It’s the Ron of a New Era

Posted July 22, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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New head writer Ron Carlivati’s name started appearing in the credits this past Wednesday, but I decided I would try and reserve judgment until his first (partial) week played out. As anyone I’ve ever dated will tell you, this is not one of my strong suits, but… I made it!

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“So, Doc, whaddaya think?”

I’ve read a lot of comments online from people who are disappointed that it wasn’t instantly a brand-new show. Is that a realistic expectation? I don’t think so. I get why people were hoping for it, given how lifeless and un-engaging Days has been for months, but he still inherited Dena Higley’s canvas, with the characters she chose to write for and the stories she had in motion. Given that, I’m encouraged by what I saw this week. There was definitely a new energy, a zip, to the breakdowns — look at the way that the Hattie reveal played out. They led us on for a good half-episode that it was Marlena conspiring with Anjelica before flipping the script and showing that it was actually Hattie. That felt playful and actually dramatic. And there were sharp shifts in a bunch of other dynamics: Abigail suddenly grew a backbone with Dario; Gabi definitely feels like the third wheel in her triangle; Dario is unequivocally a baddie now.

That said, it ain’t perfect (and I wasn’t expecting it to be). Like, uh…

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What in the hell kind of plan is this that Anjelica has cooked up? Let me walk through this: she’s still in love with Justin, a man with whom she had a child three decades ago, and for some reason, she’s just getting around to going after him now. So she enlists Hattie, a woman with a striking resemblance to Marlena, to recruit Bonnie Lockhart, a woman with a striking resemblance to Adrienne, the love of Justin’s life. Presumably Anjelica plans to use Bonnie to take over Adrienne’s life and push Justin away. Thing is, Adrienne is engaged to another man, so in theory, she isn’t an obstacle at all. They tried to skate over this in the dialogue by having Anjelica tell Hattie that Justin and Adrienne will always be connected, but this is more convoluted and nonsensical than me trying to get a straight answer out of Anthem Blue Cross on the phone. Meanwhile, Hattie is participating in all this because she desperately wants to be with Roman Brady — who, by the way, is often the target of these plots (like that socialite who needed to be set up with him at Hope and Aiden’s Broom Closet Gala) and perhaps has some really active offscreen sex life — and, in order to land Roman, she needs to… impersonate Marlena, dump John, then get with Roman, which will involve pretending to be Marlena for the rest of her life even though she hates doing so. Maybe it would be easier to just be herself and go after Roman? My head hurts.

This doppelgänger thing could get old really fast, and I hope it’s just a “fun” fix for whatever dull-ass Anjelica/Adrienne story that Higley was in the midst of telling. But I’m optimistic based on some of the changes that we’ve seen so far. My biggest complaint over the past year hasn’t so much been the stories they were attempting to tell so much as the boring, illogical ways in which they were telling them. Like, there’s a world in which an Abigail/Chad/Gabi triangle totally would’ve worked after Abigail faked her death, but they’ve mostly ignored the compelling issues there and instead leaned on some fake history between Chad and Gabi. The show isn’t suddenly going to have the production value of Game of Thrones, and there’s going to be some necessary re-establishing of things that feel played out to us (Marlena/John conflict over ISA missions, Adrienne and Justin’s continued bond despite her engagement) in order to set foundations for Ron’s stories, so I can deal with all that. But I have my fingers crossed that things will be interesting and surprising, and that maybe I’ll have reason to root for some of these people instead of wanting to see them all set on fire.

More Returns Coming

Posted July 18, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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Thank god there are things going on behind-the-scenes… and we won’t even have to wait that long for the show not to be a snoozefest anymore!

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What Happened in Salem: Week of July 10th

Posted July 17, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

The investigation into Deimos’s murder continued to be handled about as well as every other legal case in town…

After Sonny insisted upon confessing to Deimos’s murder, a crime he doesn’t actually remember committing, he was booked. JJ was released from police custody and instantly became huffy that all the other cops who are technically still suspects are allowed to keep investigating, so he just tagged along to further taint various crime scenes and chains of custody. Signs (well, mostly the fact that he is the only person left on Earth getting his porn from the magazine stand instead of the internet) pointed to Xander having been holed up at the Salem Inn on the night of Deimos’s murder, but Greek authorities confirmed that he is still locked up there.

Read the full recap to find out What Happened in Salem last week!

Frightful Friday

Posted July 15, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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This isn’t even what this post was supposed to be about, but something happened when I went back to get my screenshots, and we can’t move forward until it’s addressed.

