There's not an easy way to tell you this, DAYS friends. Many steaming Salemites are ready to punch stupid Cupid in his dumb cherub face. Love might be a many-splendored thing for folks like Shawn and Belle, but it's Rocky Patch Road for Eli and Lani as they lurch another mile closer to Splitsville. Steve and Kayla continue to crack, too. So do Jack and Jen, because they're so not "Jack and Jen" right now. The only thing most of these couples can agree on is disagreeing. And there's no better place to start with the linchpin of Elani's problems than...
Look. I love Kristen. I'm an OG fanboy from the days when she was simply social worker Kristen Blake. I've loved the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between, but even I know she's surely not some saint simply because she's said sorry a few times. Both Brady and Lani need to accept that, because I fear they'll remain insufferable until they do.
Let's take Brady "Eli Got Exactly What He Wanted" Black blabbing on like the spoiled brat he is. Really, dude? Eli wanted a billionaire man-baby bothering him all the time and threatening to expose him? Eli wanted to lie to his pregnant new wife? I don't think Eli wanted either of those things. Seriously, Brady, shut up like it's your civic duty. Salem will thank you for that.
As for Lani. Ha! I'm sorry. I can't. I can't take her seriously. At all. When she screeched at Eli, "What you did to Kristen!" and "Do you know how dirty that is!?" I laughed. A lot. At this point, I find Lani so far gone, I believe she needs Abigail's old room in the Florida loony bin.
Lani can claim all day long that Kristen is her bestest friend in the entire world -- ever! -- but I'm not buying it until she makes her some friendship bracelets. That's how it's done, right, Eric? You can also ask Jennifer. Well. Maybe don't ask her now. Jenny from the Block is not in a chatty mood. One might get slapped. Wait. Maybe Lani should ask her. Joking. Just joking.
So, yeah. Points for Lani for being a protective pal, but, yep. I'm with Eli. She has a distorted take on Kristen, and her loyalty does defy reason. Lani also continues to claim that la Lady DiMera is the reason she and Eli are together, which never gets truer each time she states it. Lies don't become truths just because one wishes them to be, Lanister. Guh. It's maddening. If Lani had fought Gabi this hard for Eli, they could have had years together instead of being newlyweds. But that's a dead horse I'm tired of beating.
When Eli said, "I'm not sorry" and, more so, "Deal with it!" I cheered. A lot. I wish Lani a healthy delivery, but, afterwards, if she went "into the next room" for a long time to work on her Kristen and me collage, I'll gladly help Eli raise the twins and find a new love interest that isn't so exasperating. And by "help raise the twins," I mean I'll yell for the nanny -- but do so happily. I wonder what Fran Drescher is up to these days. Anyway...
I mentioned Jennifer earlier. Yep. She's still steamed with Jack. I don't blame her. He cheated, yada-yada-yada. He was wrong. Blah blah blah. No doubt. But this entire storyline is so exhausting, I just want to walk away from it like Gabi when she spots Julie having a heart attack. I'm not even going to look back or download an app. Best wishes for a speedy reunion, Jack and Jen.
Okay. Maybe I will glimpse back in the rearview for a moment. Jen and Kate got into a fight. She smacked Kate. Fair. Kate smacked her back. Unexpected. No! I'm not smirking with an amused, Muriel's Wedding-like, "You're terrible, Kate." Well. Maybe a little, but I digress...
Hell, Kate even admitted, "I'm the guilty one. I own that. I regret that," but Ms. Roberts was not apologetic, and I loved every moment of it. Her points were harsh, especially to the woman whose husband she had slept with (and one must add) while she was in a coma, but that doesn't mean Kate didn't have valid points to make, especially about Horton treatment and Bill's positive influence on her life. And, no! I was certainly not cheering when Kate exclaimed, "Get over yourself!" Okay. Maybe I was a little. Or a lot.
That said, I don't think Jennifer owes Jack or anyone else anything right now. She needs time to sulk and lick her wounds. Figure out what she wants. It's also Reason Number 90,210 to hate that Hope is gone: Jennifer could use some cuz time. Maybe a Zoom or Facetime meetup over doughnuts? Hope has been in touch with others, but more on that later. Moving on to the state of "Stayla."
Steve and Kayla fighting is frustrating all around. He's frustrated. She's frustrated. I'm frustrated. You're frustrated. Somewhere, Don Craig's kicking a mailbox out of frustration, too. It's frustrating, and I get it.
I get Steve's side as a father and a detective. Tripp is his son, and, even with the DNA evidence, Steve senses there's something off about the story. The case. Detective-ing is his thing. He's seldom that off.
I get Kayla's side, too. She is a doctor and a sexual assault survivor, and she has been victimized by la Vitali famiglia. She's ruled by facts as a person of science, yet her feelings are raw due to her past experiences. Sure, she's taking some low blows, but they're basically at an emotionally charged impasse. It's, well, frustrating.
