What happened to you?

Let’s start with Eric, because, hey! It’s Eric!


I had no idea he was going to be on today, so it was a nice surprise when he popped up. And it was an even bigger bonus when it was clear he was upset and drinking because of the Basic Black photographer’s job. That shows that when he seemed so accepting of the news, it was because he was being nice and didn’t want to make Nicole feel bad, not that he didn’t care about the job.

All this drinking is interesting too. Are they setting up Eric going, very quietly, into a tailspin? Which no one will notice at first because he doesn’t scream for attention like the people around him? His lie to Sami that he was “with a friend” shows him instinctively hiding the fact that he was drinking alone. Not a good sign.

I loved his scenes with Sami. Ali and Greg have great sibling chemistry, and I loved that Sami naturally turned to him as someone she could trust. He was perfect at the voice of reason. He saw she was latching onto EJ’s letter as exactly what she wanted to hear, and as the perfect distraction from her grief about Will. It was nice that she acknowledged he was right about that, and seemed comforted by his words.

I think I like this letter from EJ as a plot point. It’s hokey, but c’mon, it’s a soap. I like how it adds a different layer to this serial killer story, something that could potentially spin off into another story in the future. I’m not holding my breath about how explosive this secret will be about Stefano (didn’t we do this a few years ago with some secret Alice had about Stefano, also in a safe-deposit box?), but it potentially gives the Bradys a play against the Dimeras, and Andre, when that story starts heating up.

Abby pulled her hair back! Yay!


Now, Ben and Abby. So much subtlety and intrigue.

The show is doing such a good job making sure we’re constantly jumpy about when Ben is going to lose it with Abby. Today when she said “Chad” and he heard her, I was so afraid for her. And then that note of warning in his voice when he said she “had” to believe in Chad’s guilt, otherwise there’s no telling what “that monster” will do.

Yes. That monster.

So then it was both good (Chabby!) and bad (what will Ben do to her?) when it became clear, at the hospital, that Abby still doesn’t believe in Chad’s guilt. So soapy, so good.

And do we think Stefano is going to kidnap Abby? Something about the way he held up that queen makes me think so. I’m not sure how he thinks it would help Chad, but it will be great if it gets her away from Ben!

When Rafe arrived to question Ben, he was awesome, as has become the usual. When he’s questioning someone, he manages to imply he knows a lot more than he’s saying. It’s perfectly calculated to make any guilty person panic and lose it, and I could see it working on Ben. When Rafe turned at the door (classic interrogation technique!) and asked Ben to explain Chad’s motivation – why now? – I could see Ben trying to avoid the trap, just leaving it be. (“I’m sure the Salem PD can figure it out.”) But he couldn’t help trying to erase Rafe’s doubts, and in searching for an explanation that would fit, groping towards his own motives. The pressure built and built … if I can’t have her, no one can.

And then, when Rafe left, and Ben looked at his face in the mirror and said “What happened to you?” and then smashed the picture of his face? So chilling. I love that they are giving Ben layers, and motivations. He really is conflicted about Will, and it’s making him lose it.

In other news, Sonny arrived in Salem.


I love Freddie, but I don’t see heavy drama and angst being his strong suit. He was excellent, though, in the way he mournfully took all the blame on himself for leaving. It killed me when he thought Sami was blaming him. That seems very in keeping with his character, and it’s realistic, but I hope we have some resolution for him before he leaves. Will’s death does not erase all the terrible things he did in their relationship, and Sonny was certainly justified in leaving — in fact, I would say it was overdue.

I’m glad they gave him scenes with Paul, and showed Paul does still have feelings for him. I know that it isn’t going anywhere (since Freddie is leaving), but it gives us an inkling of where Paul is emotionally if they give him a new love interest – which I hope they do.


31 thoughts on “What happened to you?

  1. Oh MP I think they are totally setting Eric up for a juicy, downward spiral storyline! Yay. I was so glad he was on again (though again wearing the jacket of horror). I think his last few appearances have been forecasting a quiet cry for help from him, but he’s usually such a stable guy, that no one seems to be really listening. Looking back at his last talk with Marlena, he basically told her that he had lost everything of importance to him, and now he’s lost the job he was trying to grab onto. His lie to Sami about “being with friends” was pretty telling. He didn’t want to admit he was out drinking alone. I also think that they show may go through with the Daniel/Nicole marriage at this point, and that will be another big blow.

