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66 February 3rd, 2015 GH’s Tony Geary Opens Up About His Back Surgery & The Fluke/Luke Storyline: “I Was Starting To Worry That I Wasn’t Going To Be Able To Give It What It Deserved”

Courtesy/WABC

Anthony Geary (Fluke/Luke) has been giving the performance of his career over the last several months, once the veteran actor who has made General Hospital is home for decades, returned from debilitating back surgery.

Geary, who was in a significant amount of pain opened up to WABC’s Sandy Kenyon in a exclusive video interview (Kenyon himself will appear on next Monday’s  2/9 episode of the ABC daytime drama).

In a sit down conversation filmed in Geary’s dressing room at GH, the actor revealed to Kenyon that he was very fearful that he would no longer have the strength or the vitality to do this job.

While Geary triumphantly returned to the set this past November, he noted he was concerned that he might not be able to finish out this tour de force “dual role” storyline:  “I was in a lot of pain during that period and I was starting to worry that I wasn’t going to be able to give it what it deserved, because I’ve loved the material so much!”

Tony still does six to eight hours of physical therapy each week and he’s grateful to his bosses for accommodating that schedule.  The good news is that Tony admitted that he is going to be OK!

Watch the interview with the incomparable Geary after the jump, and then share your thoughts below!

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  1. Mrs B says:

    A classic actor and daytime character. It just wouldn’t be any good without him.

    Reply

  2. Sly says:

    I’m glad your back and going to be OK.
    Now, let’s wrap up this story line.

    Reply

    Cathy Phillips replied

    Yes, enough is enough

    Reply

  3. LILLIAM BRIOUZA says:

    Tony thank you for all your hard work in good times and hard times like now .Happy to hear that you’re healing . I have been a fan in all your career in gh best wishes .

    Reply

    pat replied

    Tony we are so happy that you are doing okay and are finely coming back to stay at GH
    THERE ARE ALWAYS GOING TO BE A MOUTHY JERK OUT THERE LIKE Irene
    BUT 99 % OF US ARE NOT LIKE HER WE ARE NOT MOUTHY AND DON’T KNOW WHAT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT
    SO WELCOME HOME TONY CAN’T WAIT TO SEE MORE OF YOU ON OUR FAVORITE GH

    Reply

  4. Irene says:

    I could care less about TG. Go away already. He is strange.

    Reply

    harry replied

    Irene, that would be considered a compliment by Tony. There’s nothing wrong with being strange or weird just as there is no such thing as normal.

    Reply

    Timmm replied

    You should go away from this site!

    Reply

    Irene replied

    All opinions are subjective. That is my opinion. I will say I should not have posted here on a story about TG. I should have anticipated a reaction. Will not make that mistake again.

    Leo replied

    I agree with Irene.

    He makes “General Hospital” tough to get through. His glory days as Luke Spencer are long gone.

    harry replied

    Irene, it’s perfectly fine that you have a different viewpoint than us. I just objected to you stating that TG is strange…. as if it were a bad thing.
    There’s nothing wrong with being different or strange. I should know.
    Do not leave just because some of us disagree with you.
    Love Tony but yes, want the Fluke story to be wrapped up sooner rather than later.

    Elite Advisors replied

    Irene…I am surprised by the harsh insensitive nature to the post. There was no reason to go out of your way to post something like that. Would you have posted such an ignorant comment had it been a loved one? I think not…perhaps THINK before you speak/ post next time…. for the most part, most of us here tend to be kind to one another.

    Timm is right …you need to go away.

    Pegg replied

    Are you kidding me??? This man is an icon!!!! Best actor on daytime!!! He can do anything and do it with more talent in his pinky than most pretty boys have in their whole body!!!!
    Be well Mr. Geary!!!! You are simply the best!!!!!

    Reply

  5. AJQ says:

    The most interesting part of the piece is that Mr. Kenyon clearly states that Geary is playing “his character’s alter ego Fluke.” His character’s alter ego. Fluke is Luke’s alter ego. So for anyone who was still confused about whether Luke and Fluke are the same person, Mr. Kenyon’s reporting is confirming that it is the case.

