She’s Come Undone

Perhaps Sami had the right idea by not letting her grief out.

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Because apparently it caused her to forget what happened the last time she murdered someone in the name of good in that very hospital.

I have to say, all the material between Sami and Marlena has been A+. It was sort of hilarious how Marlena gathered Eric and Brady to, in essence, stand around and stare at Sami until she broke down in tears — but it also felt like something a concerned mother would try to do, especially one who so often thinks and acts as a professional rather than a person. All the push-and-pull with Marlena trying to “shrink” her and Sami resisting has been terrific character work. And Sami’s breakdown in the spot where Will was found really worked for me.

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I’ve been biting my tongue on this, but I am terrible at staying out of internet arguments, so I’ve gotta get in my two cents here: the killing of Will does not strike me as some grand homophobic move. Is it foolish and short-sighted? Absolutely. It’s an impulsive response to a weak recast, a way of wringing drama out of the exit of an actor they wanted to dump anyway, as with Serena and Paige. It actually wouldn’t surprise me at all to learn they’d contacted Chandler Massey about returning and only decided to kill Will when he turned them down. I’ve read lots of allegations about how Days is clearly eradicating “the gay canvas” by having Will violently murdered while Sonny is off the show (…because the actor chose to leave and they just dealt with one disastrous recast) and Paul has no story (Paul, an interesting character played by a strong actor who, unfortunately, has only really had story revolving around Will/Sonny for his entire tenure). If they permanently reduce Paul to a once-a-month player and never recast Sonny or introduce another gay character, then yes, it will read like some plan to erase The Gay and go back to “good American values” or whatever. But honestly, if this whole nostalgia trip for the 50th includes Belle and Shawn — Belle and Shawn! — then it’s tough for me to believe that they wouldn’t have jumped at the chance to bring back “the real Will” instead of killing him off. But so much of Will’s death has included references to the wedding, to his coming-out — not to mention his relationship with Sonny — that I find it really difficult to believe that this is anything other than a boneheaded move to play with the new toys (Chabby) and the old ones (Kayla/Steve, Bope, etc.) while casting aside the recent ones because they haven’t been working.

Whew. Glad that’s off my chest.

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All that being said, I have to lodge an official complaint about the lack of balance on the show. Yes, Will’s death is currently The Big Thing, as it should be, but it’s driving me insane how people like Eric, Nicole, Kate, Jennifer, Paul, even Daniel are now people who appear once every week or two, more for check-ins than real, strong material. A lot of what they’re doing with Theresa is very smart and is working shockingly well, but she gets three days a week about her design dreams and Brady and Tate’s colic and Anne, while Nicole and Kate only to get to pop up for the Basic Black thread, which is merely a part of Theresa’s larger story. I understand that they couldn’t feature every single person reacting to Will’s death in the episode or two following it, but Kate’s scenes with Lucas on Wednesday — good as they were — felt a little perfunctory, and then it was back to Basic Black world for her. Nicole’s engagement to Daniel is an afterthought, and they’re playing her and Eric in such a straightforward way that I can’t even tell if there is a story there.

Thursday’s Eve/Eduardo scenes were good scenes, and it was nice to see Eve move along in her grieving process, but they weren’t crucial, and we have so many players languishing on the sidelines. I love MBE and Kayla, but it feels like she has been on five days a week for two months now. Same with Abigail and Chad. There’s been a lot to cover with the Necktie Killer (and much of it is very good), but I’m almost relieved Chad is in a coma for a bit just so we can stop seeing everyone have the same conversation four episodes a week.

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30 Comments on “She’s Come Undone”

  1. Jamie Says:

    I don’t believe the removal of The Gay from Salem was intentional. I don’t think they did it to get “back to values” or for any other homophobic reasons, but I do believe The Gay has been removed from Salem.

    I don’t foresee a Sonny recast coming any time soon. And when I went to watch yesterday’s episode on the DVR I read the episode summary and I honestly thought to myself “Who’s Paul?” before I remembered…it’s been that long since we’ve seen him.