    Abby is in big big trouble. I think that Ben is going to lose it soon. Obviously Abby still doesn’t believe in Chad’s guilt, and if Ben finds this out, that she is STILL questioning, I think this is when Ben turns on her finally. I thought both RSW and KM were really good in their scenes together this week. It’s amazing how much better RSW’s acting seems now. But now the character has so many more layers. The writing is just miles above what he was given to play before.

    I think “the Queen” is Hope. Stefano wanted her married to Aiden and away from Bo for some reason, and now I think he’s going to let Aiden try and kill her to focus suspicion away from Chad. Andre did say Chad being in a coma was the best place for him right now, and if another attack occurs while Chad is in the hospital, it veers suspicion away from him. Perhaps he has even been steering Aiden in this direction all along.

    I don’t know what to think about the EJ letter. Of course it gives AS the perfect out after the funeral for Will is over (and we know she’s not staying). I wonder if there is even actually any evidence against Stefano, or if the key leads her to EJ instead. It would be nice for their fans to have a happy ending (even off camera). Who knows, maybe they will surprise everyone, and they managed to get James Scott for a day after-all.

    Again great job by Galen Gering this week. He reminded me of Peter Falk’s awesome Columbo on Friday. That moment at the door when he turned back, was like Columbo’s famous “just one more thing.” He really had Ben sweating, and, let’s face it, Ben’s explanation makes no sense at all. Great scenes between the two of them, with Ben basically telling Rafe his own twisted story and motivation, and pinning it on Chad.

    Next week should be Will’s funeral I assume, so more high drama. Only thing I missed this past week was some Steve and Kayla interaction, but even without that I was riveted.

    Two other quick things: 1) Christopher Sean deserves an Emmy for keeping a straight face during John’s “explanation” of his past. I was giggling. 2) No more creepy hugs between Kayla and Daniel – their scene was kind of unintentionally hilarious too, “so I gave my mother this experimental drug…” Only on a soap!

    • Oh, that hug between Kayla and Daniel was strange. I was mostly laughing at his reaction when she said “I know it’s unethical.” His expression was like “When you’re a doctor who’s dated as many of his patients as I have, I pretty much roll with whatever.”

      I know this is wading into dangerous waters, but I think I need a refresher on John’s past, the Forrest Alamain part. What I got from his explanation to Paul was that he was adopted as a baby by Alamains from an unknown family, and then the Alamain family faked his death when he was a teenager and he doesn’t know what happened to him after that. I had always thought the Forrest Alamain reveal was retconned away, but it sounds like it wasn’t. It’s just incomplete.

      Good theory on “the Queen” being Hope. I wouldn’t be surprised if Aiden’s decision to kill Hope was suggested by Stefano, though I kind of like the idea of it being Aiden’s own idea.

      Agree about RSW! Turns out all along, they just weren’t giving him the right kind of material!

  2. I wonder if Andre and Stefano are setting Aiden up. They tell him to attempt to kill Hope, but then they make sure that he is killed and all suspicion falls away from Chad and everyone thinks they are safe because Aiden was the killer. I’m not happy about this as a fan of Aiden, but I can see how that would be a good way to drag out the serial killer story.

    • That’s my guess too, because otherwise how DO they drag it out? Ben is looking like a good suspect now, and Rafe clearly questions Chad being the killer. They need to throw another red herring in there in order to draw this out for a bit longer.

      I do wonder why they torpedoed Aiden’s character, if Peter Reckell isn’t staying long-term, but it may be a case of the writers being more invested in a Rafe/Hope romance going forward. We don’t have any confirmation on Peter’s contract. I actually wonder if Bo might end up dying, protecting his family. I could see Peter agreeing to giving Bo a hero’s death, if has no intention of returning. Imagine the fall-out of that one!

    • Jasmine, I think you’re right! I hadn’t put it all together like that, but Aiden trying to kill Hope in a copycat style (hoping it will be attributed to necktie killer), and getting caught, would give Stefano and Andre a perfect fall guy for Chad. That’s so diabolical.

      It would leave Ben without an explanation for saying that Chad admitted his guilt to him – and would also frustrate the reasons that Ben killed those people at all! So that will be interesting going forward. Will Ben be happy to have Aiden take the fall, even if it means Chad goes free? Or will it make him go even crazier? I think it’s gotta be the latter!

      Denise, I refuse to accept that PR is leaving until it is officially confirmed. Until then I am just going to assume he’s staying for good. It’s happy here in my world. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • If it were up to me, PR would stay forever. I love Bo as a character. And I think he and Hope belong together. I really haven’t liked any of their other pairings (though I didn’t see the beginning of Haiden, so I can’t judge). I’ll try and live in your world until we hear different :). They are playing it pretty close to the vest, which makes me nervous.

