Regan Reax: My Love Affair With Rebecca Herbst and Elizabeth Webber





Shocked, dismayed, sad, disappointed, angry, heartbroken — I’m experiencing a full body of emotions, all due to the ridiculous firing of Rebecca Herbst (Elizabeth Webber) from General Hospital. I know, some—maybe most—will jump to the conclusion that my dismay is due to my love of all things Liason, the unforgettable romantic pairing featuring Herbst’s Liz and Jason Morgan (Steve Burton), and I won’t lie, that definitely plays a part, but I have been having a love affair with the character of Elizabeth Webber since long before she fell for Jason. In fact, I've loved Liz and Herbst since they first popped up in Port Charles back in 1997.

Elizabeth’s storylines over the past 13 years have made her one of my all-time favorite soap opera characters, while Herbst's performances in those storylines resulted in her becoming one of my favorite daytime actresses. "Bad" Lizzie Webber was a force to be reckoned with when she first showed up at Audrey’s (Rachel Ames). You just couldn’t help but root for the underdog, little sister over the more “perfect” Sarah.

When GH scribe Michele Val Jean made the decision to write a brutal rape storyline for the character of Liz, Herbst’s acting choices —not to mention the elegant writing—transformed her into a fan favorite, which she’s been ever since. Who could ever forget a shattered and broken Elizabeth crawling out of those bushes, only to be found by Lucky (Jonathan Jackson)?

A teen love affair was created through pain and healing. Simply put, it was one of the best stories General Hospital has ever told, brilliantly acted by Herbst and Jackson. It also led to GH finally revisiting one of the most controversial arcs in the soap’s history, when Lucky learned his father, Luke Spencer (Anthony Geary) had raped his mother Laura (Genie Francis).

The tender care Lucky showed for Elizabeth as they both dealt with the scars sexual violence had left on them, made what could have been just another soap teen pairing a bonafide supercouple. Remember Lucky and Liz hiding out in the catacombs, or making a home out of an abandoned boxcar, with Elizabeth painting the walls? These two were destined to be together, until they weren’t.

With plans to move to New York City, Lucky and Elizabeth gave us one of their most memorable moments, exchanging vows in an empty church, just the two of them, promising their love and life to each other. That love ended in tragedy, when Lucky was thought to have died in a fire. Herbst rose up to the challenge again, giving yet another heart-wrenching performance, stopping fans in our tracks as a result.

Out of Lucky’s “death”, Liason was born. Yes, here is where my love of Jason and Elizabeth: The Couple began. The two started out as friends, helping one another in their own way. Elizabeth needed someone to help her mourn over lost love, Jason was reeling after seeing Sonny (Maurice Benard) with Carly (Sarah Brown). When Liz found him shot and bleeding in the snow, magic transpired. Liz was on to her second, epic love story in Port Charles, one born in friendship. It’s sad TPTB never seemed to realize how much this pairing came to mean to fans of General Hospital.

The winter Jason spent hiding out in Elizabeth’s studio gave fans some of the best moments in Liason’s history, a slew of Liason lovers, including me, were hooked, but Liason just couldn’t make it work. Whether it was Burton’s comings and goings, or the brass deciding to put Jason with one flashy, story hog newcomer or another, fans of Liason always got just close enough to forever before having the rug pulled out.

Then, after years apart, Liason fans finally got what we’d been waiting for. A drugged up and cheating Lucky (then played by Greg Vaughan) and Sam McCall (Kelly Monaco) rolling around on the floor with her own mother’s husband, caused the fates to align as Liz walked up those infamous stairs and into the arms of the one man she could never forget, mob lifestyle be damned!

Both in need of comfort, Liason exploded in a night of passion we fans will never forget. The blessing of a faulty Quartermaine-produced condom gave us baby Jake and at long last what felt like a real shot for Elizabeth and Jason, that is until a bullet ripped through Michael’s skull.

