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DAYS Executive Producer Ken Corday Talks with SOD On: Cast Changes, Focus On Romance & Plans For 50th Anniversary!

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

In an in-depth interview in the latest issue of Soap Opera Digest on newsstands now, Editorial Director Stephanie Sloane chatted with Days of our Lives executive producer, Ken Corday on the big plans for DAYS 50th anniversary kicking off this fall.

Corday explains his decision to change head writers from Gary Tomlin and Chris Whitesell to Dena Higley and Josh Griffith, as well as the renewed focus on the fan favorite returns, storyline change-ups, cast shake-ups, and his plans to save the ratings struggle of the long-running NBC soap opera.

When discussing what was number one of his listed of changes that he wanted to implement, Corday related:  “I needed to, first of all, change the cast.  The cast on the show was no longer recognizable to me and those that were recognizable were doing nothing.  So we had to flip that. We had to jettison stories that were not going over well with the audience and we had to give characters on the show that were recognizable and powerful more story.”

Corday also confirmed that romance will be a main factor in the 50th anniversary and with the new writing regime relating: “Romance is the basis for where the story starts.  This is how Dena and Josh approach their storytelling with me and with the producers:  Who is the couple I want to die for here?  Who are the couples we want to root for? Let’s isolate three or four of them and build great story around their high, romantic stakes. Every one of their stories is based on romance.  And a little bit of psychosis, but that is also dramatic.”

Make sure to pick-up the latest edition of Soap Opera Digest on sale now to read the entire interview.

What do you think of Ken Corday’s comments on changing the cast, and what will happen in the romance department? Are you encouraged for the future of DAYS?  Share your thoughts below!

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Gmbenet
Guest
Gmbenet

I want to know about the shocking deaths! Who dies? Also, the problem with the show is not always the characters, but what the writers do with the characters. When the writers have the characters do stupid stuff (i.e. Eve sleeps with JJ; Nicole and Sami and Abigail going from man to man), it takes some of the enjoyment out of watching the show. It is not the characters that iritate but what the writers have the characters doing. Some of their actions are over the top or immature. For long time characters what makes it especially irritating is knowing… Read more »

blake
Guest
blake

I’m sure Clydee will be killed off before the anniversary to make room for the vets. I will be soooo glad to see him gone!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

It would seem to be “True” that heads roll during big anniversaries!

john
Guest
john

So the yearly edition of SOD’s Plan to Save Days is here.
It sounds good, but like I said, it’s not the first time.

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

I honestly think Mr Cordy abandoned the ship and it ran off course, then he finally noticed that and decided to get hands on again and make the changes needed to save the ship before it sank. Whether he would have done that if the 50th wasn’t on the horizon I don’t know, all I know, by the sounds of it, Days might become my favorite soap again come fall.

Newc11
Guest
Newc11

It is refreshing to know that he recognizes that the show, while still good, is nowhere near where it could and should be. Getting back to the show’s roots is exactly what is needed. We’ve suffered through too many years of watching these “B” and “C” characters and families. Focusing on the Horton, Brady, Dimera and Kiriakis family is a great start. I truly believe they need to alter their production schedule so when a story is not working, they can respond. Recording 5 or 6 months ahead of the airdate is detrimental. Also, a small change they could make… Read more »

Joel
Guest
Joel

I agree about story happening in the park. So sickening! If I never see that park again, I’d be thrilled beyond words.

Sally
Guest
Sally

I agree, recording the show so far in advance is a HUGE hindrance! We have to suffer through months of what’s *not working* even after we’ve rejoiced that an actor/character has been let go. How did they ever get on this stupid schedule in the first place? Give everyone 3-4 months off and GET CURRENT! And the sets…they are the absolute worst in ALL of television! When I started watching this show 3-4 years ago, I couldn’t get over how terrible and out-dated they were. And don’t even get me started on the wardrobe department! Do they even have a… Read more »

