I think ‘General Hospital’ is going to be better without
I know a lot of people disagree with me – but hear me out.
Now, before I begin, I want to stress I’m talking about
Jason Morgan and not his portrayer Steve Burton. For his part, from everything
I’ve seen (and one media event with him and Maurice Benard and Anthony Geary
more than a decade ago), Burton is a stand-up guy. He’s funny and personable.
I’m just sick of Jason Morgan.
You can actually track the ratings decline on GH to the time
period when Sonny Corinthos and Jason Morgan became the two leading men.
In the 1990s, GH was a balanced soap that had hospital
stories, adventure stories, social issue stories and, well, the wacky
Quartermaines. Sure, the mob was still prominent in the mid-1990s. It just wasn’t
the be all and end all of every storyline on the soap.
When Sonny and Jason took over – the Carly character is just
as culpable, I should point out – everyone else fell by the wayside.
The Quartermaines have been decimated in the past 10 years,
with Emily, Alan, Justus, A.J. (more on him below) and Lila being killed off
(yes, I know Anna Lee died in real life) and Ned and Dillon being shoved out of
town. Edward will be dying in upcoming weeks as well – thanks to John Ingle’s
unfortunate passing (may he rest in peace).
Technically, Jason Morgan is a Quartermaine. He just rarely
interacts with them. He had a hand – whether deliberate or inadvertent – in the
deaths of Emily, Alan, Justus and A.J. and he was also responsible for keeping
one Quartermaine heir from them until it was too late and stealing another.
Jason Morgan is just not a character I could invest in.
Actually, that’s not entirely true. When Jason Quartermaine
had his accident and turned into Jason Morgan – I was invested in the story. It
was well done and poignant. Nice guy Jason Quartermaine was gone and rage
monster Jason Morgan was in his place.
Then, later, when Jason Morgan fell in love with Robin
Scorpio, I was still invested.
So when did I stop caring about Jason?
It happened little by little through the years. It doesn’t
even have anything to do with his love interests – Courtney, Liz and Sam – even
though I felt he fell flat with all three of them. For me, the character just
lost all traces of emotion and rooting value and turned into a vacant Borg.
With Steve Burton leaving the show for greener pastures, GH
has the chance (and a lot of freed up money) to make some vast improvements.
They’ve already announced that Sean Kanan is coming back as
wayward brother A.J. Quartermaine (I’m sure his resurrection will be
miraculous). That’s a good first step in fixing the Quartermaines. You still
need to add Alan and Emily to the "must have" list, as well. Actually, while you’re at
it, Ned would be a nice addition, too. I could totally get behind a Ned, Alexis
and Shawn triangle.
The biggest thing GH needs to do, though, is bring back
There has never been a better time for Laura to return. You
could put her in a triangle with Duke, Anna and Luke. She could be there through
daughter Lulu’s pregnancy. She would be a great sounding board for Anna.
Nikolas could return to town as well (if Emily and Laura are there, he needs to
If Burton’s expansive contract money isn’t enough to afford
all these actors, you can oust the deadweight that is Spinelli, Olivia and
Steve to balance things out.
The current writing regime at GH has made impressive strides
– but there are still gaps. Former head writer Bob Guza did some terrible
injustices to GH. This is an opportunity to fix a lot of them.
What do you think? Is Steve Burton’s exit a good thing or a