I will survive

by Tony
For the Week of April 9, 2012
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I will survive
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The week of April 9, 2012
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Think you're having a bad day? Think again. Lexie found out she's dying! E.J. found out Nicole's pregnant. And Austin took Carrie back, but she still has the hots for Rafe. The good news -- Will admits, 'I'm gay!'

In the interest of full disclosure, I was Mr. Tired Cranky Pants when I sat down to watch my five-episode DAYS-o-thon last week. I even went in stocked with some of my favorite things to lighten my mood. I had a venti, unsweetened black iced tea from Starbucks, some Special K Cracker Crisps, a yummy coconut chocolate bar from the bakery down the street, a banana for a quick potassium boost during Wednesday's episode, and, of course, my fuzzy TV-watching throw. Yes, I was ready to melt away my sorrows of a long week with good snacks, a warm blanket, and DAYS.

Unfortunately, somewhere between Alamainia and Carrie Reed, my mood did not improve. I survived, but I was not a happy camper. In fact, I became Mr. Tired Even Crankier Pants. So, let's discuss what made me an even snarkier Scooper than normal, and those few shining moments that pulled me from my funk.

The good news is that John and Hope are no longer the Pawn and Princes Gina. The bad part, they're still in Alamainia. Even worse -- the Pawn and Gina sucked face for a good portion of the week. Excuse me while I nibble on a Saltine for the queasiness.

I'm not going to be happy until John and Hope are back in Salem. This storyline is going on far too long for what it is. That is to say, it's basically a stroll down a part of memory lane that nearly everyone wishes they could be gassed to forget about.

Yet it seems someone on the writing staff grabbed the DAYS history book, closed their eyes, said, "Our next storyline will be..." while frantically flipping through the pages until a finger landed on "The Pawn and the Princess" and they exclaimed, "That's it! Perfect!" Nope, not so perfect, but on the bright side, at least they didn't stop on the Virtual Garden of Eden or Touch the Sky. There's that.

Let's take a quick glimpse at two shining pieces of ridiculousness, you know, because there were only two last week. One, John was able to download a Salem Spectator story about Bo with ease, but it took them two or three weeks to search for cell service. Here's a little hint-hint ISA John: email your fellow agents, update your Facebook status, and/or post something on the soapcentral.com message boards when granted Internet access. It might help you escape, fool.

Two, Count Wilhelm just happened to be single and still wanted to see Gina after ten-plus years. Uh huh, because a handsome, rich count would be available within ten minutes of receiving a call from a decade-old booty call. I guess Princess Gina deserves a high-five for that one, as girlfriend must be pretty, um, talented.

Speaking of old booty calls, Ian and Kate locked lips again. She was "vulnerable" and all worked up because she assumes Stefano's still obsessed with Marlena. Oh, and Ian laid on his creepy, stalker charm. Who can resist that?

Ian once again admitted that he still loves Kate, but we finally found out why he left her. He claims he loved her so much that he wanted to protect her from some ruthless, nameless advisory out to get him via her (not be confused with Cobra -- a ruthless, terrorist organization determined to rule the world). Yes, she bought that. Ugh. Just ugh. Is there actually a Flimsy Storylines "R" Us store where the writers found Ian's backstory on sale?

Just as flimsy, Stefano sent those photos of Marlena to himself "knowing" that Kate would open the envelope and be bothered. Okay, okay, here's my problem, er, problems. I've actually watched DAYS the past several years. So, one, Kate knows much, much better than to mess with Stefano's secrets. Since patching things up after admitting she knew about Chad's paternity, she's been a loyal and deviously devoted wife. There's no way she would risk that because he wasn't around for mail call.

Second, Stefano and Kate have grown into a solid couple. They've pledged their love and trust in each other a lot. They've also agreed to scheme separately with the knowledge the other would be there should some sinister backup be needed. So, where did Stefano's distrust come from all of a sudden? I may need a decoder ring to figure this one out.