    Reply

    harry replied

    Agreed.
    I do think he’s a brilliant actor but alas, tired of the Fluke story as it seems a bit self indulgent.
    Fluke seems to be reflex action against Luke’s superhero status which was established after he raped Laura and after he led a life of crime as Frank Smith’s henchman. I get Fluke is the end result of a character predicated upon black and white thinking but do feel this has dragged on to long.
    That said, I do adore Tony Geary and think his talents transcends all bounds.

    Reply

    pat replied

    you are so right his talents are way untouchable can’t wait to see what will come next hopefully we will get our old Luke back soon we all miss him so much

    kelly irons replied

    I totally agree with what you both said above. Long tired of storyline, Geary has always rocked as an actor. I will say one critical thing but it won’t be rude. I feel kind of let down with the not so big reveal that Luke is Luke, I have named him ReLuke. Maybe it will catch on. Anyway that being said, maybe more shall be revealed making this not seem like a let down after a full year of waiting to see. I did have my doubts that it was Bill Eckert. I also have yet to hear about “Pat” the sister. If anyone can enlighten me on that I would appreciate. Tweet me @imjustkel. Thanks

    CeeCee replied

    So, AJQ, is Luke’s alter ego sleeping with Helena? Now I understand why Fluke has a penchant for corpses.

    Reply

    Michael (not Fairman) replied

    That assumes that Mr. Kenyon has some inside knowledge of what the “true” story is. I’m not sure he does. I think it’s equally possible that he simply used the term for convenience.

    Reply

  6. downtownla says:

    I wish Tony Geary would just retire already. If he wants to be in Amsterdam with his partner, let him. For his salary, I would much rather have Laura back on screen.

    Reply

    pat replied

    really laura has been gone for ever get a life Luke is the one we have been watching for the last 10 yrs get a life downtownla

    Reply

    harry replied

    Not cool.

    Reply

    Jeremy replied

    Agreed, Downtownla. I would love Genie Francis to return to GH, if/when Anthony Geary departs. It’s time we know what happened to Laura after that doctor’s appointment… what in Paris, two years ago?
    She could bring Lucky back with her, too.

    Reply

    k/kay replied

    Let him do his exit anyway he wants and I wisjh him all the best! As for Genie she said her good byes a long time ago and I think she is happy with that. Maybe it is time to just fold up the tents!

    Timmm replied

    There is no story for Genie. It would have been great to have her when Lulu went through all her trauma. It would have been great to have her with the Fluke story but its all coming to an end. She would have no story lines and be wasted.

    Timmm replied

    And what would Laura do? Last time she was on she left because they didnt write her with any sort of power or independence. She would be a shoulder for Lulu now and thats the reality of her character.

    Reply

  7. Elyse says:

    I had the pleasure to meet Tony once in FL, he’s a class act! I love him and his character on GH. I would miss him on the GH canvas if he couldn’t come back.
    I totally understand how he felt after his back surgery, I’ve had 2 back surgeries, my second one left me with nerve damage down my right leg. Any surgery is a risk, but I’m thankful that I’m not paralyzed. Although, I have pain everyday, moreso, when I’m visiting my parents up in Massachusetts during the winter months. Tony has pulled through remarkable and I hope and send warm wishes that his back is better and he keeps up with the PT, it does help to stay active, and that he won’t need anymore back surgeries.

    Reply

  8. Timmm says:

    Wow, learning all those lines, playing dual characters and rehabbing to. Amazing. Thank you Mr. Geary, Godspeed.

    Reply

    harry replied

    Timm, he is so good he is actually scaring the heck out of me. I looked in the mirror after one his scary scenes in the basement and I had a white streak in my hair!
    Okay, it may have been there before…..but still.

    Reply

    su0000 replied

    Tony is brilliant!
    I forget it is actually one man/actor..
    I see it see it as two different actors playing two different roles!!
    Tony is just that good !!!

    Timmm replied

    Dont worry about those white streaks Harry, Mr. Geary has plenty and it works for him!

