Dancing in the sweeps

by Tony
For the Week of May 11, 2009
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Dancing in the sweeps
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The week of May 11, 2009
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Kate wants to protect Lucas, but she's not about to let Chloe and Dr. Dan off the hook. And, boy oh boy, she certainly didn't let Chloe off the hook last week!

Departures, dilemmas and danger, oh my! That can only mean one thing - it's May Sweeps! And, it looks like Days is pulling out the big guns already and last week was only the official start! Let's hope the momentum lasts, because if it does, Salem will surely be the place to be this month. Since there's a lot to cover, let's jump right into the action ...

I'll Be Seeing You (Chelsea & Company)

Thanks to a little internal negotiation, Chelsea/Rachel's last day wasn't last week! I'm exciting about this as we get to see our Swamp Baby for two more days sometime this month. Yet, the goodbyes for Chelsea were pretty powerful nonetheless. Her time with Philip and Stephanie was nice albeit brief, but, fortunately, my concerns last week over whether or not she'll get to say farewell to Bo and Hope were squashed! She did and they were great! Actually, I'd say the Hope/Chelsea scenes were even more moving than the one she had with her father. They were both great, don't get me wrong, but I've always been a fan of Hope and Chelsea's heart to hearts. Their talk was just all shaded of awe! And Hope's right, she will be missed!

Now, before those tender moments, Chelsea had a meltdown about how quickly life can change as well as one about Max. He wanted to go with her to London. She didn't want him to. I agree with her reasoning ... he'd have nothing to do while she's busy. I just kept thinking of Brady and Chloe and saying, good point Swamp Baby, good point - Salem's not ready for another recovering junkie. So, all in all, Max agreed to stay, but they'll wait for each other. If Darin wasn't leaving I'd say that would last until another niece showed up, but, considering he is, I have a feeling she'll be back to claim her uncle man and take him back to London.

Not So Free Pass (Kate, Dr. Dan, Chloe & Lucas)

I try to give credit where credit is due. Because of that, I owe Dr. Dan a pat on the back for how he handled Kate's blindsiding revelation that she knows all about him and Chloe! Honestly, I thought he'd deny, deny, deny, but he didn't. He didn't really even apologize for his actions. In fact, he held his own with ball buster Kate! He even slammed Lucas to her face and vowed to protect Chloe! "She hurts, he hurts," he warned. I was impressed ... or as impressed as I can be with Dr. Dan these days.

Kate, however, was also impressive. Sure, she gave up on a full blown revenge plot, but that didn't mean she was going to be all forgive and forget, let's hug! Honestly, she had me a little worried when she had murder on her mind. It's hard for a character to bounce back from killing someone in cold blood ... unless they've been brainwashed by a DiMera or are leaving the show, of course. But, now that I can breathe a sigh of relief, I can gush about how much I loved Kate's vicious attacks.

Nearly everything about how she handled things worked for me. Lauren Koslow was as amazing as ever. From eerily calm to all out ballistic, she delivered the goods. And those goods were great! Foremost, she knew telling Lucas would crush him ... and potentially cause him to leap from the wagon into the Brady Pub's fully stocked bar. So, she isn't about to tell him. She wants to protect him. That's the Kate we know. Yet, she's not about to let Chloe and Dr. Dan off the hook. That's also the Kate we know. And, boy oh boy, she let certainly didn't let Chloe off the hook!

I almost felt bad for the Chloemiester. Ok, not really. I enjoyed Kate ripping into her. It was pretty entertaining! Even my roommate, who was home sick and watched that particular episode with me, agreed. Actually, my roommate's reaction was pretty much spot on - she winced and simply said, "Ouch!" Ouch indeed!

All in all, I'm eager to see how this plays out. And, surprisingly, it doesn't look like Lucas is going to idly sit by and accept what they've told him. He wants answers from mommy as to why she fired Chloe in such a harsh way. I'm happy about that. He's already played the fool too many times. I hope he keeps digging and digging. Lucas has been on an upswing lately and I'd hate to see him regress into a big pile of pathetic cluelessness who accepts lame excuses.

Forget Forgiving (Kiriakis vs. DiMera)

"Are you on drugs again Brady?" asked Victor when his grandson opposed him. Ok, I know Victor is a little heartless, but when he picks on Brady, whose face healed incredibly fast, I can't help but crack up. Perhaps its residual distain for Brady from when Kyle Lowder played the part. I'm not sure, but it's funny.

