I’m baaaaaaaack

Well, we made it.

My hatred of Dena Higley’s writing is of long standing — I actually was driven away from Days during her last stint in 2008, even before Steve and Kayla left the show in 2009. Looking back, however, her second run was positively Shakespearean compared to this stint.

How depressing.

My complaints about her writing are no doubt known to all of you. Event driven stories, thin, cartoonish characterization, lack of payoff, offscreen characters driving story, insufficient attention to character motivation, mix n match couplings … the list could go on and on. When I went on hiatus here three months ago, I HAD to stop watching every day, to avoid getting to the point where I hated everyone and everything in Salem and wanted to blow up the whole town. For instance, I used to like Chad, Abby, and Gabi, but I slowly grew to hate them all in the course of this wretched triangle.

But next week, every character and every story is getting a fresh start with me. I had glimmers of liking Chabby again during the Halo party. I liked Chad/Billy Flynn a lot for all of 2015 and 2016, so I don’t think it will take much to get me back in his camp. And I WANT to like Marci Miller. I was never a diehard Kate Mansi fan — I liked her when the writing was good in the fall of 2015, not so much before or after. So I think Marci and this version of Chabby could win me over too. Anyway, I’m going to give them a chance.

Of course my favorites have remained my favorites: Steve and Kayla, Eric and Nicole. Nicole has certainly tested my patience, but fast-forwarding has been my friend there. As soon as I hear the word “Daniel,” down goes the FF button. Does wonders for my peace of mind!

The show has been improving — slightly — over the last few weeks. I thought the Martin house party was mostly good, by Dena standards. I’ve been enjoying Eric and Nicole since then, too, and I hope we’ll get a little Ericole story before Ari leaves this fall. I’ll talk about them more in my next post.

But for now, let me focus on Steve and Kayla. I wish I could say that I have found redeeming moments in this Tripp story. I recognize that Lucas Adams is a decent actor, and Stephen and Mary Beth have certainly been giving it their all (as they always do), but I have found the whole thing to fairly wretched. Starting from the insertion of Ava YET AGAIN into their story, the lack of buildup to Tripp’s first appearance, the insta-bonding with Steve, then the insta-bonding with Ava’s ghost, the lack of a meaningful point of view for Kayla, Steve and Kayla’s general cluelessness, Jade’s role as wet dishrag/femme fatale … well, need I go on?

But even here — deep breath — I am going to try my hardest to wipe the slate clean and give Ron a chance to redeem it, and especially to redeem Tripp so I can stand the guy even a little bit.

I am mostly unexcited so far by the return of Anjelica in the form of Morgan Fairchild. (If it were Jane Elliot, I think I would feel differently. Just imagining her in these same scenes makes them 1000 x more interesting in my mind.) However, the story has not been terrible. It suffers from the usual lack of buildup, of course, but it has some points in its favor. First of all, it has given Steve and Kayla a chance to interact with characters other than Jade, Tripp, and Joey, which is a major plus. And second, it gave us those delightful scenes on Monday.

Even in the 80’s, Stephen and Mary Beth rarely got to do comedy, and it’s a shame, because Mary Beth is a natural comedienne. So scenes like these are a rare treat:

Some good lines here. My favorite was “Do I tell you how to remove a spleen?” Ha!

Mary Beth was giving off a major Lucille Ball vibe in these scenes, in her expression above and in this moment, when Anjelica mentioned smelling “cheap” perfume:

Adorable.

And then they finished it off with a cute, sexy scene at the end, when Kayla rushed them from their meal so they could go home and get it on:

This, to my mind, was a perfect episode arc for an established couple. A little plot, a little comedy, a little romance and sexiness. More please.

I’m not naive enough to think that the glory days of Days are ever coming back, but with Sheri on his side, I can’t help but be a little more hopeful about Ron than I would be with just any writing change. At any rate, I hope I’ll be able to watch my show without wanting to gouge out my eyeballs. So you can see I’m setting a high bar.

Welcome to Days, Ron!

Screencaps I ❤ SnK 

 

 

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17 thoughts on “I’m baaaaaaaack

  1. I like hearing that Ron C has a liking for the vets. Would love to see John (are you surprised?) in a good storyline – many people don’t like Rafe with Hope but I am willing to give them a chance. Maybe even some Doug and Julie. I realize Bill Hayes is well into his 90’s but he’s still pretty good. Heavens, he told me how to use my camera.

    • Bill Hayes is awesome and I would love to see more of him and Susan. I wish they were still at the Martin house.

      All the signs I see point to John and Marlena being featured more. I hope Drake will get some good stuff. I’m excited to see his silver hair onscreen!

