I'm a survivor
For the Week of April 29, 2019
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Salem welcomed back its ultimate survivor. What will Eric do now that Nicole's back? Will Gabi crucify Stefan again? Do Rafe and Hope have any life left at all? Let's suit up and make a battle plan in this week's Two Scoops.

You guys. She's back! My Nicole is back!! And she went directly to Eric's house! Annnnnddd she has her memory!

Pardon me while I happy dance and squeal. Wheeeeeeeeee!!!! Oh, Nicole! How I've missed you!

For those who are new to DAYS, Nicole has been around Salem for decades, and with that long of a run, we get multiple versions of the character. We had the shy 20-something trying to heal from a truly awful childhood where her abusive father drugged her and forced her to do porn. That girl evolved into a woman who would never be anyone's victim again, working her way through gold digger to blackmailer to baby snatcher. She really hit her stride when she saddled up to a martini and went toe-to-toe with Sami. Then, there was the tragically misadvised foray into being Daniel's Stepford Wife, followed by the even worse stint as Deimos' lady love.

Throughout it all, Nicole's character really rested on her relationships with three main people.

First and foremost is her relationship with Eric. As he said this week, she's the love of his life. That brooding thing that Eric does so well? His passion for photography? The reason he left the priesthood? Greg Vaughan's must-deserved2018 Emmy win? All of it is because of Eric and Nicole's love. She went straight to his house because she's ready to pick up where they left off, and she's there, looking for her kid, who she absolutely wanted him to raise. In yo' face, Brady!

Okay, okay. I give Brady a lot of grief for his romance with Nicole. But my aversion to their romance is because it was a step down for these two. Brady is the second most important man in her life. Their friendship -- encapsulated best when he supported her through her miscarriage -- is one of the truly beautiful relationships on DAYS. If they can belly laugh off the time she showed up drunk, in a wedding gown, to Brady's wedding just in case he decided not to marry Chloe, these two should be able to get through a little banishment from Salem. I'm just saying, Nicole owes Brady a mulligan.

The third person most defining of Nicole's character was Sami. I was never one to pick camps here. I loved both of these women, despite the fact they were at odds no less than 99% of the time they were on-screen. The show tried to set up other feuds for Nicole between Chloe, Jennifer, and even Kate. But they all failed in comparison to Sami. Lindsay Godfrey has the acting chops to get in the ring with the Lady Zucker. Sarah could be the new Sami here, but that's a tall order to fill. Still, the whiplash she's going to get from Eric dropping her like a hot potato is probably as good a place as any for a feud to start. (And that's exactly what Eric better do, dear writers!)

In addition to a new feud, there's one main difference with Nicole this time around. For the first time ever, Nicole will have a true, bloodline connection to Salem. Nicole's the longest-surviving solo act in DAYS history. Sure, she had relatives pop in here are there. But until Holly, she never had any surviving children or any real ties to DAYS history.

That's incredibly rare when you think about it.

Her whole character arc can be summed up in one word -- home. She's always been searching for it, for the people who will make it for her, and for the physical place it can exist. All of those things are more within her grasp now than ever. I'm thrilled to watch her go get them all.

Be a good man, Rex, and pour us all some gin while we cheer on our girl.

On the topic of cheering for characters, the show obviously wants us to ship Gabi and Stefan. Part of me really wants to get on board. I'm ready to see Gabi play something other than the third wheel. The string of Chabby, Jlani, Elani, and Chabby again has become tedious over the last few years. Whether or not Gabi deserves to end up with someone is debatable. But the audience definitely deserves to watch something new.

Plus, Brandon Barash is doing work in this storyline. The question isn't if I love his acting choices, but which order they occupy in my Top 5 List each episode. However, the problem still remains that Stefan -- despite the bloated amount of screen time he's gotten since his arrival -- is still a pretty underdeveloped character. What motivates him? What's in Salem that he can't get elsewhere? Where'd he learn his business acumen? What makes him laugh? What's his weakness?

Having him fall in love with someone who isn't real was not relatable at all. We all took a hard pass/eye-roll on that. Having him grieve over finding out a child wasn't his was so universal that it didn't leave any nuances behind in his character, either. It was the equivalent of saying, "He really enjoys 72-degree weather and chocolate." Great. So does everyone I know. Stefan's still a bit of a nothing muffin.

When Stefan and Gabi get in an argument, I'm thoroughly entertained. But this primal thing they have going doesn't last further than the moment they're in, and I have to be convinced each time that these two are worth investing in. Their whole storyline feels gratuitous and a bit telegraphed.

Contrast that to him researching opera for Chloe or taking her daughter on a picnic. Those are actions that solidify some sort of character -- if not soul -- development. Yet, DAYS is clearly < ahref="https://www.soapcentral.com/days/news/2019/0125-nadia_bjorlin_out.php">not backing Chloe, at least not right now. So, that leaves us with Stabi, and Stefan seemingly reverting back to his original state. I urge DAYS to not make the same mistake they made with Tyler Christopher. This time, write a character good enough for the actor you're lucky enough to have playing him.

LOOSE ENDS:

I'm shocked Will is having medical side effects to the drugs that a mad scientist made. Really, really shocked. I was sure Dr. Rolf went through all the appropriate channels and testing protocols to ensure that no danger would ever come to a patient. In all seriousness, I do love Will's outbursts giving Chandler Massey a chance to play with different kinds of emotions. Will's distraught breakdown in Maggie's kitchen during Will's coming out storyline is still one of the top ten scenes in DAYS history. The more unhinged Will can be, the better for Chandler and the audience.

