Is Ned Planning To Leave General Hospital? Here's What We Know

"General Hospital" has nailed its soap opera tropes recently, particularly with the story of Ned Quartermaine (Wally Kurth) hitting his head and waking up believing he's his former stage persona, Eddie Maine. Kurth was so excited when he first learned of the storyline, he told Soap Opera Digest, "Amnesia? Eddie Maine? That sounds like a challenge! That sounds like something that's just completely wacky! Let's see if I can pull this off!" He added, "How do I make this work? How do I sell this?" While it was touch and go for a while after the accident when Ned almost needed brain surgery, fans speculated that Kurth might be leaving the show. 

In an interview with Digital Journal on July 12, Kurth commented on the fact that "GH" just celebrated its 60th anniversary in April, remarking, "60 years is incredible, isn't it? I am very proud to be a part of both 'General Hospital' and 'Days of Our Lives.' Honestly, I feel very honored that both shows want me around." The actor is doing double duty playing Justin Kiriakis on "Days," a role in which he celebrated his 35th anniversary in February 2022. On "GH," Kurth has been playing Ned Quartermaine (formerly Ned Ashton) for 30 years, marking his milestone anniversary in September 2021, and with this new, highly creative, and entertaining take on amnesia, fans can relax, because he doesn't appear to be leaving any time soon.

Kurth thinks Ned is suffering a form of PTSD

On "General Hospital," history is almost repeating itself with the Ned/Eddie storyline — or "Neddie" as the fans lovingly refer to him now. In 1995, Jason Quartermaine (Steve Burton) suffered a brain injury in a car accident, resulting in permanent memory loss, and a brand new character, Jason Morgan, emerged. It's unclear whether or not Ned's original personality will ever return, and the story could go either way. If "General Hospital" is daring enough, they'll make his change to Eddie Maine permanent. Given that the Quartermaine family reacted badly when Jason lost all of his memories, the show is taking a different route now, as his wife, Olivia Falconeri (Lisa LoCicero) is realizing she has to accept him as Eddie, and the two seem to be bonding.

Kurth also explained his take on what's going through Eddie's mind to Soap Opera Digest, noting that he did research on the topic and learned there are instances where a person can only remember certain things from their past. "It's almost like a PTSD situation where your mind goes to a time that makes more sense to you and feels more comfortable, where maybe it's happier, and you go there to protect yourself, like a defense mechanism," he explained, further adding that Eddie feels most at home performing on stage.

But his mother, Tracy Quartermaine (Jane Elliot), would rather see him committed and forced to return to his original state.

Lois could return to help Eddie

When Ned Quartermaine walked away from the business world and pursued his dreams of being a rock star, he took on the stage name Eddie Maine in 1993. It was during that time he was discovered by music promoter Lois Cerullo (Rena Sofer), and they became soul mates. When they were casting the part of Lois, Wally Kurth recalled, "I auditioned with a lot of people for that role and I think she was the last one. I remember thinking, 'This is the one.' She had the accent, a great look, that porcelain skin and those striking eyes. I went to the booth and said, 'You've got to hire this one!' "

Kurth and Sofer fell in love and got married in 1994, only to get divorced in 1997. Sofer stated on Maurice Benard's (Sonny Corinthos) YouTube show, "State of Mind," that, "We fell in love on TV. And when I left the show, we realized, 'Oh, our characters were in love. We weren't in love.'" Their characters had a daughter named Brook Lynn Quartermaine, who is currently played with aplomb by Amanda Setton. She and Kurth have a nice on-screen father/daughter chemistry, and you can see the heartbreak in her eyes when she looks at Eddie.

And with this recent storyline, not only is Kurth staying on indefinitely, it looks like the stars are aligning for Lois' return, perhaps just in time to help restore Ned's memories.