varying length, nearly every year since.[4] The returns ended, however, in 2013 when she was supposedly killed by Luke, ending the long lived Luke and Laura/Helena war. However, Dante Falconeri finds Helena on a metal operating table, substantiating Stavros Cassadine's claim that was "taking care" of his mother as she had done for him. Helena returned in 2014, after Robin Scorpio-Drake developed a protocol that revived her.

CastingEdit

A fan of the series and wildly popular supercouple Luke Spencer and Laura Webber (Anthony Geary and Genie Francis), Taylor called then-Executive Producer Gloria Monty in 1981 and asked for a cameo role.[3] She was cast as Helena, the vengeful widow of villain Mikkos Cassadine, who had died at the climax of that summer's popular "Ice Princess" storyline.[2][3][5] Luke and Laura's November 16, 1981 wedding, featuring Taylor's Helena, was watched by 30 million viewers and remains the highest-rated hour in American soap opera history.[3][5][6] Dimitra Arliss appeared briefly as the character in 1996.[3][4]

Constance Towers was later introduced as Helena on December 19, 1997.[4][7] Towers was a regular presence on the series until April 9, 2002, later returning on October 16 and 17, 2003, in December 2003, and from January 16 to October 2004.[4][7] Towers' Helena reappeared in January 2005, April and May 2005, October and November 2005, and January 2006.[4][7] Most recently, Towers returned from April 13[4][8] to April 21, 2009,[9] and again on June 4, 2009.[10] Towers appeared again in November 30-December 2012 and in April 2013.  

StorylinesEdit

In Summer 1981, Luke, Laura, and Robert Scorpio foil Mikkos Cassadine's plot to freeze the world using a weather machine, and both Mikkos and his brother Tony are killed while their other brother Victor is arrested. Mikkos's widow Helena appears in Port Charles just in time to curse Luke and Laura from the sidelines of their November 16, 1981 wedding. Laura later vanishes without a trace in 1982, leaving a devastated Luke to search for her. Presumed dead, Laura reappears in 1983, having been kidnapped by the Cassadines in revenge. Told that Luke was dead, Laura had been forced to marry Mikkos and Helena's son Stavros Cassadine, who had fallen in love with her. She had returned to Port Charles upon learning that Luke was alive, followed by Stavros; he is ultimately killed, and Luke and Laura are reunited. Discovering that Laura is pregnant with their first child, she and Luke leave town in 1984. Laura's mother Lesley Webber is killed in a car wreck later that year.

Having returned to Port Charles in 1993 with son Lucky, Luke and Laura have a daughter they call Lulu in 1994. In 1996 she is diagnosed with aplastic anemia, and a mysterious young man comes to town hoping to help. Laura is forced to reveal that he is Nikolas Cassadine, her son with Stavros, born during her captivity. She had been sworn by the Cassadines to leave him behind and keep his existence a secret as a condition of her release and to protect Luke from their wrath. Nikolas saves Lulu's life with a bone marrow transplant, but Luke and Laura's marriage is destroyed by the revelation of this secret. Around this time, Luke visits a bedridden Helena, gloating at her condition but vowing to have his revenge when she is well enough to fully experience him murdering her. Nikolas had come to town with his calculating but benevolent uncle and guardian Stefan Cassadine (Mikkos and Helena's younger son) and Stefan's adopted cousin Alexis Davis. Stefan and Laura had been romantically involved while she had been married to Stavros and confined on Cassadine Island, and Stefan still harbors feelings for her. Laura's marriage to Luke faltering, her own feelings for Stefan are rekindled as he comforts her. With Helena no longer a threat, Stefan discovers one of her secrets: Laura's mother Lesley is alive, having been kidnapped by Helena in 1984 and her death faked. Stefan frees Lesley and reunites her with Laura.

Helena appears in 1997 in an attempt to reassert control over Cassadine heir Nikolas and his fortune. She loathes Stefan, whom she views as weak, and seeks to thwart his influence over Nikolas by distracting Stefan with Laura. Meanwhile, Alexis had discovered that she was actually Mikkos' illegitimate daughter, and Helena terrorizes her. Alexis remembers that as a little girl she had watched Helena slit her mother's throat. Luke and Alexis plot to kill Helena in 1998, but Stefan's fiancée Katherine Bell is accidentally killed instead. They attempt to frame Helena, but Stefan is arrested; Katherine is revealed to be alive, saved by Helena as part of her plans. In Helena's debt, Katherine seduces Nikolas to put a wedge between him and Stefan. Meanwhile, Luke discovers evidence that Nikolas is actually Stefan's son, making him no longer the Cassadine heir and allowing Helena to take control of the Cassadine fortune. She next plans to eliminate Stefan and Laura, but Stefan manages to poison Helena, rendering her paralyzed and mute. Katherine is murdered for real, and Laura is charged; it is ultimately revealed that an antidote had allowed Helena to recover, and she had crept out of her bed to kill Katherine and frame Laura. Later it is also discovered that Helena had faked the DNA results, and Nikolas is Stavros' son and the rightful heir.

