No long goodbyes for Ingo Rademacher’s General Hospital character Jasper “Jax” Jacks.
Weeks after ABC confirmed the controversial Rademacher’s departure from the daytime serial, the actor’s character broke the news in a brief exchange with ex-wife Carly (Laura Wright) on today’s episode.
“Joss didn’t tell you?,” Jax asked Carly – referencing the divorced couple’s daughter – after the two ran into each other on the street. “I’m leaving town.” The character explained that he had pressing business in Sydney, and so would return to his native Australia.
Asked by Carly whether he would be back for Thanksgiving or Christmas, Jax wasn’t optimistic: “I’m kind of on the outs with everyone in Port Charles right now.”
The line will no doubt be interpreted by viewers as a sly reference to recent real-life events. Rademacher’s departure came amidst his outspoken opposition to the production’s Covid vaccine mandate. Longtime co-star Nancy Lee Grahn had previously stated on Twitter that at least one GH cast member refused to get vaccinated, and ABC later confirmed Rademacher’s departure.
Rademacher also angered some castmates, including Grahn and transgender actor Cassandra James, with an Instagram post widely interpreted as transphobic (he re-posted a photo of Rachel Levine, the U.S. assistant secretary for health and first transgender four-star officer, that was captioned with the word “dude.” In a subsequent Instagram video, he apologized for the “dude” reference but insisted, “I don’t think it’s okay to call a transgender an empowered woman because where does that leave women?”
Today’s episode marked the first mention of the character’s departure.
Also on today’s episode, a development for the character of Jason Morgan, played by Steve Burton, will no doubt exacerbate ongoing rumors about that actor’s imminent departure: The character has gone missing after being trapped in a tunnel collapse. “I hope you’re staying safe and you come home soon,” said Carly, leaving a message on Jason’s unanswered phone.
ABC has not commented on Burton’s status with the show.
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