Jonathan Jackson Talks “Whirlwind” Return With TV Guide Magazine

General Hospital‘s returning son Jonathan Jackson has sat down with TV Guide Magazine‘s Michael Logan to discuss once again assuming the role he made famous.

This is stunning—and very welcome—news! You made an indelible mark on the role, and the show.

I’m sort of in a whirlwind. This is pretty much out of the blue. It’s been 10 years since I left the show but in some ways it doesn’t feel like that at all. When I [got the offer] from GH I talked about it with my family and it felt like the right time to return. [Jackson is married to former GH star Lisa Vultaggio. They have a son, 6, and a daughter, 4.] I also talked it over with Tony Geary [Lucky’s dad Luke], who was really positive about this. Our relationship goes back a long way. That’s one of the biggest motivators in my coming back—getting to work with Tony again. It feels like a very exciting adventure.

Welcome home Cowboy!!!



49 Responses

  1. Profile photo of BigDede

    I wonder now if Tony will still think this whole Ethan is Luke’s son storyline is so great now that JJ is coming back as his son.

    This is actually what they did to Stephan Martinez. He was Nik than they offered TC to come back as Nik and SM was dumped.

  2. Profile photo of blackjack21

    i like jj, but just feel like poor gv is being dumped on by not only tptb, but now tony.

    all the supporting tweets are nice to see.

    jamey – do you think greg had any warning and was just towing the company line or did this come out of the blue? to find out yesterday and have jj back on thursday barely leaves time to order a cake.

  3. Profile photo of rebecca

    |( Boy i hope Greg Vaughn moves on to something bigger & better then G.H! He did a great job on the show and got dumped on by the writers. And now Tony seems to be supporting it? THAT REALLY SUCKS! I wonder what Julie Marie Berman thinks about this?

  4. Profile photo of GH LOVER

    Speaking og JMB what about RH ??
    This is the man who she will work with very closely and she did have chemistry with GV and what about TC ????
    he said he was sad to hear about GV but what he thinks about his new old “brother “

  5. Profile photo of THEBEST

    Greg Vaughn quit, huh? Those bastards at ABC are something else. Why would he say he got the axe if he didn’t? And why did this switcheroo happen so quick? If GV had really quit, we would have heard about it a month ago…

  6. Profile photo of season1217

    I’m sorry but who really cares about what Julie or Rebecca or Tyler have to say? As long as they’re still getting direct deposit they’ll just sit there and be happy they are still employed.

  7. Profile photo of soapjunkie88

    I don’t think that GV quit, but he sure as hell wasn’t happy either. I think ABC took the chance when they got it and brought JJ back to maybe turn the role around and make Lucky a little bit more interesting again and/or to have some buzz worthy news now that the ratings weren’t that good over August/September.

  8. Profile photo of curacaoman

    I am sure Tony Geary has a lot to do with this and with the way Lucky has been written lately. I wonder what GV ever did to him. When will they kill the idiot Luke Spencer off? I guess he will be on till cancellation. And believe me JJ coming back is not going to keep that from happening, as long as Fruza and Geary are involved in how storylines develop.

  9. Profile photo of season1217

    He looks so young/baby faced that he could probably be mistaken for one of Kristiana’s boyfriends instead of a cop!

    I understand the anger over Greg being replaced but be for real.

  10. Profile photo of EricasEvilTwin

    Why does it not surprise me that tony geary had his hands all over this. Guess he’s tired of his latest toy NP.

    Given the lack of loyalty TG showed GF back when they let her go, this doesnt surprise me. I am also shocked at the lack of loyalty ReH showed GV…you could honestly tell at GHFCW there was some definately tension between the two.

  11. Profile photo of Jamey Giddens
    Jamey Giddens

    Of course Tony is happy, Luke and Lucky haven’t been the same since Jonathan left. I am sorry for Greg, but this is normal for soaps. Seriously. How many times have we seen recasts? Greg himself was a recast for Diego Serrano on Y&R. You think if DAYS called him up right now and said, "Hey Greg, we’re gonna toss Eric Martsolf for you," he wouldn’t jump at the chance? I think a lot of people are minimizing Jonathan Jackson’s popularity in this role. Lucky was a phenomenon when JJ played the part, and no, I’m sorry, it wasn’t just the writing. He is an amazing actor—best of his generation on soaps— where Greg is a decent actor who struggled to make a second recast his own.  He gave it the college try, and will no doubt land on his feet, but GH made a very smart decision in my opinion. Show business is still a business.

