Two years. That's how long Laurisa and I've been Scooping together. And since October marks our second anniversary - please scroll down to the end of the column to see where we're registered, thank you - we decided to team up for an article! But, first, let's take a look back...
Ironically, we were initially slated to have a "He Said/She Said" type relationship. An ongoing debate if you will. Well, "he" still says a lot and so does "she," but we hardly ever disagree. In fact, there isn't any nastiness between us, but that's probably for the better because there's enough nastiness on-screen. *cough Danloe love scenes*
With that said, we needed a new angle for our "He Said/She Said" stuff. We thought of a few things, but, ultimately, ended up going old-school. We divided and conquered. Last week, Laurisa headed out with the gals of Salem and Scooped about them while I did the same with the guys. One thing we found out is not all of the women of Salem are ladies, and not all of the men are gentle. Let's take a look...
THE BABY SWAP GANG
Sami: I am positively thrilled with the writers for thinking of a brilliant and unexpected way to use Sami in her own storyline (FINALLY!). I loved how she talked to Mia and Chad. She was a teen mother. She knows what it's like. I thought her recap of being a teen parent was heartfelt and painfully honest. And she did it in a way without seeming condescending. I love the way she pointed out that the kid will know that they held their parents back. Maybe Sami is a bit more perceptive than I gave her credit for.
But I wish that Sami would have stopped at the "I was a teen parent" angle because her support for Nicole made me cringe. It's not so much that Nicole has Sami's kid - which is part of it. But it's the fact that I feel the writers are doing an unnecessary bonus lap here. Nicole stole Sami's baby and used said baby to dissuade a certain Sami Brady ex-luvah from sniffing around Sami again. Does Sami really need more reason to go after Nicole? *Sigh* I guess I'll chalk this up to another way karma is making Sami pay for keeping Grace from EJ. Sami's going to help Nicole skip the country with her own kid. Ouch.
E.J.: Speaking of "ouch," you know when someone faints and everyone rushes over to them and huddles around, but what that person really need is space to breathe? Good, you do. Well, E.J. needs some breathing room, and I don't blame him for exploding out of utter frustration since he's not getting it. What I don't think he needs is any more "helpful" lectures about how he should feel, what he should do, or where he should buy his morning lattes. Sure, I think most of them came from a well-meaning places, but the guy just got a swift solid kick to the - well, below the belt. He needs time to let the swelling go down before he can even think about standing back up. It's no wonder he liked talking to a comatose Stefano. No pressure there.
However, Stefano wasn't comatose the entire time. And I'm shocked that E.J. suspected that his loving father, whom he "trusts completely," mind you, knew about Nicole's lies. I had all but written off E.J.'s intuition. I didn't think he'd pick up on that. Stefano tried to cover his slip, but I don't think E.J. entirely bought the cover story. Hmm, maybe there's still hope for crafty, clever E.J. after all!
Nicole: Amazing. Abso-freakin'-lutely amazing. Just when I think she can't get any lower, Nicole proves me wrong. Nicole ended up reaching three - count them, THREE - new all-time-lows all in a row! It was like watching a tennis match between Nicole and the Bad Idea Bears.
First, let's talk a little attempted child molestation, eh? What if her plan to seduce Chad worked? I'm pretty sure that he's 17 and she's not. You know what that means? It means that Nicole "Mary Kay Letourneau" Walker could be facing some charges more serious than illegal adoption.
Second, and in age-appropriate whoring news, Nicole tried to throw herself at Brady and his heaping piles of Kiriakis money in hopes that he would skip the country with her and Sydney. If she did love Brady, she wouldn't expect him to leave his family, friends, career, and spend his inheritance on a house for the three of them in Morocco. It's disturbing how bad Nicole is getting at scheming. The sad, puppy-dog eyes reminded me of the way she acted when EJ yelled at her. It makes me miss that vicious hellcat she used to be.
