This may surprise you, but I happen to be a sucker for reality TV shows. And, the network granddaddy of them all, The Bachelor, started last week. For the four of you who haven't heard of this show, it's a dating show where people's romantic worth is some how equated to how many times they receive flowers, specifically a rose. You have to have a rose each week to stay in the game. This week, I noticed that Days is basically one long rose ceremony. A number of men - Lucas, Daniel, Max, and Brady- were losers in love. But what's worse is that not only did they not receive a rose, but they were flat out told to return their old roses, do not pass "Go", and do not collect $200. Tough break, but we can't all be Philip now can we? No we can't. But we can talk about where these bachelors go from here....
MAX and CHELSEA
Does anyone remember the "do over"? You know, that ever popular playground tool which automatically gave you another free throw or another turn at double-dutch. While the "do over" is a very powerful force (second possibly only to "I called it"), the writers are sorely stretching its powers. They can not just call a "do over" and expect the fans to forget history with Max and Chelsea.
(Stomping and pouting) I feel cheated! Rachel Melvin and Darin Brooks have a down-right good love story right now! The writing is tender and the storyline doesn't need to be rushed because the actors can actually pull off playful banter. But the writers need to address THREE main points: 1) Max and Chelsea are related 2) Max's ex is Chelsea's best friend and 3) Max and Chelsea have already dated before. I've previously addressed the first two, but let's think about the third point for a minute. I can't even imagine dating one of my high school boyfriends again, and I didn't get dumped because I lied about running over my little brother! Max and Chelsea have hella history between them and the writers are acting like even that doesn't exist. Shouldn't they at least have one of the characters start a conversation with, "Look, we've done this before and it didn't turn out too pretty..."? I'm just saying.
DANIEL, KATE, CHLOE, and LUCAS
They sure put a nice little bow on Daniel and Kate's "relationship", huh? I'm so glad that the writers ditched Chelsea and Daniel's storyline with a rewrite for a chance at Daniel and Kate. That was worth it! (That's sarcasm in case you missed it.) Oh well, at least Kate had a reason that I actually bought. Daniel symbolizes Kate's cancer and I can see her wanting to get away from as many things that remind her of her cancer as possible. In the mean time, Kate is playing nice with TWO of her sons' lady loves. She gave Philip the A-okay for Stephanie, even telling Stephanie that she hopes to see more of her. And Kate threw an engagement party for Lucas and Chloe. Unfortunately, Chloe and Daniel thought the party would be the best time to go ahead and sleep together. Makes sense.
Holy horn dogs, I don't like these two together at all. It's cheap at best. I think even the writers know that. Chloe told Daniel, "We only have one thing between us." Sadly honey, that one thing isn't a storyline. It's hormones. That's it. I really need some help pointing out why I should care about this couple; and even more, why I should care about their affair. When it comes out, Lucas and Chloe will break up. Even though I liked them as a couple, I was in the minority so I don't know that many fans will be too upset. And, since Kate called it quits before Daniela and Chloe hooked up, it's hard to see Kate caring. Finally, I guess Kate could go after Chloe for hurting Lucas. But there's still the fact that Chloe risked her life by donating bone marrow to save Kate. Truth be told, Lucas can find another girl but Kate wouldn't be alive without Chloe.
I'm starting to wonder (and this is purely my own speculation- NOT BASED ON ANY INSIDER INFORMATION) if Nadia Bjorlin and Shawn Christian are going to be leaving the show. That's the only logical explanation as to why these two would be paired together. Since neither Chloe nor Daniel have any real ties to Salem, would we miss them if they surfed off into the sunset together? I feel terrible for thinking this because Shawn Christian has hunky leading man written all over him, and he can actually act! Plus, Nadia has real history with the show. I feel bad throwing more support behind newbies like Rachel Melvin and James Scott than Nadia, but that's just how the storyline cards are falling. Any thoughts?
NICOLE and her MERRY MEN
Nicole is still lying. E.J. is still clueless. Brady is still awesome. And, Dr. Baker's hair still scares me. That is all.