Finally, to reiterate, Stefano and Kate scheme separately. They don't ask or tell. They do their dirty deeds and then meet back at the mansion for cocktails. Sure, I get that she's upset that he's MIA, but it's not like she doesn't have a full plate to keep her occupied. What about Countess W business? How about seeking revenge on Sami? Maybe she could have a little chat with Carrie, the daughter-in-law who's cheated on her son...twice. A follow-up with Will, perhaps? But, nope, running to Ian makes much more sense because we all know how Kate is such a wilting flower in need of a man, and how un-creepy, non-obsessive he is. I repeat, "Ugh."

Also ugh-worthy is Billie and Dr. Dan's coffee non-date. This really doesn't need to happen, dear writers. They can just not re-reschedule it and move on. They'll both find others, I'm sure. As long as the hospital is full of women in paper gowns, Dr. Dan is golden.

As for Billie, I'm sure there's got to be a handsome, accented ISA agent running around Salem somewhere that she could be paired with. Oh, wait! Agent Spencer is a handsome, accented ISA agent who was jogging and ran into Billie. Nah, it makes much more sense to gross us out with a Billie/Dr. Dan pairing in lieu of exploring one that might be fresh and exciting. Not that two ISA agents tracking down a sinister mobster while combating feelings for each other would be exciting. Nope, not at all.

The only exciting tidbit to come from Billie's chat with Spence is that she discovered Stefano is involved in arms dealing, but believes E.J. might be setting him up. Interesting, but I'm not sold. E.J. wants to impress Stefano. He either does as directed by dear old dad, or surprises Stefano with a "Daddy! Look what I did?" while handing the Phoenix a lopsided drawing of his evil deed to put on the fridge.

Hey! Remember when E.J. and Sami lived across the hall from each other and were not attached to one another? How about the time Lucas verged on becoming a chump? Remember when Carrie was married to a guy, but had eyes for another? Oh, and remember when Rafe helped a former blonde schemestress to hide a pregnancy. Well, if you liked all of those storylines, you're in luck. It's all happening again!

The only part I feel lucky about is that Sami and E.J. are neighbors again. Remember when E.J. was just this mysterious hunk with an accent, intriguing our young, hotheaded Sami? Those were good times (until they became bad ones, of course).

More so, James and Ali have chemistry to spare. They can do ugly very well, but they can also set the screen on fire with flirty, fun chemistry. Seeing their characters in a similar living situation years later, yet now knowing what they do about each other, will be interesting. This could be one, careful way to make "EJami" work again. That is, a slow burn bringing things back to the basics of what made them work in the first place.

The other stuff, I'm not as optimistic about. Although I simply adore Bryan and Ali's friendship-laden chemistry, I don't want to see a "Lumi" threepeat. Keep 'em as friends, keep 'em as friends, keep 'em as friends. Got that, writers?

I also don't want to see Lucas become a dimwitted punk again. So far, he's steered clear of that, and he's even impressed me with his clear thinking. I like smart, smartass Lucas. The way he handled Sami kept me in stiches. But Sami and Kate are like his kryptonite, and I don't know how much longer he can hold out before he crumbles and becomes Lucas the Lame again. I hope I'm wrong!

And lame can't be brought up without thinking of poor, devoted, but dimwitted Austin. I give him points for loving Carrie as much as he does -- like, there needs to be an Austin vending machine for anyone who wants a handsome, kind, albeit not-that-bright, husband -- but cheese and crackers is he not getting it. And by "it" I mean that Carrie's a ho who's still in love with Rafe. Dear, dear, Austin, she wasn't looking at Nicole's jewelry from across the room, she was looking at Rafe. Grab a placemat and a crayon, and I'll draw you a diagram.