Finally, Nicole took Sami's money and, worse of all, Sami's friendship. I get that Nicole is in deep, but the guilt was written all over Nicole's face when Sami got up on her soap box in her "Team Nicole" shirt. It's just too bad that guilt wasn't actually strong enough to make her do anything about it. I'm fairly certain there's no easy way to say, "Look, Sami. I know this is going to be a real bummer, but this little bambina that you just gave me 50 G's to jump town with...yah, she's actually your baby. Ooopsie!" But that isn't an excuse to step further and further into...well...it.
Brady: Thank you, writers! That was my only thought when he turned down Nicole's advances - I mean, her offer. I didn't even care that she flat-out blamed him - again - for her problems. Actually, that was to be expected. So, go, Brady! It's great to see him finally applying that "Just say no" lingo to Nicole.
Chad: Wow! I think Chad is the only teenage boy who actually pays attention to porn dialogue. I'm impressed. Well, not really. Anyway, Chad exposed Misty Circle and, like Brady, he was smart enough to resist Nicole's "offer." That was a good move. However, the rest of Chad's moves have me conflicted.
On one hand, I think he's a total tool. The majority of the time he acts like a spoiled kid who simply wants what's "rightfully" his and isn't afraid to enlist the help of his powerful parents if it suits his needs. Plus, he actually said, "I guess so," when Nicole asked him if he loved Sydney. Um, yah, that doesn't do wonders for his case of baby love. Throw in the fact that he's been a manipulative twit whose main goal has been to "win" Mia back and I can't help but to wonder if Sydney is just a warped means to that end.
On the other hand, at times I felt he really loves his child. How could he not - Sydney's adorable! And he saw her once...from across the room. But, also, judging from the flashbacks of him and Mia, it's obvious that he's capable of love (or something like it). Yet I remain skeptical that he'll love Sydney enough to do the right thing as he seems all about the victory. Then again, as an audience we know Chad's actions are ultimately pointless. Therefore I'm conflicted again - has all of this hoopla been interesting character development filler or simply filler?
Mia: I love how the show is not letting her look back. Unfortunately giving her daughter the best life and respecting what the father wants have to be mutually exclusive. It's not like Mia is changing her opinion, nor does she have the luxury of going back in time. I like how she's going full speed ahead with what she thinks is best for Sydney. It's very unselfish and I like that about her. But, I was ticked that Mia had no legal counsel during her little chat with Chad. I also wonder the legal bearings of "selling her baby" since Mia was a minor when that whole thing went down.
Will: His unwavering support of Mia was impressive. And, the big shocker - I didn't even catch a glimpse of his self-righteous Lucas Horton streak. Nope, no glimpse at all! He didn't judge her in the least. In fact, he did what he had to do to help her and even enlisted the big guns, Sami. That lead to another huge shocker - he's beginning to accept his mother's past, and, although he doesn't like it, he's not condemning her as much because he's learning not all problems come with a right and wrong answer. I like this side of Will. More, please!
Lexie: She's the only one who doesn't have an agenda here, and I liked it when she spent time with her niece/Goddaughter regardless of her DNA. Lexie represents the point that EJ needs to get to - eventually.
Stefano: He's awake! I'm happy about this because Once-A-Year-Coma-Fun Stefano isn't as much fun to play with as Vindictive-Fun Stefano or even Malibu-Fun Stefano in his evil pink sports car. And the guy's not even that rusty after this latest coma. He managed to cover-up his potentially disastrous slip and then played a convincing game of possum. While E.J. and Lexie think he's unconscious, he's reached out and threatened someone - that someone being Nicole and that threat being, "Get your scheming behind back to the hospital - now!" Ah, we've missed you, Big Guy! Welcome back!
Kate: Alert the press! Kate agreed to let Nicole leave with Sydney because Kate knows that Will (and "his little friend Mya" LOL!) want Sydney to stay with Nicole. Don't look now, but Kate and Sami are on the same side of an argument for the SAME REASON. Zoinks!
