Merry Christmas

I enjoyed the Christmas episodes last week. The Horton ornament hanging always brings tears to my eyes. I read a post from Jason47 a few years ago about how delicate and precious these ornaments are in real life, packed away carefully by the props department each year, and only brought out for the filming itself. I got the impression that everyone, every actor, director, producer, and crew member holds their breath as they are hung on the tree, especially the ornaments for Tom, Alice, Mickey, Laura, etc … all the old ornaments that are older than some of the cast members!  After reading that I find the ornaments ceremony even more touching, if that’s possible!

I also thoroughly enjoyed the Steve and Kayla comedy hour on Friday.

kaylaharmonica2

I loved how Stephen and Mary Beth played the scenes slightly cockeyed, like Steve and Kayla had already gotten into the eggnog. The banter with Roman about the fruitcake was cute, but it was nothing compared to Kayla’s “gift” for Steve that she’s been taking harmonica lessons, and her demonstration of her skills with “Jingle Bells.” Stephen’s deadpan response was perfect, when she told him enthusiastically that now she can play for him all the time.

And of course, there were these outfits:

stevekaylachristmas

Look at that red patch! I laughed out loud at Ari’s line, “I didn’t know Santa Claus was a pirate!” It was all so, so much fun.

And surprisingly, I was really blown away by the Chabby scenes. I haven’t been as down on Abby’s return as some people have. I certainly can’t say it’s been well written — Abby’s been all over the place and none of her “plans” about staying dead — such as they were — really made any sense. But I like it when things are stretched out and they make us wait, because that’s something that they don’t do enough anymore. The anticipation of Chad finally seeing Abby was heightened through the long wait, and it was nice to see that pay off in a big way (payoffs — remember those?).

abbyreturn

I particularly liked Chad’s mixture of emotions, part elation that she was back, part fury that she ever left. That carried through nicely through today’s episode, when he defended Gabi after Abby lashed out at her. but also seemed close to taking her in his arms a couple of times. I’m gratified to see that Billy and Marci seem to have a more intense, emotional chemistry, which contrasts nicely with the friendly, bantery chemistry he has with Camila. I’m leery of how this triangle will play out, but so far, so good.

I would say overall Thursday and Friday were a perfect pair of Christmas episodes. A wonderful blend of family bonding, humor, angst, and heartbreak. I can’t remember a pair of episodes I’ve enjoyed more. Today’s show wasn’t quite as good — too much Hope and the teens, which are the weaker stories — but it was great to see Charles Shaughnessy back, this time with the vets.

And how poignant was it to hear him say, considering Joe’s recent death, that Stefano might be alive? If only, if only. 😥

Screencaps Joanie and LizK

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10 thoughts on “Merry Christmas

  1. I’m enjoying the quad because I like all the characters, but I’m not über invested in Chabby or Jabi.

    I like Gabi being genuinely happy Abby’s alive. I like Abby being annoyed about Chabi, while recognizing her hypocrisy. I do think Abby went from “I didn’t come back for you” to “stand by me” with Chad too quickly. I like JJ unknowingly pushing Gabi towards Chad by keeping “her” a secret. I like Chad defending Gabi to Abigail.

    There are a few things that make laugh or roll my eyes. Gabi waiting a whole night to tell Chad Abby was alive. Abby being totally cold towards Gabi. JJ seemingly not caring Gabi emotionally cheated on him. Poor baby cop!

    I do see some shippers complaining about the story, but I swear some soap fans just want their couple happy and trouble free. Doug and Julie are happy, and they’re only on a handful of times a year.

  2. I wonder if they’re going to mention Abby and Gabi’s abuse at the hands of Ben/Nick. Abby tried to kill Ben. Gabi actually did kill Nick. It could be an interesting beat.

    • Good point about Ben and Nick! It would be really interesting to hear Gabi and Abby talk about that. (Although it makes me so sad that Nick became a villain – I loved the original, geeky, lovable Nick).

      Gabi’s treatment of JJ does bug me. She went and kissed Chad based on JJ’s “secret” – she could have had the grace to apologize for being wrong, even if she didn’t want to get back together with him. I agree — poor baby cop. :’) I suspect Lani might be thrown into the mix for him – let’s see how that works out.

