Reilly always had a fascination with John the Priest, so I think it's supposed to be the Devil's manipulation. They did briefly really lean into that background after Kristen figured out the password to Stefano's computer (than Tony went blind retrieving). John the Priest was supposed to make him sexier for Kristen since she was guilt-trapped into being with Tony, which was actually pretty good thinking to have it reestablished for Possession.
I don't mind they brought Wayne back. John's missing past had so much potential, but it unfortunately became a prop for every head writer to use in another story.
I started watching Days in the summer of 1993. Every story from then until Possession was absolutely on fire.
I could swear I remember Laura's Carly using her training to sneak into the hospital and examine the records re: the monkey virus in 2006(?). I think that's the last time I remember her referencing it though.
It is always annoying to me when writers forget the initial specialization of characters. For example, Lucy Coe became so silly and dumb, but started out as a university law librarian. At the very least she should have known that Ian Thorndike was cribbing the works of Irish poets. Similarly, Carly went through the nursing training at GH as a physical therapist, but you'd never know it when she is either in an emergency medical situation or creating a spa for her hotels.
I don't necessarily think Carly is all that far removed from who she was. She got money and power and she used to it to create a lux hotel home/world for herself which she controls and always has a place for her and her family, unlike where she came from, and can lord it over others as needed. She's still poor white trash if you scratch the surface and I think Sarah can play it all easily. I think it's the stories that got weak.
I always liked Jaime Ray Newman even when fans mostly hated her at the time. I had wanted JJ to come back and be paired with her - Spencer and Cassadine, in love. I thought losing her was a huge waste.
I think the original baby Kristina secret was dynamite, and kept hidden for a good long stretch. Unfortunately they've failed Kristina completely as an adult. It didn't have to be that way. I have also not forgotten that racist peasant line lmao. It ages worse by the year!