Meeeeeemorieees! Light the corners of my miiiiiind!

Oh, Jason Morgan. We’ve had some good times, haven’t we? And some infuriating ones. Mostly the latter. Frankly, if anyone told me back in 1996 that most of the next seventeen years would revolve around the trials and tribulations and miracles worked by this guy, I would not have believed them:

YES, THIS IS AN OUTFIT
JASON Q VOLUNTARILY WORE

(I still kind of don’t believe it? I mean, try saying this sentence aloud with a straight face: He kills people for money and is the show’s moral center. See what I mean?)

Anyway, I’m having kind of hard time taking Jason’s “death” very seriously. Mostly because I don’t like him very much right now? And he’s obviously going to pop up alive and well again the second Steve Burton changes his mind? I’m sure I’ll have more to say later about the convoluted and underwhelming retconny Joe/Duke/Bernie shenanigans that led up to his swan dive off the pier (and about Sonny diving in after him, which may have been the most entertaining and LOLarious thing to come out of this entire mess). Also, have no fear, there will be caps of Sam in that wetsuit, because, hello, gay lady here. These are things that need to be documented.

Still! I have some complex feels regarding late 90s/early 2000s Jason. And for good or for ill, his departure marks the end of a long era, and deserves some sort of eulogy to mark the occasion. So I’d like to take a moment to remember the important things, namely:

The many bad hairstyles and neck sizes of
Jason Morgan Quartermaine, a retrospective

From skinny and elfin to bulked up ‘roid arms, we’re going through twenty-one years of Steve Burton, guys. Strap in.

1991

Enter Jason Quartermaine, all shiny and new:

THE FACE OF A SMARMY DUDE BRO,
IF I EVER SAW ONE

Note that the neck is normal sized, face appears proportional to the body, and hair is short, yet so very floppy.

Also, there was this:

(It was really hard to get a non-blurry full length shot of this sartorial masterpiece, but yes, those appear to be purple pants with a black crotch diamond, topped with a blue turtleneck and technicolor dream sweater.)

1992

Black t-shirt? Um, no. Jason Q woos the ladies with a BRIGHT NEON PINK tank top and his superior knowledge of boating safety. Also, accidentally kills an attempted rapist on a deserted island and then lies about it to the cops. I guess even then, he had a proclivity for completely unnecessary cover ups?

1993

Here we see him starting to get that pinhead look. Also, what the hair has lost in floppiness, it has gained in height. I’m guessing there’s about an inch and a half of hair standing straight up there? Oh, the 90s.

1994

I have nothing to add to this except that it is disturbingly similar to my current hairstyle.

1995

This was possibly the darkest fashion year of all. There were… a lot of vests. Like, a lot. Of. Vests.

(SERIOUSLY. SO MANY VESTS.)

Also the year of the puffy pirate shirt. Amazing.

1996

Enter Jason Morgan, finally. Brain damage! Sure, it might leave you with amnesia, an inability to lie or read maps, and zero moral compunctions about killing people for money. But it also makes you dress better.

The boy with no past meets the girl with no future. Romance and lots of clinical safe sex talk ensues. Then, the boy with no past meets the girl with no name. Sleazy hook ups, cheesy camera angles, and a lifetime of unhealthy, co-dependent friendship ensues.

But the greatest romance of all is watching Sonny seduce him. Seriously. It’s like a work of art:

Also, if this clip does not get you excited for Sean Kanan, then I don’t know what will:

DRUNK AJ HAS SO MANY FEELINGS, YOU GUYS!

(I’m actually quite sad that Steve Burton’s time on the show didn’t coincide with Sean Kanan’s by even a day. I always enjoyed their brother chemistry.)

1997

He’s obviously fallen into the groove here. Very boring fashion year: black t-shirt, leather jacket, short hair sticking up a reasonable length. Blah, blah, blah.

But remember when Jason had emotions? And actually expressed them? Vividly?

Look at him laughing and crying and getting all angry about everything!

(Also, I feel I should note that while compiling the clips for this post, I totally fell into a YouTube hole of Jason/Robin goodness. YOU GUYS, THEY WERE SO ADORABLE AND SAD. I want to give them all the hugs.)

1998

Hair’s still in a holding pattern, but playing daddy to Michael seems to have inspired him to shake things up a bit with long sleeves and non-black colors:

Then, of course, we have his brief experiment with professionalism after taking over the business from Sonny. Wearing that suit like pro, Morgan:

Also, apparently in 1998, Jason was super religious and it was kind of weird?

(And hilariously, teen girls actually sighed and cooed on camera over his hotness? Good times.) (Baby Amber Tamblyn is so cute! I’m still weirded out that she’s married to David Cross now.)

1999

This was the year Jason discovered highlights. It was unfortunate.

Also, we’re back to that sticking straight up, just a little too high all over his head thing. He’s like a hedgehog.

2000

See, now this is nice! Stick with this look, Jason.

2001

Spoiler: he doesn’t.

YOU WANT THE HEDGEHOG? YOU CAN’T
HANDLE THE HEDGEHOG!

2002

Back to the highlights! But the sticking up parts are looking a bit more sculpted, at least. And his face looks really narrow? Note how dainty the neck is:

2003-2005

This is where it gets boring for a few years. Highlights: gone. Sides: short. Top: combed forward then sticking up a little at the front. Neck size is starting to grow, though:

(Also, somewhere in there, he gets amnesia again and is briefly horrified by the terrible life of murder and extortion which he leads. But then he gets over it.)