  3. I read Eric’s comment about the “friend” as a bit more cynical statement about Nicole’s “friendship” depicted on the tablet in his hands. Eric may have a new sharp edge ..honed by his past disappointments ..betrayals..near death experiences..I see strength ..not necessarily happiness..but steady resolve..One thing is evident..Greg Vaughan๐ŸŒž is a talented, sensitive actor๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

    • Ooh, great point, Donna. I like that. It would be really interesting to have Eric get angry with Nicole, or feel resentment at how she offered the job and then took it back.

      And yes, we agree about Greg Vaughan. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. OK…so two things from Thursday that i can’t ignore…Adrienne telling Justin she has loved him since she was 17…..I knew she was young when she came to Salem looking for Steve but 17? How in the world was a 17 year old supposedly following Steve to Europe and back and he didn’t notice? I always assumed she was 19 or so and good lord, what was a 17 yr old doing with a flask getting Kayla drunk on Steve door step in one of my favorite episodes?

    Kayla and Daniel…what? He tells her to go home and she says no she would either just drive Joey crazy or fight with Steve….Steve is living with Kayla and Joey? Then that hug…why? I could understand the hug if Nicole or Steve had seen it and gotten jealous, or if Joey or maybe even Eric had seen it and gotten the wrong idea…maybe even Hope or Jennifer. Otherwise it feels like they are setting something up…it’s not something I want to see again.

    So far I have been disappointed with Sonny in his grief. It has felt flat to me. At least there are not as many missed beats. Roman is the only important person we haven’t seen react to Will’s loss and I am fine with that. I am glad they let us see Paul trying to be there to support Sonny. Speaking of Paul, I want something more for him. I like the idea of him helping John in his search for his identity.

    This EJ stuff just seems unnecessary and feels like a way to make sure Sami is the center attention….again. The scenes with Eric should have focused on the loss of Will not this letter. I freely admit that I hate Sami and she is a huge reason I didn’t regularly watch the show from 1995-2015 so I know I am biased about this so I will just let it go.

    I am seriously loving Rafe right now! Loved his scenes with Ben and with Stefano. And I am excited for watching Rafe’s family drama unfold.

    I think we all see where this Aiden and Hope situation is headed so I will just sit back and let that play out. I don’t want Bo to die but if Peter Reckell truly has no intention of returning to the show again then I will accept it.

    I am continually amazed at how much better this show is than it was just a couple of months ago. With the exception of the Sami/EJ thing I am at least marginally interested in every storyline right now and that is huge for me. I don’t think the ratings have shown much of an improvement so far and that is sad but hopefully it will continue to improve.

    • Shea: re: Daniel & Kayla – I was also totally waiting for someone to come around the corner and “get the wrong impression!” Otherwise, I was kind of like WTF? And the hug was kind of awkward and creepy.

      And don’t feel bad about your Sami bias LOL. I also thought it was somewhat odd that she was talking to her brother exclusively about EJ and not about Will at all really. It was weird. At least you know you only have to put up with probably another week!

      I’m with you all the way with Rafe though. GG has been stellar now that they’ve actually given him some meaty material. I’m anxious for him to get some more air time with A. Martinez. Hopefully that is coming.

      I have no idea about ratings, etc. I can’t believe they haven’t gone up when the show is so good right now. And we still haven’t even gotten to Bo’s return or the anniversary!

      • It looks like the ratings are only slightly better than they were but Days is still in 4th place and it doesn’t seem to be gaining any real ground. Considering I was watching both Days and GH and I haven’t even watched the GH episodes I have on my DVR in the last 3 weeks but I have to watch Days daily I just don’t understand it.

      • I’m surprised the ratings haven’t gone up. It’s so much better …maybe the word just hasn’t gotten out. Shea…I’ve been watching GH and FF everything but Nicholas and Hayden who I’m liking very much as a couple. theyve got a nice romance brewing there. Maybe give them a shot?

      • I just saw a press release from yesterday that Days hit a 16-month high in the 18-34 demo. So that’s good news – the demo is really the only thing the advertisers care about.