  2. underyourwing Says:

    if anything bothers me more than the killings it is the stupid SL of JOHN trying to find out who he really is, for the 387th time……..have we gone brain dead??
    also, Brady The Dumb…….i could go on…….but i want to keep my blood pressure down. Let’s just hope when they make Tate 10 years old next month he is not Tate, Son of The Dumb.

    As far as the anti-Gay thing I quote the brilliant Dorothy Parker:

    “Heterosexuality is not normal, it’s just common.”

  3. Robbiemac420 Says:

    I just want Ben caught ASAP! My body actually gets physically stressed watching the show these days because of him and how he seems to be (literally) getting away with murder. Abby (and everyone else) seems to be totally clueless. Chad waking up, remembering what happened in the fight, what made him finally realize that it was Ben all along, AND the police believing him (even if he IS a DiMera), is the only way I can imagine the whole Necktie Killer storyline coming to an end. And it needs to come to an end or I will stop watching, if only for my own health!

    I don’t see any homophobia in the storyline and I have been consistently happy about how the writers introduced it, dealt with all the real emotions of what it’s like to come out, as well as loved ones’ responses, and how love is the same regardless of sexual orientation. I hope that Paul and Sonny come together eventually.

    As for the cast members only appearing once or twice a week, if you think of how big the cast IS, and how most of them are Hortons or Bradys, dealing with the news of Will’s murder can’t be shown all in one week.

    Whew!

    • mykleraus Says:

      The cast feels really big these days. It’s weird. I don’t know if it’s bigger than it was last year, but it certainly FEELS that way.

      I think Days has done a really solid job depicting same-sex characters and relationships — which, unfortunately, includes at times giving them the same stupid, hamfisted writing that the straight characters get.

  4. marypickford Says:

    I agree with you that they don’t seem to be motivated by a desire to scrub the canvas clean of icky homosexuals. That said, I think they should have been more aware of the potential backlash this move would create. If they wanted to get rid of a bad recast, but still have lots of impact on the rest of the canvas, Roman would be an excellent choice. 🙂

    The balance issue is definitely my biggest complaint of this new team. Even the people we feel like we see every day are actually on about 3 or 4 days in a row, and then disappear for about the same amount of time. And then these little dribs and drabs of other stories once a week or once every two weeks. I lose the continuity of the story, so it doesn’t feel like a story as much as a check-in, as you point out.

    • underyourwing Says:

      well lately there have been quite a few checking out…… but yeah, it is jumpy and bumpy with who is where when doing whatever….with whom ever.

    • mykleraus Says:

      It’s strange to me that they either didn’t anticipate the backlash or didn’t care. I sort of can’t believe they actually went through with it, rather than just sending Will away with Sonny and having him return single and with a new face down the road.

      And yeah, the ‘check-ins’ aren’t working that well for me. I feel like the Basic Black thing hasn’t picked up steam, and other things are almost moving TOO fast. It’s odd.

  5. ADW Says:

    I totally agree with you I don’t think TPTB are against gay romance and gay storylines. They wanted to have a death by “the neck tie killer” which would make a more profound impact in Salem (Will is a Brady, a Horton, married a Kirakis, and 1/2 siblings/step family are Dimeras). Also, Will’s death is a turning point in the investigation. Sonny/FS decided not to renew his contract well before the new regime. Paul was back burned but, now it looks like he will be around more and is going to help his Dad find out who the heck he is. It’s a good thing that Paul isn’t jumping into anything serious w/ anyond as a newly outed gay man who has been through a great deal in the past year.

  6. Dan Says:

    Marlena’s intervention was well staged, but again there was a hint of old habits dying hard. When Marlena said she had forced Sami’s hand, I was a bit disappointed. Marlena and Sami have such a complicated relationship because of Marlena and Sami’s ying-yang temperaments. I felt like it was a bit of Marlena cheerleading when it should have been left more open. Besides, Marlena should have known by now how difficult her relationship with Sami is. Wouldn’t it have been more powerful is Marlena asked Kate to speak to Sami given the history between the three characters? If anyone could have cracked Sami, it would be Kate.