Lucky is presumed dead in a fire in May 1999; he reappears in February 2000 having been kidnapped on Helena's orders and brainwashed into serving her. In 2001, it is revealed that Stavros has been in cryonic suspension in a secret room below General Hospital since his apparent "death" in 1983, waiting for a time when medical science could revive him. Helena manages to do so, and Stefan stirs up trouble in town. Though initially compelled to do Helena's bidding and even hurting his loved ones, Lucky finally manages to break Helena's conditioning. Luke kills Stavros again by pushing him into a bottomless pit in 2001.[11]

In 2006 Helena placed a nanny in Nikolas' home, Colleen McHenry, in hopes of getting Nikolas' son Spencer. For a while, everything was going according to plan, until Colleen turned on Helena with her own agenda. She had fallen for Nikolas, and when her feelings weren't returned because Nikolas and Emily had gotten back together, she lost it. Colleen overpowered Helena and held her captive in a tower near Wyndemere for a couple days, then kidnapped baby Spencer on Christmas Eve. Nikolas and Emily searched for them and tracked Colleen to Chicago where she had dyed her hair and gotten a job at a daycare center to save enough and start a new life with "her son". After a few near-misses with Nikolas and Emily, Helena encountered the psycho nanny and took Spencer to St. Petersburg, Russia. Nik & Em followed her and got there just in time to stop Helena from baptizing Spencer with a different name. When they tried to get him back, Helena threatened to kill him with a dagger. Emily offered to trade herself for the infant and Helena accepted. Emily was able to get away, as was Helena.

Helena reappears Port Charles at the General Hospital grand re-opening on April 13, 2009[8] demanding that Nikolas return a painting of Saint Gregoire to her,[12] which he does. Alexis voices her suspicions that Helena has actually orchestrated the recent arrival of Rebecca Shaw, who resembles Nikolas's deceased wife Emily Quartermaine;[13] Nikolas is inclined to agree when he later sees Helena and Rebecca talking.[14] As Helena leaves town on her jet, she tears the paper off the backside of the painting and reveals a birth certificate. She returns again on June 4, 2009[10] and soon tries to lure Rebecca away from her "current partner" and assist in Helena's plans; Rebecca angrily refuses.[15] After their conversation, Helena disappears.

Helena showed up in Port Charles again on February 10, following her learning of Nikolas' affair with Elizabeth Webber. The following day, Elizabeth finds out she is pregnant. Believing the baby is Nikolas's, Helena made immediate threats to Elizabeth about the welfare of the child. Believing she is unstable, Nikolas and Lucky pressure her into committing herself into Shadybrook</span>. In an attempt to keep tabs on Elizabeth, Helena makes a large donation to the institution, getting an upperhand with the staff. While reminiscing with Luke, she reveals the immediate threat from Valentin has passed. Later, when Elizabeth has a paternity test done, Helena pays the lab tech to let her see the results first. She finds out Lucky is the biological father, but has the results switched to make it look like Nikolas is the father. Helena has her Man kidnap Tracy who she thought knew Liz's baby was a Spencer. Luke tries to find Tracy but ends up kidnapped, too. While they are being held hostage, Tracy becomes sick and Luke takes care of her. Later Nikolas and Lucky find Tracy and Luke. Upon returning to Port Charles, Nikolas banishes Helena from Wyndemere for her actions and warns her to stay away from Elizabeth and their son. When the newborn Aiden is later kidnapped, Helena instantly becomes a suspect, and Nik openly threatens to kill her if she is the one who did so. Eventually, Aiden is found and is ok.

Over time, Elizabeth suspects that Aiden is Lucky's son, not Nikolas', and confirms this with a third DNA test. After delaying this revelation when Elizabeth's middle child Jake is killed in a hit-and run accident, she finally reveals the truth to Lucky and Nikolas. Nikolas does not take the news well, and decides to leave Aiden with Elizabeth and Lucky, then prepares to leave town. Helena is seen in Port Charles secretly watching Nikolas as he boards his jet. Shortly afterward, she confronts Lucky to taunt him, while insisting the whole time that Aiden was really a Cassadine and that Elizabeth's third DNA test was the tampered one. Lucky demands her to leave.

