UPDATE, 4:40 PM ET: Ian Buchanan is in fact portraying Duke Lavery. In an interview report with TV Guide‘s Michael Logan, Valentini says, “We will eventually find out that the Duke Lavery we saw die all those many years ago was an impostor. This is the real Duke.” So yes, we’re in for one of those storylines, folks.

“In the interim, Luke and Anna will find themselves in a new place with their romance and they will be very surprised by the intensity of it,” said Valentini to Logan. “Anna will, of course, be shocked and conflicted, she’ll run the whole gamut of emotions when she finally comes face-to-face with Duke. She’s going to want a lot of answers and Duke is really going to have to prove himself.”

Buchanan will not be seen on the show again for at least another next five weeks, according to TV Guide.

PREVIOUS, 4:22 PM ET: After promising that today’s episode of “General Hospital” was “not to be missed” as the series has “been keeping a huge surprise under wraps,” executive producer Frank Valentini got some good news today as the big reveal began trending worldwide (see images below) just a short time ago.

While live tweeting along with thousands of others, fans of the daytime drama series learned that actor Ian Buchanan had returned to the ABC soap after a 23-year absence. Of course, Soap Opera Network broke the story on Thursday, August 23.

When we last saw Buchanan on the drama series, it was 1989. His character, Duke Lavery, the love of Anna Devane’s (Finola Hughes) life faked his death and entered the witness protection program only to return to the series with a new face as portrayed by actor Greg Beecroft within the same year. The character was killed off in 1990.

A “General Hospital” representative was unavailable for comment at press time. It is currently unclear as to whether Buchanan is in fact portraying a once again alive Duke Lavery. If he is, does that mean Duke faked his death again? If not, who really died? The Tale of Two Duke’s indeed!

Buchanan had just completed his run on NBC’s “Days of our Lives” on Wednesday, August 22 as Ian McAllister, although the series films three months ahead of airdate, which enabled “GH” to snap the actor up quickly for this “secretive” plot twist.

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