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Jennifer Rose! What in the name of Alice Horton is going on here?! I was actually going to make a little side comment about how cute she looked, based upon my occasional glances at the TV while folding laundry, but then I was trying to get a shot of her with Brady and was subjected to this full-body horror. She’s like… Summer 2017 on top, Victorian-era Scotland on the bottom. This whole thing has a very puzzling, distressing tent-like effect on her that I cannot comprehend. And in July, no less? The only good thing I can say is that I was originally terrified those were extremely wide-legged pants, but no, they’re just a plain old ridiculous skirt. But still. Put that top with some skinny white jeans and stop being your own worst enemy!

Whew. Okay, now that we have that out of the way, we can talk about Brady.

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Who, by the way, is like, “Jen, I’m dating perennial Worst Dressed Salemite winner Nicole Walker, and I still can’t get over that skirt you put on.”

After Thursday’s episode, I was all set to talk about how refreshing it was to enjoy Brady in a more supporting role — being a friend to Jennifer, showing concern for Abigail, getting in Dario’s face. It’s the same way I felt after Theresa exited last year, and they had him being a friend to both Nicole and Chloe, before they went full-steam ahead with that idiotic Canada excursion. But then they had to go and blow all that goodwill on Friday, with him pounding his chest and huffing and puffing at Nicole and Eric. Maybe it’s because there’s so much unfinished business between “Ericole,” but I keep forgetting that Brady and Nicole are even supposed to be a couple. This latest Great Love just is not taking. At all. There have been plenty of times in the past when I’ve rooted for them to get together, or at least thought it’d be a nice option, but this version just ain’t working.

Oh, and how dim is Brady? “How could you and Eric kissing possibly be about Daniel?” Well, EVERYTHING FUCKIN’ ELSE has been since about 2012, so why not?!

Meanwhile, Friday was apparently White Jade’s last day.

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Meh. The most interesting thing I have to say about this is that, in trying to get a usable screencap of her, I realized that she spends 80% of her scenes with her eyes closed and/or head down. Now go forth and never be mentioned again!

Another One Bites the Dust

Posted July 14, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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We basically knew about this already, but finally confirmation…

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Actor and Character Out

Posted July 13, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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I would definitely not call this one a shocker, especially in the midst of a writing change, but the timing is kind of interesting…

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The Waiting Game

Posted July 12, 2017 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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Ron Carlivati’s work officially begins airing next Wednesday, July 19th.

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Pour me a glass, ladies! I’m not sure if I’m toasting to the dawn of a new era or just drinking to make it through these remaining few Higley episodes, but don’t skimp.

One of the big problems with these writing transitions/reboots is that the lead time is so damn long that we wind up watching, like, six months’ worth of stuff that we know is barely going to “count” as soon as the new writers come in, so it’d be hard to care much even if most of it weren’t dreadfully boring or half-baked. I know it’s been said that Carlivati got his hands into some of the scripts prior to his actual start and did some tweaking, and while we don’t have any confirmation on what was tweaked, I’ll be damned if this wasn’t a visual metaphor:

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Hope and Rafe. In the actual trash. Come on.

Also, aren’t these two kind of still suspects in Deimos’s murder? Why are they working this case? Why is Lani (also a suspect, and also the girlfriend of the guy who was being charged with the murder until five minutes ago) working the crime scene? It’s all almost as stupid as JJ being outraged that he isn’t being allowed to investigate the case. You were just arrested for the crime in question. Stay in your lane, kid! I know Raines literally has no employees left who aren’t under some level of suspicion for this murder, but maybe he could get his ass out in the field and do some damn work instead of just snarling at everyone.

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Aside from my general apathy regarding this entire murder mystery (which I hope will become more intriguing as the writing change kicks in — Carlivati explicitly said that he extended and tweaked the story, which is good because right now there aren’t really “clues” for us to play along with and it’s all just kinda lying there), I remain perplexed about two things: 1) what the point of this Anjelica business is, and 2) what the hell Anjelica is wearing in any of her appearances. Did someone in Wardrobe get mixed up and think they cast a Tempurpedic as Angelica Deveraux instead of Morgan Fairchild? That would at least explain why she constantly seems to be covered in duvets.

As for why she’s there… I barely even have a guess. The pacing is wonky as hell, and she hasn’t even crossed paths with Justin or Victor yet, which makes me wonder if Ron cut some of her material from scripts and preserved just enough to set up whatever he’s going to do with the character. I read some spoilers for next week, so I know that this thing takes a bit of a turn, but I’ll be damned if I can figure out why this character was brought in. Right now, it feels as though they cast Morgan Fairchild, then picked a random old character name out of a hat in order to choose a role. I mean, I’d be curious to see what she would do as Don Craig, too, but that doesn’t mean it’d be a good move…