Sometimes I think the histories of Days' characters are written in the sand at the top of the hourglass. After a while, they seem to disappear in the spiraling swirl of grains that fill the bottom half. There they rest in a dusty heap amongst old unresolved storylines, rotten family trees and forgotten characters. Luckily, some stray specks do remain in the top section reminding us that, yes, we are still watching Days.
With all of the changes lately, I came up with a scenario which helped me weigh out whether or not these new twists and turns are good, bad or ugly. Watching Days is like a stroll down a shoreline. Each step creates an impression on the sand, yet when you turn to look at where you've just been the waves have already partially erased your tracks leaving behind mushy divots that hardly resemble your footprint at all. Yet, you can make them out even though they've distorted. I'm glad to see that amongst the recent rewrites those mushy divots have not been totally overlooked.
Fortunately, most of the recent footsteps laid by the new writers have been pretty exciting to follow. I'm not pleased about all of them mind you. I still think they recklessly trampled on characters such as Billie, Adrienne, Belle and Shawn, but, all in all, Days seems to be sprinting lately leaving many of us behind in the dust to catch our breaths.
One such thing that's left us scratching our heads is the fallout from the (semi-)shocking revelation that Colleen's steamy vow breaking affair with Santo resulted in a bouncing baby boy - Ryan. Officially, his name is Father Ryan-John-Forrest-Alamain-The Pawn-Roman-Brady-Black-DiMera! Whew! His towels would cost a lot of money to monogram. Fortunately, he's loaded.
Since the Brady Family Tree has now been twisted more than a pretzel, I did a little breakdown on my Soap Central blog. Hopefully, it will clear up some of the recent confusion regarding the "John Revelation." The content includes an explanation of the relationships between Shawn and Belle and E.J. and Sami, why Sami saw Colleen's ghost when she wasn't even dead yet and explains who John is actually related to now.
|Who is John actually related to?
Get the answers to that question and find out how DAYS history has been changed with the revelation that John is a DiMera!
Click here for expanded coverage in Tony's blog.
Mama Mia! (The Bradys)
For a storyline that started off a little rocky with the reading of letters, cheesy flashback complete with phony accents and the disappointing lack of some core character involvement, I have to say, it ended well. And holy major revelations Batman! John is officially a Brady-DiMera, Belle is more of a Brady than Shawn Douglas and Colleen has only slept with one man her entire life. Ok, kidding about that last part. I have to admit I was glued to the screen and may have used up a few tissues. By "may have," I mean I bawled like a toddler with a scrapped knee.
In the end, it turned out I liked Colleen a lot more than I thought I would. I still think she was a little selfish, perhaps cruel, for hurting her family almost as much as the DiMeras have, but I caved in and forgave her much like her kin did. In her twisted way, she was trying to do the right thing, yet went about it in the wrong way. All things considered, I think everyone's forgiveness was a bit rushed, but I guess it was one of those times where the happiness of seeing her outweighed her sins. Besides, Days is running on warp speed these days!
The reunion between her and Shawn Sr. was very touching and definitely one of the highlights for me. It was great to see Frank Parker get some screen time. Aside from looking a little frail, which has me worried, he did a great job. Even during the flashbacks in Galway it was obvious that these two shared a special connection and it was wonderful that it still remained after all their years of separation. It was certainly bittersweet that it couldn't have lasted longer, but their farewells to each other were sweet.
Colleen's deathbed confessions and goodbyes to everyone were moving albeit a little rushed a long. The conversations between her and Belle were especially touching and well acted. Amongst the rewrites and revamps, I was so glad they didn't forget the Alamain Connection to John's past. What a great nod to fans and some major clarification. All in all, it actually wrapped up everything in nice little bow, yet the fallout is something that will have prolonged effects on most of Salem.
The only major beefs I have were that they didn't explain why everyone thought Daphne DiMera was his mother and I disliked the fact John was such a prick throughout everything. I understand he's brainwashed and Drake acted the part wonderfully, but it was a little bit of a letdown not to see the "Old John" reemerge to reconcile with his estranged mother. I hope that once he remembers, they'll play up his regrets. That could be interesting to watch. He'll also probably regret slamming Marlena into the door, ouch.
