Subtle Prague-ress

If you travel to downtown Europe and don’t run into another (former) Salemite within the first 24 hours, did you really travel to downtown Europe at all?

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How nice to see LeAnn Hunley and Anna again! And while I love them both, I have to say that her acting seems a bit, er, rusty. Not that I blame her — this shooting schedule must be more like doing theatre than television, really — but I do hope she settles in, because it’s distracting. I’ve also seen people commenting that they don’t like that Anna is being played as “wacky” or out of her gourd, but honestly, Anna’s sort of always been that kind of heightened character. Her grief over Tony, and her blame toward Stefano, is legitimate, and I much prefer her coming in with some real energy over all the bland “Hi, I’m going to ring your doorbell in the opening act and waltz into your home and just kind of be around for two days.”

And then Carrie! And the Austin who’s even less believable as a forensic accountant than the last one!

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Would you believe this is the first time Christie Clark’s Carrie has been onscreen with Anna since her first month — as a child — in 1986?! Aside from that, they’ve never been on the show at the same time. I loved that they actually backfilled their entire mother/daughter relationship for us through dialogue, with Carrie being frustrated that she’s always had to take the parental role with her own mother. Also surprisingly great: Austin rolling his eyes when Carrie mentioned Rafe’s name.

I’m finding this Prague stuff fun, and of course inserting familiar but surprising faces adds a layer of interest to it, a la Hattie turning up in prison with Hope. But I’m thinking about what it would take for this entire thing to really pop. Some of it is that this is obligatory — we’re long past the point at which Stefano turning up alive would ever be a shocker, as are the characters — but I think part of it is also that this is just plot. I’m no expert on the Stockholm story of the 80s, for example, but I believe it was actually about a hell of a lot more than Orpheus’s revenge and Britta’s tattoo or whatever. Those things were all vessels for the real character stories to play out: Kayla seeing another side of Steve, Steve allowing himself to trust Kayla, Bo processing what it meant to be a Kiriakis, etc. (I could be 100% wrong on those specific dynamics, but you know what I mean.) I wish they’d loaded some more character stuff into this arc. Like what if they’d made more of Paul’s reluctance to be with Sonny because of Will, but Marlena had caught them in a close moment right before the group left for Prague, so it was tense between them, and this whole thing was the vehicle for both Paul and Marlena to accept that Will is gone and Paul staying away from Sonny won’t bring him back. That kind of thing.

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Meanwhile, Jennifer’s scenes with Thomas were absolutely pointless and plot-free, but in the absolute best way. They could seriously spend one episode a week having her or Hope or Julie tell old Horton stories, and I’d watch without blinking the entire hour. Even at its worst, Days has maintained that core and that sense of its roots better than most of the major soaps, and I think that’s how it’s managed to stick around for so damn long. There’s always that center to go back to. Also, props to Melissa Reeves for managing to look amazing in spite of that confusing mesh vest with sweatshirt sleeves and Puritan blouse getup. She’s a beautiful woman who tends to be very susceptible to whatever fuckery the wardrobe, hair, and makeup departments inflict upon her, but this time, she managed to maintain her sense from the neck up, so much so that I didn’t notice her horrible outfit until halfway through the episode.

But let’s talk about how Jennifer told Thomas that Hope is “going through a bit of a rough time right now.” Is that what we’re calling being imprisoned for murder? Sign this kid up for therapy right now — and not with his batshit crazy great-grandmother Laura! — because if that’s how this family tiptoes around serious issues, he’s gonna need it.

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14 Comments on “Subtle Prague-ress”

  1. Farah Says:

    Jennifer should’ve included the family history of mental health problems, adultry, murder and semi- incest, and that’s just on the Horton side!