All along the way, Herbst rolled with the punches, not to mention the Lucky recasts and paycuts. From Jackson to Jacob Young to Greg Vaughan to ultimately Jackson again, Herbst never missed a beat, managing to preserve Liz’s integrity and spirit, even as one out-of-character plot point after another was written and executed to try to make fans dislike the character. Sorry, it didn’t work.

ABC Daytime and General Hospital have made a huge error in judgment. Failing to see the potential and legacy Liz brings to the canvas (Hello, she's Dr. Steve Hardy's granddaughter!) only tells me what fans have been claiming all along is absolutely true — General Hospital has no respect for history, veterans or their viewers, and this “storyline dictated” exit proves it.

Photo Credit: ABC


Comments

Member since:
15 May 2008
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1 hour 33 min

Doodleynoodle, no prob! FYI: It is in the correct tense...

Member since:
19 January 2011
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1 year 47 weeks

Thank you - I totally agree!

Cyberologist's picture
Member since:
27 December 2007
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4 hours 25 min

A great tribute to a character and actress I followed over a decade. I too wish Becky the best and hope that she continues her acting career there is life after GH and I'm looking forward not backwards hopefully the next place she lands will appreciate her.

Member since:
3 February 2008
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22 hours 12 min

Regan, that was SO well said. I've watched GH since Luke and Laura returned in 1993 and I've loved Elizabeth and RH since Day One. You said everything I wanted to say. I loved Elizabeth, loved Lucky (as played by JJ) and Elizabeth, and eventually grew to love Liason too, even though I was ultimately rooting for a Liz and Lucky reunion. I admit that while I didn't like Liason at first, I could see the chemistry was there between RH and SB and waited patiently for some kind of acknowledgement from TPTB that this was the couple to root for. No such luck. Sad I still remember the scene in church at Robin and Patrick's wedding when SB and RH looked at each other. Those two said more to each other with only their eyes than most actors do in pages and pages of dialogue. I can't believe what TPTB has done in firing Becky, or that they are that stupid. RH and Liason have topped the fan polls in Soaps In Depth and Digest for YEARS; this is CLEARLY what the fans want, so why are they so blatantly disregarding this? How can ANY soap these days afford to piss off so much of it's fan base? It doesn't make sense!

watchingallday's picture
Member since:
21 December 2009
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2 years 13 weeks

Jillian and DoodleyNoodle, I think yall are missing CityGrilla1's point. By changing storyline "dictated" to storyline "dictate", they're saying that the story line to get rid of Elizabeth was commanded from the higher ups. I agree 100% with that sentiment. CG1 was not correcting anyone's grammar. lol

jpp1975's picture
Member since:
30 November 2007
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1 week 3 days

Lovely article Regan, I totally agree with everything. I hope Y&R snaps RH up for either Mac or another character, I'd totally go back to watching Y&R just to see what she could do over there. Or, if they didn't already have 2,000 actors that they don't show enough, to B&B to reunite w/Ric Hearst. Or maybe to DAYS as Chelsea or Sarah?

I♥GH's picture
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24 May 2010
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3 years 12 weeks

Great article and I totally agree. I am heartbroken over this news. I cried when I heard, and I still can't stop the tears from coming when I think about Elizabeth and Becky being gone from GH.

Elizabeth has been my favorite character on television for over 13 years, and I can't imagine a GH without her. Becky is so talented, beautiful, and loved by so many; GH made a MASSIVE mistake letting her go and it is an irreplaceable loss to the show.

GH has lost this viewer because Elizabeth was the only reason left why I was still watching. Becky's last day on GH will always be my last day as a viewer. I'm a huge fan of Becky's and I will go to whatever show she's on next.

Saher89's picture
Member since:
31 October 2010
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2 years 51 weeks

icam with this article!
there's an online petition going right now, to save becky....
here's the link:
http://twitition.com/w7ni2
save liz...