PHILIP and STEPHANIE
Like my scooping counterpart Tony, I'm really embracing post-Stax Stephanie. Just when I thought that we were going to have to watch Steph pout and roll her eyes for weeks, Steph stepped up and told Melanie to take a shot at Philip, but Mel will have to go through Steph to get there. WHOO!! She reminded me a little of the devil-may-care attitude Stephanie that came back from Dayton. Sure, that Stephanie was a little slut-tastic, but I had to admire her spunk. I'm glad she got it back.
And, I'm so glad that Philip and Stephanie stopped short of doing the deed and opted for another date at the Penthouse Grill. We know that Jay Kenneth Johnson and Shelley Hennig have sexual chemistry, but I really want to see if these two have romantic chemistry. Now that Kate's cancer storyline is wrapping up and Philip has made it abundantly clear that Melanie is no threat, I want to see if Steph and Philip can actually pull off charm and, dare I hope, humor.
I'm still championing Melanie becoming the next love-to-hate villainess in Salem. This week, we got a dose of what's to love about her. I adored Melanie's scene with Maggie. Maggie warned Mel that Philip isn't going to be as easy to manipulate as Nick was. (Which sounds way too much like a challenge to me, Big Red.) Mel says that she just operates the way her dad tougher her- manipulate people and then apologize and charm your way out of it. There's a lot of truth to this sentence. The problem is that Melanie sees her childhood as an excuse to use rather than an obstacle to over come. We'll see next week when Mel shows up at Nick's sentencing. She has something planned, and I'm eager to watch!
Also to love? Melanie offering advice to Max. Honestly, I think that Max should probably at least listen to what Melanie has to say. After all, Mel is a pretty successful con artist and how can she be a successful con artist if she can't read people's motives and actions? Don't you have to be able to read people in order to con them? I think so. Max certainly can't read Chelsea right now and Mel might just be the decoder ring he's been looking for.
SAMI and RAFE
It's a new year and I'm turning over a new leaf with Sami and Rafe. I enjoy Galen Gering's comedy. He plays a great straight man to Alison Sweeney's fast-talking Sami Brady. And, I really appreciate that the writers have taken him down a few rungs down on the Jerk Ladder. Furthermore, I realize that I don't need to get my panties in a knot over a couple that, frankly, has far more obstacles ahead of them than storyline behind them or chemistry together. So the question is: Can this pair entertain me in the mean time?
Surprisingly, yes! Sure, it's probably for the wrong reason, but this storyline is so ridiculous that it's getting down-right funny. And I like me some funny! Sami is such an important witness that she needs to go into witness protection, yet she's guarded by a man who can't even walk. She'd be better off attaching "The Club" to the front door and standing back with a Nerf gun to attack all intruders! Then, there's the paint-by-numbers romance. Rafe is sick with fever- probably from the infection that he got when Sami stitched his stab wound with a sewing needle- so what's the best thing to do? Why, give him a sponge bath on the couch, of course! If I knew this trick, I'd have never gone with an HMO. I'm setting the official over/under at 5 days until the heat goes off in the safe house and Sami and Rafe have to keep each other warm with body heat. Who's taking that bet?
I totally side with my scooping partner Tony. Mr. Killer needs to find Sami and Rafe so that they can get out of that safe house. I want them to take this storyline on the road. I say go full out Jack Deveraux with this one and give Sami and Rafe disguises, fake accents, new identities, and have them join the circus. Alison and Galen could totally pull it off.
Wait....I've just been handed a bulletin. Apparently, my above section pertaining to Nicole's storyline was not adequate. So, I shall try again:
NICOLE.... and her MERRY MEN
Nicole got a second chance to meet her New Year's Eve date- a pregnant girl named Mia. (Insert obvious "Mama Mia" joke here.) Mia demanded on meeting Nicole's fiancÚ before agreeing to give up the baby. Apparently Mia's own mother was a single mom who went through a string of rough boyfriends and Mia wants to make sure that her baby is going to be in good hands. No worries that said baby will be in the hands of a woman who is a complete emotional basket case and tracked Mia down through an illegal baby broker in a dark alley. Nope. The baby daddy is the potential deal breaker. Right. Actually, wrong. Something is very wrong with Mia. Either she's not being honest, or we have more to find out about her. I don't care how much you look like that chick who used to play Abby , you're not fooling me, Mia!
