It’s always a bit of a surprise when Jennifer Smith shows up on GENERAL HOSPITAL! And since the character’s appearances on the soap have been so sporadic over the years, it’s understandable that even longtime fans might need a bit of a refresher on her past in Port Charles. Which is where we come in!
Jennifer Smith was introduced back in 1980 and was originally played by actress and model Lisa Marie. In 1994, the character returned played by Roseanne Arnold for a few episodes. Then, for a handful of episodes in 2002, Sally Struthers took over the role. But when Jennifer resurfaced again in 2015, GH opted not to go with another celebrity guest star and instead recast the character with actress Holly Gagnier, who had previously played Ivy on DAYS OF OUR LIVES and Cassie on ONE LIFE TO LIVE among numerous primetime roles. And Gagnier reprised the role when Jennifer returned to the canvas in January 2022.
The daughter of notorious Port Charles mobster Frank Smith, Jennifer Smith was in love with Luke Spencer, but he was only interested in her so he could get his hands on her father’s non-mob-related businesses. Frank arranged for them to marry and planned to hold the ceremony on a yacht. After learning that Luke had raped Laura Webber, a furious Scott Baldwin tracked him down on the boat and started a fight. Luke was knocked overboard and was presumed dead but he’d really swam to a nearby dock where Laura was waiting for him so they could run away together.
Jennifer disappeared and was said to be living in Europe, but in 1994, Luke and Laura discovered her and her husband, Billy “Baggs” Boggs in Atlantic City. Jennifer was still clearly smitten with Luke, and Billy was attracted to Laura, but they were able to get away by threatening to expose their crimes which would send Jennifer to prison for theft.
In 2002, Jennifer abducted Luke and Laura, threatening to kill Laura if he didn’t marry her. She wanted Laura’s death to be the ultimate wedding present! Roy DiLucca posed as the priest to officiate the ceremony and Felicia Jones as his wife in order to help Luke and Laura escape safely.
When their son, Lucky Spencer, was abducted in 2015, Luke and Laura were lured to Canada by the kidnappers and were shocked to be confronted by Jennifer. She demanded one night of passion with Luke in exchange for Lucky’s life, but in the end, nothing happened because Luke had drunk too much and passed out. Jennifer also eventually admitted that she didn’t have Lucky, but had been given information by the kidnapper to help her get Luke. She claimed not to know who the real kidnapper was, but it was later revealed to be her father, Frank, so she was probably lying.
The year 2022 got off to a rough start for Laura when she learned of Luke’s death in a cable car crash in Austria. But after holding a memorial service for everyone to say goodbye to their friend and loved one, she was further stunned when a woman dressed all in black arrived and lifted her veil to reveal it was Jennifer! She offered apologies for what she’d done to Laura in the past, and when Sonny Corinthos entered, praised him and Selina Wu for controlling the East Coast. After exiting The Haunted Star, Jennifer made a phone call assuring someone that Sonny has no plans to expand to the West Coast and won’t be a problem.
Then, in April, Jennifer was seen in French Polynesia once again on the phone with her “darling” and informing them that she was attending the auction of the Ice Princess in the hopes of snagging the diamond to finance their attack on Port Charles. When a naval officer bought her a drink, she had no idea it was really Valentin Cassadine!
Stay tuned to GH to see what kind of trouble Jennifer stirs up this time around!