    CeeCee replied

    Playing the baddie must be the most challenging undertaking for an actor. I agree, Timmm, Geary has proven what a professional and talented actor he truly is…..ailments and all. His eyes still scare me, though…LOL. Regardless, hats off, Anthony!

    Reply

    Timmm replied

    I’m glad he chose GH all these years but can you imagine what he would have done on a show like CSI or Law and Order? What about the movies? Our gain and the rest of the entertainment worlds loss!

  9. jimh(leave it to beaver) says:

    Fluke is Luke but Dante sure is Dumbte…what cop struck twice in head with crowbar calls his wife…he either calls the station to report cop down or 911…but in spite of flaws ive enjoyed GH this week…cant wait for the next episode…i see TG semi retired from the show and returning as Fluke on occasion.

    Reply

  10. Robert says:

    He is putting in Emmy winning work and yet having to endure the pain of his back condition as well as hours of physical therapy per day. I am in awe of this Tony’s endurance and talents, I look forward to the big reveal of the dual personalities of his character.

    Reply

  11. Nancy says:

    Best actor in the role of a lifetime. Don’t leave us. We love you.

    Reply

    Ces replied

    I agree!! Tony IS daytime TV! I love Luke Spencer and Tony forever!

    Reply

  12. pat says:

    Tony we are so glad you are back and everything for you is getting better BUT we can”t wait for our old Luke back
    we have missed you for so long and don”t want to loose you GH would not be the same
    loving fans all around the word need you back as Luke Spencer
    and who ever filmed this for you needs to get a job because not one time did the camera get on you or were you were at just saying he did not know what the hell he was doing as a camera man lol

    Reply

  13. Nick D. says:

    A total professional and probably the top male star in the history of the genre. The fact that he is giving yet another buzz-worthy and Emmy-worthy performance after all these years and that he lobbied hard for such a meaty storyline is proof that there will never be another Tony Geary. Bravo!

    Reply

  14. Aden says:

    Tony is indeed a daytime legend. He has rightfully deserved all of the accolades he has earned over the years. With that said, his rooting value and relevance has completely vanished without the perfect balance that was Laura. His deep seated desire to play such dark material has eradicated decades of show history, and the Cartini regime has been fully complicit. The past three days of GH have been absolutely disgusting, disturbing, and shocking. I remember many years ago, when Wendy Riche pledged to stop telling stories about senseless violence. Then Jill Farren Phelps came along, and all we got was 11 years of senseless violence. And under Cartini, it has been ramped up to an intolerable level. The show is now about a bunch of murderers and unrepentant sociopaths. Watching Carlos savagely shoot Ava point blank and laugh while doing it…it reminded me of the brutal murder of beloved Frankie on Another World. She too begged for her lofe as a woman and mother, and was viciously strangled. That was unfortunately one of the final nails in the show’s coffin. Love in the Afternoon indeed. The fact that Disney is a willong participant in this grotesque filth is sad too. The heart and soul of GH is gone,and as a lifelong viewer, it saddens me deeply.