While I totally get both sides, I believe they're both failing right now. As seasoned Salemites who've seen it all over the years and heard about the rest of the wacky, wouldn't one always weigh the "What ifs?" Like, "What if Tripp is being truthful and, as such, how did the DNA match?" Also, "What if Tripp has an unknown sibling on the Vitali side, as unknown kin pop up all the time in this town (Tripp himself popped up!)?" And, "What if one's husband was abducted by a mad scientist and implanted with the 'Essence' of an archenemy?" Oh, right. That last one is for real. Again, anything can happen in Salem. Tempers are too high for logic to prevail at the moment, but I hope level heads soon come out to play because an unstable "Stayla" makes me uneasy and, well, as stated, frustrated.
On the topic of the trouble Steve and Kayla are having, while wishing Charlie would stay an adorkable love interest for Claire and not, you know, a potential rapist, I began thinking. Scary, right? Well, in all of the conversations about Tripp being a genetic match for Baby Boy George Horton, has it ever been confirmed verbally that Allie is. You may be asking, "Huh!?" Hear me out and brace for some icky theories about Li'l Henry...
Four tests were run. Kayla stated that Tripp is a match. It's easy to assume Allie is the mother, since, well, she delivered Henry and has a horror story about his conception, but this is Salem! In this twisted town, Kristen carried Tater Tot, and was going to do the same to Sarah's fetus. Vivian birthed Philip. Without her consent, Marlena's womb was rented to wonder twins, Rex and Cassie. And Dr. Rolf was about to use Kayla as a "Stefaclone" incubator. Yes, Salem has sure seen its share of peculiar pregnancies.
With that said, are we sure it was Allie's egg combined with Johnson-Vitali sperm? Could it have been one of Ava's eggs combined with someone else's sperm? Dr. Rolf would be familiar with Allie, given she's E.J.'s stepdaughter. He certainly knows Ava. She's been one of his *whispers* Resurrection by Wilhelm success stories. We've all seen her segment on the sinister scientist's infomercial. Maybe he thought she owed him a favor for the entire bringing her back from the brink of death thingy, and she had to offer up an egg or two. He's been itching to bring Stefano back, so is this the way -- Ava's egg, Stefano's sperm, Allie as an incubator, and Tripp as the fall guy? Hmm!
After all, both Tripp and Allie can confirm she had too much to drink that night, but was it just alcohol? Dr. Rolf isn't above roofie-ing a drink. Perhaps Tripp did help her to bed, leave a note, and scuttle off with smitten thoughts that this cute but wasted gal would call him once she shook the vodka-soaked cobwebs from her brain. With Tripp gone, perhaps Dr. Rolf implanted the fertilized egg in Allie while dressed up like Tripp. Maybe? It seems far-fetched, but remember when Stefano dressed up like Elvis Presley to impregnate Susan? Yep. DAYS has done some nutty things in the name of pregnancy plots, so anything is possible.
One more possibility. While Dr. Rolf is all about Stefano Redux, could Steve's sperm have been used? Would his swimmers still have Stefano's "essence"? That's a question I never thought I'd ask, or want to ask, but here we are. Meaning, Allie could have carried Steve and Ava's second child and Tripp's brother, hence making the DNA test match Tripp. I know. This all gave me a case of the icks, too, but this is Salem, baby, and as Eli would say, "Deal with it."
We got a Chelsea and a Paul mention. Woot! I know she has Uncle Max, which still makes me cringe, and he has hot trainer guy, but these two meeting somewhere, becoming friends, and helping each other find love again would be a fun web series to watch.
Seriously, though, it's a crime Chelsea isn't in Salem right now. One, I'm with Shawn. His immediate family needs some representation. Two, Chelsea's chutzpah could easily castrate the Kiriakis boys club. Thirdly, of all Victor's kin, Former Swamp Baby has the mouth to deliver the zingers when he's not around. She will also stand up for Claire when Xander is a tool to her. This all needs to happen. Please!
I get that Shawn misses his mom and sister right now (and I'm sure Bo, Zack, and Ciara are on his mind, too). I also get that his comment was probably focused on immediate family, but, still, he does have family in town. Like, everywhere. Uncle Roman, whom he was talking to earlier; Aunt Kayla; and an entire brood on the Kiriakis side are around. Wait. He's a Horton, too. Okay, you can't swing your bag in town square without hitting someone he's related to. Shawn, maybe make some calls. Eli is a cousin, and you were talking to him earlier. Brother-in-law Ben, who could use some cheering up. Oh, J.J.'s in town, and Jennifer would be a good proxy for Hope as long as she's done slapping people.
Shawn stated, "Love can overcome just about anything." The "just about" part has me panicking! I hope this was idle chitchat and not foreshadowing. After I'm done with Two Scoops, I'm going to cross my fingers. And toes.
