Death and dying
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Two Scoops is an opinion column and the opinions expressed are solely those of the author. The views expressed do not represent the opinions of Soap Central, its partners, or its advertisers.
Who's dead, who's not so dead, who's imaginary? While the Newman Civil War continues, other family battles are underway, and it's hard to tell what's real and what's not. Our writer struggled to figure it out, but she delves into it in this week's Two Scoops nonetheless.

The Newman Civil War is all shades of messy.

I'll start off with what I thought from the beginning: I don't think Victor is dead. I think Nick and Nikki are involved, as is Nate, but probably nobody else. I think they're trying to make Adam feel some guilt or remorse, or at the very least get him arrested, although that doesn't appear to be how it's playing out right now.

Despite the norm of soap operas having the person who was just given CPR getting up right away and running away or fighting crime, receiving CPR, while potentially lifesaving, does some damage to the body. You don't learn and practice CPR on a peer like you might learn and practice bandaging a sprained ankle. They wouldn't be okay if you did it right. And Nate didn't do CPR on Victor. If he'd thought Victor were truly dead and had not gotten a pulse, my guess is he would have done CPR. Nate knows CPR. He wouldn't wait for an EMT.

Nick blamed Victor's death on Adam's quest for revenge. I wondered right away if it was a dream Adam was having, because it seemed a little more over-the-top than I would expect. Especially Nick's repeated "not after what you've done." They're at least veiled references to people knowing what Adam's really done. Nick later asked Phyllis for evidence, and I think a part of him knows she can get it. If he doesn't 100% know Adam poisoned Victor, Nick is perhaps in the wrong for the way he treated Adam.

Why did Victor spend his life battling family if he loved them so much? Was Adam his biggest disappointment in life?

Adam was shocked "it happened so fast. How is that possible? That Dad is actually dead?" Phyllis tried a few times to get him to say if he thought he might have gone too far, but he didn't want to hear anything from her. Nobody really wanted her sympathy, though. She really is as unwanted as Adam (but Adam has Sharon with her pom-poms, cheering him on from the corner).

Apparently, Adam's motive was to take control of Newman Enterprises, and he wanted to cheat to get it, not get a gift from the father who offered it to him. It felt weird that he was suddenly bummed out, like he hadn't imagined death as a possibility when he tampered with an ailing man's medication. The fact that he saw it as a Greek tragedy, killing his dad, showed he knew he was guilty. But he's still plotting and covering his bum.

The drug dealer was suddenly in Crimson Lights, where we've never seen her before. She works at the hospital pharmacy. She named Victoria. When did Adam get to her? But I guess he has easy access, because he got her to make fake meds. At this point, isn't there a camera in the park? After J.T. was buried there, because it's a high-crime area, you'd think our drug dealer lady would be on film, making the deal happen with Adam.

I don't feel bad that Adam only has Connor. He's driven everyone else away. Even Phyllis, in her own way, wants to sympathize with him, but he also sends her away. Sure, he semi has Sharon, but that's just a mess in general. I acknowledge his family isn't warm and fuzzy, but that's part Victor, part Adam, part family. He doesn't give them a lot of reasons to welcome him back and embrace him. And they don't try.

Adam effectively asks, "Why does nobody like me when I drive everyone away through my insecure, hateful actions??? They're out to get me!"

I hope Adam pays for this. Messing with prescriptions is beyond anything that should be allowed or acceptable, no matter what your motive is.

Jack let go of the hurt from Victor and assumed Phyllis had. She "just had to suppress my rage when I was around him." I remember people were upset that Phyllis didn't recognize that fake Jack wasn't Jack. That story was a mess. I get why Phyllis is still angry. I wonder, though, if this storyline, where Phyllis is the one with the knowledge (and knowledge is power) will continue her redemption tour, and maybe buy her the redemption she actually seems to want now, even though she knows it's opposite her knee-jerk reactions that she is slowly stopping.

Here are a few random things that stood out about this death story:

Summer didn't end the call with her mother with "I love you."

