Monday, June 7, 2010 at 10:56 AM ET by Errol Lewis
Updated Monday, June 7, 2010 12:14 PM ET
Photo: Florian Schneider/Hallmark Channel
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — "General Hospital's" ratings are about to skyrocket now that the soap has reached a deal with Vanessa Marcil to reprise her role as Brenda Barrett later this summer, at least that's what the ABC soap hopes will happen.
According to USA Today, Marcil first hits the air beginning with the Wednesday, August 11 episode, which finds Brenda returning "to Port Charles with a big secret that, of course, is sure to wreak havoc." What secret that may be, no one knows.
"Brenda arrives in Port Charles with a secret that will impact Sonny, Jax and Jason," said Brian Frons, president, ABC Daytime to SOAPnet.com.
"General Hospital" has been trying to make a deal happen with Marcil for the past two years and the show came close in 2008, but unfortunately things didn't work out schedule wise. "We were trying to fit it in this past year, but it didn't work out, so maybe in '09 we'll find a way," Marcil said in a late 2008 interview with Soap Opera Weekly. "It's definitely in the cards at some point." Of course, nearly two years later, the cards were dealt in a way that benefited both parties.
"We are so thrilled to welcome Vanessa Marcil home to 'General Hospital.' Vanessa is a wonderful, talented actress and her portrayal of Brenda makes her a force of nature in Port Charles," said "GH" executive producer Jill Farren Phelps.
Vanessa joined the cast of "General Hospital" as the conniving Brenda Barrett, whose mission was to tear apart Jagger Cates (Antonio Sabato Jr.) and Karen Wexler (then played by Cari Shayne), in 1992. In 1998, she opted to leave the cast of the series and join FOX's "Beverly Hills, 90210" as Gina Kincaid. She returned to "GH" in 2002, but moved onto NBC's "Las Vegas," which also starred Josh Duhamel (ex-Leo, "All My Children") and James Caan in 2003. The series was canceled in early 2008 during the infamous Writer's Guild of America strike.
Marcil's brief return to the ABC soap in 2002 marked the series' best ratings performance in nearly a decade. During a single week in the all important February Sweeps period in 2003, "GH" had 4.1 million households and 5.3 million total viewers tuned into the trials and tribulations of Brenda and her series of men (Sonny Corinthos and Jasper "Jax" Jacks).
"General Hospital" airs Weekdays on ABC. Anytime on ABC.com.