Nikolas Cassadine has gone through many changes to GENERAL HOSPITAL over the years, so some may need or want a refresher on the character’s twisted history. Nikolas was introduced in 1996 with Tyler Christopher creating the character, and in 1999, Colton Scott took over. Christopher returned to the role in 2003 and played the character as an actor until his 2016 exit Nick Stall briefly take over to lead Nikolas off the screen. There were also a handful of episodes in December 2005 when Chris Beetem took over the role while Christopher underwent surgery on his broken arm. Although Nik was presumed dead there was no body and in fact he returned very much alive and was played by Marcus Coloma as of October 2019! Although for a September 2021 episode, the role was briefly recast with actor Adam Huss.
Nikolas first came to Port Charles as a teenager to donate his bone marrow to save his sister Lulu Spencer. Although he and his brother Lucky Spencer initially clashed, the siblings eventually bonded. Nikola’s world was turned upside down when he learned that his uncle, Stefan Cassadine, was really his father. He was able to lean on his mother, Laura Spencer, especially after Lucky was presumed dead.
A DNA test later proved that Nikola’s father was actually Stavros Cassadine, and he learned that Helena Cassadine not only had a very alive Lucky hostage, but had also revived Stavros. Stavros died in a fight with Luke and Laura fell into a catatonic state after the murder of Rick Webber. The tragedy brought Lulu, Lucky and Nik closer together.
Although Nikolas dated Sarah Webber and Gia Campbell, his true love was Emily Quartermaine. They became close as she battled breast cancer, but on her deathbed, Emily chose to marry her first love, Zander Smith. But when Emily went into remission, she had an affair with Nik that ended their marriage. Suffering from amnesia in a car accident, Nikolas was taken in by Mary Bishop, a war widow, who told him he was her husband, Connor Bishop. (The two men looked identical!) Emily found Nikolas and he regained his memories of her. Mary freaked out and went on a murder spree, eventually dying in a shootout with the police.
Helena tried to end Nikolas’ relationship with Emily, so he threw his grandmother off a cliff! While Nik was on trial for her murder, Connor emerged very much alive and sought revenge for Mary’s death by raping Emily on the orders of Helena, who was still alive. Emily couldn’t stand the sight of Nikolas looking like her rapist and that strained their marriage and sent Nik into the arms of Courtney Matthews.
When Courtney became pregnant, her husband, Jasper Jacks, manipulated the test results to make it appear that he was the father, not Nikolas. After the baby was born, Courtney died before she could tell Nikolas the truth, but after Robin revealed he was the father, Nikolas took custody of the boy and named him Spencer. He reconnected with Emily and they teamed up to save Spencer when his nanny Colleen kidnapped him for Helena.
Nikolas’ relationship with Emily ended when she became a victim of the SMS Killer. He began having hallucinations of his late love and was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Although it meant giving up the visions of Emily, he eventually went through with the surgery to save his life. Later, Nikolas was rocked by the arrival of a con artist named Rebecca who looked exactly like Emily. When Lucky started dating Rebecca, Elizabeth Webber became attracted to Nikolas. Although Lucky and Liz reconciled and got engaged, she had an affair with his brother. Lucky discovered the betrayal and washed his hands of both of them.
Elizabeth got pregnant, and although Lucky was the father, Helena changed the results so they named Nikolas as Aiden’s baby daddy. Although he repaired his relationship with Lucky after his son Jake was killed in a hit-and-run, Nikolas was devastated by the revelation that he wasn’t Aiden’s father and tried to run away with the boy. He reconsidered and returned Aiden to Liz and Lucky before leaving town in 2011.
Nikolas returned in 2013 to reveal that Stavros was alive and behind Lulu’s kidnapping. After failing to rekindle things with Liz, he entered into a relationship with Britt Westbourne. However, that came to an abrupt end when he learned that the baby she gave birth to was his nephew, as she had stolen Lulu’s frozen embryo! When Nikolas found out that Helena’s new henchman Jake Doe was actually Jason Morgan, he kept the news a secret in hopes of taking over ELQ to rebuild Cassadine Industries. He started dating Hayden Barnes, who had posed as Jake’s wife, but that got complicated when she threatened to reveal Jake’s true identity and Nik hired a hitman to kill her! Hayden survived and when she came out of the coma, Nik brought her home to keep an eye on her.
After eloping to Vegas, Nikolas discovered that Hayden was really Rachel Berlin and demanded a divorce, but she blackmailed him into staying married, revealing that she knew he had her chance. Jason and Sam also learned this and used it to force Nikolas to return ELQ. He then faked his own death to set Hayden up and ran into Ava Jerome in London. They were briefly kidnapped but fled to Cassadine Island, where they met Sam and Jason and the mysterious Theo Hart, who turned out to be Nikola’s uncle Valentin Cassadine. He forced Nikolas to give him the entire Cassadine estate and then shot him! Nikolas fell to his presumed death over a balcony. In 2019, when Ava tried to use a psychic to contact her deceased daughter, she also asked about Nikolas, but the psychic was unable to reach his spirit on the other side. And that was because he was very much alive – as Ava found out when her masked stalker removed his disguise to reveal he was the Cassadine Prince!
It was then revealed that Nikolas was working with Jax and Hayden to find Helena’s will, which would return Cassadine’s fortune to him and Spencer and take it away from Valentin. Unfortunately, it was hidden in a painting of the Matriarch that ended up in Ava’s hands! Pretending to be a ghost, Nikolas tormented Ava to learn the whereabouts of the portrait and used Jax to get his hands on it. (Nik had already driven Hayden out of town by making her think her life was in danger from Valentine!)
Ultimately, Nikolas agreed to marry Ava so that she would hand over the codicil, and Valentin was kicked out of the mansion. Nik’s family was glad he was alive, but not that he’d been hiding until he could defeat Valentin. Spencer, in particular, took the news seriously. Franco Baldwin also wasn’t thrilled to learn about the past Liz and Nik had together. Nikolas and Ava found themselves trapped in a marriage that neither could walk out of without giving up a fortune, although they soon realized they had a lot in common and eventually confessed their love for one another!
Nikolas decided to make it official and suggested Ava make their union come true. Unfortunately, they began receiving creepy gifts from a stalker, and as things escalated, Ava broke up with him, fearing for her daughter’s safety. When Spencer returned to Port Charles, Nikolas soon suspected his son was the stalker and set a trap, but was proven wrong when Ava’s car was set on fire while Spencer was with him. Nikolas wanted to fight for his marriage, but Ava issued a restraining order to keep him away from her and planned to leave the country until the stalker was found. Nikolas allowed Spencer and his new girlfriend Esme Price to move with him to Wyndemere and was shocked when a guilty Spencer finally spoke out about the stalking!
Thrilled to be reunited with Ava, Nikolas supported her when she had his son arrested for his crimes The newly returned Victor Cassadine was behind the death of Hayden’s mother. Nikolas allowed Spencer to move back to Wyndemere and agreed to let Esme stay as well. Ava was furious that he was defending Esme and canceled the renewal of her vows. Nothing he said could convince Ava to change her mind, and then it got worse when Esme manipulated him into a passionate kiss!
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