The hospital can't tell the press about Victor's death. That's a huge violation of HIPAA law.

Adam's only friend is Mr. Daniels?

When Phyllis' message to Nick changed from "you're better off without him" to "sorry for your loss," it made me laugh. She made the right call, though.

Nate may say he's fine, but he doesn't look it. Guilt for his role in a plot, or sadness over losing a patient? I can't tell.

I think Jack would have always missed Victor. It's a balance thing, and who will he push and fight against now?

I hadn't thought until it happened how much Traci would feel when Victor died. Colleen's heart was all that remained alive from her. And that, too, is gone.

Adam was awfully quick to say he didn't kill Victor when Rey just offered sympathy.

Sharon told Faith about Victor by phone. Good call. She'll play chess in his honor.

Sharon and Nick's bond is strong, but…she defends Adam to Nick immediately. Even when it would be better to say nothing at all.

Battling Demons:

I thought Billy was cycling between personalities awfully fast, all triggered by sleep. Victoria looked completely drained -- and she didn't even know her daddy was "dead" yet. I found Billy's psych battle uncomfortable to watch. Especially when Victoria was fighting with him while Victor was "dead."

True confession time: I love A Christmas Carol (and Charles Dickens in general, but especially that story). The Muppets made my favorite movie version. I feel like that story was kind of the inspiration for Billy's magic moment of recovery, when he was confronted by the teenaged Delia and other people from his life, when he punched his gum-chewing alter and suddenly found himself again thanks to the love of a good woman.

Now, the magic of Victorian England fit the story in A Christmas Carol. "Marley was dead to begin with." Here, Delia was dead to begin with. Jason Thompson acted his heart out. I'm glad (I hope) he's better. But the healing in the boathouse through the love of Victoria and Chloe, the impact of the dreams in which he saw his actions, felt too contrived and so unbelievable that I just couldn't buy it. Drama? Yes. But it went beyond the level of suspension of disbelief for me. Maybe that's because of my real-world experience with someone who has dissociative identity disorder?

The truest part of it was when Jill said Victoria couldn't do it for Billy and he had to do it alone. Because too many people want someone else to do their work, their thinking, their learning for them, and they don't want to invest the hard work to do it themselves. But our life, our behavior, and our responses are our responsibility, and to quote the nondramatic New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick: "Do your job." Nobody can do it for us. We have to do it for ourselves. But in the end, we're stronger. Let's hope Billy is, too, and the recklessness he's displayed for a long, long time (before Phyllis and Summer) slows down a bit, and if it returns, it's for corporate drama, not for any prolonged, irrational grief response.

I liked the insight into what Billy thought his loved ones and the people around him thought about him, though. He did need to acknowledge that. And sure, if he needed to get some tough love from his demons, more power to him. But does Billy need some serious therapy? I wonder if Scrooge did. I won't miss the gum-chewing!

The wheel of the lie keeps on turning:

This was almost a Theo-free week, which would have been fine with me. Is his father's integrity going to rub off on him? So far, not so good.

You know that people on soaps lie but sometimes I wonder how the writers keep track of who is lying and who knows about whose lies. It's hard to follow when you're watching; I can't imagine doing it while creating it.

"Okay, so Theo is creating a diversion, but he's going to blame Zoe for wanting to be the center of attention, and he is going to claim he wants business success, but he wants revenge, too."
"And he's mad because Summer wants to get freaky with Kyle, no matter how hot their sex is."
"And Kyle is lying to Lola by omission, not talking about Zoe."
"And Summer knows the secret, and now Phyllis knows the secret..."

I imagine it involves flowcharts or maybe one of those yarn/picture combinations TV shows have for the psycho who's seeking revenge and uses red yarn to connect his intended victims. Anyway, my point is that most everyone is lying about something. And it's hard to keep track of it all. That's why I try to tell the truth. Less to remember. Sure, my truth is subjective, because all our truths are, but it's mine, and I mean it.

Self-Discovery:

I called it. Sharon and Jack bumped into each other while discovering themselves. I found it interesting that for ex-spouses who remain friends, Jack and Sharon hadn't even done a check-in with each other.