The fact that Nicole and E.J. are engaged makes me very excited. There exists a possibility that Ava and Chloe could throw Nicole a bachelorette party. Ava fled to Italy, Chloe knows all the hot spots in Vienna, Nicole's probably never had to pay for a drink in her life... the idea just gets better and better all the time. I just have to pick out which heels I plan to wear because I'm totally going to invite myself! And, I won't even mention the fact that Nicole has been too busy with her own schemes to notice that the "love of her life" is slipping further and further into the dark DiMera side, and that pretty soon he'll be the fall guy for doing all the DiMera dirty work. Nope. Won't mention it a bit.
And I'll even do my best not to mention that Nicole is going after the wrong dude. Tell me I'm not the only one who sees the irony in the fact that Nicole is crying and sobbing over losing the "one guy who's ever supported her" on the shoulder of the man who actually is supporting her! Wake up and smell the hunk, Nicole!
But, why is Brady helping Nicole? I totally understood Brady getting out of rehab and wanting to spread the gospel of forgiveness. Rehab is a life changing event after all. And, I completely understood him being there for Nicole through the miscarriage. But, in the last few weeks Nicole has done nothing but use Brady. Yet he's still around. Why? Judging from the fact that he fluffs up his feathers every time E.J. is present, I'm really leaning towards Brady falling for Nicole. And unlike some other instant pairs, I can think of very good reason why Brady would be interested in Nicole. Brady hit rock bottom with a divorce and rehab. Often times, people who had such a public fall find comfort in those who are at an even lower place than they were. Brady hasn't been able to help himself in a year, thus I totally buy the appeal of trying to help someone else. Even though he told her to take a hike (which I totally loved, by the way) I have a hard time believing that Brady and Nicole really won't speak again.
I didn't know much about John Callahan before now, but I have to say that he and I just aren't jiving. I feel like I should hate Dr. Baker a lot more. The guy is a black-market baby broker. Yet I'm just indifferent to him. It probably doesn't help that Arianne Zucker is acting circles around the room, but Nicole and Dr. Baker's scenes were a bit awkward. Is he still blackmailing her? Or, is she just going to become a regular black-market-baby customer? Either way, Nicole still has to come up with some cash, right?
I am continually impressed by how much this storyline is about the family, and not just Theo. Renee Jones is doing an amazing job as Lexie. And it certainly does make sense for Lexie- a character who's been so desperate to be told "I love you" that she had two affairs- is now having problems because another man in her life has trouble saying "I love you". Then there's Stefano. I actually felt bad for the big guy. He hasn't talked about Theo grooming to be an heir or anything so I buy his genuine concern. And as always, it's nice to see E.J. and Tony show up to comfort Lexie. I love it when families pull together, even if it is the DiMera family.
There are a few teeny little things that make me a little nervous about this week's action. First, Theo had surgery on his brain to relieve pressure that happened when Theo fell. If that kid wakes up and instantly can recite all the presidents and solve complicated algebra problems, I'll be beyond disappointed. Please, no miracle cures here. Second, I definitely didn't think that Daniel needed to be the one who heard Lexie's speech about not wasting any of life's precious time and proclaim your love for people in your life. That's like giving a Red Bull to a 5 year-old at Disney World on Christmas Eve.
JOHN and MARLENA
We're on our way to watching John and Marlena reunite. If the flashbacks of John and Marlena with a mullet and feathered hair are any indication of what's to come, I'm filled with bitter-sweet excitement for the next few weeks. (Note: Those are the types of flashbacks that get the "Tony/Laurisa" approval.) John agreed to go under hypnosis and uttered the words we've been waiting to hear, "Doc- the love of my life"
But getting old John back and having John regain his memories are two separate things in my book. I'm excited to see how it will play out. Sure, I would love for John to remember Belle, Brady, and the rest of his family/friends. But I like new John's attitude. And, I like the love story between new John and Marlena. Old John made it way to easy for Marlena to turn into a weak mess because he would always take care of things. New John makes Marlena stronger. He makes her stand on her own. And, she might need to stand on her own for a little while.