  12. Profile photo of KMRDaytime

    As much as I liked JJ as the “real” Lucky, if they are bringing him back to simply step into JY’s and GV’s Lucky — the one who slept with Liz’s sister, manipulated her, became a drug addict, slept with Maxie, slept with Sam, became an inept cop — I think I would rather not see it. The character of Lucky has been basically destroyed since JJ was last in the role and no matter who is playing him Lucky and Liz still did all those lousy things to each other — the only way the old magic could be captured is if they did a “John Black” kind of thing…

    QUESTION — I may be remembering wrong but didn’t they explain JY’s Lucky with surgery? How will they explain suddenly looking the same again?

  13. Profile photo of keanna

    I agree, I think that they will undo the whole Ethan story, and have him either as Robert and Holly’s son or just a scam, and he will be gone before the year’s over. I have a feeling Tony had his hand in this as well.

  14. Profile photo of Jamey Giddens
    Jamey Giddens

    Didn’t GH do the same thing when they brought Tyler back as Nikolas and got rid of the other one? Another World tossed Cali Timmons, who was popular as Paulina, the moment they could get a name like Judi Evans in the role. It’s the way the cookie crumbles.

  15. Profile photo of blackjack21

    season – i agree that quote is extreme, but jj is 9 years younger than gv so it will take awhile to get used to a younger lucky again. i just hope they don’t immediately “fix” lucky and liz – she has done him wrong and he needs to shun her.

    jamey- i agree. justin deas had the great quote “we’re actors, we get fired, it’s what we do” (close enough :) )
    it’s just a shock. i am ginormously saddened for greg, but to be honest if this helps keep gh and other soaps relevant and on air, i’ll take it.

    also, people never question jj’s acting – he’s been handpicked to work with some of our finest actors today and deservedly so.

    but poor greg..:( boohoo. i wish they could have found some way to keep him on. like make him sly or something. guess we know where sarah’s salary is going…

  16. Profile photo of Serenity324

    I was a huge J Jackson fan back in the days. However I’m sorry that Greg got the shaft, Im sure he will find something though. I wouldn’t be shock if Amber (former Emily) comes back down the road.

  17. Profile photo of Courtney fan4life
    Courtney fan4life

    Jamey how are u ok with this but not ok with what went down with SS.

    GV was fired for the old Lucky and from what I hear he only signed a 6 MONTH contract!

    And p.s.s I hate Lucky no matter who plays him but this is messed up.

  18. Profile photo of keanna

    Jamey, you are right, Stephen Martinez played Nicholas for about four years and he was doing a great job, I loved him with Marissa (Gia) they were hot together. But I don’t what happen, but soon Stephen was out and Tyler was back in as Nicholas.

  19. Profile photo of EricasEvilTwin

    Jamey I cant speak for anyone else, my comments in no way should be taken as detracting from JJ, nor do I like the negatives about GV. I do think its a business and I get that. But there is a decent way to do business and a crappy way to do business and this IMHO reeks. And for the record, I didnt like the way they handled the SM/tc issue either. TC may be the “better” nik for many and definately has been the “more known” or even “more popular” nik, but SM did a fine job in the role and the pairing with Gia was quite good. I think if they had stuck with him, at least we wouldnt have gotten treated to all the years TC phoned it in, banking on his reputation of talent and popularity to care him through lack luster performances. I dont watch Another world so I cant comment on that one.

    In all of those instances, I dont fault the actors, but I do fault tptb. I have had to fire people, never pleasant, but I would like to think that I treated those folks with respect and decency. And I do fault tg because he has made it clear for ten years how little he has thought of the recasts. Shut up and do your job already. Maybe if he spent less time pandering for the Ethan is my son story, recruiting new luckys and forming pay alliances with other actors, and more time on his own performance as Luke, the character could be interesting again. I think its funny how much more tolerable ethan has been with Luke off the canvas.

