Soaps

‘Days of our Lives’ Week In Review: All Mucked Up

Baby Bump-Its

Brady warns Nicole that Chloe is digging in her heels.

It has become exhausting trying to figure out this latest incarnation of Nicole Walker. Seeing the former investigative reporter walk around Salem with a Bump-It in her hair, giving her a Stepford Wives (2004) look was odd enough but she also began to warm up to Deimos Kiriakis again. What a weak follow through, honestly. To get her baby back, all Nicole has to do is drop her turd of fiancé so that Chloe Lane will know that baby Holly will be safe. But nope, Deimos who has gone kidnapping crazy as of late is now the new love of Nicole’s life and she can’t go for more than a day without him. Even at the risk of losing her child forever.

Nicole went from being a complex character trying to survive after years of horrible abuse to a volatile young woman who abused others to a compliant shell of a woman who wears too many Bump-Its and doesn’t drink nearly enough wine. It’s a disaster – a DAYSaster! I’m over complaining about her characters as I’ve done it for weeks and months at a time and what has that changed? I just feel like this last week was particularly unfair on her and on frenemy Chloe Lane too. Unlike recent characters, these two women have pretty rich backstories rampant with abuse that could easily be cited to explain some of their more destructive behaviors. Not excuses, but explanations. I haven’t picked a side like some of the characters involved in this story as I can find equal fault and rights in both of their sides, but there’s just so much more potential depth to this story that the writers are just missing.

Nicole is clinging onto Deimos, this dangerous man who is absolutely no good for her. Why is that? It could be easily tied back into her past abuse at the hands of her father, as with many of her other relationships and destructive choices. Chloe’s need for companionship and fighting for friends and family to stay by her could come from the severe bullying she used to face every day. These women are flawed, but those flaws have been glazed over to just become snippy insults. I saw a lot of fans and other soap bloggers citing Chloe calling Nicole a porn star in a derogatory manner as irresponsible and nasty. Nicole was forced into porn at a young age, it wasn’t her career of choice but people always seem to forget that. And it’s funny coming from Chloe who was forced into prostitution which should also revoke her access to the Mother of The Year Club in her books. It’s just a shame that these two survivors have been written into these corners where they have to fight in such a juvenile manner. Their rapport was always one of my favorites out of the characters. Each woman was honest with one another, condemning their bad points when they were bad and celebrating the good when they were good and their friendship went one. There was a real life honesty to their friendship that I thought was so well done, now it’s trashed for a miracle baby fathered by the eternally pestering Daniel Jonas. It’s just – ugh.

One of the best parts of this storyline was Belle Black and Shawn D. Brady’s involvement. While Brady Black is running around town trashing his ex-wife to everyone with ears, gossiping like a teen in the schoolyard, Belle and Shawn Douglass came to Chloe with their honest feelings and support. Chloe met her lawyer and her man at the Brady Pub where they laid out the fact that even though they didn’t agree with her and that this mess could get even messier, they would be there to support her as her friends. The scene was incredibly mature and surprising for me, having not seen a level of maturity like that from a DAYS character in a long while. It played out so realistically. In life, you can’t always agree with everything you friends do but it’s your friend’s life to make those decisions, not yours. All you can do is support or not support. Brady is basically campaigning for Team Nicole while having the nerve to say he hasn’t chosen sides. Once again, would have been a perfect moment for a Marlena level bitch slap from Chloe but the moment passed. As if I couldn’t love Shelle even more, especially this iteration of them as parents to a teen while working on their relationship, it’s all been very enjoyable. The way they handle situations so maturely and level-headed too is such a nice contrast to the balls to the wall way of dealing that Salemites seem to subscribe to recently. It’s just amazing to me that writing regimes can’t seem to find a place for Marlena Evans’ and Bo Brady’s children but continue to create new bastard children of peripheral characters to fill up the canvas instead.