  2. Jayme Korth Says:

    Even more distracting than Anna for me were those sets. I know they need to redress existing sets due to budget constraints. I’ve accepted that everyone has the same office. I’ve accepted that everyone who’s sick winds up in the same hospital room. I even accepted that Marlena’s townhouse was also Brady/Theresa’s AND Victor/Maggie’s (when they were poor/crippled) because they supposedly lived in the same complex.

    But the police station in Prague? MY. GOD. They moved one wall and put up a cardboard sign that basically said ‘Prague Police’. When i saw behind the scenes pics from this episode, I thought we were in for another ’round the world tour in 24 hours (ie: when Marlena flew to Italy to throw Kristen out of a window, flew back the next morning, was kidnapped AND BROUGHT BACK TO ITALY that afternoon, and then returned later in the evening). The police station set is used in at least every other episode. Change the paint at least!

    Also distracting; A martini shaker that doubles as an urn.

    • mykleraus Says:

      I didn’t mind the sets until that police station. That was disgraceful! I thought they did okay re-dressing the Martin house lobby (they even put in a desk with a person behind it!) and the cafe. The police station was ridiculous. Oh, and the alley.

      That 24 hours of Marlena going back and forth and back to Italy was nuts!

  3. marypickford Says:

    Downtown Europe, ha! Absolutely.

    I think the original Anna was a much more well rounded character, but her later runs all made her out to be a little over the top (kidnapping Sydney). She’s great with the comedy and banter, so I say let her loose and have fun with it! I’m enjoying her very much, and I agree her relationship with Carrie was conveyed very economically.

    Yes, being a major fan of the Stockholm story, you are right that while the plot was fun, the real story was Steve and Kayla growing closer, Bo dealing with his Kiriakis identity, and so on. Such good stuff. Your suggestion for a Sonny/Paul moment and Marlena talking to him about Will is so perfect I’m going to pretend it happened. 🙂

    • mykleraus Says:

      I think Anna’s also been beaten down by the years. She’s no longer this starry-eyed social climber, and I do think that behavior wears on people. She lost Tony once, was an absentee mother, got caught up in all the DiMeras’ shit AGAIN, and wound up losing Tony and spinning out. I do want to see more layers to her, but I think being sort of zany out of grief is an interesting reintroduction.

      And thanks for the clarification on Stockholm! I have a dream of going back and watching as much of the 80s as I possibly can once I have time someday…

  4. Jamie Says:

    Of course they are running into Salemites in Prague…Marlena left Paul at the Horton Town Square and wandered off to the docks where she ran into Anna…in the meantime Steve and Rafe went over to the B&B/Kate’s House….I haven’t seen yesterday’s episode yet, but the screen shot of Carrie and Austin, that looks suspiciously like the scene of the Carrie/Rafe ice cube incident.

    Could they at least put some effort into making these settings look different??

    I’m very excited to watch the scenes with Carrie and Anna. This is an epic moment that has been way too long in the making!!

    • Farah Says:

      Oh Carrie and Rafe! Who could forget that ice cube scene with the random porn moans and a woman whispering “hot” while Carrie and Rafe looked disinterested in each other.

      • mykleraus Says:

        “Do you feeeeeeeeel the heeeeeeeat?!” Ugh.

      • ADW Says:

        LOL 😂 there was precursor to Eve’s “yes yes” porn moaning music.
        Anna reminds me a little of Kathleen Turner or Lauren Becall. I enjoyed seeing Anna/Carrie in a scene together at last (I never saw it when Carrie was a kid) their relationship/dynamics is interesting to say the least AND as far as looks two ladies seem believeable as mother-daughter.

      • mykleraus Says:

        Carrie strangely looks like she could be either Anna OR Marlena’s daughter, which is kind of an interesting layer to that whole situation.

    • mykleraus Says:

      That ice cube scene was so atrocious! Why was it so damn hot in their office in the middle of January? Who NEEDS AC then in the Midwest?

  5. underyourwing Says:

    after reading All of this i am so freaking confused it is confusing……i do believe i have been driven to the nuts as my niece would say when she was 5.


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