Xander, honey, no. Turn that dial way back when speaking about Claire's craziness. First off, rude. Second off, way, way, way too soon. Thirdly, you're frickin' family and trying to score points with Pop-pop. He's not, well, crazy about Claire bashing. Though, Xanimal does always make solid life choices like caging women, swapping babies...you know, noncrazy stuff. This pains me, but you're on notice, sir. And I'll be taking those biscuits Sarah got you, sucka.
Yes. Yes. And, yes! Xander and Sarah teaming up to bring down Philip is a zillion and one times better than watching Sarah scold him. Welcome back, Xarah! Your charm was missed.
So, Ava is still pining after the Patch Man. Dimples wants to call dibs on Belle's heart again. All that I see are two flawed, attractive Salemites that are commiserating when they could be a potential match made in, well, somewhere. "Phava" or "Avlip," perhaps? Could be interesting. Just saying.
Convents are the hot spots for finding friends. Who knew? But, really, oh, damn! Kristen said to Brady, "I've never had a friend like Lani." Don't tell Ava and those flashbacks that, Ms. DiMera. Ava is unpleasantly possessive and sometimes not nice when she feels betrayed. Then again, Ava could take out Lani, solving a lot of problems...I kid. I kid. And if you need me, I won't be at Ava's sublet that looks nothing like Nicole and Eric's place, letting things accidentally slip after this column. Nope. No, I won't.
When Abigail stated, "I'm the one who totally screwed everything up, but then, you know, I'm crazy, so nobody wants to hold me accountable for my actions," I raised my testament hands. Preach, Reverend Abs. Preach. You're not wrong. I admire this self-awareness. I also wish it were around in the old days, prior to her diagnosed mental health issues. Back then, she was Entitlement Incorporated's poster child for its campaign, "It's Not Your Fault You Did Something Wrong. At All. Everyone Else Is To Blame, Even For The Things You Did Do Wrong Because You're Special...And Not Wrong. Ever!" That was a long slogan. It's no wonder that company folded.
Given Gwen's grit to give it to Abigail combined with her affection for chatting with Stefano's portrait, AND her comment on Stefan and Jake being exactly the same, I'm looping back to an original theory about Gwenie. That is, she's Stefan's ex of some degree. An ex-wife, an ex-girlfriend, a not-so-ex-psycho who locked him in a cage one summer when they were teens, or something ex-y like that. That "exactly" comment set off some alarms.
This theory also checks a lot of the boxes as to why G-Money hates Abigail (irrationally, of course, as Abs didn't even like Stefan, but soap logic and all). She probably sees it as Abigail "stole" Stefan from her. I'm guessing this happened around the time Stefan found out he was a DiMera-Alamain hybrid from hell. He left town with mommy and Andre, pledging to Gwen he'd be back, and he never returned. She went looking, perhaps, spotted him with Abs, and that's that? Maybe. Maybe not. But that's the hunch du jour (again). Plus, Gwen versus a dark wig wouldn't be as entertaining. Well. Kind of hilarious, but it would end too quickly. Anyway...
Abigail "stealing" Stefan from her and ruining her relationship probably set her off. Somehow, maybe through Rolf, as they're established friends, she found out about Jake two-ish plus years ago and set the wheels of some sort of revenge in motion. That part's still foggy.
Either way, I think it does revolve around a connection to Stefan and, as such, a respect for his father, as she loves her face time with the Phoenix portrait. Plus, Abigail's comment about people not holding her accountable due to her craziness may be foreshadowing to Gwen's desire to hold her accountable for these mysterious wrongdoings. As to why she doesn't hate the wig or Gabi as much, that remains to be seen, if it even has a connection. This all leads to a big old bag of "Hmm!" and more guessing.
We've gotten a Hope Update! Shawn stated that she's "doing fine" but quickly shoots down the idea of coming home. She won't divulge where she is or what she's up to, but she is in constant contact. Roman has heard from her, too. This gives me, well, hope, as it were. Though, I pray she doesn't end up at the convent, too. For a gal who has no friends, Kristen is swimming in them.
Google Assistant, book Uber for Ava's apartment. What's that, Google Assistant? We're still Two Scooping? Whoops. I meant, Google Assistant, move on to Extra Scoops!
In addition to the adoration I feel for Eli "Deal With It" Grant and Kate "Get Over Yourself" Roberts right now, I'm in love with all things "Shelle!" From Belle's proposal a few weeks ago to this week's love fest, I'm all in. I adored John and "Tink's" talk and may have misted up. His love for his daughter is precious. I also loved John's scene with Shawn. And, ha! They were hilarious together with jittery Charlie. Poor kid. Add in the shout-outs to Chelsea and Paul, and I was beaming. Oh, and then, yes, honey -- Jan Spears cometh down the aisle. It's pure soap indulgence at its best, and I loved every sudsy moment. More, please!
