Brenda Barrett
GHMarcil-Brenda Barrett
General Hospital
Portrayed by Vanessa Marcil
Duration 1990–2002 , 2003-
First appearance 1990
Created by Maralyn Thoma
Aliases Fareset Brenda

(by Spinelli)

Gender Female
Born 1975
Age 36
Occupation Co-Owner of Confusion
Residence 120 Harbor View Road

Character historyEdit

Brenda Veronica Barrett is born to Harlan Barrett and his former lover, Veronica Wilding, on March 31, 1975. In 1992, the 17-year-old drops out of boarding school and turns up on the doorstep of her older sister, Julia. Julia has been blocking Brenda’s access to her trust fund until she agrees to finish school. She later moves in with Jagger Cates and clashes with Karen Wexler, who is in love with Jagger. Brenda also becomes best friends with Robin Scorpio.

Sonny Corinthos or Jasper JacksEdit

An 18-year old Brenda begins an unforgettable romance with older mobster Sonny Corinthos in 1993, bringing General Hospital some of its highest ratings since previous Supercouple Luke & Laura. Brenda nurses Sonny back to health after he is shot in his attempt to break Frank Smith out of prison. Despite all who care for Brenda warning her about how dangerous Sonny is, she refuses to believe it. Brenda agrees to wear a wire hoping to prove all of her friends wrong. Sonny discovers what Brenda is doing and furious, kicks Brenda out of his apartment leaving her devastated. Brenda does not give up and does everything she can to get Sonny back. Sonny finally admits his feelings for Brenda and attempts to leave his new wife Lily for Brenda, but shortly after, Lily discovers she is pregnant. Knowing what having a child means to Sonny, Brenda realizes they can never have a future together. Sonny dedicates himself to being a good husband, whilst still longing for and loving Brenda. Immediately after her breakup with Sonny, Brenda is comforted by the dashing billionaire Jasper Jacks, who demands that she marry him immediately and giver herself a real chance at happiness (without Sonny). Brenda marries Jax at the same moment that Sonny's wife, Lily is killed in a car bomb. After mourning his dead wife Lily, Sonny dedicates himself to getting his true love Brenda back. Sonny does everything he can to force Brenda to admit her true feelings for him, but Brenda denies it and wants to honor her husband Jax. Sonny proves Brenda's marriage to Jax to be invalid by bringing Jax’s supposedly dead wife, Miranda, to Port Charles. Brenda decides to stay with Jax, which was the height of the very popular Sonny-Brenda-Jax love triangle. Later Brenda is kidnapped in an effort to frame Sonny. When Sonny comes to rescue her, they are trapped together in a cave, where the two admit their feelings for one another and make love. Brenda tells Jax the horrible truth. Brenda decides to end her relationships with both Jax and Sonny because she cannot choose between the man she loves (Sonny) and the man who made her happy (Jax).

The mid-1990s storyline of General Hospital's Sonny Corinthos, Brenda Barrett, and Jasper "Jax" Jacks is often referred to as "the hottest love triangle in soap opera history" by the soap opera media.

Failed marriage and exitEdit

Brenda and Sonny later reunite as Hernando, Lily’s father, is attempting to frame her for the murder of Dr. Pierce Dorman. Sonny later kills Hernando in self-defense and ultimately clears Brenda of all charges. Sonny finally proposes and Brenda happily accepts, assuming they can leave Port Charles and the mob behind. On their wedding day, Sonny realizes Brenda will never be safe with him and sends Jason Morgan to tell her he has left town. Brenda is distraught and later moves back in with Jason’s family, the Quartermaines, for a short period of time and then moves in with Jax. He tries to help her deal with Sonny’s betrayal and calls on her estranged sister Julia to help. Brenda’s emotional and mental health only gets worse, which leads to her being institutionalized. After recovering, Brenda decides she wants to be with Jax because he is healthy for her. As she and Jax prepare to marry, Sonny returns but understands she has moved on. Brenda’s estranged mother Veronica Wilding arrives in town in 1998 revealing she has a mental illness which could be hereditary. Brenda gets tested. Before she can see the results, Veronica drives a car off a cliff with Brenda in the passenger seat. Believing Brenda is dead, Jax tears up the test results without reading them to learn if Brenda had, in fact, inherited her mother's "crazy genes".