Ye Ole Good News (Kayla)
Kayla is pregnant! I'm surprised by how excited I was to find out, yet I have this unpleasant feeling that it's going to be a bumpy road for the Johnsons - especially with Ava's eventual arrival. Regardless, I was kind of hoping she would at least tell her dad as he really needs some happy news right about now, but I definitely can't wait to see Steve and Stephanie's reactions to the big news. The best part - it's not a "who's your daddy storyline!" YAY!!!
Ye Ole Bad News (Bo)
Baby good. Mysterious illness bad. And we learned that Bo has one. As long as it's not the "Jungle Madness" that plagued Peter Blake years ago, I'm interested in seeing this play out. In all honesty, I was a little confused at times as it seemed like Hope was experiencing the same sudden symptoms as well. Steve and Kayla's cryptic chats didn't help me figure that out. I THINK it's just Bo who is sick and when they said this will really affect them both, they meant the effect on them as a family, yet, like the illness, it's still a mystery to me.
Don't Fear The Peeper (Ava)
So Tamara Braun made her Days debut, kinda. Like Steve, we only really caught a glimpse of her through the window, but it seems like she had a major effect on him already. I've never really followed General Hospital, but I do know Tamara comes highly recommended which makes me totally excited to see what she's going to bring to the Salem canvas. Welcome to Salem U.S.A., Tamara, where the dead are alive and babies have at least two daddies.
The Dingoes Ate My Husband (Chloe)
So Mrs. Brady Black is being grilled like a weenie at a barbeque these days. She's had some pretty suspicious reactions when asked about her hubby's disappearance. Whereas I don't think Chloe's wicked enough to deliberately put Brady in harms way, I definitely think she knows more then she's letting on. Philip seems to sense that too and is a little torn whether or not to believe her. I feel the same way, man, and suggest you find a girl without so much baggage - Morgan perhaps?
London Calling (Billie)
I'm happy for one thing - they didn't kill Billie which means she could possibly return someday! And that's the only thing I'm content with regarding her exit. Truth be told, and please be nice and don't throw any cyber rotten tomatoes at me because this is only my humble opinion, but I was never a big fan of the character Billie until Julie Pinson began portraying her. She's a great actress and a lot of fun to watch. And now that I love her, she's leaving thanks to a lucrative job offering from Victor. Dumped right before Valentine's Day, it figures. Anyway, I wish they would have made more of the scenes considering they were sending off such a beloved character, but at least she got to say goodbye to Chelsea and her mom. Best wishes to Julie - you will be missed!
Friends 'til the End? (Morgan and Company)
As much as I'm enjoying Days right now, one of the things that royally tick me off is that they seem to be turning Morgan into the snotty, catty sorority stereotype a lot of us feared she would be when she first came on. Her semi-aggressiveness in telling Chelsea that they have to vote on her continued sisterhood seemed a little cold for a character that used to be very warm. I understand that she's the "Grand Poobah" of the sorority with responsibilities to uphold, but given all they've been through together she was quick to blame Chelsea (again) and reluctant to pledge her allegiance despite Max's convincing. Note to the writers: Please, please don't turn Morgan into a crazy Jan Spears/Willow! We like her, really.
Horsing Around (Nick, Chelsea, Stephanie and Max)
Although Stephanie's gift to Max did set off a couple of blips on the corny radar, all things considered, it was nice to see that gang having a little fun. Chelsea's wisecracks to Max were especially entertaining. Now, I don't want to beat a stuffed horse, but I'm still not sure about the "Stax" pairing. It's still kinda icky in my opinion, but I'm going to try to have a more open mind about it. Try being the operative word.
Make Room For Step-Daddy (E.J.)
Ok, I know E.J. has been a very, very bad boy to say the very least, but, come on, how could you fault anyone for falling in love with an adorable little baby like Ali? So cute! Lexie's warnings about getting too attached were right on, yet I don't think he totally dispelled them. Sami's speech to him seemed to be made more out of her sorrow over losing Lucas than fearing E.J. is trying to replace him. I really think he's trying his hardest to be a better man. I don't even think he has too much of an ugly ulterior motive. It seems he's just desperately hopeful that eventually Sami will love him and in the mean time is just enjoying being a dad/step dad. I figure, until I see him sneaking around in black gloves again, he has my benefit of the doubt.
