All mixed up and don't know what to do?
For the Week of March 16, 2020
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From a sleeper agent to a prickly princess, several Salemites are all mixed up. Chad has become Stefano's Winter Soldier! Marlena's mind has been hijacked, too. Hope is still Gina. Steve is still the Fauxnix. And Mickey is still Brady and Kristen's kid, but don't tell anyone or else Xander will not be happy! So, let's sort some things out in this week's Random-packed DAYS Two Scoops!

I'd typically ask, "What's new, DAYS fans!?" in a jaunty way, but things are a bit *insert the word or words that best describes your current state of mind.* As I sat down to write Two Scoops this week, I know mine is preoccupied with thoughts of the pandemic and concern for everyone's well-being. That concern certainly includes each and every person who's logged on to read my ramblings about DAYS.

Since 2007, I have always concluded my columns with, "As always, thank you for reading!" but let me be clear -- that's not just a tag. I sincerely mean that, and in times like these, it's important to remind one another how much we appreciate them. So, let me be the crystal clearest, I appreciate all of you and will be sending warm thoughts that you and your loved ones will remain safe (or recover quickly). Whether we agree or disagree about DAYS, we're all in this together, and, well, that's some pretty amazing company to be in.

Now, okay, I know if I'm sentimental any longer, most of you will worry that I've been microchipped by Dr. Rolf, so, as best we can, let's play the "DAYS Card" and enjoy ourselves for a rambling or two. After all, through thick and thin, we're fans and have our hour escape each weekday to take us away to another world.* So, since things are mixed up and we don't know what to do other than wash our hands a lot, or we simply need something to do with the extra time a lot of us have on our hands right now, let's handle this week's column as one big "RANDOM THOUGHTS" section and see what happens.

*Bonus fun points if you just sang the Another World theme song!

Maybe we should start with the dimpled elephant in the room. That's Justin. Oof. He's concerned about his relationship with Kayla, and anyone he spoke with brought up Steve, as if he needed to be reminded. They each had that "oh, poor Justin" look on their faces which pretty much reads as "sorry, pal." Nope. This doesn't bode well for the longevity of "Jayla" or is it "Kaystin." I'm not sure. What I am sure of is that nobody could confidently say, "I'm sure Kayla will stay with you once the Patch Man is de-Stefano-ed." A self-serving Princess Gina was the only one to point out that he'll be sleeping single in a double bed if and when Steve returns. She's probably not wrong for once.

Still, Kayla even confirmed, "I'm with you. I love you." In that moment, I didn't doubt her. She is with him now, and I believe she's sincere when she says she loves him. Kayla's not known to be fickle, but, yeah, no. The more Salemites talk of this, the more I'm convinced it's headed south. When Kayla made that declaration, her tone was less confident and more indecisive, but politely stating, "I want to go out dancing with you, but it's snowing and I just ate a big meal and I've already burrito-ed myself into a comfy blanket and I'm three episodes into something I'm streaming, but mmmaaayyybbbeee. Sure. That sounds nice." Yep. She's eventually going to stay home. "Home" being Steve in this scenario. Oh, poor Justin.

Speaking of streaming, I recently fell down a Schitt's Creek rabbit hole and now, anytime someone in Salem says "baby," I can only hear Moira Rose's mirthful version: "bebe." It's helped with the heaviness of most "Kristen and Brady remember Rachel" scenes. And there's been a lot of them lately.

Though it would be the twist of all twists if Kayla decided to stay with Justin if and when Steve is de-chipped. I love Sweetness. I love Dimples. Do I love that idea? Eh. It depends on how it's handled going forward, really. So far, the pace has been hard to swallow, especially for Kay, who's generally a slow mover (and a woman who mourned for decades when she thought Steve had died in the past). Then, there's the Adrienne aspect. Granted, Kayla and Justin have had some cute moments, but I think Steve and Kayla are endgame, so is anyone investing? Anyone? Bueller? Devil's advocate, I used to think Roman and Marlena were endgame, too, so what do I know? Hmm.

Oh, Marlena's also been microchipped now. I suspect Dr. Rolf got them in bulk at Micro Center or something, but that's not the point. Mar Mar tried to fight it. She even uttered a few "Johns." Alas, she and the Fauxnix read some poetry, and she's a gold bird cage away from being his queen again.

Sometimes when Stefano or Rolf says "Queen of the Night," I impulsively sing and add, "Oh yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah." Then I have to repeat the last ten seconds to review what followed. That's the power of Whitney, bebe.

While marvelous performances have been plentiful, I wouldn't mind a brisker pace for the Stefano stuff. The "Queen of the Night" storyline was such a spectacle back in the day. Now it just seems, well, less impactful and kind of nerve-wracking. There's the takeaway that Stefano had gotten over Doc. In fairness, maybe Big Willy-helm scrambled a few of Steffie's memories in the chipping process, and that could explain why he's reverted to loving her again. Maybe. More so, I'm utterly uncomfortable with the thought of the Fauxnix and Mind-Chip Mar Mar maybe hitting the old chess board, if you know what I mean. I hope it doesn't go that far. DAYS doesn't have the best track record with handling sexual assaults well. At all.