I'm all for Kate having a storyline. But, I'm not here for a Maggie/Victor/Kate triangle. While I adore that both of these women keep Victor on his toes, I don't need any women fighting over Victor. I love him and enjoy his scenes. But he's not exactly a prince. He's more of a "we know his faults, but we love him, anyway" type of a guy. Woman do not fight over those dudes.

Thank goodness Eve's in love with Jack now. I'd much rather see a love triangle between Jen/Jack/Eve than any of this election/immigration storyline.

Cin hit another supercouple milestone and got a song! Their "I love you's" were adorable. DAYS successfully dragged out officially pairing Cin up for a long time, thanks in no small part to the sizzling chemistry between Robert Scott Wilson and Victoria Konefal. I hope the show has something great in store for them now! Ciara did a pretty good job of talking her way into getting to make a phone call. Ben tracked her down super-fast. These two have the makings of a pretty good adventure duo. Perhaps they could team up to find out who David's father is?

Poor David. He's got one crazy mama in the hospital. Lani is about to join her if her obsession with David goes further. David might be the only child in the history of soaps to send himself to boarding school.

I'm really disappointed in Marlena for blabbing to Sarah. It's just off-brand for her to gossip. Confidentiality is the cornerstone of her character. She's spent 40 years building that reputation, both professionally and personally.

DAYS really did the impossible and made me feel bad for Rex. Yes, he's a cheating cheater who cheats. But Sarah knew that and forgave him. Her cheating on him now feels worse, in a way, because she's doing it without any hint of self-awareness I'd expect out of someone as hurt as she was a few months ago to possess.

I find Gabi's need for revenge on Stefan a little flimsy at this point. She got her revenge, and it was pretty savage, too. The dude was crushed when Abigail and Charlotte both walked out of his life. There's no question that Gabi won that battle. So, to give her leeway to make him pay again is asking a little much of the audience. Also, she can't have kids. Sure, she can't. Yup. There's no way.

HOT

In some situations, Maggie can be a bit of a know-it-all. But not when it comes to Brady. She understands his demons better than anyone, and she can speak to him with genuine compassion. To piggyback on what Chloe told Brady last week, Maggie told Brady that he needs to stop trying to force a relationship to happen. For good measure, Maggie also threw in that Eric was the love of Nicole's life, so Brady needs to climb down off the cross he built for himself on that one. My testify hand went up in the air when St. Maggie took Brady to church on that one!

I'm totally projecting what I want to see happen here, but I'd love it if this was all laying the groundwork for Sarah and Brady. Their brief scene before showed sparring power between the two, the likes of which Sarah doesn't get to bring out with Rex or Eric. For separate reasons, both of those guys walk around on eggshells around Sarah. Brady doesn't need to do that. And feisty Sarah is kind of my favorite. A Brady/Sarah/Xander triangle would blow Rex/Sarah/Eric right out of the water.

NOT

Lani's done Gabi so wrong over the years, I'm shocked each time Lani opens her mouth to say anything not complimentary to Gabi. So, the shade at Gabi making out with Stefan in her own home was laughable. Though Lani probably couldn't comprehend why Gabi was wasting her time, making out with a guy who was sober and single. Hope's not wrong to suspect Lani of setting her sights on Rafe. That's literally how Lani recruits her men. "Oh, is this one taken? Cool. Must be time to make my move! Who's up for inappropriate selfies?!"

LINE OF THE WEEK

Rafe: "It was only a flesh wound."
A little Monty Python reference never hurt anyone.

RANDOM THOUGHTS

Ciara's hair got loads of extra volume on her way to the motel. I'm jealous.

If Titan and DiMera Enterprises are so successful, how about either of them conducts business somewhere other than their living rooms?

There's no way Gabi was chubby as a kid. All that baseball kept her in shape.

Does Sheila call Abe "Big C"?! I love it.

Rex was a little Ryan Seacrest about those test results. Come to my office...and I'll tell you the results...after this commercial break.

You know that couple that is so intolerable toward each other that they make everyone uncomfortable? Rope is that couple. Each time they come on-screen, I find myself thinking, "Oh, love to hang out with you but...uh... I've got a thing. Big thing! Can't miss it! You know me and my things. Gotta run!"

Hmm…really, Mags? Kate is the worst to ever darken Victor's door? Vivian heard that and is not amused with you, my dear.

The fact that Eric isn't asking Sarah and Rex on a daily basis if they've found a place of their own yet should qualify this guy for sainthood.

I'll never not love an Eli/Sheila scene. Those two are made of win.

Wait, what's this noise about Brady's toxic relationship with Theresa, where he'll never see his son? They left on good terms. Brady goes to see Tate whenever he wants.

Even if it is benign, a brain tumor that's too big to remove still sounds like a big deal, no?

Yes, everyone knows the way to get back in good graces with Kate's kids is to treat their mother with respect. Because all of Kate's kids hold her up as a paragon of virtue and flock to defend her honor. (No, they do not.)

I need Shelia vs. Eve in my life.

I'm #TeamCiara. Fortune cookies are delicious.

I secretly look forward to the day my daughter and I watch DAYS together. I haven't started yet. She's only three. But that's probably working in my favor, because if she had seen Holly's unicorn slippers, I'd be in big trouble!

That's all for this week! Tony will be back next week to track down Holly. They called him in because he's a Kristin expert. We suspect that whoever snatched the Hollster was probably working for her and thus knew where all of the tunnel entrances were located in the DiMansion.

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.

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Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of soapcentral.com or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen, what has happened, and to take a look at the logistics of it all. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same view point.

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