Jason and Chalae at '07 Emmy's (Soaps.com)

It may be with heavy heart that General Hospital fans mourn the death (by hanging, no less!) of mysterious Cooper Barrett, but it is my great pleasure to share my recent conversation with his Coop’s talented portrayer, Jason Gerhardt. The first thing I want to tell Soaps.com readers is Jason scheduled our phone call around the nap time of his not one, but two children! Yes, his daughter Madison is now the proud big sister of baby Hudson Lee Gerhardt who was born on December 7th, 2007. Jason and his wife, Chalae, are happily busy as they nurture their little family (which includes three dogs!).

Yet, as most of us know by know, the powers that be at GH decided in early December not to pick up their option on Jason’s contract. Jason shared his thoughts on leaving his first contract role. “From an acting standpoint, GH has been so good for me,” he told me. He explained that learned from watching the other actors perform and even picked their brains when the opportunity presented itself. I told Jason that it seems as if the writers kind of dropped the ball on Coop’s potential. He thought for a minute and then said, “You know, to be honest… I think they did and it’s showing. From what I hear, not everyone’s happy with the storyline.” On that note, I asked him if he knows weather Coop committed suicide and/or if he is the killer. Jason admits that he does know whether (or not!) Coop is the Text Message Killer, but the show wants it to remain open-ended for now. Then we laughed when I asked him how much poor Maxie can take. Jason smirked, “Ya know, Kirsten Storms said the same thing!”