Hold up. Did anyone strike up the band and do a balloon drop for Marlena's one-millionth time being abducted? Milestones and all, amIright?

Okay. Mind-Chip Fun Mar Mar has me troubled, but Winter Soldier Chad is kind of crushing it. Billy Flynn is such a great actor that it's fun to watch him play around with variations of Chad. Of course, I don't want him to kill Gabi or Kate, especially Kate, as their connection has always been a highlight for me, but for now, it's a little glimpse into what Chad would have been like had he drunk Stefano's Kool-Aid all those years ago when he left as a lanky, loveable hipster and came back a boss with a heart of gold. You know, had he become more Stefano or Peter instead of working hard to be a Lexie-like, E.J.-lite (mostly) good guy we can root for. Either way, I'll always root for Billy and watch the hell out of his performances.

Oh, and "La Famiglia" is a much easier trigger word than, "Longing, rusted, furnace, daybreak, seventeen, benign, nine, homecoming, one, freight car." Though if Chad got a silver mechanical arm, that would be kind of badass. Bucky Barnes, move over.

I wish Kate hadn't sold those stocks. That's disappointing. Eh. Well. At least now she can pay for the martinis when we celebrate Evan's eventual downfall.

Wait! Will Evan have an eventual downfall? Out from the ashes rose Orpheus! He's back and connected to Evan and was bebesitting David. I guess he's a full-service baddie these days. Oh, and George DelHoyo is so wickedly wonderful in the role, I'm eager to see what Old Not-Dead Orph is up to this time. *insert evil snickering*

But would the bad guys winning this round really surprise anyone? I'm going to shower Rafe with a lot of praise in a second, but holy bad idea, Batman! Was Rafe's second brain cell on a coffee break when the other decided it was a good idea to let the Salem popo track Evan? Of course, he was going to evade them. Of course, he was. His force is a farce. Rafe should have just reached out to Ciara, Shawn-D, Hero Hattie, and Mr. Roman. They're the ones getting things done these days.

Eli and Lani are out of their love bubble and ready to help Rafe find David. For a second there, I almost considered that Lani might be the one helping Evan. She went a little cray for the tot once upon a breakdown ago. Sorry, Lani. Carry on.

In better Rafe headspace, I'm enjoying his scenes with Ciara. From the hug to his declaration that he was proud of her (and even the semi-scolding as it came from a loving place), I'm glad this connection is staying alive. His apology to Ben was also a classy thing to do.

I think next time I hear Beyoncé ask, "Who run the world?" I'm shouting, "Victoria Konefal!" She's that amazing.

"CIN" is also pretty amazing, and it amazes me how their love is manic and genuine at the same time.

Rafe and Gabi scenes are always welcomed. There's an ease between Galen Gering and Camila Banus that make their sibling chemistry shine. Though Rafe wasn't exactly ready to gloss things over with Gabi. I love that he loves her despite her despicable deeds but isn't afraid to be blunt. His truth bombs such as "Your heart's buried under anger and resentment"; "I hate what you've done, but I love you"; and "You get more hurt when you enact revenge" are spot-on. Maybe Gabs listened. Maybe? She did declare she's "turning a new leaf." Do you think Gabi will live up to that self-rebranding? What? What? I can wait until you stop laughing for your answers. Oh. That was your answer.

Maybe this wouldn't be the best time for Gabi to rein herself in. She kind of needs to be off the leash if she stays true to her word and helps Rafe find David. Like the others I mentioned, she might be one who could get the job done.

Is it weird that a man who dated a woman and has a child with her now dates men, Gabi? Is it? That kind of sounds familiar, no? I can get Will and Sonny on speaker phone to get their opinion. Must have been the meds, or Gabi was making the list of wonderful things she wants to do next in her head and was distracted. That's it!

I believe Xander when he tells Sarah, "All I want is to make you happy." Can one be a sweet son of a B? I think Xander might be proof of that.

A round of applause for Will, please. Not only did he give us another glimpse at his unpredictably pleasant friendship with Ben (he even brought treats, you guys!), but he got Sonny to slow his blaming himself roll over shacking up with Evan. Sonny. Sonny Bear. Nobody expects you to make great decisions when it comes to men. No one. You have a two out of everyone else you've dated batting average. Maybe three if we count Dreamy McBlue-Eyes Brian from back in the day. Just stick with Will, and if he does go away again, maybe listen to Kate's hunches. Deal?

Sonny and Will's romantic re-ringing was sweet!

Also, Will, you go, guy! I loved his chat with Victor. What he said was fair -- sorry, Vic.

Am I the only one who cheers when Shawn-Douglas swaggers into the room!? He's kind of the best. I'm loving his banter with Princess Gina, and I'm glad Ciara finally joined in the, um, family fun.