    Killing Will was controversial, but I suspect they did it to get people talking. If the show were truly homophobic, they would have brought Sonny back, killed Sonny off, and created a Will, Gabi, and J.J. triangle. Sonny would be forgotten and Will would be gay in name only while Steven Carringtoning it up with the ladies and the occasional recurring gayplayer.

    The show made a choice to not recast Sonny, to fire Wilson and kill Will, and to sideline Paul. Do I think they did it for moral reasons? No. On the other hand, I think they chose to embrace the past which was very white and very heterosexual. It is interesting that they are bringing back Belle, Shawn, and Phillip, but didn’t have a place to continue the Will / Sonny / Paul story.

    Bringing back Massey would be what TIIC would do because again its a quick fix that wouldn’t fix anything. Massey was average at best, and the writing was slanted towards his strengths. Without Sweeney there to coddle his character, I don’t know how Massey would come across. Honestly, Wilson’s material was very Massey over the last very, but everyone forgave Massey instantly. It would be interesting to have seen Flynn / Massey, which I think it would have shown Massey’s, as Berris often did.

    The show needs more balance, but people are happy online because it looks like 1984 again. I think May 2016 will look very different from October 2015.

    • Robbiemac420 Says:

      I appreciate your opinions and I really like it when the actors are referred to by their character’s names. So who is Steven Carrington and TIIC? Massey is Will, right? Sweeney is Sami, I think. Wilson? Flynn? Thanks for the clarification!

      • Dan Says:

        I apologize for the confusion.

        Chandler Massey was the previous Will. Guy Wilson is the actor who played Will when he was killed off. Sweeney is Alison Sweeney, the actress who has returned as Sami. Billy Flynn is the current actor playing Chad Dimera.

        TIIC is short cut for the idiots in charge.

        Steven Carrington was a character on “Dynasty,” a nighttime soap in the 1980s. Initially, Steven was introduced as a gay man with a male lover who later bedded his stepmother’s golddigging niece Sami Jo and producing a son, Danny. Steven occasionally had male lovers but also married at least one woman (Claudia).

        Thanks for the kind words.

      • underyourwing Says:

        i am just guessing here but i think TIIC = the idiots in charge?? and Steven Carrington if I am not mistaken is the gay character from the old beloved chestnut Dynasty….great show!
        correct me if I am wrong please….

      • mykleraus Says:

        Now I just want to watch some old Dynasty!

    • mykleraus Says:

      I don’t think Massey would’ve made the writing for Will over the past year work, either, but he was less cringeworthy to watch than Wilson. I’m still trying to figure out what the F the writers were going for with Will. The setup of the entire triangle with Paul was so flawed, and it was like they were trying to come up with reasons for Will to act like Sami Jr. — even if it didn’t make sense for him to do so.

      I see your point about Marlena/Kate, though I could also see Marlena reasonably deciding that Kate is poisonous (I mean, she literally had Sami sent to Death Row). It’s an interesting dynamic, at least. I’m kind of wondering if they kept Kate out of the Sami stuff because they put such a nice bow on their rivalry when Sweeney left, and they didn’t want to undercut that during a return trip. We’ll see if they interact at all this go-round…

      • Dan Says:

        But Massey was his own version of cringeworthy. I appreciate that Wilson at least made an attempt. The show wrote to Massey’s weaknesses, his inability to make Will a strong person, so we watched as everyone from his mother to his grandmothers to even his detractors had to defend him from the terrible decisions that his Will made.

        Massey’s Will never suffered for anything he had done. Sonny NEVER should have taken him back right away after Nick and Gabi’s aborted wedding. Sonny and Will should have united after Will’s coma when Nick and Gabi’s relationship was falling apart. This would have at least fueled some of the drama there. If Massey were still there, Will would have everyone telling him how evil Paul is for staying in Salem and threatening his marriage. Gurl, please…

        I honestly don’t know what the plan was for Paul. It’s a shame because Christopher Sean, like Freddie Smith before him, is being wasted because of a change in management.