  2. I’ve been out of the show for so long but I still follow your blog. 🙂

    Do you remember when Dena first came to the show? We heard everyone say we will hate her and we were like “Well let’s at least give her a chance!” Awww, in honor of Game of Thrones premiere tonight she is the equivalent of Joffrey and Ramsey joining together to write a soap opera drama. Ah the pain!

    • I remember those conversations on TWOP. Ha. Was it Erika Slezak who said Dena writes “events not stories”? That was pretty insightful, and unfortunately it’s one of her least-bad qualities. (Sometimes her events can be semi-engaging.)

      Too bad you’re not watching the show anymore! Is there anything that could lure you back? A Blake return? 🙂

  3. Welcome Back! I gave up on watching every day like 6 or 7 months ago. I’ve just tried to follow along mainly be reading recaps and watching an occasional episode but most days it’s just painful to watch. I watched GH for a good portion of Ron’s time there so I feel pretty optimistic about what he will bring to the show…especially with Sheri coming back. My biggest complaint about Ron was he made my favorite GH male character a cheater by having Dante cheat on Lulu. (She had lied to him and he thought she was already cheating on him but it was still hard to take.)

    I was glad I checked back last week to see if you were back yet. I was watching a Zac Efron movie (That Awkward Moment) and Jack #1 (Joseph Adams) was it! I immediately thought of you and checked the blog to see if you were back.

    • Joseph Adams!!! I love Jack #1! I’m so glad he’s still acting. I had no idea.

      I’ve been the same, though I held on longer, so it’s only been 4 months or so that I stopped watching daily. The 2 or so episodes a week I watched were bad enough to turn me off to most of the characters, and that is very difficult to do with me. I WANT to like the show, and I always try to look for the silver lining. So congrats, Dena!

      I also started watching some full episode DVDs from late 1983, so I will probably post about those as well. Now that I’m going back to today’s Days full time, it might be hard to find the time. But so far (I’ve watched maybe 7 episodes) it’s been an absolute blast.

      • Jack #3 is great of course, but #1 was the more perfect choice. He’s the younger brother, blonde, shorter and he just easily looked like he could be the rich brother. He was perfect. Anyone know what happened there? Fired, quit, what? I seem to remember he getting fresh with a cast member….or something to that effect?

  4. Did you watch Days on Thursday, 7-20? I do enjoyed watched Angelica. She was a joy to watch in her scheming ways, bring her on. They mentioned Jack three times today. I got a feeling he is coming back and was interested in your thoughts.

    • I did! I’m glad to see some schemers back in town — they have been sorely lacking. And I definitely caught the Jack mentions. As I said above, it looks like MA showed up in a BTS photo. It could be a ghost or flashback, but I’m excited!

  5. Welcome Back Mary! You’ve been missed.

    I’ve been so so disappointed in this S/K and Tripp SL. Zero build up and drama. I hate that we now have a Steve and Ava kid but I was willing to give it a chance. Not surprising Dena did nothing with what could have been a good story for S/K. Once again S/K took a back seat in a story mostly about Tripp and Ugh Jade.

    I’m hoping Ron can salvage the rest of the story. I fear he’s going to rush to wrap up the story with little payoff to sending Joey offscreen. MBE did say she had some good scenes to play coming up so guessing it has to do with JLs exit.
    I really really hate that we’re stuck with an Ava kid with both of Kaylas are offscreen. I want to watch legacy characters.

    I’m not thrilled with what we’re hearing about Ron’s upcoming stories. Looks like S/K will be taking a backseat for awhile. Both Ron and Sherri are promoting this Hattie stuff on twitter which makes me question which direction they are taking the show.
    Not thrilled with most of these spoiled returns with the exception of Jack. I can deal with Shelle but bringing back the same returns again and again is so boring. Kristin, Sami? No!

    • Thank you, Michelle! 😉

      I have the same fear that Ron is just going to wrap up the Tripp story quickly and move on. I wouldn’t mind as much if he moved on to something good for Steve and Kayla but the signs are they are moving to the back burner. And to have NO fallout from all of this would be terrible.

      I am going to keep an open mind about Hattie/Bonnie, I can enjoy stories like that if they don’t eat the show. We’ll see.

  6. Great to have you back. Always enjoy your commentary. I’ve actually rather enjoyed the show lately. I only watch S&K, but I tuned in for the drug trip at the house stuff, thought it was quite well done and well acted, and funny. It gave the actors a chance to do something very different than the typical “soap” stuff.

    I hope the Tripp destroying Kayla’s career story isn’t in fact wrapped up quick. Why would the writers want or need to do that? As much as one looks forward to seeing Tripp caught (and made to pay), what made the old Days so fun was how long it took for resolution. Like when Kayla was poised by Deveraux. That went on tortuously as Kayla got sicker and sicker. Dragged out stories feel like you can’t wait for resolution – but in fact dragging them out makes them “fun”.

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