A Joyous Occasion

Posted November 12, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

Tags: ,

No, the title of this post is not referencing Friday’s cliffhanger of “woman is about to give birth to [what she thinks is] her rapist’s baby while being held prisoner by her barely-ex-husband.”

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I’ll admit that some of the recent twists have injected life into this story, but also, even though she isn’t technically suffering DID right now, isn’t Abigail just acting like Gabby-with-a-Y anyway? She’s being a bitch to her loved ones, she’s leaning on Stefan for support, etc. I keep wanting to leap into the TV and remind her that Stefan isn’t “the only one who believes her” — he’s actually actively hoping that she is suffering a relapse of her DID so that she will forsake her real family and life to be with him. What support!

No, let’s talk about the actual onscreen anniversary, which was a delight. To the surprise of anyone who has ever met me or passed me on the street, I began sobbing the moment Frances Reid appeared onscreen in that replay of her anniversary message from several years ago.

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Alice! Just seeing her and hearing her voice on my television again was such a treat. What a great way to honor the show’s history. And it was so fitting to have the centerpiece of the anniversary episode be John and Marlena actually getting married.

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I do question the wisdom of springing a surprise wedding on them in the exact same place that Marlena was near-fatally shot mere months ago, but hey, none of these people have ever been bastions of good judgment or taste. (And don’t get me started on the fact that they were getting married at the mall in the first place.)

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This was an incredibly strange week in terms of the cast, though. A lot of stories wrapped up, and it was striking how much of the show has been hanging on recurring or guest characters. Over the past few weeks, we’ve had Kristen, Nicole, Xander, Sami, Susan, Bonnie, and Mimi all exit, plus I don’t think Belle and Shawn are going to be on again too soon. I’m a little nervous about how things are going to look this week. There’s obviously the Abigail story ready to take over (groan), and some more time for Ciara/Ben and Will/Sonny/Paul should be good, but it’s the sort of transition we haven’t really seen aside from when there’s a writer switch. The show has been so good since August, and I’d hate for that to have been just a three-month detour.

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Day of Days Promo

Posted November 10, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

Tags: ,

The annual Day of Days fan event was held today in L.A., and the highlight for me is always, always the long promo/trailer they screen. This year’s does not disappoint, and you can watch it on NBC’s site here.

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I had three glasses of wine at a baby shower this afternoon and rushed home to watch, so here are some stream-of-consciousness thoughts (behind the cut to protect the spoiler-averse)…

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Happy 53rd Anniversary, Days!

Posted November 8, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

Tags: ,

Fifty three years ago today, NBC aired the very first episode of a show that would go on to fill our world with joy, lunacy, and semi-frequent assaults upon basic human logic. To mark the occasion, the network just launched The DOOL App, featuring behind-the-scenes info, classic clips, quizzes, and more. Meanwhile, here’s a photo of me in a deranged t-shirt that my friend Ira made for my birthday a few years ago.

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Please note the trifecta of important Days memories in the very bottom row: “Melaswen,” “Satan,” and “cameo” (as in, “my mother’s!”).

Oh, and if you click here, you might find a special treat that I’m not going to crow about too loudly lest it get taken down. Happy birthday, Days, and here’s to another 50+ years of Hortons and Bradys never learning a damn lesson!

The Results Are In!

Posted November 7, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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I’m not talking about the midterm elections. I mean the results that really count. You know, like “Does this baby really belong to that tacky grifter?” and “Is that my husband or just a random person covered in a comically excessive amount of gauze?”

(Also, I’m kidding! Voting is important!)

First up, that went about as well as any gathering in Salem could go: violence, public humiliation, shattered relationships, and the like.

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I’m not sure I totally buy Rex blurting out that he’s the father in front of everyone, but the general setup of the reveal was fun, and I always love when we get this many angles on the fallout. And not to say “I told you so,” but Sarah…

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…I know you’ve been gone from Salem a long time, but an engagement party is a 100% guarantee that all hell is going to break loose and the wedding ain’t gonna happen. That is literally the only purpose of an engagement party on this show. It’s the social version of declaring, “Nothing will ever tear us apart again!”

That aside, I’m really enjoying Linsey Godfrey and her portrayal of Sarah so far. She’s goodhearted without being passive or spineless. I’ve seen some criticisms about her and Rex being front-and-center immediately without viewers being invested in them or their relationship, which I can certainly see as valid, but without giving away any actual spoilers, it seems to me that this is essentially onscreen backstory — that is, it’s a way to introduce the characters and bring them in with some heat, to set them up for the real stories that are going to be told with them.

And just as these newer faces begin their journeys, it seems as though we’ve seen the last of Bonnie, Mimi, and baby Emily (thank god this child has a name!) for a while. Mimi’s monologue to the infant after the truth came out actually got me pretty emotional; it was touching and had some real heft to it. I’ll admit that when Farah Fath’s return was announced, I wasn’t really sure what they’d do with her or why she was needed, but she fit in quite well, and this little arc proved to be fun.