Maggie warned Marlena about Dr. Taylor. Even though I haven't seen anything suspicious from Dr. Taylor, I know better than to ignore Maggie. Methinks that Dr. Taylor may be up to something. Please, oh please, let her be a Stefano plant. Not only would that be juicy (maybe Stefano had Dr. Kenneth Taylor killed??....), but it would mean that Sandra Robinson gets to stay around Salem for a while. How interesting would it be if Stefano's new pawn was a beautiful Marlena look-alike?
Bo is still having his visions. While I like that Bo isn't hiding them from Hope, I'm a little confused as to why Bo and Hope are talking about these vision like they are such a bad thing. Haven't they saved Theo's life twice? Does Bo really need to go see a psychiatrist? I think these magic powers qualify Bo Brady for real super hero status! Now, all he needs is a cape and some tights......
E.J. is making mysterious phone calls, wire transfers, and dealing with "problems" in places like Hong Kong and South America- all in the name of DiMera. I'm glad that E.J. has something other to do than be tangentially involved with Nicole's Baby Game. More of E.J. DiMera: Lawyer Extraordinaire, please!
Hilda got a new assignment came by the safe house to say goodbye to Sami. Awww....I'll miss Hilda! Like Sami, this professional-wrestling-loving frau captured my heart too. But just as she left, Hilda ran into Mr. Killer on the pier. Hmmm....how did Mr. Killer get the picture of Hilda?
I saw Mark! TWICE! Doesn't Theo's therapist/should-be Chelsea's love interest look a lot like a mini-Patrick Dempsey?
Kudos to Arianne Zucker for wonderfully executing that difficult choreography involving kissing James Scott, walking sideways, and knocking a briefcase off a bench with her knee- ALL AT THE SAME TIME. Personally, I'd have a hard time kissing James Scott and remembering my own name at the same time.
Molly Burnett looks much older with straight hair.
Did Philip and Stephanie almost do it in the same bed that Lucas and Chloe almost did it on and then Daniel and Chloe did do it on?
I still feel bad for Lucas. The guy is so clueless about women. I can't figure out why TPTB keep insisting on making Lucas part of a couple. They guy is Days' biggest love loser; the next-gen Roman, if you will. I wish that the writers would embrace that fact and make Lucas a disgruntled bachelor- swearing off women for a while and focusing on his daughter and his career. Let us root for Lucas as a solo act before he falls head-over-heels again.
Brady Black. Congrats to the writers for keeping Brady involved in Nicole's storyline. He speaks for the people! And by people, I mean the entire lot of us who are screaming in unison at our televisions for Nicole to TELL E.J. THE TRUTH!! Furthermore, if she can't tell E.J. the truth, then they don't have a relationship worth having. Brady was even one step ahead of me for noticing that Nicole is actually mad at E.J. for not being the guy that she really wants him to be. That is, a man who's so in love with her that it doesn't matter what third party, be it an ex-wife or a baby, enters their life.
E.J. and Lucas's talk about Sami. Not even James Scott and Bryan Dattilo's frienemy chemistry could distract me from the fact that this scene was a huge Lumi tease. I'm sick of these morsels of hope that Dena is throwing at fans. It's like offering a starving person a tick-tac. She did it to Ejami fans at the beginning of the week when Sami said that she can't close her eyes without thinking of E.J. But, the E.J./Lucas scene was even worse. It made no sense for Lucas to be so troubled with E.J.'s news since Lucas KNOWS that Sami and E.J. have another kid together. If anything, I would have thought that Lucas would just smirk and say, "We'll see about that one, Elvis."
LINE OF THE WEEK
Kate to Daniel: "You are such a unique man"
The emphasis here is on the word "unique" which in today's PC world is basically a polite way of saying ugly, different, or weird. It's the word that you use when you really mean, "I'll never wear this/do this/eat this/watch this ever again." Oh Katie, you don't even know how right you are!
That's it Days fans! As I'm sure you've seen, Days is running commercials in primetime advertising all the Jarlena goodness over the next two weeks. For those of us who are fans of the couple it will be bitter sweet; but hopefully a good number of veteran characters will get some screen time. Tony will be back next week to fearlessly lead us through Nick's sentencing and more baby mama drama. Until then, have a great week!
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