While searching from a recently missing-in-action Luke in Florida, Lulu and her boyfriend Dante learn from a pimp that Luke is somewhere doing business with Helena. The two arrive on Cassadine Island where they confront Helena about Luke's whereabouts. Helena later threatens to cause the Spencer family pain by making them lose Luke. Helena has a plan to get revenge on Spencers for the deaths of both her sons. Nikolas leaves Port Charles with Spencer in summer 2011. On September 28, 2011 Luke's son, Ethan, is wandering in Nik's home. While there, he find a photo of Laura and is smacked in the head with vase by Helena. Helena sees someone passing by while she and Ethan talk.

On January 11, 2012, Helena is seen lurking the tunnels of Wyndemere holding a dagger and listening in on Ethan and "Cassandra's" conversation. Helena reappears on February 24, 2012 when she shows her face to Ethan and "Cassandra". She insists it's time to end the charade and tell Ethan the truth. Ethan's shocked when he realizes that Helena and "Cassandra" know each other. It hits him even harder, when "Cassandra" announces under the pressure of Helena that she really is Iraina Cassadine, Helena's daughter. Iraina tells Ethan that she was forced to play the part and take a place in Helena's never ending vendetta against Laura and the Spencer family. Helena seeks her goal when she informs Ethan that she wanted him to fall for Irina in order to break his heart. Irina tries to convince Ethan that she's fallen in love with him and doesn't want to lose him.

Helena claims that Irina is still playing him and then she lets two of her men bring in a beaten up Luke. Ethan is shocked to learn that Luke was captured by Helena all this time since he thought his father was on one of his adventurous trips. Helena then announces that one of them is going to die. She ends up shooting her daughter, killing her. Ethan is shocked and even calls Helena a bitch. Helena then tells Luke she's going to kill Ethan for payback when Luke killed her son(s). Right when Helena is gonna kill Ethan, Ethan's mother Holly comes in and says Ethan is really Robert's son. Helena they takes hair out of Ethan and Luke and tells them she's going to do a DNA test to see if Holly is lying and leaves them alone.</span> On November 30, Helena Cassadine appears again when Robert Scorpio wants information about Cesar Faison. She doesn't give him too much of useful information.

On March 29, Helena returns on the Haunted Star and is surprised to hear that Nikolas has been shot. She makes Laura call Scotty to hear about his condition but Alexis picks up the phone and confrims what Luke and Laura have said about Nikolas's condition. Helena tells her that she is in charge of Nikolas's well being and if anything happens to him her throat will be slit. Helena then says she plans to kill Laura. Dante comes in and is able to prevent Helena from killing Laura. He says that there is someone in one of the staterooms. While Dante stays with Helena Luke and Laura go to resuce who they originally think in Lulu but it turns out to be Ethan. Later on the deck Luke shoots Helena after she tries to make Laura kill Ethan or Luke, presumably "killing" her. She is seen in flashbacks of Lulu when Lulu remembers that Helena forced her to "marry" Helena's son Stavros[16] and having sex with him.

Luke received a message from Helena, saying that said she had laced his earring with plutonium poison. While on Cassadine Island, seeking the cure, Helena appeared in a hallucination to Luke. On January 30 2014, It was revealed that Helena and Stavros's bodies had been cryogenically preserved by her husband's brother, Victor Cassadine, who was planning on using Robin Scorpio-Drake to revive them.

On January 30, Victor Cassadine, along with his associates, show up at Robin's door demanding that she helps Victor revive Stavros and Helena in exchange of her also reviving Jason Morgan, meaning she once again has to leave her family behind indefinitely. Robin reluctantly agrees but only agrees to do it to save Jason. Victor removes Robin from Port Charles and takes her to the Crichton-Clark clinic in Scarsdale, NY.

Over the summer/fall of 2014, Robin worked hard at reviving the three. She was more focused on working on Jason than Stavros and Helena. Robin -- after a brief and hostile encounter with Patrick -- successfully finds the formula to revive Jason. She planned to test it on Stavros and Helena, but Victor uses it on Jason. At first it doesn't seem to work, but then Robon manages to keep Jason stable through the process. Victor then orders his thugs to lock Robin in one of those rooms and takes her key card, so they can use her formula to resurrect Helena and Stavros. Stavros is revealed to be alive in September and tells Lulu and Dante and that he appropriated Lulu's other remaining embryo and fertilized it with his sperm with the intention of getting Lulu pregnant with Stavros' baby. After Stavros' plan failed and he's shot to death, Helena (in the 17 September, 2014 episode) is also revealed to be very much alive.

