General Hospital spoilers direct from the writers of the ABC soap hint that Steve Burton will not be Jason Morgan, but a new character, at least at the outset of the actor's return to GH. Burton teased fans about his return and hasn't confirmed what character he will play, but according to departing head writer Jean Passanante in the recent issue of Soap Opera Digest, Burton's fate might not be to play the Stone Cold hitman.
General Hospital writer addressed Burton's return
In a short blurb in SOD titled "GH Scribes On Steve Burton's Return," the GH writer confirmed that the actor will be back on the soap in the very near future. Passanante also promised the plot will "reintegrate him [Burton] in a way that should satisfy our audience," but what does that mean exactly? There's a growing debate online about whether it will be a Jason twin twist or something else. The possible return of Steve Burton as the "real" Jason has polarized fans, many of whom love Billy Miller and don't want him disenfranchised from the role of Jason.
Fueling the controversy is that Billy Miller was reportedly in contract negotiation since he only inks one-year deals with General Hospital. There are now rumors circulating online, but none confirmed by official sources, that Miller has renewed his contract with the ABC soap. With Miller firmly ensconced in the role of Jason Morgan, it seems there would be many recent storyline obstacles to reintroduce Steve Burton as the same character, given the facial reconstruction program results and positive DNA match.
Burton's return - Jason or not?
The SOD interview in this Friday's magazine has GH scribe Jean Passanante admitting that General Hospital will not "gloss over Burton's uncanny resemblance to the Jason viewers knew."
Passanante told Soap Opera Digest, "It's sort of a great puzzle that requires figuring out."
But if the uncanny resemblance is acknowledged, that sounds much like how General Hospital reintroduced Michael Easton and made mention of Hamilton Finn's resemblance to the late Dr. Silas Clay. Also, resemblance means "looks like" -- it doesn't mean that it is the same person. In fact, Burton could play any number of roles in this return.
However, Passanante also said, "We are bringing someone in who will challenge all of that," referring to Billy Miller's Jason and his resurrection from a presumed death and troubled past.
Can GH justify Burton as Stone Cold?
While the recent writer interview certainly sounds like Steve Burton will not be back as Jason, at least not initially, it leaves the door open for plot twists. There has been talk of a twin twist since Heather Webber (Robin Mattson) claimed years ago that Jason was born a twin. She's the cousin of Jason's biological mother, Susan Moore, and might have some inside information. However, if General Hospital plans to have Burton be the original Stone Cold and Miller's Jason be the previously unknown twin, they have written themselves into a corner.
Some of the confirmation of Billy Miller's Jake Doe as Jason can be explained. For instance, if Miller and Burton are twin Jasons, they could be a DNA match. Then there's the facial reconstruction program that looked at Jake Doe's bone structure and plastic surgery and morphed him back into Burton's face. Those are medical issues that could be consistent if the two were born identical twins. However, that's not the only obstacle to bringing back Steve Burton as Jason (or Jason's twin).
Thanks for the memories GH
It's the memories recovered by Billy Miller's Jason that pose a problem for Steve Burton coming back as the same character. Miller's Jason hasn't recovered all the memories from his former life, but he's recovered enough to convince General Hospital fans that he's the real deal. If Burton is back as his old character, how will the ABC soap explain Miller's Jason as having the memories of Burton's original character? It's true that GH sometimes delves into shady science with mind control and freezing people, but simultaneous memories seem unexplainable.
Then again, GH's writing regime doesn't always respect history, so they might just ignore the fact that Miller's Jason has Burton's Jason memories. They are known for shockingly big writing mistakes. For instance, out of the blue, they retroactively wrote new dialog that placed Jason at Helena Cassadine's (Constance Towers) will reading when viewers know he definitely wasn't there. General Hospital writers could do what they want with no regard to what viewers know to be fact, although that would spark outrage among many fans.
Burton teases return as Jason (or maybe not)
General Hospital spoilers tease that Steve Burton will be back on the set taping new scenes soon, which means he'll be on GH episodes this time next month (give or take). On Tuesday, July 26, Burton took to Instagram to fuel the debate over his return. The actor shared a pic of him as Stone Cold Jason Morgan and asked, "Will I play this guy again????" then hashtagged it #jasonornot #mustsee. It seems more of a situation of "we'll see" but, no doubt, GH fans will consider it a "must see" as well.
Are you looking forward to Steve Burton's return? Do you see inconsistencies in the storyline if they try to make him the "real" Jason? Do you prefer Burton or Miller as Jason? Check back for more GH news and expect to see more Jason drama as his wife lingers near death with these General Hospital spoilers for the week of July 31.
[Featured Image by Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock]