The one with friends, frenemies, and cupcakes

For the Week of May 24, 2021
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It was a friend-filled Sweeps week in Salem (sort of)! Lani reunited with her bestie, Kristen. Jan jolted Claire by stopping by. Sami and Lucas hilarity ensued! And Gabi gave some good advice to her frien -- frenemies. So, let's dig out those bracelets that Eric and Jennifer made us once upon a time ago and have a friendly little chitchat in this week's DAYS Two Scoops!

The Divine Miss M, Bette Midler, sings, "Yah got to have friends." That's so true. Especially in Salem. Some are there with tough love. Some with hidden love. Some are new. Some are old. Some cool you down when you get too hot (Hi, Claire Bear). Some catch you -- or at least try to -- when you fall. Others must arrest you, while some tend be a little more frenemy than friend, and that can be fabulous, too. So, pals, let's first dive into one of my favorite friendships...

Okay. Okay. Okay. I know that one shouldn't have fun when trapped in a dungeon-ish room while waiting for a psycho to return and "take care" of you, but I was in stitches because of Sami and Lucas. Alison Sweeney and Bryan Dattilo are comedic gold. Yet they're so gifted, they can switch to heart-tugging in a moment, and we seamlessly go along for the ride with them. Their individual talents combined with their familiarity with one another forms this bestie chemistry that few pal pairs can rival. I adore them both (and have for decades).

Of said "heart-tugging moments," I enjoyed that Sami finally apologized. It was a very Sami apology, sure, but those tender moments bring her character back down to earth (well, Salem earth). As did the moments when she showered Lucas with support concerning Kate. Sami (and Gabi) are right. This is freakin' Kate Roberts we're talking about. She will not go down like that. At all. I'll stand with the remaining two thirds of the Tossing Nick in the River Crew by standing by Kate, too. Though, has anyone thought about putting a little martini in her I.V.? Like, seriously, Ms. Kate might respond to that, but I digress.

Of course, when we added in a Xanimal, the hilarity continued! Sure, he was there to kill Sami and Lucas, but did we think for a second that he was actually going to go through with it? I'm shocked Special K thought he'd shoot to kill. I guess Kristen was desperate, too. At least those scenes slayed me. There's that. I couldn't get enough of the rapid-fire exchange between the three (more on that later).

In the end, it was Sami's shared money that saved both her and Lucas, despite her momentary protest that she wouldn't pay for him. That totally cracked me up. Sometimes Sami and Lucas are at their funniest and best when at their worst. More, please.

At the root, though, Sami had to reach out to E.J. to secure the sum. La Sweeney crushed that scene completely. It was wowing, as that was one complex call. It was filled with desperation, a smidge of hope, a ton of regret, heartbreaking longing, and love and self-loathing. Sami misting up had me misting up, too. Oh, "EJami," what has become of you!? Then again, I guess a complex love, loathing, and something in between all at once with a side of tears and smiling through tears is kind of their -- wait for it -- e-"JAM"-i. Sorry. Had to. Anyway. Nope. Love has never been easy for them. And it still isn't. What will the next phase for them look like?

So, it seems Sami's need for a cool ten million might be the catalyst to bring E.J. back to Salem, and we'll find out. I'm sure he wants a long explanation as to why his wifey needed access to that kind of coinage.

Still, this is going to be rough. I'm greedy, as I want the "Lumi" bestie bond to stay intact and the "EJami" chemistry to continue, as well. Well. If that old chemistry is still there. That's to be seen. If E.J. still has a marshmallow on his head or a new face, will that lovin' feelin' still be there, or will it be gone, gone, gone, whoa-oh? I repeat, "hmm!"


So, Ciara asked for a divorce. Sounds about right. Then Claire and Ben kissed. Yep. Also sounds about right. I was actually surprised how into it Ben was. He took his shirt off and everything. Then he (thankfully) pumped the brakes. It's not that in another time and place they wouldn't be an interesting, maybe even hot couple, but, with Ciara alive, their shelf life would be so short that it's probably not worth pondering the possibilities of "Beire." Or "Clen." I'm not sure what the cyber speak is on this smooshed name, but I can say, do we bother to care? I'm cool with them staying tight-knit, caring friends.