Also, call me crazy, but I think that Kate has a little bit of a crush on her husband. I was a little touched when she said that Nicole shouldn't take Sydney because Stefano loves her. And, I thought she was genuinely upset when she found out Stefano was awake and no one called her. Hmm....I wonder....
Johnny: He hates Missy the babysitter. He tried to run away from her. Seems logical. His parents should follow his lead - if the chick is shady, run!
KIRIAKIS & DIMERA
Victor: Thanks to Stefano's illness, Victor did some soul-searching and reflected on his own mortality. It was some good stuff that I'll touch on more in a bit. I also enjoyed the code of criminal ethics he abides to. He's such gentlemanly cantankerous crime lord, isn't he?
But it seems Vic wants out of the business - the illegal part, that is. He wants to sell his half of his "no books" operation to E.J. Hold the phone! He said "his half" of the operation!? That means that Stefano (and E.J.) already had the other half...meaning they were drug lords, too! Wow. But, to be honest, I'm glad Vic is getting out. I thought it was bogus that he returned to it in the first place, especially after what happened to Brady. Nancy Reagan will be so proud.
E.J.: However, that makes E.J. a drug lord. Fully, not just a half. Well, technically I think he's still pondering the deal, but, nevertheless, this is a new side of his character, and I'm not sure how I feel about this development. He's undoubtedly done tons of horrible things in the past, but, for some reason, "Crime Lord" doesn't seem as bad as "Drug Lord." And given that Roman is chomping at the bit for the king pin, something tells me things are going to go from bad to worse for E.J. if he does accept the deal to be a dealer.
Bo: I totally enjoyed Bo and Lexie's interaction...even though I didn't enjoy the circumstances that caused them to interact. I mean, seriously, Hope, give it up already. Anyway, the Bo/Lexie scenes, thumbs-up! I'd like to see them hang out some more. Bo needs at least one stable gal in his life. Um, where is Caroline, by the way!? Anyhow...
Bo pretty much continued to suffer because of Dope. Whoops! I meant Hope. And I continued to have a lot of sympathy for him. The dude's simply hurting. He feels that he can't even approach Hope to talk anymore - how sad. Lexie gave him sound advice, but my advice - he needs to remember he's a man of action. Bo needs to jump on his motorcycle, or in the more family friendly mini-something-or-other he traded it in for, and rescue Hope from herself. Perhaps they could go to the Horton cabin to talk. It's nice and clean thanks to Mel, Nathan, Brady, and Arianna. Just a suggestion.
Lexie: I also like that Lexie is there for Bo since they've been friends for so long. And, I realize that the writers are trying to make a storyline here, but even the addition of the usually level-headed Lexie isn't making me believe in this storyline any more than I did last week. I still feel like the current Bope drama is reheated bogus old leftovers. I would have thought that Lexie would be a bit more outraged with Hope taking Ciara and suddenly bringing up mistakes Bo made in the past, especially considering that Lexie knows exactly what it's like to have a child ripped from her and have people use her past to judge her.
Victor: Bo had Lexie. Hope had Victor? Ok, sure, why not? She seems to be content talking to any Kiriakis man that isn't named Bo. However, in a weird way, from Victor's perspective, this move makes sense (in the midst that a storyline that doesn't, that is).
Victor likes many things but among the top three are seeing his family happy, power, and control. Bo's happiness is on the line. He wants to ensure his son will regain it. To him, Hope moving in is a minor victory in his campaign. Now he's in control of where she is. He also knows what she's up to. Knowledge is power, and, like I said, Victor likes it. In his mind, he's now a step closer to getting them back together because he's in charge of the situation. Or, he thinks he is, at least.
In a less manipulative, control freak aspect, it was great to see Victor's vulnerable side. A side that normally only Caroline can bring out...when she's not M.I.A. We know he's been a broken man since Isabella's death. But seeing Stefano ill reminded him of his own mortality. And perhaps reminded him of how lonely his life has become as well. If Hope and Ciara can spread a little joy while he works on getting her and Bo back together, I consider that a consultation prize. Although Hope and spreading joy hasn't really gone hand-in-hand these days. Good luck, Victor, you'll need it.