Do I wear a sparkly mini-dress to a spa? Yoga pants, maybe. High-end spa, maybe I'd wear "high-end yoga pants," if such a thing exists. Sharon looks like she's wearing a Christmas tree skirt. Also, stiletto heels? Seems un-spa-like, but maybe I don't get the spa concept.

Jack and Sharon kept reinforcing "just as friends" and "came alone, go home alone," so of course I worried that they'd hook up. I was so glad they didn't! But their self-discovery trip(s) was (were) mighty short!

When Jack said, "Whatever I thought I was looking for, I had all along," I imagined him in ruby slippers, clicking his heels.

Sharon told Mariah, "I can't fix everyone. I can only fix myself." She apparently learned that her life wasn't defined by the man she was with. But I wonder if she can define her life without trying to save someone like she appears to be trying to save Adam from pain now. I get the desire to help others. I do it, too. But perhaps she could go back to her spa and do some work on boundaries. Interestingly, the person she must save is a man. But he won't define her. Nope. She's learned. I'll believe it when I see it. She said she couldn't fix everyone, only herself, but... looks like she's in a fixing mood.

I wondered about all of us. How do we define ourselves? Are we just our partner or lack thereof? A lot of people don't stand on their own, only with who they're with. I wish Sharon (and more people in general) really could stand on their own and be strong without a partner, without needing to be someone's hero, without having to be all things to all people.

And with that being said, I have to say, the looks Sharon and Rey still exchange? I'd like to see them work through this mess, for her to get over her need to save Adam, and for Sharon and Rey to maybe have a shot at a relationship. They aren't over each other. It would add to the love in the afternoon.

The Will in the Sky:

Amanda Sinclair is Hilary's doppengänger. Did Chance pick a Hilary look-alike lawyer to throw Devon off his game? I shall refer to her as Hilawyer, whether it was intentional or not.

Tucker McCall was mentioned a couple times, and Patch hasn't been on Days of our Lives in a while. Will we see him back on Y&R before he shows up in Salem USA? Did he really pay the lawyer to change the will? Or could the lawyer have just had a grudge with Tucker and taken it out on Devon as he lay dying (if it was even really from the lawyer)? I somehow believe the will was right because Jill said it sounded just like Katherine.

Devon told Hilawyer it wasn't real. It was funny when he said the issue was that she looked "like you look." He said, "I guarantee that it's not a coincidence that you, a dead ringer, showed up on my doorstep." Is Mishael Morgan back for a visit or long-term? I'm hoping it's just to usher Chance back onto the canvas (and/or Tucker) and that she isn't here long.

I've seen sparks between Elena and Nate, but I'd like Nate with Abby (especially during this Victor mess, although if Victor turns up alive, Abby might walk), and I'd like Devon with Elena. Their pairing seems healthier than Devon's pairing with Hilary, even if it isn't as fiery. I know people may hate me for saying that, but that's okay; it's just my opinion.

Quote(s) of the Week:

Jack to Sharon at the spa, on his romance history: All I managed to prove was that being a divorce lawyer was very lucrative.

"Ghost" Jack to Billy in the boathouse visions: You couldn't climb out of an eight-inch hole with a brigade of firemen to help you.

Random Observations:

How does everyone already have ice ready in a bucket? If I look in a bucket on my counter, there's just dust.

How does Kevin have so much sedative available in needles? I'm guessing you'll tell me the dark web.

What is Billy's splint made of?

Follow the bouncing Delia was a weird game.

Abby in her pink silk pajamas looked shell-shocked after Victor was taken away.

Awww, Nick and Chelsea said the L word to each other.

Previews:

In the previews for next week, it looks like Victoria is arrested (again), and Devon is telling Hilawyer not to say she doesn't know she looks like Hilary. Hopefully there are more twists and turns that will leave us shocked and amazed.

Closing thoughts:

What will happen until we meet again in this spot? I don't know, but I presume the writers do, and I'll be on the edge of my seat, watching with you.
Christine

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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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