General Hospital's Genie Francis (Laura Webber) looked back at some of her most famous - and infamous - storylines for The Story of Soaps. That includes the infamous "disco" scene, in which Luke Spencer (Tony Geary) raped Laura.
It was such a big deal in the media and it took the country by storm. I’ve had to justify it for so many years and I have to say, it feels good to sit here and say I won’t justify it. It’s awful. They shouldn’t have done it.
Gloria Monty tried to deal with it by calling it rape-seduction. The term now would be 'date rape.' The night of the rape, Luke’s last request was to dance with him, and the dance became very seductive. He took her down to the floor and that is the rape.
Francis noted that storyline would have been very different had it been told today. She said:
Before movements like #MeToo, almost 20 years after the rape happened, General Hospital, for months, for almost the whole year, addressed rape head-on in a whole new way. And for the first time, Laura confronted him about having assaulted her. That was remarkable. To say to Americans, 'We were wrong.' And to, in essence, allow Luke and Laura to finally confront head-on something that had been repressed, not just in their relationship, but in a lot of fans’ memories. And that’s the power of soap operas.