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Ava Jerome/Maura West: General Hospital Character and Actress

Ava Jerome: Lovely but Lethal

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240px-MauraWest_Ava.png

Maura West as Ava Jerome

ABC, Inc.

Ava Jerome may look beautiful, but watch out.  She's deadly.  

The blond hair, the sexy mouth, the beautiful clothes, the glam appearance – Ava looks like the picture of elegance.  Inside, however, she has the heart of a streetwise mobster.

Jerome comes by it honestly; she’s a member of the notorious Jerome family, once a presence in Port Charles.  Though her brother Julian is believed dead, Julian is again in Port Charles, posing as publisher Derek Wells.  Ava has joined him there with the purpose of stripping Sonny Corinthos of territory they feel belongs to them.

Lies My Mother Told Me and Why No One Else Likes Ava

Ava told her daughter, Kiki, that her father was the famous but insane dead artist Franco.  This made Kiki a Quartermaine, which gave her voting stock in ELQ.  Ava got busy making deals for Kiki’s shares, deals which would benefit Ava, of course.  Then she learned that Franco is alive.

There was another surprise in store.  Ava found out that her ex-lover, Silas Clay, is a doctor at General Hospital, and she panicked.  She especially panicked when he asked Kiki’s age.  Ava claimed Kiki was 19, when she was, in fact, two years older.  Silas Clay is Kiki’s father. 

Question: What woman would tell her daughter a serial killer was her father?  Answer: Ava Jerome.

Thanks to all of these machinations, Kiki could barely tolerate being in the same room with Ava.  And now she really can’t stand her, since Ava is now sleeping with Kiki’s husband Morgan!  Granted, the marriage is over, but come on!  Seeing your mother with your husband?  Kiki loathes her. 

Needless to say, Ava has made a big splash in Port Charles.  With her looks, she was an instant annoyance to both Carly and Olivia…and we know what Carly thinks of her now that Ava is having sex with her younger son.  Sonny is no fan, and he doesn’t even know that she and Julian are plotting against him.  Duke Lavery – color him suspicious.  Though she denies she’s one of those Jeromes, Duke doesn’t believe her.  Silas would rather steer clear, but Ava seems to want something else.

The Actress Behind the Mobster

The very popular knockout who plays Ava Jerome is a true leading lady, Maura West.  She joined General Hospital on May 8, 2013, for a short-term role.  Before she had even appeared on screen, West was put on contract.

West attended Boston University, where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree.  Fans of the 41-year-old Massachusetts native remember her best as Carly Tenney on As the World Turns, a role she won a mere year after her college graduation.  West originally played Carly for one year, from 1995 to 1996.  She then left the show to be a mom to her new baby, Benjamin Knight.  She returned to her role in 1997 and stayed with the show until its 2010 demise.  In 2007 and 2010, she won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series.  She was nominated in 2004, 2008, and 2009, and as Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, she was nominated in 2001 and 2002.

West signed on to play Diane Jenkins on The Young and the Restless in 2010; she was the third actress to play the role.  After seven months on the air, the actress was let go.  The role was a bad fit for her, but since As the World Turns was being cancelled, she took the first thing that was offered instead of waiting.  There was a huge age discrepancy between the last person who played the role and West (the character of Diane was actually the same age as West's mother), but the producers told her that was intentional.  West eventually felt there was really no interest in the character, and the writers killed off Diane.

Personal Life

West has been married to her former costar, Scott DeFreitas (Andy Dixon on ATWT), since 2000. The couple have four children together: Joseph Peter, 12, Katherine Marie, 11, Basil John, 6, and Birdie West, 3, as well as West’s son Benjamin Knight, 17, from her previous marriage to director Jonathan Knight from 1995 to 1999.

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