Member since:
14 August 2010
Last activity:
1 year 49 weeks

I could not have said it better myself. Sad

The character was loved by me from the first time she hit the screen and I would always find myself rooting for her to overcome all obstacles. Even though the character was put through the grinder the last few years I was still able to watch because I was waiting for her her be redeemed and given some sort or storyline. Obviously now that is not going to happen.

I wish the actress the very best and I hope to see her in another soap where her talents, loyalty and charisma will be appreciated.

AllmyDaysatGh's picture
Member since:
16 October 2009
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49 weeks 3 days

Regan, you summed up everything to perfection...this was a flawless article. Thank you so much....I am going to miss Rebecca Herbst and Elizabeth Webber!! :'(.

Member since:
1 November 2010
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30 weeks 6 days

Regan you wrote everything to perfection. Liz Webber is my favorite character on GH. And now that she's fired I see no reason to continue watching just to watch more mob storylines. And i'm not going to watch GH until the mob storylines are over and out.

coolblue's picture
Member since:
7 July 2009
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10 weeks 20 hours

Regan, that was beautifully written.
Elizabeth Webber is a legacy character and Rebecca Herbst is an amazingly talented actress who will be missed. GH/ABC Daytime has definitely made a terrible decision.

I learned in history class all about dictators. Their misuse of power, agenda, and disregard of any ideas except their own ultimately lead to their own downfalls and demise. I can only hope the same outcome for the dictators that made this decision.

jlj0117's picture
Member since:
29 September 2009
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1 year 47 weeks

You know how wonderful an actor is, when you can be brought to tears at the idea of not being able to see them on your screen anymore. My mother watched GH, all through my childhood, so I know the history, and the families, and I always watched here and there, keeping up with all the story lines. but when lizzie webber blew into town, with a plane ticket bought with the only money she had, when her parents dumped her, at age 14....THAT is when I started skipping gym every day, to walk home(2miles) just so I could see my favorite character. she stole my heart when she showed up. broke my heart when her rapist broke her. And made me damn proud to be a woman, when she used the bastards on gun t.o make him squirm, and beg to be turned in to the cops. LnL2 was my first super couple. But they couldn't hold a candle to the amazing "more than friendship" that is liason. Becky owned every story line ever thrown at this character. the rape, luckys death, luckys undeath, LIASON, ric, zander, poison snakes, hidden panic rooms, rapists, blackmailers, dead undercover cops in freezers, stealing the ice princess and faking her death to escape the clutches of the dragon queen, miscarriages, paternity secrets,scandalous affairs, one hell of an NOP, hit and runs, and everything in between. Liz/Becky, made this show for me. I never thought the day would come when I would bid farewell to GH. But it has. If my girl Liz is gone, so am I. language alert............ Fuck u frons and guza . I will never watch this show again.

Kelly8970's picture
Member since:
15 October 2008
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1 year 45 weeks

Sad( So well said! GH has made a huge error in judgment. There is no General Hospital for me with Becky Herbst as Elizabeth Webber.

spikefan's picture
Member since:
1 October 2010
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3 years 10 weeks

Guza has no respect for GH history. I fell in love Lucky and Liz , but not ready Liz fan. But I won't stopping watching the show simply because of Liz's leaving.

True GH is not what it use to be but Robert Guza for ya!

Member since:
4 August 2008
Last activity:
2 years 22 weeks

Very well written Regan. Thank you for this. It has been very hard to watch the character of Liz over the past year, as they have tried to make her look bad and out of character at every turn. She is my favorite character on this show and it is sad to see the outcome of this. My best to Rebecca Herbst.

Miry's picture
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30 October 2008
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2 days 18 hours

Very nicely written article Regan.
RH will be missed!

SoapFan75's picture
Member since:
29 December 2009
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2 years 20 weeks

Very well done Regan. You captured all of the best Liz moments which are subsequently some of the most important moments in the shows history. Liz should have been groomed to be the next heroine on this show. This is a legacy character with ties to other legacy characters via two of her three sons.

js3557's picture
Member since:
28 September 2009
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1 day 7 hours

Excellent article Regan! You summed up beautifully why I love Liz Webber/Rebecca Herbst so much. GH has made a huge error in judgment and have lost this viewer and many others.