I dug all the references to Ciara being absent throughout most of the Princess Gina storyline. Yep. We noticed, but I'm glad Ciara is there now. Her self-awareness that she's been an absentee is also a plus. You're just winning everything these days, Ms. Brady.

Poor Jen. I felt her feels when she said, "I can't lose Hope. She's my cousin. She's my best friend." I've always loved their "Cuz" connection.

Though people in Salem have as many best friends as they do "loves of their lives."

Mar is going to be proud of Brady for his pseudo-shrink powers that helped Kristen remember every little thing about Rachel. I thought they only did that on Criminal Minds. Way to go, Brady!

Something dawned on me during Thursday's episode. When the bebe-swap bombshell explodes, we might get a Kristen vs. Victor showdown. That has all the makings of a snark-filled fight for the ages.

For a second, I thought Eric and Kristen were going to bond over God. That's sort of both of their schticks. Nevertheless, I admire Eric for gritting through his Kristen-rage and letting her visit. She was in pain, and he's the King of Pain. It makes sense. Good on him.

Mickey giving baby side-eye

I think my current favorite character is Mickey. She's not only adorable, but she can already throw shade. Seriously! When Sarah said something like, "You couldn't possibly be the same bebe," the camera cut to Mackenzie, and I swear the look on her face was, "Duh, lady! I'm not."

And mic drop! Nicole is in the know about the heart-shaped birthmark. Now she just needs to connect the, um, dots, as it were, to Xander and Dr. Amanda Raynor (yes! She's important enough to have a first name now), and, poof! The Bebe-Swap bombshell will be going off.

I have all the faith in Nicole to crack this herself, but if she reached out to former schemer buddy Jack, for old times' sake, I wouldn't be disappointed. Bringing Jack into a storyline is never a bad idea. Plus, investigators Jen and Abby could assist, too! Hello, win.

But please! Oh, please, oh, please, oh, please, Nicole, don't keep this to yourself. My Eric and Nicole-loving heart cannot take any more secrets leading to a breakup or a lot of huffiness and pleading. Let's tell Eric, like, now-ish, okay?

Extra Scoops

I so needed the laughs provided from the Shawn-D, Ciara, and Princess Gina scenes. Hilarious! From Shawn-D's comment about "ripping that chip out of your head" to Gina G's snarky comebacks, the three of them were wonderful together. Sure, I'm as ready as Shawn-D, Ciara, and Jen to have Hope back, but one more round of such hilarity wouldn't be so bad. Hint, hint.

I think there's enough "NOT" in the world this week. I encourage everyone to take this allotted time to send some Tweets of gratitude to the cast and crew of Team DAYS for providing an hour weekday escape when we need it the most. May they remain healthy and as fantastic as always!

Princess Gina: "Goodie. Hope's other child. I almost forgot she even existed."

Ciara (to Princess Gina): "You're a microchip."

Ciara (to Shawn): "You're right. She really is obnoxious."

Shawn-Douglas (to Ciara): "Just ignore her."

Kate (to Evan): "Well, I knew I'd see you in handcuffs one day...I'll tell you what. I'm going to say, 'Hi,' to Sonny and Will for you."

Dr. Rolf (to Chad): "My deepest apologies. I've always been a slow packer."

Rafe (to Gabi, who explained that people only focus on her faults, not the wonderful things she's done): "What wonderful things?"

Will reading Princess Ari and the Two Kings should be on the DAYS app. Though I'm curious as to what Gabi's part in this will be.

Can we please get more scenes between Matthew Ashford and Wally Kurth? Jack and Justin's chat was short and simple, but that amount of talent on my screen is always welcomed.

"Oh, so, like, a setup." Yes, Will. Like a setup. Don't make me regret those nice things I said about you above.

Sarah's hair is all Mystic Pizza-era Julia Roberts, and I kind of love it!

Speaking of Sarah, how much fun do you think Linsey Godfrey and Greg Vaughan are having playing with the bebes who play Mickey!? They're so cute and squirmy.

I want in on that lovely group hug between Will, Sonny, and Ari Grace. So cute! Okay, I also want in on hot chocolate and doughnuts, too.

Ha! Even Kristen takes digs at Gwyneth Paltrow.

Princess Gina's white jacket and black shirt Saturday Night Fever combo was out of sight.

Am I the only one who thinks the pictures in Mickey's hospital room are a little unsettling? I know they're supposed to be cute, but I get a creepy vibe from them. Like, horror movies have been made from such things. Fine. Stop asking. I'll leave the nightlights on tonight for you.

So, friends and fellow DAYS fans, that's it for March 16! Laurisa will be back next week with a bag full of awesomeness and Two Scoops. With that, stay safe and remember that everyone is just as concerned as you are, so be patient with one another. We're all in this together and, "That's a fact." And again, and as always, thank you for reading!

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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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