  20. Profile photo of Jamey Giddens
    Jamey Giddens

    Who is SS? Oh, Sabine Singh! I made fun of The Real Greenlee campaign, because I felt the old Greenlee was overrated. I also think Sabine improved on the role. I can’t say the same in this case at ALL. Jonathan was phenomenal as Lucky, he matched Genie and Tony in every scene.  Also Sabine was just coming into her own, Greg has had years to make this role work.

  21. Profile photo of doctormo77

    Personally, I feel the writers wrote very few storylines that enabled TG and GV to connect as father-son. I did see a little bit of something when Lucky (GV) was in a coma and Luke had to consider taking him off life support. I do feel that GV tried to make the storylines work, espcially when he was given meaty material. I believe his best work occured during the drug addiction storyline. His relationship with Sam was also quite enjoyable.

  22. Profile photo of DynamiteKiddo

    Coltin Scott decided to leave, though; he and GH couldn’t come to terms on a new contract.

    I’m one of the few soap fans who loves the theoretical idea of recasts, if the role *needs* to be recast. I welcomed Amanda Baker taking on the Babe role because Alexa Havins was leaving. I was sad for Jennifer Bransford, but understood Laura Wright’s hiring as Carly because the show determined Bransford was a miscast within four months. This is an actor who’s given nearly seven years to GH despite constant mistreatment and this firing is one of the lowest in daytime. It says a lot when so many fellow cast members are extending their sympathies when, typically, people keep mum and stay neutral about these things (haven’t heard anyone comment on Jonathan Jackson yet) . . . Greg was a great guy and a loyal ABC employee and he was done dirt, dirt, dirt and everyone knows it. There’re ways to handle things like this, and this wasn’t handled properly, or remotely delicately, at all. I, personally, think this switch shouldn’t even have been considered, though; Greg Vaughn held this post as Lucky for too long and with too much enthusiasm and dignity for this to happen.

    Really, really disheartening turn of events. Really disappointing article, too; nothing against Jackson, but it sounds as if he’s of the opinion this was his role to take back whenever he wanted, regardless of who had been playing the part for six-and-a-half years. Not surprised Tony Geary had a hand in this, either.

  23. Profile photo of JaSamLover

    I honestly think my heart stopped beating when I heard this news. SQUEE!!!

    My earliest memories of GH are watching it with my mom. And of Lucky, b/c I thought he was so cute. So yeah, I’ve had a crush on JJ since I was just a little girl. Camp Nowhere anyone?

    I am sad to see Greg Vaughan go, though. He really could have shone if they gave him more to do. It’s a shame.

  24. Profile photo of daisyclover1938

    Well my anger has turned into sadness. I’m still unhappy with the way they treated GV, but it is what it is. But no one should be expecting GV fans to be jumping up and down clapping because JJ is back. It’s still pretty raw, so to think that everyone is going to adopt an “oh well, tough luck” attitude right away is unrealistic.

  25. Profile photo of chris345

    I think the biggest problem with Daytime today is that talent is often made a 2ndry issue and fanbases and favorites effect storyline way to much.

    This is work, this is a job. It’s just like another person who is working for a corportation. The numbers are down and they continue to go down, the talent is down and the storylines are down. Shows need to have actors and actresses in roles with whom they want to write for. If a show doesn’t care about a character or an actor enough then they need to let them go and move on.

    I like GV and I really liked his Lucky with Sam. But under the current writing and creative team on GH his Lucky was never going to be more than a pretty face, a dumb cop who didn’t get and wouldn’t get a storyline worthy of Luke & Laura’s son.

    GH is doing what they should have done long ago, they are being truthful in their choice and allowing their strips to show. The don’t and didn’t want to write Lucky with GV playing the role and they finally owned upto it. What they did for the last three years is allow GV to take up space and pay him the bare amount todo that.

    Soaps, all soaps need to start doing this. They are dying off each day and it’s time they started using talent which they are interested in giving storylines to and removed all the dead weight. One of the main problems with soaps is they write to many storylines for actors and actresses that aren’t that talented or upto the task before them. TPTB have agenda’s and favorites and because of that the shows suffer.

    It work and the best people should be out there and if you feel you don’t have the best person in the role than you shouldn’t bother with the part until you get that person.