Hope: If she says she can't look Bo in the eye and leave, then maybe she shouldn't be leaving in the first place. I don't get it. And to further confuse me, she took Victor up on his offer to move in with him. Huh?!? I thought she needed space from Bo. How is moving in with his family going to do that? Oh that's right, Justin will be there. Goodie.
Justin: Yep, he will be at the Kiriakis Estate, as Victor called it, just like he was at Bo
and Hope's house at the most opportune moment to help, which is so not good. Justin seems to have Hope-Senses these days. They're sort of like Spidey-Senses in the fact he can detect when she needs help, yet they fall short on sensing potentially adulterous outcomes. I guess every system has a flaw.
Ironically, I don't think Justin has ulterior motives or even lustful thoughts, just yet. After all, he's one of the "good guys," and wants Hope and Bo, as well as he and Adrienne, to reconcile. Yet, poor Justin seems to be clueless about the potential minefield he's walking into. He's also clueless about his powers. And by "powers" I mean not only does he possess the general Kiriakis charm, but his dimples are a deadly weapon. I worry that combination could spell big trouble in little Bope-Land now that he and Hope are roomies. I repeat, so not good.
Adrianne: No, she didn't appear this week. But, I just wanted to point out that Justin mentioned that he and Adrianne could use a "little break". What he DID NOT say is that he and Adrianne are divorced and free to start a relationships with other people. Thank you. That is all.
Maggie: Let me get this straight. Chloe cheated on Lucas, and Maggie brought her a cake. That means that she should probably give Kate a steak dinner for lying to Lucas and she better sign over the deed to Chez Rouge to Sami for all the crap she's done to Lucas. In fact, I'm planning on heading to Salem right now and kick Lucas promptly in the shins so that I can get a box of Alice's doughnuts.
Chloe: In response to Nicole's current situation, Chloe said that she couldn't stand the idea of adopting a baby only to have it taken away. So she and Super Dan are going to have a baby of their own. Yah, either that, Chloemeister, OR you could just have a legal adoption. All kidding aside, I'm shocked that Chloe is so down on the adoption idea since she grew up as an orphan. I actually think it would be more fitting to her character history if she and Daniel adopted an older child. From what I've read, babies are easy to adopt but as the child gets older, the odds of being adopted are much lower. I remember some of Chloe's first scenes on Days when she was in the orphanage. Shouldn't she have a special connection to a child who grew up just like she did? I'm certainly not suggesting that being told you can't have children (as Daniel seemed to suggest) is an easy thing for any woman to deal with. But it seems especially strange for a character like Chloe to be so anti-adoption.
Dr. Dan: Everyone please sit down because what I'm about to say might be shocking. And I'm a bit unsettled by this feeling, queasy perhaps, but I have to admit - Dr. Dan didn't totally annoy me last week. It's amazing how less horrible he is when he's not bashing Lucas - you know, that annoying, immature drunk who's wife he stole. Although it does puzzle me that nearly every female patient he treats ends up sterile. Then again, it still puzzles me why he gets turned on by nearly every female patient he treats. Moral of the story, it's probably better if he and Chloe never procreate. I don't think Salem, or humanity in general, is ready for that combined gene pool.
MEL, NATHAN, & MAGGIE
Maggie: I love Mags to death, but has she learned NOTHING from what just happened with Lucas? He got mad at her for taking it upon herself to make decisions about his love life. Why the heck is she doing it with Nathan now? She presented her concerns to Mel and Nathan in a very respectful way. She said her piece. Now she needs to butt out. While she's at it, maybe she can realize that Nathan and Melanie are the least of her problems right now. She's got a nephew in rehab, a niece having an emotional meltdown, and a grand-nephew who's trying to help is teenage girlfriend hold up her end of an illegal adoption, YET Maggie's pouting about Nathan and Melanie going to the movies and sharing a kiss. Oy.