However, there was little laughter in Philip's hospital room when the three of them talked revenge. Big Daddy Vic and Dimples were thumbs up. Brady? Not so much. He delivered a slew of forgive and forget propaganda that would've made even the biggest pacifist say, "Man, enough already." He preached that they should end things. I agree, but where would the fun in that be?

Not to be defeated, Brady went to Bo for help! I didn't think Bo would be able to change Vic and Phil's minds, but it was great to see him in on a Kiriakis boys club meeting. Victor pretty much called out Brady's plan to enlist Bo and squashed it. However, kudos to Vic for giving Brady props. That was nice that he acknowledged his grandson's strong convictions. Didn't matter though as Phase One was already complete - Victor kidnapped Stefano! He even gloated to E.J.!

Now, I'm all for this storyline. It's great. Heck, nearly all of Salem's heavyweights are in on the action and you can't beat that. However, I need to make one nitpick ... a minor word of warning if you will. The writers need watch the cliché/corny traps that can easily chip away at the awesomeness of a wonderful storyline (see my "Not" selection for further examples).

This is example is simple - I don't think Victor's little decoy is going to work. He locked E.J. in that room which should be scary. In that room was a bed with a sheet draped over a human-like form which, again, should be scary. They want us to wonder - could it be Stefano? Could the Phoenix be dead? If you ask this Scooper I'd say heck-to-the-no! Please, we've seen the man's skeleton before and he came back to life. The Stefano corpse routine is tired and needs to be retired. My guess is that under that sheet is either Rex's mummified remains or all the shredded copies of the alternative fuel project lumped together in human form. Ok, end rant. In any event, I can't wait to see what Victor wants from E.J. in order to ensure Stefano's safe return!

I Don't! Wait, I Do! (Philip, Stephanie & Company)

Let's start at the beginning of the week with these two, shall we? Now, I know this will be shocking, so you may want to sit down, but Philip and Stephanie had another fight about the danger he's in/his need for revenge and her stress of having to live with that. Unsurprisingly, she left ... then came back. Although I'm utterly tired of the recent trend of Salemites walking out on their significant others when angry (Steph, Rafe, Nicole, etc), I'm still rallying behind Steph on this one (sans the walking out of course). I talked about that last week so there's no use rehashing so let's just say I agree with her worries. Thankfully Philip also sees her point and kept a venomous Kate from confronting her! Big time bullet dodged!

However, when Steph walked out, a nurse walked in. A very, very mean nurse/assassin with a syringe full of sedatives and a pillow! She tried to suffocate Ole Dimples and Hope got to save the day! I'm always glad when Fancy Face gets to be a woman of action. She simply rocks! Side note: More Hope please!

Melanie also got to jump onto the hero bandwagon and gave Philip a little, um, mouth to mouth? I'm still not sure if she was making out with him or saving him, but he survived. Crisis averted. Well, sorta. He and Steph went another round about that close call, but patched things up.

But before they patched things up, Stephanie went to E.J.! I doubt that any of us thought he would back off, but I one thought - you go girl! I loved Steph taping into her inner Grandma Caroline and standing up to a powerful man. Actually, she stood up to both Philip and Victor over the course of the week too. Yep, it looks like our former bootylicious Barbie with a pension for jerks like Jeremy is on an upswing! I repeat, you go girl!

By the end of the week, Philip returned home from the hospital. Stephanie welcomed him with a nice sign and some champagne. Ok, not sure giving alcohol to someone who just got out the hospital is a good idea, but they were celebrating. And, as it turned out, they had a lot more to celebrate - Philip asked her to move into the mansion! No, not just move in, by the end of the night he proposed to her! Yes, a marriage proposal. No, really, he did. And she said yes! Let's talk about that for a minute.

I'm really rooting for these two. Laurisa is too! We like them, but, hold the phone - he proposed!? I'm not sure I can buy that just yet. It's way too soon. I get the sentiment behind it, but these two have some serious issues to work out. I can already imagine their wedding - Steph will walk halfway down the aisle then turn around and walk out ... then come back.

