|Anthony Geary as Luke Spencer|
|Portrayed by||Anthony Geary|
|First appearance||November 1978|
|Created by||Douglas Marland|
|Spin-off appearances||GH: Night Shift|
|Occupation||Owner of The Haunted Star Casino and Yacht|
Co-owner of Kelly's Diner
|Residence||Haunted Star Yacht |
Port Charles, New York
Fictional character biography
Before the show
Luke Spencer was born and raised in Port Charles, New York. He grew up in a poor family near the docks. He was a street smart, tough kid who was protective of his younger sister, Bobbie Spencer. Bobbie once recalled when he beat up the McCarthy kids who lived across the street from them because they had been stealing her milk money for the past two weeks. His father, Tim, was an alcoholic who abandoned the family when Luke and Bobbie were young leaving his wife, Lena, alone to raise them. Tragically, Lena died suddenly of a ruptured appendix right in front of her children. Fearing they'd be taken away by child welfare, Luke and Bobbie boarded a bus to Florida and went to live with old family friend, "Aunt" Ruby Anderson. In order to sustain themselves, Luke pimped Bobbie from the time she was 14 years old, under the supervision of Ruby, who was also a sex worker.
It was discovered in 1999 that Bobbie and Luke suffered a lot of abuse from their father while growing up. Luke confessed this to Laura when she was confronting him about the rape and he broke down in front of her. This was shown as one of the reasons why Bobbie and Luke began their lives the way they did. Also in a Christmas flashback to Luke Spencer's past it was revealed that he as a young boy had been befriended by Lila Quartermaine although he did not know her name. She had plans to take Luke and his sister in when they suddenly disappeared.
Everything above was mentioned, never shown, on the show.
In the beginning, Laura Webber wasn't paired with Luke, but with Scotty Baldwin (played by Kin Shriner). Scott and Laura had continually faced obstacle after obstacle placed in their path by the scheming ex-prostitute turned nurse Bobbie Spencer, who wanted Scott for herself. Bobbie re-established contact with her brother Luke in order to help her with her schemes to break up Scott and Laura, which was how the character of Luke Spencer was introduced. However, after Laura was injured in a car accident caused indirectly by one of their schemes, Luke and Bobbie felt guilty and decided to give up their vendetta against the couple. Of course, by this time it was becoming apparent that Luke was beginning to fall for his sister's foe.
While Laura was working at the Disco, Luke had fallen in love with her. At the time, Luke worked for mob boss Frank Smith (originally portrayed by George Gaynes of the Police Academy film series) and later portrayed by Mitchell Ryan from the sitcom Dharma & Greg. Smith ordered Luke to execute a "hit" on senatorial candidate Mitch Williams, who had crossed Smith by vowing to bring down the Port Charles mob. Luke didn't want to, but he knew that if he didn't, he would be fired or possibly killed. Luke also knew that if he did perform the hit, then Mitch Williams' security agents would probably kill him as well. Luke was very depressed, and on the night Laura waited at the Disco for Scott to pick her up, Luke became very distraught and vowed to hold her in his arms before he died. On the floor of the Disco, as the Herb Alpert song "Rise" played in the background, a drunken Luke raped Laura.
Although Laura told others that she had been raped, she never named Luke as the rapist. Laura stayed with Scott but ended up falling in love with Luke, as well. On election night, the night that Luke was to assassinate Mitch Williams, Laura saved Luke's life by throwing away the keys to his car, thus preventing Luke from performing the hit. Luke's best friend Roy DiLucca decided to perform the hit himself (Mitch Williams survived, Roy was presumed dead after Mitch's security agents shot at him, only to "return from the dead" twenty years later). Thus Luke was saved from his predicament, only to fall into another when Smith told Luke he would spare his life if Luke married his daughter, Jennifer.
Summer on the Run
Despondent over Frank Smith's order that Luke marry his daughter Jennifer, Luke ordered Laura to tell Scott that he raped her. Laura refused, and a cat and mouse game between the two ensued as Luke tried on several occasions to get Laura to admit her true feelings. On one occasion, Luke trapped Laura on a sailboat and attempted to seduce her. Just as the couple were about to make love, Luke pulled back and told Laura that she was free to go, which frustrated Laura immensely.
Eventually, Laura wrote Luke a love letter that Scott eventually found on the day that Luke was to marry Jennifer. He pulled Luke out of the ceremony and onto a yacht, beating him up. Luke fell overboard and was presumed to have drowned, but Luke eventually resurfaced and told Laura that they could finally be together, now that Scott knows about their relationship. Luke told Laura they could start a new life together if they could decode the black book he had stolen from Frank Smith - which contained the coded names of all of Smith's mob contacts. Solving the codes in the book would allow Luke to send Smith to jail, and he and Laura would finally be free of the mob.