        I decided long ago that ratings often don’t make sense, especially from week to week. I think TPTB do look at other things now too, not just Nielsen’s. Online viewing is easy to track. (NBC seriously needs to fix the player on the website, though. Whenever I try to play it online – usually to get screenshots – it crashes on me. Drives me crazy.) With all the sophisticated tracking they can do now, I find it hard to believe they only depend on Nielsen ratings. But maybe I’m wrong.

      • It’s funny b/c GH and Days are my two shows also, and I’m like four episodes behind on GH. On one of the GH boards I follow, they are always pointing out how Days is doing it right and the folks at GH should be following their example. I think ratings are sketchy things these days with all the DVR’ing and online viewing. The old ways of tracking ratings seem outdated to me (but so does the emphasis on the “key demo” – so what do I know?)

        I work at a hospital, and usually walk the floors on my lunch hour. Every time I walk between one and two, all the floor TVs and waiting rooms have Days going strong! I have to avert my eyes so I don’t get spoiled walking by!

      • I agree with you about Sami! I used to watch because I wanted bad things to happen to that witch, but when she got involved with Elvis it just made me sick. As handsome as the actor was, the character of EJ was up redeemable in my eyes for the torture and brainwashing of Steve.

    • I always thought it was strange that they had Adrienne, who was so poor she had to live in a nasty hovel, flying to Europe and following Steve around. It seemed in retrospect that they had a different idea planned when they started that storyline. Adrienne had to be under 25, since it was established when he reconnected with Jo that Steve had been given away 25 years earlier. They did not play her as a teenager, more like an inexperienced young woman in her 20’s. I think they are trying to make her more youthful so we don’t notice the rather large age gap between her and Lucas.

  5. I’m not excited by an Eric story revolving around alcoholism, given his experiences with Brady and his addictions. But I am totally on board with an Eric who is more cynical and a little less self-sacrificing. Go for the job, Eric! Prove you’re better than ol’ Giovanni. And go for the girl, too. I know you’re better than ol’ Dr. Dan.

    Being too nice has been nothing but heartache for Eric. I’m fine with his trying something different. Kindness and decency doesn’t mean rolling over to let people walk all over you.

    • I hope they don’t go with an alcoholism story! I think his being out alone drinking is more of just a symptom of his overall dissatisfaction with his life. I sort of feel like Eric is in a place where he feels people don’t understand him, and he doesn’t really understand himself anymore. He has no focus. I think we might see a bit of a personality shift, like you folks said, more cynical and less self-sacrificing. I like that Eric is “nice.” It’s a rare male character on a soap who is really sweet and caring, but from Eric’s point of view, I agree, what has that really gotten him? He lost his vocation, the girl he loves, and now he’s sort of rudderless. It’s a good point for the writers to do a shift in the character, and I’m sure Greg Vaughn could do a great job with more material like that. I’m definitely intrigued by where they could go with him.

    • I thought the same thing. It is OK to let him struggle to find himself and maybe do a couple of reckless things but I don’t like the idea of it becoming an alcohol problem.

      I get it that everyone wants Eric to be the photographer for Basic Black and have all of those scenes with Nicole but honestly if I look at the character of Eric I want him to find something meaningful and I don’t see why that can’t be a more meaningful vocation than a fashion photographer but that is just me.

      I also want Paul to find a vocation that means something. This fashion model/product spokesman thing is just blah.

      • The thing I like about the Basic Black job is that it’s similar to when Nicole was at a low point and he gave her a job that wasn’t necessarily what she needed to be doing for the rest of her life – but it was what she needed to be doing THEN. I see the BB job for Eric as a parallel to that, a chance for him to get his legs back under him and do something productive that he’s good at (just as Nicole was good at the rectory job) before he finally figures out what he’s supposed to be doing with his life.

        And if we get a slow-burn rekindling of the old Ericole magic while he’s finding himself, well, that’s all to the good.

      • I can’t understand why anybody wants Eric to be with Nicole – sure she is beautiful but she is also a soulless liar who ruins almost everything she touches. She is shallow and selfish – and always has been.

    • Agree with all of you. An alcoholism story is not what I would like to see. I wouldn’t mind seeing drunk Eric again sometime, though. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I would like to see him do something active, even if it’s a mistake. Maybe he sabotages Giovanni’s first photo shoot, I don’t know. lol. I don’t have a clear idea in my mind of what that something would be, but it would be interesting to follow up from what he said when he was drunk – everything I’ve done is wrong. So he tries something new, something different.

  6. That Daniel and Kayla scene threw me too and not in a good way. I am wondering if they are showing he has connections in Salem because he’s going to die soon. It made no sense.

