Archive for February 2017

What Happened in Salem: Week of February 20th

February 27, 2017

A new Horton appeared in Salem. Meanwhile…

After two weeks of treading water, everyone decided they were tired of the Orwell debacle and had to wrap it up ASAP. Drew managed to destroy both the program and the device. JJ and Paul rescued Sonny, who has a new character trait of “too stupid to know when to let it go” and was hellbent upon justice. Kate broke it off with Eduardo, With Dario’s help, Abigail managed to locate and save Chad and Gabi, who were on the verge of freezing to death and had thus stripped down to their skivvies to share body heat (a thing that only happens in Salem) and had been making out in their delirium (also a thing that only happens in Salem — normal people can’t be bothered to get it on if they have a faint headache, but Shawn and Belle were literally dying in a fire and managed to conceive a child).

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

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The Son Also Rises

February 25, 2017

I don’t know what’s more surprising: that David Banning, a character who hasn’t been onscreen since 1983, got an actual funeral, or that Maggie remembered her connection to the Hortons and not only showed up, but lent Julie one of her outfits to deliver her eulogy.

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Tell me that thing isn’t straight out of the Prince Memorial Line by Basic Black.

All in all, the funeral was pretty well done. There were actual people in attendance — it’s asinine that Hope wasn’t there (Did Rafe poison her with that picnic? Is this the start of some Munchausen-by-proxy storyline?), but Ciara and Claire stepping up to support Julie was nice. And I thought the writing did a nice job over these two episodes of filling in the story of Julie and David’s relationship, which until the past few months has literally not been referenced for decades.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a modern-day Days gathering if there weren’t an exchange like the following:

Valerie: And I’m so sorry about your son.
Maggie: He was a good man!

Yes, WE FUCKING GET IT. It isn’t even that I mind Daniel being referenced, really — it was polite of Valerie to offer her condolences, considering this was the funeral of Julie’s son and Maggie lost hers and Valerie has probably heard about him at the hospital (all over the damn hospital, all the damn time, if I had to guess). But this show’s fixation on mourning him is absolutely deranged. Valerie didn’t offer Hope her condolences on Bo. She didn’t even tell Maggie she was sorry to hear about the loss of Mickey, Maggie’s husband of four decades whom Valerie actually knew. Nope, all about Daniel!

And it also wouldn’t be a Salem event without a random long-lost relative waltzing in.

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So far, I’m digging Eli. The actor did well on his first day with tough material, and as dubious as I was of the whole “I just happened to take an ancestry test right before David Banning’s funeral” thing, they did a decent job of using his FBI background to motivate it. Anything that anchors Valerie to Salem and beefs up the Horton clan is fine by me, too. And I have to say, it was really nice to see so many black faces when the camera panned around that funeral. This is the first time in a long while that it’s felt like there was an actual black presence in Salem, which is beyond overdue.

Look at me, being all optimistic! It’s like I’ve never seen this show before.

You’re as Cold as Ice

February 23, 2017

Is there anywhere in the world where being close to death makes people horny like it does in Salem?

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I know it’s about as classic a soap situation as an interrupted wedding, but it’s also about as relatable as finding out your town psychiatrist has been possessed by Satan. And at first I thought I’d just dozed off and missed a key scene, but it looks like they purposely played what went down as ambiguous — one episode ended with them headed toward sex, and in the next, they were delirious and making out (as one does) before passing out entirely. Then there was that chat in the hospital about “Do you remember what happened?” “Uh, no.” How long until Gabi decides to tell Chad that his DiMera soldier was totally operational even in the face of arctic temps?

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Nicole, meanwhile, finally got a hold of her senses long enough to call it off with Deimos, and all it took was having a judge decree that her relationship with him was a key reason for her not to be trusted with her own child. If only she had access to evidence of his dangerous, erratic nature before something so terrible transpired!

…oh, wait.

And if Nicole were really in her right (“right”) mind, she would’ve decided months ago to fake a breakup with Deimos long enough to get that kid back from Chloe, then turned right back around and married him the second Chloe’s claim on Holly had been taken away. Or, you know, not gotten involved with a lunatic in the first place, but that’s probably asking too much. If you have to be an idiot, at least be a clever, conniving idiot!

Days Renewed!

February 21, 2017

After all the rumors that Megyn Kelly’s move to NBC would spell the end of Days of Our Lives, and the news of a new head-writing regime… the network has just announced that it’s renewed Days for another year!

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From TVLine:

Despite rumors that Days of Our Lives was nearing extinction, NBC has renewed the venerable soap opera for a record 52nd season, TVLine has learned exclusively. The pickup comes a month after the sudser fired co-head writer Dena Higley and replaced her with General Hospital vet Ron Carlivati. Days‘ other co-head writer, Ryan Quan, is sticking around as a creative consultant.

I was beginning to get nervous that the lack of an update meant NBC was just going to let the show keep filming until it had enough episodes banked to take them to the end of this contract and then decide not to continue airing it past that, but maybe they were waiting to see how things would look under Carlivati’s pen. It’s always difficult to get full clarification on this, but I believe this means it’s guaranteed to be on-air through September 2018. Or maybe November 2018. At any rate, there are more Days ahead, and with any luck, they’ll be able to right this ship and not have the next renewal be such a nail-biter.