        Kate and Sami had a beautiful moment today. While I get what you’re saying, I think the dynamic between the two is too powerful not to capitalize on. Sami and Marlena have a strong and complicated history, but no one since JER has been effective at writing or bringing them forward into the 21st century. I have a huge problem with Sami fleeing Salem on the heels of her son’s funeral to find E.J. That’s the kind of sh^t Sami calls Marlena out on, rightfully, when she chooses John over her children.

      • mykleraus Says:

        That Kate/Sami moment was well done. It really summed up their odd relationship without much dialogue at all. I don’t mind Sami heading off in search of EJ or whatever this thing is going to turn out to be, though — Will is dead, so there isn’t much she can do in Salem, and I can totally buy that Sami feels like she has to DO something. There isn’t anyone in Salem who needs Sami in the way that she’s needed Marlena over the years, and if she thinks EJ is alive, that would (in theory) lend stability to her other children’s lives. So idk, it doesn’t feel false or even hypocritical to me.

        I liked Massey (limited acting abilities and all), but I’m not sure I could have seen him as such an adult Will the way he was played and written under Wilson. His strengths were definitely in the more teenage/young-adult stuff. And yeah, they definitely wrote him as a Mary Sue, which they almost seemed to overcompensate for once Wilson took over. There was a really jarring switch.

        I’m still bitter that the potential for a decades-long Horton feud, with Will and Nick, was completely wiped away!

  7. Robbiemac Says:

    To Dan….thanks for your clarification! I’ve been watching DOOL since the 80’s (although I was never a Dynasty fan..silly me!), but due to my memory deficit disorder, many times I can’t remember past characters, how they fit in to the show’s storylines, and especially their real names. It would be so great to see a DOOL family tree–Hortons, Brady’s, diMeras. So thanks for helping this ole girl out!

    To underyourwing…..I agree with your idea of having lesbian characters in the show. Not the kind that portrays two straight-looking women kissing. Oh no. I’d like to see the chemistry that ignites soft butch/femme relationships! I’m not suggesting anything so shocking to the mainstream as a “bull-dyke”, riding in on her motorcycle with a pack of cigarettes rolled up in her sleeve (not that there is anything wrong with that!), and capturing Gaby or Theresa. Opposites DO attract (Steve/Kayla, Bo/Hope, John/Marlena, etc.) Afterall, stereotypes came from somewhere in our LGBT history! Seems we have had to whitewash that history so it becomes more palatable to the mainstream. I wonder how many viewers DOOL would lose (or gain)???!!! LMAO!! Sorry….didn’t mean to get on my soapbox!

    • mykleraus Says:

      I think anything even resembling diversity would be nice, and it makes for more dynamic storytelling. They made a lot of strides in featuring the gay characters, but they have all been very mainstream. Hopefully this has opened the door to some more diverse portrayals of all kinds of characters, though their history with black characters sort of implies otherwise…

  8. underyourwing Says:

    you betcha! BUT doesn’t “love mean never having to say you’re sorry” ?
    wait……what?
    i am sorry to say when there is snow in hell i will ski there too before they get real enough to engage with a true story line with lesbian characters….they stayed so “main stream” with the boys anyway, there wasn’t much realism in it all….other than will sleeping with paul then messing everything up trying to get him with another guy….. from my experiences/observations with the whole ball of wax, there is no way a non cable TV station could really get into it to do it justice.
    they did blow a perfect opportunity here when Marlena was blowing off John for so long……a lovely female companion would have been just the thing to cheer her ass up….
    wait….WHAT??

    • mykleraus Says:

      I felt the same way about the guys. I’m glad we’ve gotten the characters and the story — and they were pretty bold in how they didn’t shy away from showing affection, kisses, bedroom scenes — but all of the gay characters so far have been in a very mainstream mold. Which I guess is sort of what they do with the straight characters, too…

  9. Robbiemac Says:

    Please, please, please, Rafe! Listen to your intuition! Put more pressure on Ben! Seeing his smug-ass mug at the funeral, I don’t know how much I can take!!!

    • mykleraus Says:

      I’m actually really enjoying Rafe as the investigator here. It’s one of the few times I’ve ever bought that any of the law enforcement officers in Salem has any idea what s/he is doing!


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