2006

First of all: neck size is exploding rapidly!

Also, hair is starting to get a little shaggy — leading to this poofy, gel-laden mess by the end of the year:

This, of course, leads to…

2007

An infamous year of hair horrors. First, many months are spent with the long, greased back look. I want to wash my hands just looking at it:

Then, when presumably it was so long that greasing it back would have required an entire tub of lard, we got floppy and greasy:

Then, longer still! And alarmingly starting to tread into mullet territory…

… until finally we reach the full Farrah:

(Note also that neck size has achieved somehow-wider-than-his-face status at this point.)

2008-2012

The long follicular nightmare is over! Neck size remains enormous until the end; hair is in standard hit man chic for the duration. All is right with the world.

RIP, HIT MAN WITH A HEART OF GOLD

And there you have it! For my money, 1996 and 2002 were both extremely good years, looks-wise. But then, neck-size preferences are such a personal thing.

Still, nothing really captures the essence of Jason Morgan, super action patron saint of manliness and butt kicking, than his daring, windswept Farrah-haired speedboat ride to Wyndemere during the Black and White Ball:

Farewell, Jason. This is how I’ll remember you always.

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20 thoughts on “Meeeeeemorieees! Light the corners of my miiiiiind!

  1. Best of luck to Steve Burton in whatever he does. My issues with Jason were more about Guza wanting us to drink his kool-aid then Jason as a character. Jason was a core character who had a place in GH, I find it hard to picture GH without him. And thank you writers for not having rushing him off in a half baked exit. Jason dying on the job is always how I pictured Jason exiting the show. I feel bad for Sam, who finally has her family back and now is left to raise Daniel alone, and Monica who has now lost her only child she had. Sonny going to tell Sam himself showed compassion and character.

  2. the only way the purple pants and pink t-shirt could have been bettered if they had been worn TOGETHER.

    thanks for that, it was hilarious!

    • I never realized before just how much NEON was in Jason Q’s wardrobe. Clearly opening up his closet when he got out of the hospital scarred Jason Morgan for life and that’s why he now bulk orders only in black…

  3. Memory lane is awesome! I would like to put in an honorable mention for the purple leotard. While it was neither Jason Morgan or Quartermaine, it does hold a special place in my heart.

  4. there were times when i liked him, when i didn’t, when i was bored with him, and when i wasn’t……

    so yeah i will kind of miss him….but kind of won’t.

    it was more or less jason q that i liked as opposed to jason morgan….

    or something like that

    susan

    • I hear you, I’ll miss him because he was a core character in GH< I won't because he was being propped ridiculously.

      • I’m honestly pretty happy to have a Jason break right now. I think it will open the canvas up for a lot of other people to get more story. (And maybe open the budget up to get some other people back?)

        I’m sure after a while, absence will have have made my heart grow fonder. But hey, that’s what YouTube’s for…

        • they did when he went the last time….people actually were used more…so yeah i’m looking forward to that instead of jason central all the time…

          susan
          \
          yeah maybe in a year or two, i’ll want him back…but….

          i agree saw…..don’t keep having liz and sam going to the same man…so boring…so done that…..

  5. THANK YOU…sooo very much for this…My Jason Q and Jason Morgan (the early years) loving heart really appreciated it.

    Those colorful outfits were a riot.

    Did he have his ears pinned back somewhere after 1993 or did his hair cover them until his head and neck grew into them?

    I agree about this hiatus as well. I think once SBu does his stint over at Y&R with buddy JFPhelps, he’ll hightail it back to GH soon enough (I give it a year) and then we will get all sorts of AJ and Jason angst. I can only hope that during this time a reformed AJ ends up somehow returning with Jake, and also helps to raise baby Daniel (as a supportive uncle only – pls no more Liz/Sam wars with yet another man). That would be all kinds of payback…

  6. Thanks for the retrospective. Interesting. I’ve tuned him out as a character for so long, sometime around 1998 according to the pics. Someone who kills people for a living and is the moral center of the show and “the” romantic lead was something that I just could not tolerate. After a few years of Jason Morgan, it wasn’t even about hating the character anymore. It was about hating the skewed and redundant writing. Yes, the character was repugnant, but just as damning … he was boring. He killed “bad” people and saved the good folks of Port Charles over and over and over. Yawn.

    I hope that his absence does open up the canvas a bit for other characters. If it were Guza handling it, I’d have no hope. With the OLTL guys, maybe … we’ll see.

    • more or less i tuned him out when he dumped robin….

      all he kept on telling her was how much he admired the truth…that he wanted the truth at all expence…yet when she told AJ about michael….he dumped her…so ever since then he’s been the biggest hypocrate to me…oh i’ve watched him since…….because i’ve really had no choice…but……..

      like you said giving him amnesia and having him be the only soap character that’s kept it…..was totally the wrong thing to do

      susan

  7. This was hilarious! That first 2003 photo? I’m 100% positive he is talking to Brenda in that scene. The distinctive annoyed/befuddled look on his face alone tells me. Am I right??

    • Hah! You would ask about one of the few I don’t remember what the source was. I think my eyes were starting to glaze over a bit around that point…. Don’t think it was Brenda, though. Maybe Ric? Or possibly Courtney.

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