    Reply

    Shay replied

    You make very valid, impassioned points, Aden. Although I have never been a devotee’ of the callous, declasse’ Ava, that gleefully grotesque gunning of her by the creepy, crazed Carlos was just too brutal to behold…..it crossed a “bridge too far,” so to speak! Having said that, I’ve never understood this hirsute hitman’s appeal, as he has always been much too maniacal and feral for my druthers, but his supposed justification for shooting this unarmed woman was simply not sufficient, let alone the immensely savage and distasteful manner in which it was executed. Had it been Sonny, at least there could have been some understandable, perhaps possibly excusable, reason, due to Ms. Jerome’s remorseless role in his beloved Connie’s death, but with Carlos, Ava only behaved in a “business as usual sense” according to mob code….what did that locoweed really expect? When you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas! Furthermore, to have Corinthos reconsider his immense malice for this mafiosa and try to save her skin at the last minute caused Rivera to look even more unbalanced and deranged by comparison. The whole scenario made me sick, and I truly hope we shall soon be seeing the gory end of that madman of melodrama, Car-LOS! As for Fluke/Luke—whatever TG and Cartini choose to call that Frankenspencer—I also concur with your thoughts regarding the destruction of this fabulously flawed, yet still ultimately redeemable, anti-hero. The deplorable depth of depravity that has been dispatched to reframe this character’s entire psyche via revisionist history and disjointed plot machinations has been most distressing to those of us who have shared Lucas Lorenzo Spencer’s storied GH journey through the years. And the fact that Geary has so happily complied and conspired to create this misanthropic monster makes it more disheartening….while I can completely “get” that he relished the opportunity to stretch his acting muscles and play such a sinister, soulless slug of humanity, what I cannot abide is that he has been so wholly willing to spit in the face of loyal viewers who do not wish to see this ugly, twisted fate befall his once-revered rogue of a rebel. Whilst I am presently remaining in my mode of “suspended disbelief” in regard to recent reveals, I’m still retaining a glimmer of hope that those developments that apparently transpired this past week are yet more red-herrings in Ron C.’s seemingly endless trail of trademark taunts and teases that traipse toward yet another of his decidedly dramatic denouements….in other words, it won’t really be over until it’s over….but by then, will we even be able to comprehend and accept the torturous turn-in-a-trice truth or care that the end is finally nigh????? To that I cannot say for sure….

    Reply

    CeeCee replied

    By the time “the end is finally nigh”, certainly much of our interest will be lost. As you so eloquently describe, Shay, the soooo avant-garde methods injected into this intricate, endless storyline by Ron are beginning to lose steam. But, as the loyal fans that we are, in the end, we will accept whatever…..
    The saltimbanchi performances by Ava and Sonny were truly extraordinary. LOL. Really? Never knew they were that nimble, albeit wounded.

    I vehemently reject Sonny as the hero. No way, no how. He did a couple of good deeds…gets a gum-ball-machine medal of honor for that, but, a mobster is mobster, is a mobster.

    Also, I do not think this will be over. Fluke will not be caught….he will disappear with Helena. The mystery will just be that. Perhaps he will resurface as someone else, yet again.
    Sonny and Ava? Hades only knows.

    Michael (not Fairman) replied

    I think TG has made it pretty clear in previous interviews, Shay (i.e., long before the Fluke story), that he basically doesn’t worry too much about what the fans want or don’t want to see with Luke; he wants material that interests him to play. (There was an interview on this site within the last couple of years, for instance, in which he told Luke-and-Laura fans “move on”—and it wasn’t said in a particularly nice or understanding way, either.) I recognize and accept that as an actor he wants to play material that challenges him, but I can’t help wishing he did care more about what his legions of fans want. They’ve put him in the position of being able to dictate story (and enjoying long vacations each year to go to Europe, etc.), and I do think he owes them something.

    I agree with Aden that the character has long since squandered his rooting value. It isn’t just the absence of Laura, though she did have the effect of grounding him and making his rougher edges easier to bear; it’s storylines like this one, and the one a few years ago in which Luke was responsible for the hit-and-run and then all of that defiant aftermath. As I said, I get the desire to play something meaty, and when you’ve got the talent he’s got, the sky’s the limit—but somebody at ABC should be reining him in (and I’ll point out that the problem goes back to before Carlivati and Valentini). He’s an asset, but not if people get sick of Luke on their screens in these distasteful storylines, and maybe if those storylines are only way they can keep him interested in staying, it really is time to cut him loose and let him retire.

    Rose replied

    I have to agree with much of what you’ve said. As if the news isn’t bad enough, and some of prime time…now it’s spilling over into daytime. This is not to say soaps haven’t had their moments of dark. I can take some violence, etc, but not a diet of it in place of real story telling and drama. I still like some escapism, and a little love in the afternoon.

    Reply

  15. Charday says:

    He’s the star of the show, a great actor and character.