Shawn and Belle breathe life into the show for me. I enjoy their dynamic so much (and thank the universe for Brandon Beemer and Martha Madison). Their teamwork is terrific, but it also comes with a side of their experiences as a couple -- both strengths and weaknesses. He questioned why she threw water in his face. She questioned why he threw Philip in hers. It's a very "Shelle" moment that added depth to the storyline, and yet they've matured enough to remember they are a team. More, please.

Yes, Lani. Yes! Arrest your bestie, and let's be done with this storyline. I applaud Detective Price-Grant for doing the right thing (finally) and doing it so compassionately. It needed to be done for the growth of Lani's character...and to prove she has brain cells left, as her last few experiences with Kristen had given me pause as to her prowess. Go, Lani, go!

Of course, at first, I was also proud of Special K for turning herself in without a fuss, but then she turned around and wanted to play hardball. Her freedom for Chloe's life. I mean, that sounds fair. I'm quite sure similar deals have been made in Salem before. Though, sorry, Eli, that you have to deal with that special brand of crazy.

In any event, Kristen might end up a free woman, but will she end up single, too? I hope so, as the "rinse and repeat" of Brady and Kristen has gone on for long enough. I'm ready for better for both of them.

It was very meta of DAYS to bring up Kristen and Lani's closeness and possible "more than friendship" mystique. I think many of us wondered if the show would "go there" with them, especially as hard as their friendship was pushed. And that was really, really hard. Alas, we're just as gossipy as a convent full of nuns, as Kristen and Lani confirmed they're just extra special, deeply bonded besties.

Meanwhile, Chanel came out to Lani. I was glad that Lani offered to be there for her cousin and "never judge" her. That's on record and seemed like it should be noted. Lani's compassionate side was certainly present here, too, and I liked it.

Eli was nice to Chanel, also, but something still stinks of a "Carrie, Austin, and Sami" scenario here. I know Chanel says that she has a connection to Allie but won't go for her, and maybe I'm wrong, but let's call it a Celeste-like intuition, darlings. After all, Ms. Perrault wasn't always perfect with her premonition-ing. So, there's psychic wiggle room here.

Gwen being a drug mule tracks. She is sort of an ass. Ba dum tss.

Then again, Dr. Snyder is sort of assy, too. It didn't take his crazy long to come out of the closet. Oh, buddy, when Jan and Gwen are the sane ones, you must wonder about your life.

I enjoy this version of Julie and Gabi! They're finally at the fun point of being ex-foes or frenemies or whatever they want to call their still-prickly yet not hot-warring cold-warring selves. Whew. Anyway, they cracked me up. Gabi led with, "You're in an especially nasty mood today," and Julie fired back snark, but not a kill shot. That's progress for them. Heck, Gabi even got an apology from Julie. THAT is huge.

I can't give Jake all the credit, but Gabi's in a good place right now. Last week, I saw a warmth return to her that I haven't seen since Will and Sonny were around. Her bite will never go away, yet she was compassionate toward both Kate and Abigail. Well, her own special brand of compassionate, but I'll take it. I loved the relationship that was formed between Gabi, Kate, and Sami years ago. In addition to being related due to Ari Grace, they had a bond. They had each other's back. Sami embraced hers with Kate over the past few weeks, so I'm glad Gabi did, too.

And I loved -- loved! -- the pep talk that Gabi gave to Abigail. "Stay and fight!" she urged. Yeah, Abs. Stay and fight. Though, okay, I get Abigail's reasons for leaving. They're as legit as they are out of the blue, but, sure, why not? Plus, Gabi pledged to keep an eye on Gwen and, oddly enough, Gabs and Julie are on the same anti-Gwen page, so, if one of them weren't scary enough, the two of them possibly (and reluctantly) teaming up to protect Abigail's interests sounds terrifyingly tremendous!

The truth about the Gwen Suckage Tour storyline is that nobody is getting away unscathed. Even if I found it a smidge cringy, Chad wasn't all incorrect by stating, "Maybe we've all been through too much." Yes, but no. Stay optimistic, Chaddy. Let's go over to talk to Doc Evans about going "through too much." Between your daddy and sister, John's 30-plus identity crises, Stella Lombard, Samantha Evans, Samantha Brady, and a devil possession, I'm sure your Gwen problems will seem small in comparison. And if they don't, ask Mar Mar about a giant gold Parisian birdcage. You're welcome.

Yep, Nicole. You cheated on your husband. And you're a hot mess right now. You know, married to one guy, in bed with another, and in-like with yet another. I'd say choosing between three handsome Salemites that look like Invisible Greg Vaughan, Paul Telfer, and Galen Gering isn't such a bad problem to have, but my dance card hasn't exactly been full since the Melaswen days. Damn you, Colin Murphy, for not taking swimming lessons, but, again, I digress...

While Nicole made her own bed, as it were, I don't exactly hate what Xander told her. Laurisa summed that up perfectly last week, so be sure to check that brilliance out! So, I concur. With that...

Nicole told Ava. Oh, I want this to be a beautiful tale of friendship and sisters before misters, but neither of them is that far from their scheming days, especially Ms. Vitali. I fear that once Ava understands that Rafe is really under Nicole's skin, too, things will get ugly. Maybe Nicole could play "Flock, marry, kill" and decide who she should be with. That always works.

Nevertheless, Ava, Xander, cheating, and Allie aren't Nicole's real problems. Nope. She has a Sami-sized one. And, yes, one would think that since they're basically having the same storyline, they could commiserate, but comrades these two are not. So, let's get ready to party rumble like it's 1999!

Extra Scoops

It was a great Sweeps week in Salem! I can't decide what I loved more. All of the amazing performances were epic (Billy Flynn and Marci Miller owe me a box of tissues). There's that. Though, the escapades of Sami, Lucas, and Xander had me in stitches, as did Jan's jaunty stroll through Salem as she did her dirty deeds. Lani's growth was great, as was Gabi's compassionate side coming out to play again. ALL that and a smitten Tripp delivering a bouquet of flowers to Allie, and let's just give cheers to Team DAYS for an awesome week!

If I were Abigail, I'd be less pissed that my dad sided with the wrong sister and madder at the fact he hasn't cut and run when things got tough. I kid, I kid. Though, if Jack and Abigail's relationship can rebound from a few abandonments and such, I'm sure they'll be fine at the end of Gwengate.

Still, there needs to be an end to Gwen's grating ways soon. Making her a "victim" doesn't mean she gets a free pass. At all. And having her dish out some honesty after the fact kind of puts her in the same league as people who say, "I'll babysit the kids if you want to go out." It's not babysitting when you're the parent. Guh. Wake up! I don't even know where I was going with this anymore...

Okay. While I can somewhat understand why Jack is overcompensating with his insta-daughter, he needs to pump the brakes. He's not doing anyone any good by coddling her or putting a star sticker on the chart every time she recognizes she's done something sleazy. We need Uncle Steve (or, better yet, Aunt Adrienne back from the dead) to jump in with some tough love and straighten out their niece if Jack is too -- let's go with -- nice to do it. Mr. Deveraux, I'm not mad at you. I'm just disappointed.

Gabi: "Well, what do you know? One of my dreams finally came true, and I didn't have to drug anybody to make it happen."

Jan (to Shawn): "As long as I'm around, you'll never be alone."

Sami: "Just wait a second. Look, whatever Kristen is paying you, I'll double it."
Xander: "Well that is quite the offer."
Sami: "I'm a very rich woman."
Xander: "I want ten million."
Sami: "Ten million dollars!? You're saying Kristen offered you five million dollars to kill us?"
Lucas: "Well, like, two-point-five each."
Xander: "Actually, it was two million for you. Three for her."
Lucas: "Why is it less for me? That's not fair."
Sami: "Isn't it obvious?"
Lucas: "No. It's not obvious. A whole million dollars [less]. That's ridiculous."
Sami: "Well, I mean, come on -- "
Xander: "Stop it! It isn't because of your worth. It's because you, Sami, are a gigantic pain in the ass."
Lucas: "He's right about that."