Finally there's Rafe, Nicole, E.J., and Sami. I didn't even need Celeste's help to predict this one. E.J. reacted to the baby news exactly how one would expect E.J. to react to it. Sami reacted in a very Sami way, too. And just as predictable, Rafe stepped in and claimed the baby was his. The only person who didn't follow suit was Nicole. She just kind of agreed to Rafe's plan and thanked him for helping her.

I'm sorry, I understand that my girl is overwhelmed, but Nicole doesn't follow plans, she makes them. Granted, they don't always work out for her... um, they actually never do, but she's been through enough now not to go in so blindly, especially with Rafe, who's used her once before and pretty much admitted -- in not-so-many words -- he's doing it again to seek revenge on E.J. Oh, Nikki, someday you'll learn, and I'll be there when you do with a sympathetic ear and a dry martini.

Um, happy anniversary, Abe and Lexie? I'm not sure that applies when their big day was tarnished by a medical shocker and an out-of-the-blue half-brother showing up. If it sucked to be Abe a few weeks ago, last week was Lexie's turn to travel to Suckville.

Let's start with the medical mumbo-jumbo. Lexie was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. Said tumor was in the advance stages, and Dr. Dan called it a "worst-case scenario." Jinkies!

I was moved by Lexie's diagnosis. The scenes were well acted by James Reynolds and Renee Jones. I appreciated the little touches they added. Abe might actually inch out Austin in perfect husband material. He was kind and supportive, and tried to be strong for Lexie who was as completely shell-shocked as he was.

I'm hoping Lexie gets a medical miracle. Keeping me optimistic is that nearly every Salemite has been declared dead several times before, and Lexie is half DiMera. Her family memebers resurrect more than an '80s horror film bad guy. Combine those facts with super Doc Jonas and her new doctor half-brother, whom I'm sure is as brilliant as he is hot, and it gives me hope that even if she dies, she has a fighting chance of un-pushing daises.

Of course, Celeste is back to lend her whacky brand of psychic support. It's nice to have the character back on-screen, and I think Beverly Todd is doing fine with the material, but, like Abe and Lexie even pointed out, her return's a little random. They said they hadn't seen her in months? Try years, which is especially odd since Celeste said it only took her two hours to drive to Salem. Like Marlena coming back after years of being away when her family needed her, I'm sensing Celeste's return may verge on too little, too late.

Celeste's other random manifestation was Cameron. He's Lexie's long-lost half-brother. Okay. I need more to go on. Not only was this reveal the most awkward timing since the crash site sex of '08, but it just didn't jell with the rest of the scenes. It was so, "Hey! You're dying, but you have a brother I neglected to tell you about for twenty years! That's good news, right!?" I loved the "WTF!" look on Lexie's face and the way Abe casually introduced himself as her husband. Then again, Abe is probably used to Lexie finding out she has stray half-siblings.

Truth be told, Salem needed another hunk in Cameron's age range. Let's face it, Chad is a catch, but he can't be the sole go-to twentysomething straight guy. That would be exhausting for him. So, I'm in. I'll give Cameron a chance to show us what he can bring to the operating table. Just keep Scabby Gabi away from him, thanks.

My final question remains: Who is Cameron's father? Celeste said half-brother, so he's not Stefano's son. I'm predicting Ian. They've pretty much ingratiated him everywhere else, so why not with Celeste? Oh, oh, or John? Celeste did keep him chained in that dungeon for a while. Hmm!

What's-His-Face and Who's-That-Girl were spotted last week! Oh, right, that was Jack and Jennifer. They kissed and reunited, which was especially gratifying, since we got to see him go through all that therapy and her do all that soul-searching to bring her to the point where she decided Jack was the man for her. The truth is, Matt and Melissa did wonders with the material, but there is so much more that needed to be said. And this year's Most Underutilized Characters are...

I love Kate Mansi. I do! She made the scenes with Gabi bearable. The looks Abigail shot to Little Hernandi were hysterical. I just can't wait for the moment when Abigail really rips into Gabi for being an utter toolbox.