    Reply

  16. Rose says:

    A few of the comments are personal about Tony Geary in a negative way. Whether you like him or not, or the Fluke story, or how long it’s taking to play out, or what GH has done to accommodate one of their major actors it seems a really crummy thing to do. If this is his big, last hurrah, Tony gave it his all. And for all the bitching we do towards ABC (sometimes big-time deserved…you know what I mean), they actually gave him one last major story. For all the ratings and awards Tony has brought to GH over the years he deserves it, Fluke or not.

    Reply

    Ces replied

    I agree with you Rose.

    Reply

  17. Mary SF says:

    I think telling the story of Luke’s darker side and the elements in his life that made him that way was worth telling, unfortunately they decided to tell the tale in such a theatrical, way out there way that the human emotion behind a man descent into madness has been lost. Of course that is assuming Fluke is Luke. If Luke had just been rescued from Miscavage and the trauma there triggered his mental breakdown and we got to see him slowly unravel that would have been as compelling. But this isn’t TG fault, he did great work with the material, perhaps he used his personal pain to give Fluke that added edge to make truly miserable and creepy.

    Reply

    Timmm replied

    Lets remember this to, Luke was never an altar boy.

    Reply

  18. Lin says:

    Tony Geary, I wish you a speedy and complete recovery. I sure hope this was not a hint from you that Fluke is Luke. The narrator should have said that the name Fluke came from Facebook.I think that’s so cool that it came from the fans.

    Reply

  19. MaryAnna says:

    Wasn’t,t a particular fan of Luke (am a fairly new viewer of GH) BUT as much as I want the Fluke storyline to be over – TG is terrific ! I hate him, he is SO cold! It,s a great actor that can make you loathe him so much. So WTG Tony, hope yor,re feeling better and get an Emmy for this!

    Reply

  20. Dan says:

    Very cool and rare interview with Tony, since he doesn’t usually do a lot of media. He’s the best actor in daytime history hands down, in my opinion. He’s got the 7 Emmy awards to back it up, along with a host of other accolades, and he should have an 8th to add to the mantle when this Fluke storyline is over. I don’t know if this is his last hurrah or not, but it’s certainly been a pleasure to watch and enjoy his work over the past 21 years that I’ve been watching GH.

    Reply

  21. Patricio says:

    Mr. Geary is a master class is acting. He is best in his quite moments. I have enjoyed his portrayal since the 1970s. Thanks for the years of excellence, Mr. Geary !

    Reply

    nancy dillingham replied

    Yes, I agree. TG is best in his quiet moments; his eyes, his intonations, his body language, the tone of his voice convey so much. I cherish the quiet moments and the great dialogue he had with Genie Francis during the heyday of Luke and Laura. I must say, however, that the funny improvisations with Genie Francis are priceless. Remember when they had the apartments close together? And TG’s tenderness as Luke when when Laura always connected emotionally with me. Priceless.

    After saying all that, and perhaps because of saying all the above, I feel that actors are not immune to that old adage that often we can not see the forest for the trees; TG seems to not have the long view or a good perspective on his stong points as an actor. We loved his quirkiness as Luke and never tired of his inventive, entertaining ways. An actor with his dedication and previous integrity can always find ways to make the character fresh. One last comment: What good is an actor if he no longer connects with his audience? It’s a two-way street. No connection is like “one hand clapping.” Sorry, but that’s true. No matter how good TG thinks he is by playing eviil, it is a mute point without an audience. Many great actors believe that an actor must find some vulnerablity in even the darkest, most evil character so that he can connect with his audience. That is totally lacking with TG’s strange imposter. The audience feels no connection (I am speaking as “the audience”).
    Come back “Luke.” And if TPTB were smart they would recognize that bringing Genie Francis back as Laura will lead to the greatest story yet as she tried to reach “her” beloved Luke. She tried mightily to inject some of that the last time around, but it seemed she was totally shut down–even rebuffed–by TG–and TPTB left her character high and dry. What a missed opportunity.

    Reply

    Patricio replied

    Hello Nancy -

    Thank you for your well crafted thoughtful response. Your comments about Tony disconnecting with the audience is spot on. The greatest villains ate people we love to hate, note just hate. This latest chRacter has no redeeming value and is tough to follow.