What Happened in Salem: Week of February 13th

February 19, 2017

As Steve and Kayla remarried, people kept intermittently remembering that they’re all still obsessed with the Orwell…

Apparently nostalgic for the 18 hours he spent in Prague, Sonny visited the Salem alley that’s identical to the one in the Czech Republic — and was attacked and kidnapped. Paul, who was beaten while trying to save him, went with Adrienne to confront Deimos, as they were convinced Sonny’s kidnapping must be part of the war over the Orwell. Chad and Gabi remained in the meat locker, where things got dire after the motor kicked back in and threatened to freeze them to death, so of course we didn’t see them for the remainder of the week.

Read the full recap to see What Happened in Salem this week!

Mother, May I?

February 18, 2017

Here’s a screenshot I snagged of Friday’s dramatic twist, in which Julie choked on a large piece of the Horton Town Square set.

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Oh, wait, this was right after she received a phone call that her only child, David, was killed in a motorcycle accident. I truly do live for any time they let Susan Seaforth Hayes go to town with the Vaudeville-style dramatics — see also: “OH MY GOD, NICK! YOU’VE BEEN SHOT!!!!!” — and even though it was so over-the-top that it looped back around and came out on the bottom (no, I don’t even know what that means), it did feel like exactly the way Julie would react to this news.

And luckily Doug took Julie home right away, so that Hope could slip off to dance with Rafe instead of being there for her family.

Does it suck that they killed a legacy Horton offscreen? Of course. Do I think this is some crime against the fans or irrefutable proof of ineptitude? No way. David hasn’t been seen onscreen since 1983. Yes, he absolutely could’ve been brought in and used in story, but frankly, he and Mike Horton would serve most of the same purposes at this point. The characters in that rough age range who need love interests are Hope and Jennifer, neither of whom could be paired with David. And I strongly believe that a huge part of the reason that Julie’s branch of the family has been neglected for so long is because of all the SORASing confusion that took place in the 70s and 80s: David, born in 1968, was an adult by 1976, and his son, Scotty, was born in 1978 and an adult by 1989. I think subsequent writers have shied away from dealing with the absolute confusion of Julie having a grandson who should be around Jennifer’s age right now — or how the hell old David would have to be in order for that to work. If anything, this strikes me not as killing off a long-unseen character just to clean up a loose end, but a move intended to generate story.

I’ll put the rest of this behind a cut because it’s getting into spoiler territory, but they’re also the kinds of spoilers that anyone who thinks about this stuff has probably figured out, so… proceed with moderate caution.

(more…)

Mr. and Mrs. Johnson

February 18, 2017

Sure, they might’ve had to forego the elegant boat setting for a restaurant decorated by a blind person, but Steve and Kayla are finally husband and wife again.

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And I know my standards for entertainment are probably as low as Statesville’s standards for security, but there was lots to enjoy here. The vows were heartfelt. Kayla looked fantastic. Numerous people attended, and there was an actual reception instead of everyone immediately rushing off to participate in other storylines. Lots of cute little moments, too: Carrie dancing with Roman, Stephanie checking in with her Aunt Adrienne, Doug bemoaning how everyone was staring at their phones, Mary Beth Evans somehow getting away with (kind of) singing “Single Ladies” for the bouquet toss…

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And it’s nice to see that, despite how long it’s been since they were together, Steph and Joey still bother to get the same haircut. Their scene together was really cute — presumably, when Stephanie says that she’s proud of Joey, it’s because she isn’t aware that he murdered a woman in cold blood — and James Lastovic seemed less stiff than usual with Shelley Hennig. It’s strange: for a character who didn’t make much impact on me during her actual run, Hennig’s Stephanie was such a breath of fresh air during her visit. I’m pretty sure she and Carrie have never shared scenes (Christie Clark overlapped with Shayna Rose’s Stephanie for a little in 2006, and both Clark and Hennig were on for Alice’s funeral in 2010, but I don’t remember them interacting at all), so that was one of those nice touches that Days manages to remember to hit even though half the stories have holes the size of Daniel’s ego in them.

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Also loved: Kayla’s fib over the phone to Caroline (Peggy McCay really must not be well, huh? I don’t want to think about it) that of course they were having a Mass for the wedding, followed by her telling Marlena, “I’m going to Hell.” That felt so real that I was sure it had to be an ad-lib.

What a lovely palate-cleanser following that whole demented mess in Prague. Not that I’m thrilled about how that entire thing, after all the hoops they jumped through to establish that Stefano could be alive (and the fact that I went along with it!), wound up just dumping more shit on Steve and Shane, who apparently believe Hope to be so noble that they’d rather carry the guilt of this entire scheme for the remainder of their lives than let Hope rightfully believe that she shot a man dead. Do we think Hope will ever wonder whose body she and Rafe dumped in a random warehouse? (No.) But they planted that little nugget of possibility that Stefano really one-upped everyone again and that he’s still out there somewhere, which I guess is supposed to make us so confused that we just stop asking questions and bask in the glory of everyone bending over backwards to welcome Hope home, but… ugh.