I freely admit that I watch this show to relax. I certainly don’t expect anything illuminating to come from my dirty little habit. This week, however, the show surprised me by serving up some truly enlightening lessons.
LESSON #1: Nicole loves carrot cake.
Look, I enjoyed the interplay between Suzanne Rogers (Maggie) and Arianne Zuker (Nicole). It was fun to see two characters who rarely interact suddenly have so much to say to one another. But one thing about those scenes was absolutely fucking ridiculous. Nicole cracked because Maggie offered her carrot cake?!
This woman has been married to, like, three incredibly wealthy men. She’s living in the damn Kiriakis mansion. She can’t have Henderson fetch her a piece of carrot cake? If only Sami had known about this earlier, that whole Sydney storyline could’ve been concluded a lot faster:
Kate also could’ve saved herself $5 million back when Lucas needed a wife…
LESSON #2: Rafe is a robot.
His only emotion is “Sami.” That’s it. This dude is a parody of a romantic hero. “You shot some guy in the head at point-blank range? No sweat.” “Oh, you got my sister killed? Let me make you breakfast in bed.” Is there anything Sami can do to make him angry?! Used to be that she would walk in a room and everyone — her parents included — would go fleeing in terror.
As for Arianna, she never fully worked as a character. Her relationship with Brady was “nice” but didn’t do much to define or progress either character. I definitely never bought her as some hood chola who was slinging crack and cutting bitches and all that. I mean, Ari was less hood than this mess:
And yet, her death totally worked for me. They were wise to spotlight the grief of the people who should be affected–Melanie, Brady, Gabby (the new actress really stepped it up for this arc), even EJ–rather than trying to manipulate us into being sad that Ari is gone. Hell, she got a more fitting and effective sendoff than a lot of beloved long-term characters. Remember when the Salem Serial Killer was running around, and the most anyone could be bothered to do was throw a triple funeral for Abe, Jack, and Maggie in between checking their haunted PDAs?
I’ve gotta ask, though: with this whole hit-and-run thing going on, why has no one asked if Chelsea is back in town? We all know her driving record…
LESSON #3: Kayla can’t dress herself. Still.
I don’t know how Kayla was in the 80s (I’m guessing full of shoulder pads), but when she came back in 2006, she was pretty much always dressed like some combination of Stevie Nicks and Paula Poundstone. And on this latest return, her outfits evoke what might result if Miss Frizzle got drunk and drove the Magic School Bus into Kate Roberts’s closet.
Nevertheless, it’s lovely to see her, especially involved in her daughter’s and brother’s storylines.
Now for some unabashedly positive stuff:
– Loved the way Shelley Hennig played the moment when Nathan got down on one knee. You could see that Stephanie could not believe this was actually happening, that someone was saying these words to her and she would never have to worry about finding a man again. Too bad none of this is consistent with the character’s history pre-Phillip-breakup, but they’ve finally given her a somewhat interesting arc, and you can tell Hennig is enjoying having something to play other than “pretty young woman.”
– Kate finding Vivian was terrific. Those two play off each other so well. I’m glad they haven’t just forgotten that history because it isn’t the primary storyline.
– Weird that they randomly used Kinsey so much this week, but it’s good to see her. This teen scene has never really gelled, but I like the idea of a few tertiary teens. Where’s T, though? That kid is funny. And he sort of seems like someone’s horny little brother who might be up for a covert handjob in the basement after everyone else has gone to sleep. Just sayin’.