      • I’ve learned to disassociate Early Nick and Evil Nick because the story was so good. Blake played the hell of out it. I even felt sorry for his character at intervals. I enjoyed The Murder Crew of Kate/Sami/Gabi leading into EJ/Abby affair and Sami’s revenge. Late 2012 into mid 2014 was entertaining until everyone started leaving (Blake/Alison/James/Eileen) and TomSell burned out.

        I thought Gabi was needlessly cruel to JJ post Abby reveal. I also thought JJ was kinda pathetic for still begging her. I had to laugh at Chad and Gabi not wanting to “work” on a relationship. Maybe it’s because the cheating angle was so out of the blue and the details are gross. JJ got blackout drunk and slept with Lani. That’s some icky consent.

      • I was only watching sporadically then, which I regret. After going back and watching the Ericole clips from 2013-14, it looks like the show was really clicking then. And I love Blake!

        Gabi was cruel to JJ, and I think it was partly how Camila played it. She was still acting like the wronged party, and like JJ never meant anything to her. It was strange.

        I’m trying to put the consent issue for JJ that night out of my mind, because I know Days will never address it. I’ll be curious about how Lani is portrayed, because she had some stalkery moments with Rafe and Shawn, even though she was mostly played as a nice person. I wonder if they’ll bring that out more.

  3. Can we comment on how Chad and Gabby said they “loved” each other already? That was so forced and the story really didn’t need it.

    You know I am a big Chad fan and the scenes with him and Abby worked – I agree Abby went from “hey I didn’t come back for you” and Chad played that hurt so perfect, to fight for us a bit to quick, it would be better if she stuck with one emotion! But I agree the scenes were good and effective. I like that Abby is gonna have to work a bit to get Chad back.

    Gabi I like, but I was annoyed at how mean she was to JJ – I really like JJ and at no point to it come up that well you went and kissed Chad while still dating me so who is the cheater? Gabby seems to have gone off JJ pretty darn quick. JJ needs to stick up for himself a bit in this story I think, I mean his brother in law did kiss his girlfriend, where is his anger at both of them for that?

    Wondering the details of the “Lani” drunk hotel night – is it possible they didn’t sleep together and JJ was just drunk?

    • The shift from “I didn’t come back for you” to “fight for us” was quick, and worse, it was unacknowledged. I thought the scenes worked, as I said above, but I hope Chad points that out. It gives him another reason to be hurt and push her away. Billy was great with his reaction to finding out even Dario knew Abby was back, and he didn’t.

      I agree Gabi just seems so done with JJ, and as I said above I think it was partly how Camila played it. I think she should have played Gabi as more torn. And I agree JJ should have been more angry, he has a right to be!

  4. I did love the mutual trolling with S&K and the gift giving. It reminded me of all of the joke gifts from back in the day (the chattering teeth, the squirt gun, the cigar ring). It’s also been nice to see Steve and Kayla accepting Jade, because it’s very in character, although I wish there was more conflict in the story coming from somewhere else.

    The Chad/Abby/Gabi drama has been fairly tedious for me in the last month, but working better in the last few shows. I’m still warming up to BF/MM as a couple, and kind of side-eyeing a lot of Chad and Abby’s reactions, but Gabi’s reactions to Abby being alive really energized the scenes. I always wanted this to be a triangle when Abby came back, so I’m trying to enjoy that part.

    • I think a triangle is a good idea for Chad/Gabi/Abby, but as I said in my post I kind of dread how it’s going to play out. I don’t think Dena has the best track record here.

      I loved the trolling gifts too, LOL. They are so much fun. I agree that it is in character for them to accept Jade, and I like their ruefulness talking about this grandchild. I just find Jade and Joey to be kind of nonentities at this point, and their relationship isn’t really defined. If Joey had some bright future he was determined to give up to get a job and marry Jade, there might be some interesting conflict there.

  5. Oh no, I didn’t know Joseph Mascolo died! How awful. So great in Jaws 2. Especially if, what it sounds like from Roman, that he is alive. Sounds like they did, or were about to shoot some scenes with Stephano. I sure hope they don’t just get a new actor to play Stefano.

    So much crazy stuff going on with actors dying who still have stuff to shoot. Princess Leia in Ep 9? Checkov in more Star Treks? I’m not a fan of digital resurrections like Peter Cushing – at all.

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