Spoiler Alert! I'm about to rave about recent casting news. Skip ahead to, um, I guess the end of my column if you wish to remain unspoiled. Actually, click here to skip over the casting chatter. I'm annoyingly happy and ready to gush amongst my DAYS-loving friends. You've been warned.
So, let me break this down. October 11th can't come fast enough. Like, I really want to put myself in a Nyquil-induced coma from now until 12:59 p.m. that day because at one o'clock is when one of my favorites amongst favorites comes home to Salem. That's the day Eileen Davidson returns as Kristen Blake!
You can read the entire article on soapcentral.com by clicking here. I'm so happy I'll even wait while you do. Just, um, give me a refill on the champagne if you go.
Now, Laurisa said in her Two Scoops column last week, "Party Alert! I'm going to let my partner have first crack at rolling out the red carpet for the divine Ms. Davidson. He loves her like I love a good stiletto."
I know Laurisa. I know how much she loves heels. That's a bold statement. And it's very true. I love Eileen as Kristen! In fact, Eileen's on my list of favorite daytime actresses. Kristen's high on my top ten list of favorite DAYS characters of all time. That's what I consider a win/win, folks. And in honor of Laurisa's generosity of letting me get the party officially started, I'm going to use one of her signature celebratory yelps, and exclaim, "Woot! Woot!"
Okay, breathing again in five, four, three, two...
Needless to say, I can't wait to see what Kristen has been up to since last we saw her locked away in a dungeon screaming, "I've lost my freedom. I've lost John. Marlena's won! No. No. No!" I'm anticipating that sometime within those fourteen years she's come up with a juicy, devious revenge plot or two. Cue evil laughter while imagining her first confrontation with Marlena upon her return. The look on Doc's face alone will be worth the price of admission.
It will also be interesting to watch the dynamics between John and Kristen. Last time, she was a DiMera, and that caused friction for them. This time around, he is.
On that vein, I can't wait for Kristen to meet E.J. She wasn't a DiMera by blood, but Stefano adored his devious adopted daughter. E.J.'s just been dethroned, but still wants to be a DiMera. She might be able to teach him a few things about being a non-DiMera insider, and thus teaching Will a few things, too. Oh, Marlena will just love Will interacting with E.J. and Kristen. I hope this happens!
But whereas I could go on gushing, I will spare everyone. I have a few more months to gush and anticipate, after all. In the meantime, we have on-screen drama to talk about.
Last week in Salem crawled a bit. A lot of the action seemed to be repeated from the week before. Considering we're only a few weeks until the big Olympic hiatus cliffhanger, things better start heating up like the weather. Let's discuss!
E.J. and COMPANY
Given that I don't believe E.J. is guilty, I had a hard time staying awake while Roman, Rafe, and Agent Spencer investigated Salem's fair mayor. Someone's setting him up. We know that. The question is who.
My best hunch is Ian. He paid E.J. a cryptic visit after Stefano died. He has a Phoenix walking stick, and that means he has a DiMera connection. What that connection might be is a mystery in and of itself. Perhaps he's one of Stefano's seven brothers, or maybe Andre isn't dead and got another surgery to look like a creepy goon. So many possibilities!
Of course, Roman thinks E.J.'s guilty as sin. But I have to give it to Ro Ro. He flat out admitted he can't be objective about the DiMeras. Hey, at least he admits it, and I can't blame the guy. If someone's been kidnapped and tortured by the same family several times, that would leave a little bit of a bitter taste in one's mouth.
That leaves the investigation up to Rafe and Spencer. Truth be told, Spencer needs to be the one to crack it. He's definitely the most impartial. Whereas Rafe seems to be open to the idea of other suspects, he can't seem to turn down the douche level around E.J. to fairly access the situation.
But not everyone thinks E.J. is really guilty. He has a cheerleader named Will. I love James and Chandler's interactions. They can create deep, complex scenes, yet still make me chuckle. I mean, come on, Will is sort of like Scrappy-Doo following around E.J. with a gusto that's simultaneously adorable and annoying at times. It's working for me.
Also still working is the chemistry between James and Ali. It's ridiculously intense! The fact that E.J. and Sami have basically had the same scene for the past few weeks, um, months, perhaps, and James and Ali still manage to make it fresh is a true testament that they're magical together. I have a feeling before the hiatus something big is going to happen between these two. I hope so anyway!
JOHN and COMPANY
Holy use of forgotten history, Batman! The writers finally remembered John is a DiMera. How did you like them apples? I know I did. In fact, I loved them!
This could be a potentially great storyline. I mean it. Watching John go head-to-head with E.J. will be intense. Those two have such a crazy history, and none of it's pretty.
Plus, there will be interesting alliances made I'm sure. Which side will Sami pick? We know Will is on Team E.J., so will Sami side with her son or Lucas? How about Kate? Where will Kristen fit in when she returns -- will she use a potential corporate war to get on John's good side, to get back at John, or will she be in it to win it for herself? How about Chad? Perhaps he'll like the idea of getting to know his long lost Uncle John. Hmm!
The first two members of Team John were Marlena and Lucas. Marlena's always at her coolest when she's fired up to take on the DiMeras. And it's amazing how much cooler Lucas is when he's not getting up on his stepstool to idly threaten E.J.