  26. Profile photo of wjhboy73

    THIS STINKS TO HIGH HEAVEN !!!!!! I LOVED Jonathan Jackson in his initial run. Jacob Young, not so much. And when Greg Vaughn was GIVEN SOMETHING TO DO I.E. DRUG ADDICTION storyline, he was fine. But THE WRITING for this character has sucked for years. So unless GUZA was also given walking papers along with Greg, this is just good for the publicity and things will just be same old, same old.

    We’re missing BIGGER PICTURE. How are you going to have the original actor who played LUKE & LAURA’S FIRSTBORN return WITHOUT Luke AND LAURA onscreen? RIDIC. I give this show 2 years. IT’S A MESS.

    Genie… stay where you are with your husband and continue to collect those residuals from Star Trek TNG… Tell ABC to kick rocks when they come asking for a limited return engagement….

    Greg…Here’s hoping you land a great gig on a CBS Prime Time show or some cool HBO or Showtime show. Hopefully , you’ll have been steadily employed and making good money when you hear that GH’s ratings have fallen to a 1.0 and is being cancelled.

  27. Profile photo of josser

    Sorry, I LOVED Nicholas and Gia!! I haven’t like Nicholas since Stephen Martines left. Martines’ Nicholas was the better one. I’d love to see Martines back as Nicholas with Marisa Ramires back at his side.

    Do you remember their song? Hubba, hubba, those two were HOT!!

    No. I don’t want Tyler Christopher fired. I’m just expressing my preferences for an actor who was one half of one of GH’s best super couples.

    Nicholas and Gia forever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  28. Profile photo of troymcclure

    I didn’t see the greatness of Nic and Gia as well, season.

    Jamey, how about posting clips of JJ as Lucky? I remember when the actor from Y&R (Raul) was supposed to play Dante someone posted a whole bunch of clips og him. I always thought he was awful Anywho, how about posting clips of JJ as Lucky to remind people how friggin’ great he was?

  29. Profile photo of Dillon

    Season I am with you on this one – I never saw what was so hot about Nic and Gia. Still hope Gia stays wherever she is.

    I am so giddy over the moon with JJ’s return.

    I want Lucky back to being an essential character on this show no matter who he is paired with, I want Liz and Lucky to be apart, and leave the paternity the way it is, but allow Lucky to stand up to Jason if he even attempts to take Jake. I want to see him mad at his brother and be mad at the world.

  30. Profile photo of daisyclover1938

    I understand the anger over Greg being replaced but be for real

    Season, I thought the poster’s comment about JJ looking like one of Kristina’s boyfriends was funny. Don’t tell me your trademark sense of humor goes bye-bye when it comes to JJ??

  31. Profile photo of GossipGirl

    Greg is an actor, he should know how it works. Soaps are dying and GH is going to do whatever they can to prolong their stay on the airwaves. Jonathan was an extremely popular actor and Lucky has never been the same since him, so it makes sense they would go after him. Everyone is replacable! Greg seems like a nice guy, but I never thought he was anything special. He is just an okay actor, in my opinion. Of course I hope he finds work, just like I hope the millions of people who are losing their jobs around the country do as well.

  32. Profile photo of GertieGal

    I agree 100% with Jamey (comment #29). Greg has been here for years and has made the character boring with no rooting value! You can blame the writers for some things BUT a great actor can take crappy writing and still make it worth watching!

    As for the comments about Tony Geary….the story says that JJ talked to TG correct? It doesn’t say that TG went to TPTB and insisted Greg be fired! Where do you people come up with these things??? Oh yeah, that’s why it’s called gossip! LOL

  33. Profile photo of ajsmom

    OMG! I’m excited about GH again! I had to check to see if hell had frozen over first!!! So glad to see JJ coming back, but I feel bad for GV. This is so shocking, whats a girl to do? LOL

  34. Profile photo of season1217

    Don’t tell me your trademark sense of humor goes bye-bye when it comes to JJ??

    It may have attended Yom Kippur service. It had a lot to atone for. It’s just Rebecca’s comments didn’t indicate that she was joking. As a matter of fact the comments seemed to be undermining. But funny is funny.

  35. Profile photo of PurpleRocks

    I’m gone for a few days and I come to JJ news? Wow!!! I have so many mixed feelings about this I don’t know where to start. Let’s see..

    I am sooooooo happy that JJ is coming back to GH. I loved him as the original Lucky and I loved him in everything else that he did including the Terminator: Sarah Conner Chronicles. I LOVE his chemistry with ReH and have always been waiting for an L&L2 reunion with those two actors. The original L&L2 storyline was my favorite of all time. He’s so awesome!