    Take care Nd let’s keep watching!

    nancy dillingham replied

    Thank you, Patricio.
    All best–and, yes, let’s do keep watching–and hoping TG regains his perspective and that the evil character is summarily “dismissed” and we get our quirky, audience-relatable character “LUKE” back.

  22. Rockin' Robin says:

    YOU GO BOY!!! I am so glad you are getting better, and you did an excellent job on this story. Do you have room for another EMMY??? You deserve it! Keep on Truckin……

    Reply

  23. mfarris70 says:

    I’m loving every beat of the Fluke story. No way do I believe that Fluke is actually Luke under some mind control by Helena. I think the corpse really is Bill Eckert “posing” as Luke to again throw everyone off what is really happening. I’m still going with my hunch that he’s actually a transgendered sister Pat Spencer.

    TG is a shoe-in for the Emmy this year. Not only do I think he’s giving the best performance of the pre-noms, but add in the double role (catnip for Emmy voters) and his personal struggle with his health and I don’t see how he could lose.

    Reply

  24. Engrady Pind says:

    I hate to say it, but I think after this Fluke/Luke story line concludes, Tony needs to retire. I will miss him, of course. I have always been a fan. His presence on the show is what keeps me coming back, but now is the time to pack it in. He has done a fabulous job with the dual character arc, but I would expect no less. If he feels he needs to stick around, maybe he should try his hand at directing.

    Reply

  25. smoochie says:

    Tony Geary has let us see all facets of Luke throughout the years, developing, building and honing his character’s personality carefully and consistently. So we have known from the beginning that he is a flawed character who walks to the beat of his own drum, extremely complex and conflicted, capable of doing reprehensible things including rape . We also got to see the loving side of Luke towards his family and those he considered friends. All along Luke has been infused with Geary’s great ability to ad-lib and sharp wit. The writers, up until this Fluke story, kept him a viable/believable, redeemable/lovable Luke because he was given the integrity/history of his character were kept in tact and they wrote scenarios and believable outlets for his womanizing, boozing, mercenary, outlaw ways without turning him into the totally despicable sociopath Luke now is. IMO Helena or someone had him programmed (she keeps playing with his ear amongst other things). So we are seeing the total dark side of Luke personified, a humanized version of the monster in the Portrait of Dorian Gray. I hope Luke is able to overcome what has been done to him and reintegrate with the good part of his nature and regains his soul, otherwise we will be seeing him go bye-bye for going beyond the boundaries of redemption. I have been watching GH since the beginning and I would miss Anthony/Luke very much if he leaves.

    Reply

  26. smoochie says:

    I forgot to mention that I really want the “Fluke” storyline to be wrap already. As much as I love you Tony, you have over-eaten all the scenery and then some. Now we need to move on with it so that Luke and Jake can go through the dreaded deprogramming process.

    Reply

    Ces replied

    By Friday’s eppie, it sure doesn’t appear that it will be concluding anytime soon with the latest “spin” on the storyline!

    Reply

  27. Dora says:

    I loved the sweet dance of the story. The actor impeccable! The storyline was genius and totally blew me away!! I can always determine the end of a story before it concludes, but, not this time. I loved it!! I wonder who will play his sister, Pat? Erika Slezak maybe? If she does, I hope they wait until they get into the mind of Luke Spencer first. I’ve always wondered, if Luke and Bobbi had such a dark past, how come they came out so strong with no issues at all. No we know; they suppressed everything.

    Reply

  28. Dora says:

    PS, I’m about 4 or 5 episodes behind, so I’ll get to play catch up. Can’t wait!!

    Reply

  29. Linda says:

    I am so happy you are okay. I am hoping the rumors of your retirement are not true! YOU ARE GENERAL HOSPITAL!

    Reply

  30. diane grossman says:

    Sorry to hear abt back surgery glad he is on the road to recovery….Tony Geary is a terrific actor…he makes
    it look so effortless…some of the story lines are goofy but that is why I love GH

    Reply

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