Luke and Laura went on the run from Frank Smith's men, stopping on the way to have some fun dancing at Wyndham's Department Store and falling deeper in love during the process. The pair took refuge in the rural town of Beecher's Corners, posing as newlyweds Lloyd and Lucy Johnson, and staying with Whit & Agnes Whittaker on their farm. Two of Smith's hit men, Hutch and Max, pursued them. Hutch located the couple, but bided his time before carrying out the hit. He soon found himself befriending the pair, and his feelings were too conflicted for him to complete the contract. Max, disguised as Sally, found them and was about to kill Luke, but was killed by Hutch first, who also died in the firefight. Eventually Luke and Laura found the evidence they needed to have Frank Smith put away for his mob activities. Celebrating their success, the two made love. However, upon their return to Port Charles, they were met by a bunch of journalists who quizzed the two on their details of their personal relationship. Laura, who had been attacked by the press previously during the storyline where she had accidentally killed her former lover David Hamilton, found the hounding of the press again too much to take and flipped out. She told the press she still considered herself to be "Mrs. Scott Baldwin". Luke was heartbroken and immediately rejected Laura. In the months before their summer on the run, Luke had spent months trying to get Laura to admit her love for him. Now the tables were turned as Laura tried for months to get Luke to admit that he loved her.
The Ice Princess Saga
Laura attempted to find Scotty, who had run off to Mexico, in order so that she could get a divorce and marry Luke. However Luke remained hostile towards Laura, even as Laura made several maneuvers to remain in Luke's life. Luke eventually went to work for Edward Quartermaine and his niece Alexandria Quartermaine, who were in search of the Ice Princess, the world's largest uncut diamond that had been spray-painted black and mounted on a base to be displayed as a statue. Luke promised the Quartermaines that he would get the statue before their rivals, the Cassadines could.
Eventually, Luke and Laura reconciled and decided to get married. Around the same time, World Security Bureau (WSB) agent Robert Scorpio had arrived in town and warned Luke that the Ice Princess mystery was far more serious than previously thought. Hidden inside the base of the statue was a formula that could create a substance called carbonic snow. The Cassadines planned on using carbonic snow in their sinister plot to take over the entire world. It was revealed that Alexandria was in league with the Cassadines and after the Ice Princess had made its way into the hands of several Port Charles citizens, Alexandria and the Cassadine brothers (Victor and Tony) finally got their hands on it and prepared to take it to Mikkos Cassadine, the eldest Cassadine brother (portrayed by sci-fi actor John Colicos).
Alexandria, Victor and Tony invited several guests on an ocean cruise aboard the Titan (later the Haunted Star). As the Titan left Port Charles, Luke and Robert snuck on board and were surprised when they found that Laura had also stowed away. Eventually, they arrived at Mikkos' island in the Atlantic. Luke and Laura found the island a rather passionate setting and made several attempts to make love, only to be interrupted by Robert. Laura soon fell sick with a fever, and when Robert attempted to make Luke leave her behind, he refused and let Robert know that Laura was more important to him than their mission. Eventually Laura recovered and the three set about finding a way to stop the Cassadines.
Meanwhile, Mikkos unleashed his ultimate plan: he planned to hold the world to ransom. If world leaders did not accept his demands for total world domination, he would use his carbonic snow in his weather machine in order to send the Earth into a new ice age. In order to show that he was capable of doing this, he selected Port Charles as a test subject and soon the city was plunged into a blizzard—even though it was still summer. As temperatures in Port Charles continued to plummet, Mikkos managed to capture Luke, Laura and Robert. When his brother Tony and Alexandria Quartermaine expressed doubts about the plan, Mikkos had them killed.
Eventually Luke, Laura, Robert, and B-movie actress Tiffany Hill managed to defeat Mikkos, and Luke was able to figure out the password in order to turn off Mikkos' machine. In the course of the struggle, Mikkos was killed. Luke, Laura and Robert were thus hailed as heroes by the citizens of Port Charles. There was one more obstacle that Luke and Laura had to face after Lee, Scott's father, drunkenly burned Laura and Scott's divorce papers. Lee was anxious to make it up to Luke and Laura and helped get Laura a divorce from Scott before she married Luke.
