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Was BJ's Heart Transplant the saddest story ever told?


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In 1994 one of GH's biggest landmark stories ever took place which was the infamous BJ's heart transplant storyline that won the show a gazillion emmys. That storyline to me made me cry more then anything. It just one of the main reasons Labine/Riche tenure was just a magical time for GH. It was all character driven, the hospital was featured, Lois/Ned, L&B, Sonny/Brenda, Stone's AIDS storyline, and Monica's breast cancer/Emily. BJ's heart transplant still makes anyone weep. Remember when Tony put his ear to Maxie's chest to hear BJ's heart beat or the moments when Bobbie cried her eyes out. That was such brilliant soap opera. What do you remember about BJ's heart transplant storyline and was it the saddest story ever told?

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The only time I watched GH faithfully was when I was in high school and B.J.'s heart, Monica's breast cancer, and Stone's AIDS were the big soul wrenching stories. I know there have been plenty of moments on other soaps that have choked me up, but I don't think I've ever followed stories like these that were so emotionally draining as a 5x/week viewer. Growing up in the '80s, AIDS was a huge issue and the huge (and at times even irrational) fear of it was placed in me and many of my peers. I can remember getting that sinking feeling in my stomach on several occasions while watching Stone's story unfold. I knew where they were going from Stone's first sore throat. I needed glasses in high school, and I remember being scared crapless when Stone needed glasses and the optometrist told him that the deterioration of his eyesight was brought on by the AIDS. Geesh, again, I was being irrational, but I went on an emotional rollercoaster with that story, and the reveal that Robin had contracted HIV from Stone, and that beautiful death scene, I mean wow.

And remember when they snuck out on that bridge in the middle of the night and rigged up a bungee cord? Stone's elation feeling the damp ends of his hair that had touched the water?

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The actual storyline was wrenching and powerful, the moment I always remember the most is Felicia realizing Maxie was give barbara Jean's heart, and falling apart.

What made that story so special for me was how much thought TPTB put into it. Luke and Lucy's needs for Damian (information and plaything) led to Bobbie being involed with him, and her choice to risk her marriage and be seduced. Tony's reaction to finding them while his daughter was dying. Lucy's feelings about having been BJ's stepmother when she was a baby. The feeling of family with Luke, Laura, Lucky, Ruby, Bobbie, Tony, Frisco, Felicia and the whole community of Port Charles reacting to her young life being taken, and Bobbie and Tony's marriage falling apart.

The special bond between Frisco and Tony and Felicia, and how important having Jack Wagner back on the show was.

It seems to me people did not start to get fed up until the end of the Stone storyline. That is when the ratings really started to go, but I loved that one too. It was gloomy, but there was so much heart. Now it is just destruction.

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I would add that Maureen Bauer's death on GL, in the clips I have seen, was pretty heartbreaking. Not just to lose the character with so many ties, but for how unresolved her marrigae was in the wake of confronting Ed about his affair.

Also, Stone's and Robin's AIDS storyline is about as tragic as it gets.

Cassie's death on Y&R is pretty hard too.

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The only thing sad about that story is that the idiots in charge at AMC saw fit to not only kill off a legacy character like Dixie, but kill her off so soon after bringing her back from the dead, and kill her off in such a 'cheap' way as nothing more than a plot point in a storyline that wasn't about 'her', and kill her off as part of a storyline that was essentially about Babe and Zendall.

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I definitely think BJ's heart was the saddest story. For me, it's because there's really nothing more tragic than the death of a young child with such a bright future ahead of them.

It was such a carefully crafted story, as mentioned in an earlier post. It wasn't JUST BJ's death, it was all the mayhem going on in these peoples' personal lives. Maxie ill and dying of a rare disease attacking her heart... Frisco's return after Mac tracked him down, knowing the legendary love Frisco and Felicia scared and not knowing what would happen to Mac/Felicia's relationship with Frisco back in the picture... Lucy's scheming being the reason Bobbie risked her marriage to get involved with Damian Smith and Tony discovering the affair... and just when all that was climaxing... BJ is declared brain dead out of the blue because of a drunk driving school bus accident. New dynamics were brought to the story... Tony and Bobbie were just raw nerves already from the slow collapse of their marriage. Felicia, Frisco, and Mac were on edge thinking Maxie was going to die, only to learn a donor heart was found... renewed hope... but then the utter devastation learning that BJ was the poor child lost so that Maxie might live. Tony's tragedy is Frisco's victory. Tony devoted his life to his children, while Frisco barely spent any time with his daughter. Would Frisco appreciate it? Did Frisco deserve it? Lucy's loss of BJ when she spent time as BJ's stepmother. It was just an amazing culmination of so much emotion, and it was all so human, so flawed, so relatable, so larger than life. It was one of those impossible situations that no one in life should ever have to go through. And what was most interesting for me was that BJ's death served two opposing purposes: it heightened the raw emotions people were already experiencing because of their own personal problems, but it also put it into perspective by contrasting the lies and the petty insecurities and the double-crossing with a perfect example of the fragility of life. Brilliant storytelling.

No other story has come close for me.

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