Neither Lani nor Brady deserves another "NOT." They take up too much space here for the same redundant reasons, and, not to spoil anything, but they might end up receiving an Alex North Memorial Award next month. Therefore, Kate's suggestion to Jennifer that Jack may get spooked and run away should she not forgive him fast enough is getting this week's dubious honor.
Sure, it's maddeningly possible, given Jack's track record. Nope. Kate's not wrong. That's a classic Jack tendency. But the suggestion not only paints Jack as still hella pathetic, but it also unfairly forces Jennifer's hand. Jenny Bear can be a tool at times, but she deserves to forgive (or not forgive) Jack on her own timeline. And, honestly, Jen, if he runs for the third or fourth time, let him go, and you can join a convent. You'll at least make friends there. And probably bump into Kristen!
LINE(S) OF THE WEEK
Kate (to Jennifer): "Get over yourself."
Eli (to Lani): "Deal with it."
EXCHANGE(S) OF THE WEEK
Charlie: "Well, I also work for Xander Kiriakis. In fact, I'm much closer to him, really."
John: "He shot my wife."
Charlie: "Maybe closer isn't the right word."
Kate (after getting slapped): "Well. I didn't think you had that in you."
Jennifer: "Now you do."
Kate: "I think maybe you scratched me, perhaps with your wedding ring. How ironic?"
Not to be a downer, but is remarrying on the anniversary of one's first wedding day really romantic or, you know, bad juju, since the marriage failed? For me, it's like, "Remember that day we were super happy and then it all unbearably fell apart? Let's do that again!" I don't find that romantic. Maybe this is why I'm single.
Jan's gift to Belle was all shades of the Joker! Hilarious and horrifying, that is. Oh, Jan!
Really, though, Martha Madison and Heather Lindell's chemistry is great. They play opposite one another wonderfully. Much more, please!
Ha! Of course, Roman knew about Jack and Kate. Never underestimate the sober guy in the room, especially if he's a celebrated former detective. Ro Ro rocks!
Jack ordered a "double anything on the rocks." Once again, ha!
D'oh! Hi, Li Shin *giggles* Shut up. I'm not blushing; you are.
Ava said to Philip, "You lost your car keys? My faith in you is plummeting by the second." I missed Tamara's deliveries so much. Welcome back, goddess!
Okay, maybe my favorite part of the "Elani" meltdown is that after he told her to "deal with it," he went directly for the fridge. I often need a cold one after dealing with Lani, too. I get it, Eli.
I also get it, Abby. Champagne hangovers are the worst. Ever. "A little worse than horrible," indeed.
Jan's memories of her "summer with Shawn" are truly twisted, yet Heather's delivery is hysterical. I mean, Jan's so far out there, she may loop back around the earth and catch a glimpse of reality. Wait. She should take Lani with her! They both could use a dose of reality. Though I don't know if that psycho would realize it if she saw it. I don't know if Jan would, either.
Charlie is putting off a total "Clark Kent" vibe. That's not a complaint. I just hope he's more Superman than Bizarro.
Speaking of vibes, Xander and Sarah's sleuthing shenanigans sort of have a Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant in Bringing Up Baby one to them. Sans the leopard, of course. For now. Maybe there'll be one later. Either way, Linsey Godfrey is pulling off some fun Hepburnian traits, and that's not a bad thing.
Aw, the "Claire Bear" talk between daddy and daughter was adorable.
Seeing Casey Moss again is good for the soul.
Have Gwen and Jan met? Something tells me they'd be fast friends.
Claire's "Whatever" to Xander made me laugh.
Not to be redundant, but I want T-shirts with Eli and Kate's emojis printed on them and the text, "Deal with it!" on his and "Get Over Yourself" on hers. Please and thank you.
Why is Jen at the Salem Inn and not the Horton home? I thought she and Jack were only at the DiMera mansion to help with the kids while Abs was, you know, away. Baby's back and has a nanny, so go home Jen Jen. Oh. Right. Julie lives there, too. While she loves hard and usually means well, a little bit of her special brand of caring might go a long way while licking your wounds. Alone at the inn suddenly makes more sense.
So, friends and fellow DAYS fans, that's it for November 23! If I may take a moment to be sentimental, I want to wish each and every one of you, as well as your loved ones, a safe and happy Thanksgiving. Our holiday may not look like last year, but this year's sacrifices will mean many more years of celebrations to come -- bigger, better, and brighter ones. So, please mask up and stay healthy. It's a scary world out there still, but it's less scary if we're all in it together. With that, Laurisa will be back to referee Salem's squabblings next week! Again, friends, stay safe, stay healthy, and stay wonderful! As always, thank you for reading, and "That's a fact."
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