This storyline could actually be a big win for Lucas. For us to take him seriously, he needs to become a man of action. I liked watching him do something to combat E.J., even if it was simply making phone calls. With all due respect, Lucas doesn't strike me as the type to be able to take E.J. down on his own. He needs a solid ally. If Victor's no longer teaching him the ropes, I think John will do just fine.
I nominate Brady as the next team member. I want him to sober up, dump the deadweight that is Madison, and join Team John. He has valid reasons to want to see E.J. dethroned. Besides, Brady's a DiMera, too.
Yep, there's a lot of great potential here, dear writers. I'm intrigued. Don't blow it!
BRADY and MADISON
Speaking of blow, I give Brady credit. He decided to stay off drugs because of Madison, whereas she makes me want to start doing them. Like, really, I'm done with her. She needs to leave. And I know she is, but it's just not soon enough. The character is doing nothing for the show, and Madison is a gross misuse of the amazing Sarah Brown's talents.
NICOLE and DR. DAN
I felt a little dirty after witnessing their pillow talk. I think most of you know which scene I'm talking about. They didn't even really try to be subtle. I'm not a prude, trust me. I get the excitement of meeting someone you become completely absorbed with. It's fun. It's exciting. But with Dr. Dan and Nicole, I just find it a little awkward. And dirty in a bad way.
Anyway, Dr. Dan brought up a valid point. He warned Nicole that he didn't want to end up in another love triangle. Points for opening up, Dr. Horn-dog, but I think that's exactly where this is headed. The writing's already on the wall, and either Rafe or E.J. will end up in the mix. Yawn!
MELANIE, GABI, and COMPANY
Is it sad when a highlight of this storyline has been the mentioning of Carly, Nicholas, Chelsea, Max, Dario, and Philip? It's even more depressing that no one called Nurse Maxine. She would know what to do.
Anyway, Gabi is a gem isn't she? She's definitely a good friend, too. I mean, I'm sure Melanie will totally understand that Gabi only went along with keeping her held hostage because she was blackmailed. Right?
When it boils down to it, Gabi's verging on a Willow Stark level of suckiness. I don't feel sorry for her. I don't think she truly feels bad for Melanie, considering she was out to ruin her life by stealing Chad in the first place. I don't want her to walk away unscathed. In fact, I want her locked up in the dungeon where Kristen Blake was held. Once those doors are shut, it's a fourteen-year sentence. I could handle not seeing Gabi for over a decade.
In the meantime, she whined to Andrew about blackmailing her. Andrew's a freak show, no doubt about it, but Gabi set the ball in motion. She's to blame. It's like she brought an arsonist to a paper factor, gave him a lighter, and was surprised when he started to burn things. Sorry, Gabs, but that's what happens when you find goons on Craigslist.
But it was Chad who was out to find Melanie. Dr. Dan even came out from under Nicole to help, too. Plus Abigail and Cameron joined in while Bo and Hope headed the investigation. Roman, Spencer, and Rafe pledged to have every man out looking for Melanie, and then left on other business. Was I the only one who chuckled at that?
All in all, I'm happy to see everyone band together to find Melanie, and Chad jump into action, but I'm looking forward to the end of this storyline. Melanie has been kidnapped one too many times. It's a bit tired. Granted, watching Gabi squirm makes me smile, but I'm sure she won't pay for her crimes. She seems to have the same luck Rafe has. I guess douchebags are like Teflon, and nothing sticks to them. Ugh.
Aw, Roman told Will he loves him! He also stated that he knows things have been strained between them, but invited Will to sit down with him and talk. Go, Roman! I really hope we get to see these scenes.
Cameron and Abigail are adorable together. They also communicate very well, and you don't see that every day on a soap. And, yes, I'm looking at Carrie and Austin right now.
John + remembering his DiMera roots = very hot! Nice catch, writers.
Gabi + in general = not, very, very, not.
LINE OF THE WEEK:
E.J. (to Sami): "Pot, kettle, sweetheart. Pot. Kettle."
I won't be upset if I never see John rubbing Marlena's feet again.
What was Kate wearing last week?
Oddly enough, I never recall seeing a basketball arcade game in the Brady Pub before.
I wish Austin would bring me some soap and fresh fruit.
I was thinking. It's sad we lost Arianna and Dario but are stuck with Rafe and Gabi.
Hmm, was Andrew's place a reuse of Patrick Lockhart's house?
Did I mention Eileen Davidson's returning as Kristen? Not sure.
So, friends and fellow DAYS fans, that's Two Scoops for the week of July 16! As I'll be busy not preparing a secret room in the DiMera basement in case Kristen wants to tuck Marlena away for safekeeping again, Laurisa will be back the next few weeks to keep you abreast of all the latest happenings in Salem, leading up to the big Olympic cliffhanger.
But if you're worried about missing Two Scoops during the Olympic hiatus in August, don't be! You can join Team DAYS Two Scoops as Laurisa and I are teaming up to bring you fresh, new columns each week during the break. We'll also have some fun announcements to make during the week of August 13, so be sure to join in the fun! 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 -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.