Luke and Laura's 1981 wedding
Luke and Laura were married on November 16, 1981, in a lavish, public ceremony officiated by the mayor of Port Charles at his official residence. Dozens upon dozens of residents from Port Charles and Beecher's Corners were in attendance. Originally Laura's former rival for Scott's affections, Bobbie, was none too happy with the marriage but eventually declared an unofficial truce with Laura. The two have since become close friends. Similarly displeased with the prospect of the couple's marriage was Mikkos' widow, Helena Cassadine (portrayed by film actress Elizabeth Taylor in a highly-publicized appearance). She arrived in Port Charles days before the wedding, blaming Luke and Laura for her husband's death. Unknown to anyone, she placed a curse on the two lovers during the wedding reception. Since then, Helena has been the Spencer family's most ruthless and consistent enemy (and perhaps the most notorious villain in GH history).
The one outward blemish on the wedding festivities was the unexpected arrival of Scott, who caught Laura's bridal bouquet and proclaimed that he was contesting his divorce from Laura. Luke was enraged by Scott's appearance and the two began to fight, in a scene reminiscent of Luke's aborted wedding to Jennifer Smith over a year earlier. This time, however, it was Scott who was soundly beaten by Luke.
While Luke and Laura were off-screen, the couple had a son, Lucas Lorenzo Spencer Jr. (nicknamed Lucky). Amidst much fanfare in both the real world and the fictional realm of Port Charles itself, Luke and Laura returned to Port Charles in 1993, with their son Lucky, played by Jonathan Jackson. The catalyst for their return was that Frank Smith had renewed his old vendetta against the couple. Frank Smith's men found Luke and Laura at the Triple L Diner in Canada and attempted to kill them by blowing up their truck, an act which led to the death of one of Luke and Laura's Canadian friends.
In August 1994, Luke and Laura had a daughter, Lesley Lu (Lulu), named after Laura's mother, Dr. Lesley Webber and "Lu" after an alias Laura had assumed while she and Luke were on the run from Frank Smith. They had to deal with Frank Smith for several more years, and then, when the character of Frank Smith was killed off, his son Damian and daughter Jennifer (portrayed by comedienne Roseanne Arnold, and later by All in the Family actress Sally Struthers).
But even though Frank Smith was safely out of their lives for good, Luke and Laura's lives did not calm down. In 1995, Laura resented Luke's growing friendship with mobster Sonny Corinthos (who would eventually inherit Frank Smith's organization). After an enemy of Sonny's attacked her family home, she and Luke separated for a while, but were later reunited.
The following year, Laura was accused of murdering Frank Smith's son, Damian. Although she was exonerated, Luke and Laura immediately faced another crisis when their daughter Lesley Lu was diagnosed with aplastic anemia. Lesley Lu desperately needed a bone marrow transplant, but none of the Spencers, including Laura, Luke, Lucky, and Bobbie were a match. Eventually, Lulu got her transplant from a totally unexpected source. It turned out that when Laura had been held captive and married to Stavros Cassadine, she had had a son by him, Nikolas. Nikolas' bone marrow was a match and the transplant was performed that saved Lulu's life. However, the revelation that Laura had borne a son that she never told Luke about was a great shock to the Spencer marriage, particularly since that son was a Cassadine. Furthermore, Nikolas and his uncle, Stavros' brother Stefan, moved to Port Charles, and acted as a continual reminder of Laura's concealing of the truth. Stefan managed to take advantage of Bobbie's loneliness after her divorce from her husband Tony and turn Bobbie against Luke and Laura for a period of time. Bobbie and Stefan even married, but Laura knew that he only married Bobbie to make Laura jealous.
Luke and Laura soon discovered that back in the year 1984, Stefan had been ordered by his mother Helena to murder Laura's mother Lesley to avenge the deaths of Mikkos and Stavros. Stefan had gone against his mother's wishes however and had rescued Lesley from the car accident that had been presumed to be the cause of her death. Lesley was now in a catatonic state and after being reunited by Stefan, Laura and Lesley were presumed dead in an explosion. However it was soon revealed that their deaths had been faked by Luke in order to hide from Helena (and discredit Stefan at the same time). Upon their return in 1997, Luke and Laura were met with unexpected hostility from the citizens of Port Charles, and particularly Bobbie, Nikolas and Stefan.
Luke and Nikolas have since grown closer and Luke calls Nikolas his "son".