    I am very very sad about GV leaving GH. He is a great actor and super nice guy. I feel so bad for him and he does not deserve this :(.

    If GH writers really knew what to do, they would not p* off the GV fan base and risk the return of the JJ fan base. The writers could have kept both actors and had an awesome storyline at the same time. Here’s what I would have done. Luke was kidnapped by Helena. Everyone knows this. Well, while he’s kidnapped, he could be re-united with the kidnapped JJ Lucky. Luke is stunned to know that the GV Lucky is not his son and the JJ Lucky had been held captive by Helena since when she originally kidnapped him. She sent a clone Lucky (GV) in his place. So then Luke and JJ Lucky help eachother escape and come back to Port Charles. Everyone’s stunned, most of all GV Lucky, b/c he always thought he was the real Lucky. This sets up a great storyline for GV Lucky trying to figure out who he really is and where he came from. Liz stops having feelings for Nik, b/c her true love JJ Lucky is back. Liz can help JJ Lucky overcome all his issues about being held hostage just like JJ Lucky helped Liz through her rape. Liz and JJ Lucky have no hard feelings towards eachother b/c they never really hurt eachother since all the hurt and lies were with the GV Lucky. So L&L2 can be back in full force. GV Lucky is heartbroken by Liz choosing JJ Lucky. Rebecca, who turns out to really be Emily, understands GV Lucky’s identity crisis since she is going through the same thing b/c of Helena and they fall in love. Nik who’s furious b/c he lost Emily to GV Lucky and lost Liz to JJ Lucky, goes all Cassadine on both Lucky’s and joins forces with Helena. Then we can have a real Spencer vs Cassadine war. (Notice there’s no mob involved in this storyline J ). In the end, Nik realizes this is all Helena’s fault, b/c if she didn’t kidnap the JJ Lucky and Emily, he wouldn’t’ be alone. He joins forces with the Spencer’s behind Helena’s back. He also rescues some other hot female character that Helena’s held hostage and they fall in love. Everyone lives happily ever after :)

    I think GV was cursed from the start by having to take over the role of Lucky. Even though he was way better than Lucky # 2, no one can top Lucky #1. It’s like if they brought Brenda back with a re-cast. No matter how awesome the actor that plays the new Brenda is, she’ll never live up to the Vanessa Marcil days.

    Oh and if AG had anything to do with GV being fired, I hate him even more than I already do. I hope GF comes back and whoops his behind.

    Also, GV is so awesome that I hope he gets a new gig soon. He could even go to the new Melrose Place. I don’t watch it but I will if GV’s on it.

  36. Profile photo of PurpleRocks

    Oh, and even though I’m a Liason fan, I’m an original L&L2 fan first. If Liz can be with the JJ Lucky, then Jason and Sam can sail off into the sunset for all I care. Maybe letting Liz be happy with someone who she truly loves and loves her back without any danger issues can help me stomach Jasam. Not fair how Jasam gets to be together with the support of all of Port Charles, while Lucky is written as a schmuck and Liz is stuck in a stupid Niz storyline and will inevitably have all of PC hate and criticize them. Hopefully with JJ returning, the writers can actually write Lucky as not a fool and Liz as finally satisfied, and Liz and Lucky can finally be happy together. And if after all this JJ drama, if the writers can’t improve the character of Lucky, then TPTB can finally admit that Lucky’s unpopularity had nothing to do with GV but had everything to do with the writing and realize they were totally unfair to GV.

  37. Profile photo of engradypind

    I was shocked and delighted to hear that JJ is coming back to take over the role he originated. I know many fans will miss GV, and truly I wish him well, but I didn’t like his portrayal of Lucky and liked even less the way Lucky was written. Lucky went from being a street savy, risk-taking compassionate and passionate young man into the safe, needy, team-player cop.

    I think we can expect a different chemistry between Lucky and Liz with JJ coming back. Hmmmmm? There should be a different Lucky-Ethan dynamic too.

  38. Profile photo of timepass

    Ok, GH will be back on my DVR but not before october 27! I look forward to watch JJ and Liz!

    As long as GV does not end up on one of the soap I watch, I am cool with things as they are!

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