Speaking of clutter characters, Deimos has continued to claim to Nicole that he’s cleaned up his act while he’s got Gabi Hernandez and Chad Dimera locked away in some storage room. Nicole has been spreading claims of her own too, pretending that she’s over him when all it takes is for Deimos to say that he’s building a nursery and is ready to raise her miracle baby for her to waver. The real Nicole would have already dumped Deimos after finding he offered nothing to her but constant peril, heartbreak and disappointment and would be raising her baby by her damn self. I’m just so exhausted of seeing these women behaving like idiots when they’re far from it.

Love Lockdown

Abigail is frantic over Chad and Gabi being kidnapped.

While constantly trying to prove to his fiancée that he’s a good man, Deimos Kiriakis continues to make bad decisions. This last week was no different, when in a desperate attempt to gain the key to the Orwell device, he kidnapped Gabi Hernandez and Chad Dimera. Deimos’ reasoning was that their families would cough up the key in exchange for the safe return of their loved ones – but joke’s on him! Neither the Hernandez or Dimera clan has any idea what the key is and the viewers have already seen Chad and Gabi locked in a sweaty room only months ago so we can fast forward! I kid, I kid. The scenario may have been a lazy cut and paste of last year but there’s no denying Chabi has a really cute chemistry, something even I can admit with my heart so full of Chabby.

Other than the question of why Chad and Gabi have found themselves in the same scenario as they did months back, there are so many other things that made me scratch my head. Where is this soundproof room Deimos has thrown them into and – can we try something else with them? I have to say, Gabi, Chad and Abby are probably my favorite characters on DAYS at the moment. Not only do the characters have great synergy but so do the actors, all of three of them. There’s chemistry whenever they hit the scene together and if written well, could really recall classic soap but with a different twist – the women are actually friends. Riverdale is doing their love triangle very well, maintaining the importance of the friendship of Betty and Veronica with their shared love for Archie in the background. Funnily enough, a love triangle can work well without having the love being the main focus and I think Riverdale is showing that perfectly. Make it about the characters, their relationships and how differently things might go depending on the way those relationships develop. Don’t turn every love triangle into a plot-driven gimmick of locked rooms and other sticky situations.

There’s so much potential in this love triangle though. I am not here for Abigail gravitating toward Dario Hernandez, not just because I think the character is a waste (a hunky waste though) but because it doesn’t make sense for her character. For someone recovering from a trauma as hers, Abigail should be incredibly wary of Dario and his volatile behavior, not experiencing it right there on the front lines. One minute Abigail is okay and the next she’s too fragile and the town is worried about her. Again, focus on the characters and let the progressions unfold naturally to propel the romance aspect along because than viewers will easily see all of these holes and call them out.

Dario checks himself out of the hospital against Abigail’s wishes.

I am all for Abigail doing more than just being Chad’s wife. Regardless of her utilizing Dario for help, it’s nice to see her taking initiative and trying to track down this mysterious room that her husband and best friend are being held in. I would love to see her working at The Spectator with her mother, hitting the street as an investigative reporter too. She literally has it in her blood. But these writers haven’t been able to do much with her outside of the love triangle which is so disappointing, same with Gabi and even Chad. All they do is float about professing love, avoiding glances and being awkward when they all once had pretty active careers and lives outside of the drama. At the end of the week, Chad confessed that he was in love with Abigail and Gabi as well which will further complicate things. I said it before, I am Team Chabby from Day 1 but you cannot deny the spark between Chabi either! I just want for this love triangle to unfold naturally so I can enjoy the push and pull without having to call out fouls along the ride. These strong young actors and the characters they play deserve better than that. But until July rolls around, I know I’ll be asking for too much.

As usual, if I missed something you really wanted to talk about or something you felt was important, let’s start a discussion! Comment below, tweet me and let’s chat!

About the author

Coryon Gray

Coryon Gray joined TVSource Magazine as a staff writer in October 2014. Prior to TVSource Magazine, he's written for and moderated Asian entertainment blogs and forums. On top of writing duties, Coryon is also a panelist for the TVSource Podcast and Soap Countdown Podcast.