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I am beyond tired of Bonnie — a little of these “wacky” characters goes a long way – but it was nice that they gave her and her daughter a resolution and had Bonnie exhibit some growth by owning up to what she’d done and going back to Statesville. You know who I’m really going to miss, though? That adorable baby.

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I mean, come on.

Elsewhere in this wackadoo town, it appears that we finally have confirmation that EJ DiMera survived his 2014 “death.”

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To which I say: it’s about damn time! Not everyone is going to be happy with this resolution, but I really respect what the show has pulled off here. They clearly understand that a big part of EJ’s appeal was James Scott, and his chemistry with Alison Sweeney, so they had to figure out a way to tie up this loose end without stepping all over that. Playing it this way allows them to get Sami and those kids out of the limbo they’ve been in for four years without committing too hard to any one future path. If they can convince both Sweeney and Scott to come back down the road, great. They can ultimately reveal that this is or isn’t EJ, but it frees up the characters (and the viewers), which is big. And the way that they’ve made a little adventure out of it, from Kristen’s initial taunts to the Nashville fiasco to Susan’s interference, is pretty classic soap. Dare I say that they managed to thread one hell of a tricky needle here?

Boys and Ghouls

Posted November 3, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

I did a multi-episode binge yesterday, and I feel like I’m supposed to have something interesting to say about the Halloween episode, but all I’ve got is “That was fun!” Which is a pretty bad blog post.

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But it was fun! I enjoyed how all the nods to Days-style craziness and movies ranging from Rosemary’s Baby to Get Out (which felt like maybe the most overt acknowledgment of black people existing in Salem ever?) actually added up to story movement in the form of Hattie agreeing to a divorce. Although… was John and Roman’s whole plan kind of mean? Like, Hattie agreed to get stuffed into a laundry cart and sit in one of the two rooms at University Hospital just to keep Marlena’s comatose ass from getting tossed into the morgue. Why couldn’t John just offer her like $100,000 and a pardon to go away? No one’s noticed she was missing from Statesville for weeks anyway. As reader otherweb1 pointed out, it also makes no sense that Abigail was able to get her magical one-sided divorce but John’s got to enlist everyone from Roman Brady to Satan in order to get his.

Talk about a nuthouse.

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Interesting choice to bring back Judith Chapman, who was the final actress to play Anjelica before her departure in the early 90s, instead of Morgan Fairchild. For all we know, Fairchild wasn’t available or didn’t want to do it, but the choice came off a little… pointed.

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Chapman was great, though! I’ve only ever seen her in her role from The Young and the Restless, and I’ve seen viewers of that show complain about how over-the-top she was, but that style was a pretty good fit for “vengeful wealthy woman actually possessed by Satan.”

Oh, and I guess stuff happened in the “real” stories, too…

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Gabby With a Why?

Posted October 31, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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You know, like, why is Abigail so resistant to seeing a damn doctor that she would rather marry her rapist? Why is Laura Horton so unreachable right now? Why am I being subjected to this?!

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Or maybe that should be “Gabby with a HOW.” As in, how did Abigail get a divorce without even informing Chad? I’m no expert, but I feel like you can’t just obtain a divorce and marry someone else in 24 hours’ time like this.

In and of itself, it’s an exciting twist and kicks some life into this whole story group. Abigail being the one fighting for herself is a nice change, and Marci Miller has played her coldness toward Chad, Jennifer, and JJ really well. It’s just that, you know, they skipped the parts that would make sense of the entire thing. I get that Abigail is pissed about Chad and Jen wanting to have her committed, but how was that going to happen without having her evaluated by a professional to begin with? “Hey, Your Honor, we found this cheap wig under the bed, so it’s obviously time to lock her up!”

Plus it means I’ve had to look at this idiot being all smug.

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Go away. You’re gross.

NBC Launches Days Podcast

Posted October 29, 2018 by mykleraus
Categories: Days of Our Lives, Soap Opera, Television

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You know what we all need more of? Days content to waste our time on! Luckily, NBC and Days have come through for us.

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They’ve just launched the Inside Salem podcast, a behind-the-scenes look at the show hosted by Michael Fairman and featuring interviews with cast members. It sounds like they’re going to post the weekly episodes each Friday on the NBC app and then do a wide release the following Monday in the Apple Store, Google Podcasts, and whatever other podcast platform you might use.

I just listened to the first episode, which features an interview between Fairman and Robert Scott Wilson (Ben), as well as a conversation between Mary Beth Evans (Kayla) and James Reynolds (Abe). I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it made for an interesting listen. The interview with Wilson was a pretty typical interview, not especially revelatory, but the second segment wound up really drawing me in. I had almost forgotten about the Kayla/Abe pairing they teased in 2012, and it was surprising how much the actors wished it had gone further, since they’re such good friends. And one thing I somehow never knew was that Days didn’t always shoot in Burbank, but was once filmed at Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood (where I’ve worked twice).

At any rate, it makes for a fun listen while walking the dog or driving to work. Check it out and let me know what you think!