Yet, I do have a suggestion to get them on the right path, dare say the path down the aisle. How about they, I don't know, move into her apartment first and NOT in with Victor? It worries me that Salem's leading men are all daddies' boys who still live at home. It worries me further that gutsy gals like Stephanie and Nicole would agree to live with their significant others at their parent's house. Now, I know there are reasons people do this ... saving money to buy/build a house, etc., but I don't think money is much of an issue for either Philip or E.J. Sure, they might be safer in a mansion with bodyguards roaming around, but as Phil told Stephanie about fleeing to Greece, "The war will rage on anywhere we go." I say Steph should remind him of that and they should move into her place. Call me crazy, but living with in-laws-to-be doesn't scream happy new start.

In related news, Owen the gardener popped up this week as he helped Philip prepare his night of enchantment with Stephanie. Yep, Wes Ramsey is in the house! Could this be the mysterious mole in the Kiriakis Mansion? My Spidey Senses are tingling ...

And They All Came Tumbling Down (E.J., Nicole & Dr. Baker)

I've said it a million times before, but Nicole and Baker crack my stuff up! Hilarious! Actually, Ari Zuker was on comedic fire all week. Her interactions with Rafe, Sami and even Marco were all spot on. But, before I go off in a gushy rave, let's talk about her and E.J. for a minute. They're not so funny.

Nicole found out E.J. was investigating Baker. Or, as he said, he was following up on Stefano's investigation of the good doctor. Um, ya, he lied as I'm pretty sure he spearheaded things a few weeks ago. But, Nicole and E.J. lying to each other is about as shocking as Max dating a niece ... AKA not at all. So, whatever.

The point is, Nicole tried to convince him to stop, but he was convinced Baker had something to do with Stefano's disappearance. Um, ya, E.J., you're at war with Victor so that reasoning made sense. Ok, he gets some points for covering his bases, but I worry about Elvis J sometimes. Then again, perhaps his eleven-year-old brain just can't figure out the obvious (my apologize to most eleven-year-olds who could).

As it turned out, Nicole tipped off Baker. I almost thought she was being selfless, but then I remembered who I was thinking about. Dr. Baker knew that too and realized her motives we a bit shady. Go figure. But, I like Baker for some reason and he made some valid points. I don't think Sami would really rock the boat for him. She wants to keep things as hush hush as he and Nicole do. Actually, a lot of what Baker said made sense, but, of course, Nicole was in too much of a tizzy to think clearly. Again, go figure.

Unfortunately, when Baker finally agreed to leave town, he fell down the stairs! Holy Ford Decker Batman! What is it with bad guys and stairs? Anyway, Baker tumbled and, interestingly enough, Maid Mary covered for Nicole when the police questioned whether or not it was an accident. It seems Stefano pays her well. I think it would be kind of cool if she held that over Nicole's head, but I don't think Mary is that vindictive. That's good news for Nicole as Baker's prognosis of having memory problems proved to be null when he woke up and accused her of trying to kill him! Yep, even from a hospital bed those two can be a riot. More please!

Dating For Dummies (Sami, Rafe & Arianna)

Truth be told, I can let Sami's hissy fit about finding Rafe with Arianna slide. I can look past her long, rambling tell off before she found out the truth. That's classic Sami overreacting. As annoying as it was, I didn't expect her to react any other way. I was also ready for it with a stiff drink in hand.

I also expected that Rafe and Arianna are siblings. Yes, they are! On a whole, that's fine and dandy. He needed some roots in town. Yet, I'm worried. Arianna was a complete ... well, I'll just spit it out ... she was a complete bitch to Sami. As my better Scooping half pointed out, Arianna doesn't even know her, yet totally played the judgment card. Among other things, she told Rafe to stay away. I hope he makes her eat some crow when he points out the Sami went to her father and the mayor to help him get a job. Sami's actually trying to help in a very Sami-ish way.

Oddly enough, I don't completely hate Arianna ... yet. There's something about her I like, but right now she's not on my good side. And, she might not be on Rafe's either. Note to Ari: You and your brother just reconciled after a long-lasting fallout, tread lightly. One last note to Ari - if you work for tips, try not to complain about a patron or mock them within earshot. It makes you look a little, well, bitchy. Back to Rafe and Sami ...

I'll give them props for the honest conversation they had at the beginning of the week. I'm glad Sami confessed to the fact she'll never hate E.J. I'm even gladder that Rafe didn't walk out on her. He doesn't understand it, but he didn't leave. That's a good sign for growth.