John muttering, "Oh, God," and shaking his head when he overheard Belle confirming that Jan kissed Shawn was hilarious.

I wonder if Allie and/or Chanel ran into Max and Chelsea in London!? Or if Chanel knew J.J. from Florida. They seem like a mistake each other would have made at the time. Oh, right, he was busy with Old Selfie Stick back then. Well, I'm sure J.J. and Chanel met in Jo'Burg.

I also wonder if the giant playing card faces behind Shawn in the square during his scenes with Jan mean anything. I've seen them there before, too. Maybe the Joker got sick of Gotham, and he's taking aim at Salem. It's safe to say stranger things have happened.

As amusing as the scene was, why didn't Sami and Lucas stack the wine boxes to get closer to the ceiling?

I feel it's karmic justice that Melinda had to put up with Jan's crazy Janness. Sure, the D.A. is easily annoyed, but Jan is a master class annoyer. You could tell Trask was miserable. Sorry, not sorry, Mel.

Marlena really is a superhero for going to the DiMera mansion. I feel like rarely do good things happen to her there. It's like Smith Island or Green Mountain Lodge for everyone else.

Okay, got it! "B.A.L." is "broke ass loser." Thanks, Chanel.

Kristen said to Xander, "I would have lost my mind." Would have!? Lady I'm gonna do you a solid and walk slowly away from that one. You don't need me to point out the crazy in that statement.

Maybe Abby will bump into Cameron Davis in Boston. Could the good doc work with Mike at a hospital there? I don't know, but seeing Nathan Owens again wouldn't hurt.

Speaking of random hospital staffers, who was your favorite naughty nurse of yesteryear: Lynn Burke or Ali McIntyre?

Also, I would kind of love to see the look on Sami and Lucas' faces if Nurse Lynn returned to Salem. Hey. If Stan can bounce back into the picture, so could Burke.

Jan's bounciness is hysterical. She zestfully approaches her schemes like others do when they get some good news. I guess it's good to love what you do, even if it's being bad.

Magic masks indeed, Xander. Oh, I can't wait until he finds out that Kristen added a Sarah façade to the collection. He'll lose his flocking mind.

Chanel can cook and bake! Okay. She's racking up points each week. And she kind of needs them, so good. Now, please send a few of those cupcakes to the DAYS Two Scoops offices, and we'll see what we can do about retracting a few "brats" when describing you. Thanks, Dupree.

Maybe Nicole could buy Xander's ring to replace her missing one. Too soon? Sorry.

I know there's no real need for them on-screen, as their Salem connections are mostly gone, but I'd love to see Rory or T (Tad) show up again. I miss those dudes. Kevin Riggin and Brendan Coughlin were both talented and charming, and they pulled off the quirkiness of their characters perfectly. Also, Claire could use a new suitor. Just putting that out there.

Oh, wait! Could Rory be on the receiving end of Gwen's drug mule-ing!? Snyder to courier to Rory. "Hmm!" again.

Or maybe Rory got it together and is now a pharmaceutical rep. Um. You know. A legit pharmaceutical rep.

When Dr. Snyder stated, "I don't have a life. I have this job," I wondered how many others related.

To loop back to recurring characters I miss, isn't it time that Nurse Maxine made an appearance!? Like, seriously. I miss her. And let's be real -- she would shut Dr. Snyder down with one of her famous looks.


So, friends and fellow DAYS fans, that's it for May 24. We've got one more week of Sweeps left, and Laurisa will return with all the latest Two Scooping soon! Meanwhile, I'm heading to the Java Café to see if I can catch up with some old friends. My Uber driver's name is "No Really Not Kristen *Wink*" so if you don't hear from me in a few, please check under the bushes alongside the highway or the DiMera wine cellar, thankyouverymuch. And, as always, thank you for reading, 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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