Chad just might join the ranks of Austin and Abe when it comes to supportive, loving partners. I cheered that he made Melanie feel better about herself and didn't judge her. Those two might make it after all because second-rate schemer Gabi just can't seem to pull it together. She needs to stop it with the Mad World website and Google Kristen Blake to learn how to really go psycho and land a man (until said man's significant other figures it all out, of course).

More gushing about Will's storyline to come, but I thought it was a great twist that E.J. knew Will is gay, and wants him to live without fear or judgment. I think Marlena was just as surprised by how much E.J. cares for him! And I actually believe, in that respect, that E.J. does have Will's best interest at heart, which makes E.J. all the more delicious.

Plus, it's an interesting parallel between E.J. and Will. E.J. doesn't want to be judged for who he is, and neither does Will. Yet E.J. has dealt with being judged (fairly and unfairly), and will be a great source of strength for Young Grown-Up Mr. Horton. It adds another level to their already interesting bond, and there's nothing wrong with that!

Extra Scoops

Will said it! He said, "I'm gay." Amazing, simply amazing scenes! There wasn't a thing about his coming out that wasn't perfectly crafted by the writers and performed by the actors. Dee and Chandler simply nailed it with their honest portrayals. I admit it, even Mr. Tired Cranky Pants Tony got a little misty-eyed.

I really can't say enough good things about what happened. This slow build was worth the wait, and I can't wait to see where Will goes from here. Not only was a weight visibly lifted from his shoulders, but he sort of graduated from young man to man.

Plus, I love the way Will found his strength and even his sense of humor again, and he wasn't even drunk. Not only was his "the ladies will be crushed" line hysterical, but Will showed he has a big heart. It was touching that he worried about Gabi's reaction and over-depending on Sonny as his "gay life coach." And, sure, he'll eventually have to tell Sami and Lucas, but one step at a time, kid. Go, Will!

I really want to slap Carrie right now, and that's too bad because we were just becoming civil. You see, she thinks it's a good idea for her to go back to Austin because things with Rafe didn't work out. Riiight. Sounds logical to me. When she tried to convince Rafe that she was trying to make a go of her marriage, she looked like a dieter eating a low cal, tasteless meal while trying to convince everyone it's yummy. Ugh, and that kiss with Austin at the pub was cheap and uncalled for. What grade is Carrie in now? Mrs. Reed-Wannabe-Hernandez needs to grow a pair, woman-up, and leave Austin. Staying with him isn't fair to him, herself, Rafe, or me.

Sami (to Lucas regarding her unresolved feelings for E.J.): "What? Me shooting him in the head was just a speed bump on the road to true love?"

Honorable Mention:
Will (to Marlena): "When people are telling you about how you should be comfortable with who you are, it makes it hard to be comfortable with who you are."

Princess Gina and Count Wilhelm were so super smooth. There is no way John heard them whispering from a foot away.

Wow! Abe and Lexie's house. The last time I remember seeing that was during the Salem Stalker storyline, and I'm sorry for brining that up, but I do love what they've done with the place.

Speaking of, remember when Abe and Lexie's house was Roman and Marlena's?

Okay, another "get rich" scheme -- move to Salem and sell champagne!

I loved Theo's dino pajamas.

Rafe still has on his wedding band, which is ironic because neither of the women he's involved with right now is his wife.

Is it just me, or do the hospital sets look a little snug?

There's something off about Sami's new apartment. I think it's the white stove paired with the stainless steel refrigerator.

Marlena said wringing your hands doesn't solve anything. Maybe she knows from experience, and maybe that's why she was still wearing those gloves, because she's all chafed.

So, friends and DAYS fans, that's Two Scoops for the week of April 9! I'm off to search for a happy place far, far away from Alamainia. In the meantime, Laurisa will be back next week to take care of all your Scooping needs, and kick Carrie's butt if need be. And, "That's a fact!"

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