Another surprising twist is why she said she would've taken Nicole's place - to provide a better life for her kids. I took that as, "Because I'm an unemployed mother of four," but I was probably reading too much into that. I can admit that Rafe and Sami had some cute time with the kids as well as with each other. I do think their pre-date and post-date were much more fun to watch than the actual date. Even the Scrabble time was nicer than the date. Yet, I'm not sold on them as a happy couple. Between forced, clichéd and rushed, I have my doubts about them. Gee, maybe I'm a bit bicthy like Arianna. Nah!

Hot Coco Confessional (Will, Mia, Maggie & Company)

You know what scares me a bit? That would be when I'm on Will's side. However, we both agree - Kinsey's a bitch. I hope, I mean really hope, she's not one of the teens bopping around Salem this summer. I can handle Tad, but she's sort of annoying and not in a good way. Regardless, she told Will that Mia was addicted to drugs and left Salem West to go to rehab. Ironically she made that presumption after pointing to Grace then saying someone must have been busy. Oh how right you are oh annoying one! Will kind of froze up from the news, which Mia called him on then she left. I kind of felt bad for both of them and that scares me too as I didn't think I cared. Yet, there's a solution on the horizon ...

Enter Maggie! Yes, it's always a good week when Big Red shows up. She even mentioned Sarah and Melissa! I think it's time for one or both of them to return to Salem, but that's another rant for another Scoop. Maggie gave Will a little pep talk then gave Mia one. Kudos to Maggie for saying something like, "It's none of my business, but ..." You're right, Mags, it's not, but we love you anyway. But, she got the job done as Will called Mia to apologize. She didn't answer his call. Bummer.

Ms. Mia on the other hand seemed a little concerned as the lie she told is worse than the truth. Yep, it is, but at least Will proved, with a little guidance, he can act rationally. So, maybe if the truth does come out, he'll be ok with it. Well, maybe not ok with it, but maybe it will force him to, I don't know, grow up a little. Since his return he's just sort of a pouty baby sulking around and blaming his parents for things. Maybe if he sees what Mia has gone through he'll realize he doesn't have it so bad after all. Ya, I'm probably giving him way too much credit ... I'll go back to my initial thought - hissy fit!

Extra Scoops


Hot: Rachel Melvin! Technically, Chelsea will be back for a short last hurrah, but our gal needs some props for her tenure with Days. As Laurisa perfectly put when she picked Rachel for Best Actress during The Second Annual Golden Donut Awards, "It's really a special thing when viewers get to watch an actress develop along with the character." I totally agree! And, whether you loved her or loathed her, Rachel's Chelsea has been amazing to watch. Heck, Laurisa and I even invited her to our exclusive imaginary happy hours. So, I say, three cheers for Rachel - best of luck Swamp Baby, you will be missed!

Not: Sadly, just as Sami and Rafe are getting turned on by each other, I'm getting a little turned off by their romance. It's still feeling a bit forced and overly cliché. Example - the body heat trick! I mean, really, why can't two adults who are dating just sleep together? Did we need that eye rolling moment when she fell into the river to prove that Rafe is a hero and Sami is a damsel in distress? I was distressed.

Line of the Week:

Will's response to Kinsey saying she was, like, ninety-five per cent sure Mia went to rehab:

"You're also, like, ninety-five per cent bitch."

Brilliant, Young Will, very brilliant! Maybe you are Sami's son and Kate's grandson after all!

Randomness ...

Rafe told Sami his secret of soothing Grace - rub behind her ears. Is that just a general trick to calm babies or could baby Grace, in turn Mia, be related to Agent Baby Soother somehow? Hmm ...

Speaking of Grace ... was she re-casted again?

Was it just me or did Will seem happy to see Rafe and Sami together? He did this smile thingy I'm not used to so I was distracted by that.

Philip talked to Billie!

Why didn't Chelsea just pick up her last paycheck at the hospital when she was at the hospital earlier? I guess it wasn't ready.

Parting Thoughts ...

So friends and Days fans, that's "Two Scoops" for the week of May 11th. I hope all the mothers, grandmothers and mothers-to-be had a great Mother's Day! Laurisa will be back next week to cover all the May Sweeps madness, but you don't have to wait that long to hear from her! She recently became part of the Neilson Ratings "Family" and decided to share her experience on her soapcentral.com blog! That post she be made sometime this week, but, in the meantime, check out my blog to see what happened when I brought my friend Joanna to Salem with me as part of the Second Annual Take A Friend To Salem Day ! It was a great time had by all and, "That's a fact!"

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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of Soap Central or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen and what has happened, and to share their opinions on all of it. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same point of view.

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