Member since:
1 April 2009
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3 weeks 1 day

I say it her on DC as many times as I possibly can. I do NOT watch ABC Daytime anymore and haven't in 3 (almost 4) blessed years. My belief is they do not care about their fans, and ruined shows I loved for 30 years.

If anyone in their right minds POSSIBLY believes ANY of your favorite characters will be around in 5-10 years, moves like replacing Soapnot with Sesame Street shows, and removing core/fan favorite characters/actors should lead you think otherwise.

In a nutshell, the only 2 annoying characters that will EVER remain on the dial are Greenpea and Ryan. As horrid as they are (IMO, I admit) the staying power these horribly annoying characters have on the ABC honchos in baffling.

I hope Rebecca hops on over to Genoa City, WIS and CBS. I would love nothing more than to see her on Daytimes #1 Rated Soap.

Member since:
29 October 2008
Last activity:
3 years 9 weeks

Beautifully written Regan and what a great tribute to Becky. I am so disappointed in GH for letting her go, there have been other actors that were let go in the past that I didn't want to go..but this one I just can't believe it. Am seriously thinking of not watching GH anymore. I have been a fan of Lizzie since she first came on and Liason one of the best love stories on any soap of all times!! I wish Becky all the best and I know she will go on to bigger and better things!!

timepass's picture
Member since:
20 November 2007
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6 days 5 hours

Well said Reagan!

I hope this news has an impact into the viewership, just to ensure that in the future they think before they fired people left and right!

Peaceole's picture
Member since:
14 December 2009
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13 weeks 4 days

I have to admit I am not a Liz fan but I did use to like her. So what I think has happened is that the character has pretty much been destroyed and put back together into this character that is well annoying. That is sad I kind of got tired of the Elizabeth getting pregnant and guessing who is the baby's daddy. I guess they had to let her go since she has gone through all the men on the show now with the exception of Sonny and Morgan.

Member since:
18 January 2011
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3 years 12 weeks

Wow! THis brought back a lot a memories and tears. Thanks. I will really miss Lizzie.

Member since:
29 September 2008
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11 weeks 2 days

As a young child, being sick and in the hospital, my watching of GH was started by the nurses taking care of me. I have been watching GH since the very first show, so have seen so many come and go. This firing just makes no sense and will put an end to my watching. Sad to see that the writers just can't understand that history and the family legacy is what these stories are really based on.

safetchick's picture
Member since:
1 February 2008
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1 year 2 weeks

Agree with you Regan and was a hug Laison fan as well. *sigh*

Member since:
19 January 2011
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2 years 6 weeks

thanks regan.

i loved almost all of her matches...original Liz/Lucky (as teens), the friendship with Zander, Nik, Jax Emily, and Patrick, Liric (liz/ric), Liz/Lucky (greg version - did not like JJ coming back) and Liason (though i loved their friendship and hated when it was hurt).

loved the back and forth with her and carly.

she is tied to so much on this show and i just can't imagine GH without her...i will follow her to another soap...hoping Young and the Restless will pick her up quick!

Member since:
15 May 2008
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1 hour 33 min

Watchingallday: Re-read what was said regarding the grammer.

Member since:
20 August 2009
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2 weeks 1 day

Great post Reagan. It says everything I would have said if I was eloquent enough to come up with it. Laughing out loud

JasonMorganIsAHottie's picture
Member since:
9 October 2008
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1 year 6 weeks

Shocked, dismayed, sad, disappointed, angry, heartbroken-Reagan you put into words what was in my GH-loving heart and I thank you for that. Smile It's really nice to see some posters that I haven't seen in awhile on the board voicing their thoughts. GH will not be the same.