Melanie: I love seeing this chick happy. And she's cute with Nathan. She absolutely lights up with energy, humor, and spunk when she's with him. The audience hasn't seen Melanie in a real relationship with a nice guy yet and I'm enjoying it. It's young, fresh, flirty, and for right now it's totally appropriate. But I can't stand the way all the life is sucked out of her when Philip is on screen. She gets this weird part-zombie/part-Rainman "What? Oh right...I thought I just saw a butterfly. He was pretty. You're pretty too Philip. Uhhh......." It makes my stomach turn to watch her accept Philip's bogus come-ons, mainly because I'm irritated that Melanie is so willing to be Philip's second choice. It screams of EJ/Nicole and we all know how that worked out.
Nathan: Just like Laurisa said Mel's cute with Nathan, he's cute with her. In fact, this couple is simply cute - romantic comedy/chick flick cute. And I think Nathan finally gets just how cute Mel is - faults and all. Heck, he even stood up for her - twice! Yep, she's bringing out the best in him. More, please!
Philip: Here's the thing. I like Philip...normally. But he needs to step away from Mel. I know she's legal, but I find his advances almost as creepy as Nicole's on Chad. Almost. Simply, his pining after her isn't doing his character any favors. In fact, the last time I found him this annoying he was chasing Shawn-Douglas, Belle, and Claire around Tinda Lau. And that's a dark place I'd rather forget.
STEPHANIE & PHILIP
Steph: I actually liked her interaction with Kate. It's interesting to watch the woman who lives her life with open flaws talking to the girl who's determined not to end up that way. I'd like to see these two interact a bit more.
Kate: Look, Kate doesn't recover from being a nosy busy-body. She just redirects her busy-bodyness to another offspring. That's why she has so many kids! (Ba-dum-CHING!) And now, it's Philip's turn. Kate is in favor of a Steph/Philip pair. Still, I'm not so sure that is a bad thing. Despite the fact that her efforts were outlandish and mostly criminal, she's actually been right about most of the pairs when it comes to her kids' love lives. I just wish she'd try the honest approach with Philip- maybe play the "I sacrificed my chance at love for power and money and look how unhappy I am now" card. Just a thought.
Philip: This song is a bit played out. I honestly don't flinch anymore when one of Kate's kids disowns her or reprimands her for her actions. I'm glad he's sticking to his convictions, but I have a hard time rooting for Philip when his goal is going after Mel.
ARIANNA & BRADY
Ari: It turns out that little Ms. Ari was in prison. For something. We're not sure what. But we do know that part of her plea bargain was to do undercover work for the police. (She must have the same lawyer that Lucas had.) We also know that she doesn't want Brady to ever find out that she was in prison. She's worried that he'll break off their secret relationships. Funny, I thought the only people who had secret relationships were cool 8th graders who date us band geeks. Anyway, I still wish this storyline didn't take such a long break. It's so juicy, yet despite Lindsay Hartley's quite adept ability to deliver the "emotional distress" glance, this storyline could use a little more feeding that it's gotten over the past few weeks. Besides, I have a hard enough time remembering everything going on in my real life, that I can't be expected to keep track of stalled storylines in my soap life.
Brady: To borrow a line from Steel Magnolias, Brady's "so confused he don't know whether to scratch his watch or wind his butt." However, I don't think he minds a little confusion when he gets to "proceed" with Ari, even if it's in secret. Guys are easy to please like that. However there are two guys who aren't so pleased...
Victor: Simply put - he hates that they're back together. He hates that Ari lied to his face about it. In fact, I'm pretty sure he simply hates Ari. Yet, I get that. He thinks she's a drug dealer and he's protecting Brady. A little odd coming from a drug lord, but I digress. Brady is his family and he wants to protect him. Noted! I'll record that in the minutes.