Early in 1998, Luke and Laura were forced to revisit their past again when Lucky learned of the long ago rape incident at the disco, from Nikolas. Luke and Laura were estranged from Lucky for months, as their son's romantic illusions about his parents had been shattered. Lucky did not know which was worse, the idea of his father raping his mother, or the fact that his mother had lived with her rapist for all of these years (Lucky's disgust was heightened by the fact that he had fallen in love with Audrey Hardy's granddaughter Elizabeth Webber, who had been raped herself). Even though Luke and Laura were eventually reconciled with Lucky, their own relationship was in bad shape. Luke hit the roof when he realized that Stefan and Laura had been lovers and that Stefan was possibly Nikolas' father. As 1998 drew to a close, Luke and Laura separated.
Luke and Laura would be further driven apart by the presumed death of their son Lucky in a fire the following year. Both were devastated, and separated during the tragedy. When it was revealed in 2000 that Lucky was indeed alive due to a plot by their nemesis, Helena Cassadine, Luke and Laura did not reconcile and instead divorced. Laura would consider reuniting with her first husband Scott Baldwin for a while but eventually she realized that she would always love Luke. By 2002, Luke and Laura had reconciled and made plans to remarry.
Genie Francis was abruptly maneuvered off the show during a dispute over vacation time, and the plot had a disturbed Laura murdering her stepfather, Dr. Rick Webber, in a psychotic episode, shortly before she and Luke were to remarry. She was sent to a mental hospital near Port Charles. Luke still mourned over the loss of Laura to a mental institution for several years, while dealing with their reckless daughter, Lulu. Laura "appeared" in episodes after her breakdown as a motionless figure, seen from the back, staring off in a catatonic state, though in one scene shortly after Luke left the room, Laura's hand was shown to move.
When Lulu found the invitation to her cousin Carly's wedding to Jax, which was to be held on the same day as Luke and Laura's wedding, she immediately called Carly. When Carly and Jax arrived, everyone found out about the scheduling dilemma. Carly graciously stepped aside to give to her uncle and aunt their day and even offered them her and Jax's entire wedding, flowers, caterers, and all. Laura and Luke thanked Carly and Jax and took them up on their generous offer.
On November 16, 2006 (exactly 25 years after their first wedding), Luke and Laura were ostensibly remarried in front of all their friends and family in a lavish ceremony in Lila Quartermaine's garden. The festivities were enjoyed by all except Tracy, who was visibly intoxicated and had to be physically removed before the ceremony was completed. However, the minister officiating the ceremony was actually an actor hired by Luke. Thus the marriage had no legal consequences, and Luke did not commit bigamy.
The wedding guests were composed of a mixture of long-time family and friends who were present for the first wedding (e.g. Lesley, Bobbie, Robert, and several of the Quartermaines) and newer relatives and acquaintances (e.g. Carly, Elizabeth, Emily Quartermaine, and Laura's three adult children). It was a particularly festive occasion, with Luke and Nikolas surprisingly demonstrating family affection for one another.
Just as the original reception was marred by the arrival of Scott Baldwin, a minor cloud was cast on the anniversary reception when Bobbie's niece Maxie Jones ingratiated herself into the festivities. Maxie had recently had an affair with Lucky (where she purposely enabled his drug addiction by supplying him with the drugs herself), and claimed to be pregnant with Lucky's child (although some, including Lulu, believe that Maxie is not pregnant at all). In an odd example of déjà vu, the unwelcome Maxie caught Laura's bridal bouquet, just as Scott had done 25 years earlier.
On November 20, Luke revealed to Laura that their happiness would be short lived and that her catatonia was now a physical illness. Laura wanted an early Christmas because she feared she would not make it. When Laura told Lulu that she was wanted by her family and was their perfect child, Lulu tearfully told her mother she had an abortion because she didn't want to bring a baby into this world who wasn't loved or wanted, just as she felt she had never been loved or wanted. Laura comforted her daughter, telling her that she was wanted and loved, and supported Lulu's decision about the abortion. When Luke brought in the Christmas tree, Laura asked why there was a Christmas tree in the house, proof that she was relapsing. On November 22, after saying tearful good-byes to her children, Laura slipped back into catatonic state in front of Luke's eyes. After Luke realized that Laura had left him, he exited the room and cried.
The story of Laura's withdrawal from reality is far from over, however. In her last conversation with Lulu, Laura expressed her belief that she was not the person who killed Rick Webber, a distinct possibility since there was no known witness to the actual killing. Later, Lulu told her stepbrother Dillon Quartermaine that she intended to prove her mother's innocence. Before Alan Quartermaine died of a massive heart attack in 2007, he wrote Luke a letter stating he knew that Rick's killer was none other than Scott Baldwin.