So Long, Farewell (Sami and Lucas)
On Monday, Lucas's mustache called Sami and the two of them ended up coming face to face in a very tearful goodbye scene (part one). I hate to say this, but if Alison and Bryan weren't so amazing to watch, these scenes would have bored me. They've basically been having the same conversation over and over for the last few months. Then, on Friday, he called again for her to rush to the big house to say goodbye. I expect more great acting and more of the same old dialogue.
Perhaps the most frustrating part is the fact that Lucas is giving up and taking the fall whether he's actually guilty or covering for someone. Dumb, man, just dumb. I'm kind of over him saying he's going to miss his family when he's not even really fighting for them. Ali certainly won't recall a messy trail, which he could win and become a free man again, but she'll certainly remember growing up without a dad. Ugh, his logic hurts my head - I give up.
Major Spoiler/Rumor and Tissue Alert
Please note, Casting and Storyline Spoilers/Rumors Discussed
According to the previews for next week on NBC.com, the Brady Bunches' flight home will hit more than a little turbulence. It's also rumored that one of them won't make it back to Salem alive. This brings me to the casting spoiler/rumor I am very, very, very thrilled to discuss - Patsy Pease, a.k.a Kimberly Brady, might be returning to Days for a short run at the end of the month. Of course, its sort of a bittersweet return for the fans as she is supposed to come back for a funeral. I'm not sure how "in stone" this is, but I'm ecstatic at even slim chance it might turn out to be true! My fingers will remain crossed as we wait to see what happens!
Hot and Not
Hot: Within a few days, Victor managed to clean house with his power and influence. He got Chelsea off the hook, send Crawford packing with his tail between his legs and set Billie up with a brand new job. My vote for the 2008 - Kiriakis for president! Imagine what he could do in Washington. Heck, the economy would definitely bounce back from the tabloid sales alone!
Not: It was kind of a let down that Sami and E.J. didn't get to meet Colleen considering their part in last summer's letter readings/mirror image storyline. Even one cheesy line from Colleen to Sami like, "you remind me so much of myself when I was younger," would have been nice. Or seeing Colleen's reaction to E.J. as he's the splitting image of her beloved. I guess we'll have to wait until Colleen comes back from the dead again to see that happen.
Line of the Week:
"... and you, Bo. Even though you don't have the Brady blood flowing in your veins, you got the Brady spirit. I'd heard that you were quite the rebel and occasionally a pain in the arse." the beginning of Colleen's deathbed farewell to Bo.
Does anyone else think it was a little, I don't know, inappropriate for Lexie to discuss Kayla's pregnancy with E.J. before telling the expectant parents? Despite that fact the Bradys pretty much hate him, I always thought there was that ... what's it called ... Doctor/Patient Confidentiality thingy. Or not.
Also, when did Lexie and E.J. become such close siblings? You'd think she would have a harder time forgiving him since he tossed her in a tunnel. I guess quick forgiveness was a theme this week.
Poor Claire is royally screwed when she is older and wants to begin dating. She is related to the Hortons, Kiriakises, Bradys, Evans and DiMeras. And because John is now Lexie's uncle she couldn't even date Theo Carver. Well, she can always be a nun.
Now, I know almost everyone loves squeaky clean, let's sing a song on a hillside Brady Black, but this guy could be such a sick and twisted bad guy if you think about it. He's part DiMera and Kiriakis - what a lethal combo!
Parting Thoughts ...
In case the verbal breakdown of John's relatives on my blog was confusing, I drafted a little makeshift, revised "Brady Family Tree" that I'd be happy to pass along. It's in JPEG format and can easily be attached to emails. If you're interested, just drop me a line via the handy dandy link at the bottom of the page and I'll be sure to get back to you.
Finally, whether you're happily coupled or fabulously single, I'd like to wish everyone a very Happy Valentine's Day. This year I had a hard time deciding who I was going to spend the big day with. In the end, I concluded having two Valentines are better then one. Therefore, Ben, Jerry and I will be hanging out on the couch come the 14th!
So friends and Days fans, that's "Two Scoops" for the week of February 4th, and, as Pre-Brain Erased John Black used to say, "That's a fact."
As always, thanks for reading and, again, Happy Valentine's Day!