Roman: I also don't blame him for being fed-up. To him, Ari's simply a crook he's made a deal, and now she wants out of it. Oddly enough, she's probably making out better than he is. He could explore other avenues to nab the drug kingpin, but her only other choice is prison. Nope, I don't blame Roman for his lack of sympathy professionally or personally. Business aside, I mean, really, with his track record in love, he'd be the last guy I'd expect to cut any slack to a pair of starry-eyed fools. Also add to the minutes - Roman needs a gal, pronto.
CARLY & RAFE
Carly: I want to know why she doesn't just drop Rafe off at a hospital somewhere rather than keep him with her long enough for him to recognize and remember her. If she's really running from the scary Alamain army, wouldn't she want as few witnesses as possible?
Maxine: She reported that antibiotics were stolen, like, a second after it happened. I know Bo said the Salem PD's budget was shot, but if they ever unfreeze any funds, I'd look at Maxine for some help.
Rafe: Not much news to report. He pretty much gurgled and muttered to himself last week. So, one could say he's on par with how interesting he normally is.
HOT & NOT
SHE-HOT: Sami's been living off John's money. That in itself is not that "hot", but the fact that the show thought to acknowledge how preposterous it is for Sami to be running around Salem like she found a money tree is "hot". And the idea that John set up a nest egg for Sami when she got out of witness protection is actually pretty believable. See how easy it is to explain certain things? Do more of that, please!
HE-HOT: Simply put - Brady said no to Nicole, hooray! That smart move saved a whole lot of headaches for everyone from Victor to Laurisa and I. Now, go on, get out of here, Brady, and have some fun with your secret gal pal...just don't look under the bed.
SHE-NOT: I can't help but notice that Nicole was running all over town- throwing herself at Brady and taking money from Sami- with a GIGANTOSAUROUS diamond ring on her finger. If she's so willing to do anything to save her daughter, why not just pawn her ring? Oh, that's right. The ring probably symbolizes her happy, precious life with EJ. (Either that or that person on set who's responsible for making sure that stupid things don't happen still hasn't been hired. Note to TPTB: Tony and I are available for a small fee and unrestricted access to a list of certain actors...well, we can go over that later.)
HE-NOT: I hate to say this, but Philip needs to get a life. Can't the guy get a little excitement that doesn't involve ex lovers? He's Philip-Freaking-Kiriakis for crying out loud! How about a corporate battle? Helping an old Marine buddy with a problem? Or what about supporting Bo through his time of need!? Almost anything would be better than the icky snoozefest called the Phil/Mel/Nate/Steph Quad-Monster.
LINES OF THE WEEK:
Kate (to Nicole): "Will you be leaving a forwarding address for your bills and your hate mail?" Ha! That's funny. Like Nicole's ever paid a bill in her life!
Victor (to Lexie): "I wouldn't kill Stefano. You know, unless I had to."
I miss Chelsea! When Victor was talking about how he doesn't have an heir to pass the slightly shady part of the business to, I had a brief dream about an adult Chelsea returning to run certain parts of Titan. It's not fair that all that delicious power is only been offered to the Kiriakis men.
Loved how Chloe was cooking in high heels and a skintight black dress. That's what I cook in too. Only I replace the black dress with yoga pants and the heels with a glass of red wine. But other than that, I totally have the same look.
How hysterical was John Aniston and Joseph Mascolo's trivia bit last Monday!? HA!
And how cute was Theo hugging Bo!? Awe!
Like last year, Laurisa and I were asked to help pick out costumes for the residents of Salem since they were busy with their various schemes and misadventures. Check out my blog for the first parts and Laurisa's for the remaining parts of this years "Halloween in Salem" costume parade. There are tons of pictures and, according to our moms, "It's a good time had by all!"
So, friends and Days fans, that's Two Scoops for the week of October 26th! Laurisa and I hope everyone has a fun, safe Halloween! We also want to thank everyone for making the last two years so special - your support, and feedback, has been greatly appreciated! And, "That's a fact!"
What are your thoughts on Days of our Lives? What did you think of this week's Two Scoops? We want to hear from you -- so drop your comments in the Comments section below, tweet about it on Twitter, share it on Facebook, or chat about it on our Message Boards.