Luke and Tracy
Then through a trial Scott Baldwin pushed for the truth of Laura's rape to come out, When it finally came out, despite efforts to keep Lulu away from the trial, she showed up just in time to hear the news. After Luke found Lulu he explained the circumstances of the event and he and Lulu have since made up. Through the trial Scott also won custody of Laura. Luke and family were devastated, but this did not stop Luke; from this point on he and Tracy hatched a plan to secure Laura from Scott. When Scott went to retrieve Laura, no one was found in the room. After Luke jumped town with Laura, Scott had pushed for Tracy to go to jail for playing a part in Laura's kidnapping, She went to the loony bin instead. Luke has yet to come back nor has anyone heard of his whereabouts.
Luke returns to Port Charles and his family on October 10. Luke is surprised to hear that Scott has a son. He is shocked to hear that his daughter and Scott's son have been seeing each other. Tracy announced to Luke Spencer the events of the summer which appalled Luke to no end.
A few days before Halloween 2007, Tracy told and showed Luke that they were invited to a black and white dress ball. Since both of them are disinterested with the Cassadines, but it was in Ghost Alan's memory, so they decided to go. They also wanted a chance to spy on Lulu with her boyfriend, Logan Hayes.
During an encounter with Anthony Zacchara, Luke experienced a near fatal heart attack. When the police arrived on Spoon Island, Luke and the other captives were rescued from Wyndemere Castle. Post heart attack reveals that he needs open-heart surgery, which he is resistant to have. The doctors tell Luke that if he doesn't have the surgery he'll die. Luke agrees to the surgery; however the surgeon, Monica Quartermaine, hallucinates and sees her deceased daughter, Emily's, face in the OR. When Luke wakes up and is told they were unable to finish the surgery he is reluctant to go under the knife again. However, Lulu and the rest of his family convince him to go in for another try. This time the surgery is successful however Dr. Julian informs Luke that if he doesn't change his ways he will go right back to the way he was. Luke is extremely reluctant to change his whole life which includes: no smoking cigars, drinking, excessive partying, changes in diet and refraining from sexual activity until being cleared by a doctor to do so. During his time at GH, Luke has visions of heaven, hell, and purgatory. In purgatory he is put on trial by his friends, family, and himself where he learns he needs to change his ways. After many attempts to break the rules, sneak out of the hospital, and trying to live life "his way", Tracy, Lulu, and Lucky are very upset with Luke. When Skye decides she is leaving Port Charles, she comes to say a final goodbye to Luke. He asks her for one last favor and Luke and Skye go on their final disguised adventure where Skye breaks Luke out of the hospital. Skye and Luke share a kiss and Skye leaves Port Charles and Luke walks away through an alley.
On the same night as the 2009 Hospital Crisis, Luke catches a thief trying to make off with his money in the Haunted Star. The thief, who gives him the name Ethan Lovett, claims he was just passing through Port Charles. Later, Luke tails Ethan to a run-down bar outside Port Charles, and the two trade barbs over a game of pool. However, the pair gets in trouble with the local law enforcement and are thrown in jail. Eventually Tracy comes to bail them out; however, initially she only bails Ethan out, taken in by his charms (which Luke recognizes as old hustlers' tricks). She bails Luke out only after he makes her see his thieving ways. Still, she hires him to become a bartender at the Haunted Star, much to Luke's dismay. On May 7, 2009, a DNA test proved that Ethan was not Luke's son with Holly, leaving his paternity unknown. On May 19, 2009, Tracy revealed that she paid off a lab technician to make the tests come back negative, meaning Ethan is not Luke's son, while leaving the truth of Ethan's paternity unknown. On May 22, 2009, Holly Sutton revealed she is Ethan's mother and that Luke is not Ethan's father, but rather Luke's friend, Robert Scorpio is. On May 29, 2009, a somber Holly Sutton revealed to Luke in the casino that Ethan is in fact his son. In June, Luke was knocked unconscious and taken to Cassadine island in Greece by Helena Cassadine. On October 6, 2009 Ethan and Lulu find and rescue Luke (and Luke rescues Helena) with help from nurse Mischa, and all but Mischa return to Port Charles. Helena tells Luke about another of Mikkos Cassadine's children, Valetine who is seeking revenge on all Cassadines and Spencers, and Luke speaks to Alexis Davis about this brother on October 15, 2009. During the time when Luke was locked up, Ethan got DNA results back proving that they are father and son.
- General Hospital at ABC.com