Days of our Lives head writer Ron Carlivati has proven time and time again that he's a master at spinning gloriously wacky and over-the-top soap opera tales. But while his latest storyline creation concerning longtime Salemite Julie Williams (Susan Seaforth-Hayes) is certainly wacky, it was actually inspired by true-life events.
As DAYS fans have seen, Julie had a pacemaker implanted into her heart after she nearly died and forever said goodbye to Salem. Some fans have rolled their eyes at what happened next -- Gabi Hernandez (Camila Banus) rigging the pacemaker -- but Carlivati says the zany-sounding plot point was actually inspired by former vice president Dick Cheney.
Via a post made to Twitter, the DAYS head writer explained that he based Julie's story on a 2013 news headline about Cheney, who revealed to CNN that his doctors made him a special pacemaker in 2007 that was impervious to hacks by terrorists who perhaps wished to induce a heart attack.
Tweeted Carlivati, "Ripped from the 6 year old headlines... 'When Cheney needed his implanted defibrillator replaced in 2007, Reiner ordered the manufacturer to disable the wireless feature, thus preventing anyone from sending a signal to the device and shocking the vice president into cardiac arrest.'"
Though Julie's story was inspired by real-life events, Carlivati has written several completely fictional DAYS storylines that have risen eyebrows in disbelief. However, the show's executive producer, Ken Corday, supports the writer's creativity, no matter how "outlandish" it gets.
"After a year under his pen, we garnered more awards in one night than any show ever had before in Daytime Emmy history," Corday says in a recent interview. "Ron likes outlandish plots but always keeps it familiar by using popular and returning characters. For example, Dr. Rolf [William Utay] is back again because he is our new villain [replacing Stefano DiMera after Joseph Mascolo died in 2016] and also provides some comic relief."
For more from Corday on Carlivati's talent and what's in store for the soap opera's upcoming time jump storyline, read Soap Central's article here.
What do you think about Ron Carlivati finding inspiration in Dick Cheney's real-life pacemaker saga for Julie's recent storyline? What other real-life headlines would you like to see implemented in Salem? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.