We have been having a field day over on the TWoP forums regarding the DiFeud this week. In addition to adding the “Di” prefix to everything and taking sides on Team Orange (Tony), Team Blinky (EJ), and Team Brady (and maybe Team Steve—the free agent out for revenge?), we’ve been crowing about the depiction of the DiMeras as over the top and yet somehow human villains. This is what has been missing from the writing for EJ in the spring, and for the DiMeras for all of the 90’s (from what I hear).
Above all, I must congratulate Hogan on what’s he’s done with Tony. Here is a man who started out evil, became sympathetic and built a normal life in Salem, which he then lost by getting sucked into Daddy’s evildoings, became more and more evil, culminating in the horror of the Melaswen “plot.” What to do with a character who has run a gamut like this? Well, you give him a healthy dose of sibling rivalry toward the new, hot younger son, some loyalty issues with his father, and best of all, you make him the biggest proponent of continuing the vendetta that has cost him so much. And you let him ride a horse in the morning room, practice waving a sword, and give him the best one-liners on the show. No wonder Thaao Pengliss is playing the role with such relish.
So many questions!
1. Is EJ the indulged younger child for whom Stefano would consider ending the feud, or is he merely a manipulated pawn?
2. Can Anna be bought by the highest bidder? Is she secretly in cahoots with Tony? Will Tony fall in love with Anna all over again? (I know I have!)
3. Is Stefano really considering ending the feud, and if he is, will that change if he recovers his health? Is he trying to get EJ and Sami together to atone for his father losing Colleen? Or is he merely making EJ think so to get EJ on his side?
4. How did Colleen die? Was she murdered? If so, by whom? Santo? Santo’s wife? Shawn? Shawn’s father? Did she commit suicide? Did she die in childbirth?
5. Will there be a love child of Colleen and Santo? Will it be one of our existing characters? Will it be John? Will it be Stefano?
6. Is Steve still a pawn or is he playing the DiMeras? If he is playing the DiMeras (which is what I believe), could he nevertheless still be influenced by them?
7. Who really imprisoned Lexie, and why? Where is Tek?
8. Is Stefano even really ill, or is he/was he just pretending?
9. Are the flashbacks of Colleen and Santo going to be as cheesily fantastic as I think they are?
And best of all, all this uncertainty seems to be deliberate. I’ve got all my fingers crossed that this will continue to be as good as it’s been so far, that it will answer some of these questions but also move forward to new surprises, new uncertainties. I haven’t seen a Hogan story so far from beginning to end that has impressed me on the level of plot, but on the other hand I’m not sure I’ve yet seen a Hogan plot from beginning to end that wasn’t hastily rewritten due to backstage shenanigans.
Ideally, in addition to incorporating our three supercouples and Sami, plus the three DiMera men, Lexie, Celeste, Anna, and Doug and Julie, more and more characters will be drawn into this. We need the younger characters integrated into the canvas and given more depth, and how better than to give them grown-up roles to the play in the big summer storyline? Max, the forgotten Brady sibling, Chelsea the child kidnapped (and resurrected) by the DiMeras, Billie her mother, Stephanie whose father was stolen from her, Kate who was a DiMera sex worker and EJ’s partner, Benjy the “good” son, Nick and Phillip because I love them. And Phillip was one of the few who got the better of EJ the omnipotent. And Nick was one of the few not to be manipulated by him, when he refused to give EJ any information about the amnio Sami didn’t have.
(whispers) And a B storyline that was actually working would be nice too.