When the emergency alarm is blaring through Crichton-Clarke she goes in the room where Stavros got shot and takes Lulu's embryo. She then goes into the room Robin and Jason are locked in, even though they have a Crichton-Clarke key card. Helena however can go into the room because she has a master key card that can open any door, even during an emergency lockdown. Helena is happy to see Robin but Robin isn't mutually happy to see Helena for obvious reasons. Jason is about to disable her but her two armed thugs disable him. Helena rambles on to Robin about her plans to take her, Lulu, and Maxie and finish Stavros' plans to get Lulu pregnant. Robin threats that she will kill Helena if she tries that. Helena insists on taking Robin out of the building when it's about to blow into a million pieces but Robin is having none of that and neither is Jason as he takes his gun and blows Helena's men away. He points the gun at Helena only for her to put her hands up and say "don't shoot." Jason agrees and drags Robin out of the room.

On September 22, Helena turns up at Anna's hotel room. She tells Robin she has big plans for her and threatens her family of she dossn't cooperate. Helena also reveals that her henchmen have recaptured Jason, but Helena's thugs later report that Jason escaped. Helena shoots one of her thugs, but only spares the other one because she needs someone to dispose of the dead body. Helena is later seen with Robin as they are on their way to Paris. Helena reveals that Jason has survived, and Robin tried to to intimidate her with the knowledge that Jason could be coming after her. Helena dismisses Robin's threats and says she will deal with Jason when the time comes.

Helena sent one of her goons to the hospital to keep an eye on Jason and report back to her. Helena learned that Jason had memory loss and got plastic surgery, so know one can recognize him. Helena hacks into the PCPD and deletes Jason's fingerprints from the records. She is also working with Jerry Jacks.

Crimes CommittedEdit

  • Murdered Alexis' mother in front of her when Alexis was a child [prior to 1981]
  • Arrested for Katherine's "murder (actually innocent); charges dropped when Katherine revealed she was actually alive [1998]
  • Tricked everyone into thinking that Stefan was Nikolas father instead of Stavros so that she could get her hands on the Cassadine fortune; killed a doctor who knew the truth; tried to kill Jax and Alexis to keep her secret
  • Pretended to be comatose [1999]
  • Pushed Katherine Bell off the parapet to her death to prevent her from trapping Nikolas into a marriage based on a fake pregnancy; framed Laura for the murder and killed the only true witness [Oct 1999]
  • Framed Faison for Katherine's murder when she became a suspect and killed him to prevent him from contradicting her story [1999]
  • Kidnapped and brainwashed Lucky Spencer [1999]
  • Ran down Chloe Morgan, thinking she was Alexis, to keep secret the fact that she had Lucky as prisoner [2000]
  • Arrested for kidnapping Lucky but released due to lack of evidence against her [2000]
  • Killed Lucky's doctor after he talked to Alexis and Stefan [2000]
  • Poisoned Stefan and dropped him overboard to drown [2000]
  • Attempted to blackmail Jasper Jacks into bed by dangling the medication needed to help Chloe in front of him [2000]
  • Tried to kill Chloe when Chloe began having visions of how Helena had killed Stefan [2000]
  • Tried to get Nikolas declared mentally incompetent to gain control of the Cassadine estate [2000]
  • Had Lucky poison Lucas Jones and blackmailed Tony Jones into helping her bring Stavros back to life [2001]
  • Had Lucky poison his own father [2001]
  • Put a look-a-like in her place in prison so she could escape [Apr 2002]
  • Killed her henchman after stealing Azure Key's treasure for herself [Jan 2004]
  • Attempted murder; took off the tourniquet that was preventing Emily from bleeding to death. [Feb 2004]
  • Attempted to murder Emily again with a knife on the cliffs [Sept 2004]
  • Attempted to murder Emily on the cliffs [Nov 2004]
  • Faked her death [Nov 2004]
  • Shot Lucky Spencer [Jan 2005]
  • Tried to kill Luke and Tracy [Spring/Summer 2005]
  • Kidnapped Courtney [Early 2006]
  • Kidnapped her great-grandson, Spencer Cassadine [Spring 2007]
  • Took over the television monitors during a ribbon cutting ceremony at General Hospital and threatened Nikolas [Apr 2009]
  • Held a knife on Ethan Lovett [Apr 2009]
  • Bribed a lab technician to change paternity test results for Elizabeth Webber's unborn child [Mar 2010]
  • Bribed a lab technician to change paternity results for Elizabeth Webber's unborn child [Apr 2010]
  • Arranged for a lab technician to be killed [Apr 2010]
  • Arranged for Tracy Quartermaine to be chloroformed and imprisoned [May 2010]
  • Imprisoned Luke Spencer in a dungeon with his wife Tracy Quartermaine [Jun 2010]
  • Ordered one of her henchmen to kill her daughter Irina [Feb 2012]
  • Held a gun on Ethan Lovett and threatened to kill him [Feb 2012]
  • Held Luke Spencer and Laura Webber at gunpoint and threatened to kill them [Mar 2013]
  • Threatened to kill Alexis Davis [Mar 2013]
  • Kidnapped Ethan Lovett and threatened to have him killed [Apr 2013]
  • Held Luke Spencer and Laura Webber at gunpoint and threatened to kill them [Apr 2013]
  • Poisoned Luke Spencer's earring with the radioactive toxin Polonium 210 [revealed Jun 2013]
  • Stole Lulu's embryo and made off with it  [Sep 17, 2014]
  • Revealed to Robin that she "had plans" for her, Lulu, and Maxie [Sep 17, 2014]
  • Ordered her thugs to knock out Jason [Sep 17, 2014]
  • Tried to kidnap Robin, failed [Sep 17, 2014]
  • Shot and killed one of her hitmen [Sep 24, 2014]
  • Kidnapped Robin Scorpio-Drake [Sep 24, 2014]
  • Sent one of her Henchmen to GH to pretend to be a nurse to see if Jason Morgan regained his memory [Oct 14, 2014]
  • Hacked into the PCPD Database and deleted Jason's records so that the police couldn't tell who he really was [Oct 14, 2014]