Return and second exit (2002-2003)Edit

Luis Alcazar, an arms dealer, rescues Brenda from the water after her accident and brings her back to Port Charles in September 2002. Alcazar reveals to Brenda she really does have Veronica’s illness. He wants to care for her as long as she is alive. Luis becomes very jealous of her past romances with Sonny and Jax and plans to kill them. Brenda discovers Alcazar’s plans and escapes. She then has someone lure Sonny to St. Timothy’s Church, where they were supposed to marry, without revealing her identity. Brenda opens the doors of the church to a shocked Sonny. She watches in horror as he is shot multiple times. Jason arrives and finds Brenda crying over Sonny who orders him to keep her safe. Brenda blames herself for Sonny’s "death" and tries to escape from Jason to warn Jax. Brenda finally escapes and finds Jax as he is marrying Skye Quartermaine. Jax is shocked to see Brenda but she does warn him about Alcazar’s plans. Alcazar finally locates Jax and shoots him. Jax survives. Sonny returns and attempts to kill Alcazar. Jax is paralyzed. Brenda decides to help him in his recovery, much to the chagrin of Skye. Brenda comforts her by revealing she is dying and won’t interfere with their life. Despite her reassurance to Skye, Brenda and Jax get close again. Meanwhile, Skye learns Brenda is not dying. Brenda begins to worry about the damage her renewed love for Jax could do, and blackmails Jason into marrying her. Jason agrees but only to keep Brenda away from Sonny who is now married to his best friend, Carly. Alcazar later convinces an envious Skye to help him kidnap Brenda. He whisks Brenda away on a plane not knowing Sonny is hiding on board. The plane crashes in a jungle. Jason and Carly rescue Brenda and Sonny. Jax discovers the truth about Brenda’s illness and dumps Skye for keeping the truth from him. He then tells Brenda she is not dying and professes his love.

When Alcazar is killed, Skye is hurt and angrily blames Brenda for the murder. Jax confesses to protect Brenda. The truth is revealed. Brenda is arrested along with Jason as the accomplice. Jason and Brenda decide against an annulment so they can’t testify against one another during the murder trial. When evidence is discovered that could send them to prison, Brenda’s attempt to persuade Jason into skipping town with her fails. Fortunately, evidence is found clearing Jason and Brenda of all charges. Brenda and Jason then leave to get the marriage annulled. She convinces him to get the annulment in Port Charles, which would take longer, because she is not ready to marry Jax.

Brenda runs into Sonny the night before her wedding to Jax and forgives him for leaving her at the altar. They then share a passionate kiss which Carly witnesses. Jax finds out about the kiss and does not say the expected "I do" at the wedding. Jax tells Brenda he does not trust her. Brenda runs into Sonny. He reveals Carly had left him too. Jason returns home. He finds Brenda crying She announces she is leaving Port Charles. Jason drops her off at the airport. Brenda tells him he deserves to be happy more than anyone.

Night Shift mysteryEdit

On the General Hospital spin-off Night Shift, one storyline surrounds a woman visiting from Europe – Brenda lives in Italy. The dark-haired woman has an accident at her hotel and then suffers from severe burns when the ambulance she’s in explodes. When the patient’s heart stops, she is sent to the hospital morgue but she regains consciousness. The woman's face remains bandaged and she is on bed rest until the season finale. In the final episode, the woman flirts with Damian Spinelli without showing her face. Later, she watches as Jason and Robin share an embrace. The unknown woman leaves, revealing a tattoo similar to the one Brenda has on her lower back. Although the name "Barrett" was shown, the woman is never explicitly stated to be Brenda.

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