    I mostly remember Sami as a young woman on the show so she doesn’t bother me much but I hope she’s not on for long bc there’s just too much going on to add more story! I’d like it better if Eric doesn’t go back down the alcohol road and I wish he would get a job at Basic Black working more as a partner role. I keep getting reminded of things on this show. I had forgotten Sami was his TWIN! That is so weird! I liked their conversation the other day and esp that moment Mary mentioned when he pointed out the letter was something to distract her from dealing with her grief. All the family moments lately with Marlena are really good. Denise… I saw that awful jacket Eric had on yet again and remembered what u said. Lol!! It really is bad. I think it’s the color. It’s too light.

    Ben. Oh crazy Ben. When he looked in that mirror and said “what happened to you?”, I thought he was going to break out into another personality or something. Loving him. The back of my head hurt after he kept smashing poor Chads head into the footboard. Abby’s going to end up making him snap one day. I really think and hope it’s Chad that saves her. And Rafe is a great detective. He’s so subtle when he’s questioning Ben, but you can tell he’s thinking there’s something not right with him. Also, don’t you think he’s probably wondering why the serial killer suspect is the one beat to a bloody pulp in a coma while Ben is just fine? Hmmmm.

    • I definitely saw Rafe’s wheels turning about the fact that Chad’s injuries are so much worse than Ben’s. Rafe has been so great. At times he’s been the only thing getting me through this – his feeling that Chad isn’t the killer, and now his suspicion of Ben. Otherwise I’d be tearing my hair out right now that Ben is getting away with everything. I still am, but I have hope.

      It is funny that Eric and Sami are twins. From what I’ve seen they do a great job showing their closeness despite their differences, maybe because of their differences. I think it’s a cool character trait that Eric seems to like troubled women, not necessarily romantically, just in general: Nicole, Theresa, Eve, and … sigh, long pause … Serena. I think it all stems from growing up with Sami.

      • Eric is definitely a “rescuer.” He seems to have a damsel in distress complex that has done him no good whatsoever! I’m hoping we might see a little more bad boy (not Sami bad!) from him. Not evil, but more daring I guess. He seems like he has been playing it safe and allowing himself to be taken advantage of a bit, due to his good nature mostly. His character has been mostly reactive, and I think it’s time for them to show him being more pro-active. Is there a rival company to Basic Black? Why not get a job there and stick it to good old Giovanni. Or, I could see he and Theresa somehow ganging up against Kate and Nicole in some manner. Pitting Eric against Nicole in some way would be good for their story. There needs to be some tension there. They are basically in a holding pattern with their story right now, which is okay, but once they dive in again, I think there needs to be some kind of conflict. There’s no passion right now.

      • I agree with you that Eric needs to be less reactive. I was saying above that I want him to do something active, even if it’s a mistake. Going to work for a rival company is an excellent idea, and if he blows Giovanni out of the water, so much the better. ๐Ÿ™‚ Then Kate could decide to steal him away from the rival company, and Nicole is against it because they already jerked him around once.

        I kind of want to see them be friendly for awhile, we’ve had so much conflict. But you’re right, there’s no tension there right now. I’d like the conflict to come from them both fighting their feelings, but we need to see those feelings again first. Sigh.

  7. Sometimes a hug is just a hug, even on soaps.

    Daniel and Kayla have been shown to be friends and colleagues for years. Daniel could see Kayla was frazzled (nice of someone to notice) and offered some friendly support. I’m quite sure it doesn’t mean anything more than that. And while there are others I would have preferred to offer that support, I was glad to see someone actually seem to care about what Kayla’s been going through lately.

    • Since Kayla and Daniel seem to be the only doctors AT the hospital, I guess it makes sense LOL. I wish they’d bring back Mike Horton, or some other doctor. They’re certainly going to have to now that Daniel is leaving, otherwise Kayla will be running from OR to OR wielding a scalpel! I assume at least one of the new characters will have to be a doctor.

      • Hopefully this isn’t a spoiler but there was a contest in Australia back in the spring to win a role on Days and I understand that the winner is going to be playing a new doctor. It was just something like a 13 week contract but I guess if he is good they could keep him.

  8. I am somewhat bothered by Sami being wrapped up in EJ’s letter. I feel like it’s taking the grief over Will off Sami’s focus, which seems sort of weirdly callous to me.

    Ben is rocking it as a psycho. I like the internal conflict. He’s not just evil. I mean, he needs to be locked away for life, but still.

    Rafe. I continue to marvel at how I love him now.

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