Health and VitalsEdit

  • Poisoned by Stefan, which left her mute and paralyzed [1999]
  • Pushed from a cliff by Nikolas [Nov 2004]
  • Hospitalized after being poisoned [Oct 2009]
  • Held at gunpoint by Dante Falconeri, who threatened to shoot her unless she told him where Lulu was [Apr 2013]
  • Presumed dead after being shot and "killed" by Luke Spencer [Apr 2013]
  • Threatened with bodily harm (Robin told Helena she will kill her if she touched Lulu and Maxie) [Sep 17, 2014]
  • Held at gunpoint by Jason until she simply pleaded "Don't shoot!" [Sep 17, 2014]
  • Presumed to be injured in the Crichton-Clark explosion [Sep 17, 2014]

Family treeEdit

   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Basil
   
   
Agatha
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Mikkos
Cassadine
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Helena
Cassadine
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Laura
Webber
   
   
Stavros
Cassadine
   
   
Stefan
Cassadine
   
   
Irina
Cassadine
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Nikolas
Cassadine
   
   
Courtney
Matthews
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
Spencer
Cassadine

ReferencesEdit

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBu-BLTByAA
  2. 2.0 2.1 Schemering, Christopher (September 1985). The Soap Opera Encyclopedia, 108-119.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Waggett, Gerard J. (November 1997). “One Life to Live”, The Soap Opera Encyclopedia. Harper Paperbacks, 112-134.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Helena Cassadine profile. Soaps.com. Retrieved on May 20, 2009.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Luke and Laura: Still the Ultimate TV Wedding. ABC.com. Retrieved on May 20, 1009.
  6. West, Abby. "Luke and Laura: 17 Great Soap Supercouples", Entertainment Weekly, EW.com. Retrieved on May 20, 2009. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Helena Cassadine profile. SoapCentral.com. Retrieved on May 20, 2009.
  8. 8.0 8.1 General Hospital recap (4/13/09) - Soaps.com
  9. General Hospital recap (4/21/09) - Soaps.com
  10. 10.0 10.1 General Hospital recap (6/4/09) - Soaps.com
  11. General Hospital was beginning to unfold a plot involving bioterrorism, with Stavros and Helena as the primary antagonists. However, following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the producers quickly altered the storyline, and Stavros was written out of the series. Sept 11 changed US daytime TV (1/07/2002) - theherald.co.za
  12. General Hospital recap (6/16/09) - Soaps.com
  13. General Hospital recap (4/16/09) - Soaps.com
  14. General Hospital recap (4/20/09) - Soaps.com
  15. General Hospital recap (6/5/09) - Soaps.com
  16. This marriage is invalid, due to Lulu being already married to Dante Falconeri.

External linksEdit


Start a Discussion Discussions about Helena Cassadine (Constance Towers)

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    • After Sonny handled all his male enemies, what would he do if Helena broke into Olivia's apartment? What would Sonny do if Dr. Obrecht broke i...

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