Rodd
Guest
Rodd

Newc11, I agree with what you’ve written; especially about the filming so far in advance and the sets. I started watching DOOL when I was in grammar school and then stopped when the show started looking cheap and the story lines bored me. I watch occasionally now, hoping that something will draw me back into to regular viewing and nothing does. The sense of family is not there for me anymore and the sets look so cheap they might as well just hang a curtain. I hope it improves and hooks me back in the coming months. DOOL has a… Read more »

TMJ
Guest
TMJ

The thing they need to work on is the length in time between filming and airing. There is something wrong when General Hospital shoots 6-8 weeks ahead, and Days shoots 6-8 months ahead. A lot of the problems with these current storylines is that they can’t be corrected quickly because of the absurdly long gap in time before they can get any viewer reaction.

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

DAYS shoots five months ahead. The others shoot 2 months ahead. 3 months is not a big difference…and before someone says it wouldn’t take as long to make corrections with storylines if they weren’t so far ahead, then where are all the storyline corrections for the messes that the other soaps make?

Jake from NJ
Guest
Jake from NJ

I agree…the only way to correct a casting mistake or a storyline is to get insync with a 6-8 week advance schedule. I am so glad mr Corday finally listen to the fans to bring back fan favorites…so looking 4ward 2 it.

Sally
Guest
Sally

Actually, I believe the other shows shoot 4-5 WEEKS in advance, so that is a huge difference!

blake
Guest
blake

Yeah I know they say it helps with the budget but it’s not helping the show at all. Hell Eileen Davidson might return more as Kristen if they did that, she was burned out from the filming before.

Me
Guest
Me

I think by now DAYS is shooting 7-8 months ahead which is beyond ridiculous! But 7-8 months or 7-8 weeks wouldn’t change anything or save the show. For whatever reason, Corday has clearly ignored the viewers for the last couple of years.

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Days lacks humour for starters…bring back Jack…have Jack and Jen be the next Tom and Alice but in a more comical way…tackle some real life subjects…maybe Caroline could be acting strange and hasnt allowed vistors to see her…the family worries her Alzheimers is progressing quickly but one day Roman visits he discovers Carolines apartment above the Brady pub is one big mess…Caroline is a hoarder…move forward away from the Eve/JJ/Paige…4EverDAYS mentioned Rafe’s father is also Paige’s daddy so lets move on to that…lets have Doug and Julie relive their first kiss…then have Lee Dumonde(Robin Strasser) show up and interupt Doug… Read more »

maddiehayes
Guest
maddiehayes

FINALLY, someone GETS it! ROMANCE is what we want to see, why oh why has it taken DAYS this long to figure that out? This is an audience full of WOMEN! Do they think we tune in to see who’s sleeping with who THIS week? Sure, some do, but most of us want at least ONE couple we can ROOT for! Eric&Nicole was that couple for me. I haven’t been watching much since their breakup, but I will tune in when the new writers’ stuff airs in August. I’m expecting a big turnaround from the depressing plots we’ve been getting… Read more »

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

There’s been a lot of Ericole in the last few weeks. If you didn’t see those episodes, you should.

Allen saint james
Guest
Allen saint james

Action adventure romance please!!

Rj
Guest
Rj

First, I want to start off that I have tremendous respect for Mr. Corday because I think it is phenomenal how he has kept the show going for 50 years despite many obstacles and challenges. I know there are armchair critics, but anyone who has ever run anything knows this is no small feat! Congrats and Kudos! The basis for the soap opera genre is romance, and I am glad that he is going to make that the foundation of every storyline and then build the drama around that. The relationships pull you in, you become invested in the couples,… Read more »

liz
Guest
liz

I hate to be a spoil sport but I don’t think bringing back the vets is going to save Days. They tried it before during the last big anniversary celebration and what happened? After the Young and the Restless, Days has got to have the most veteran cast on daytime. Some of these cast members have been on the show for 20 or 30 years and the ratings still tanked. It doesn’t mean bringing back the vets wont provide a short term ratings fix but in the end its the writing and the willingness to take chances that will either… Read more »

Rj
Guest
Rj

Liz I totally agree with you. They have to have creative storylines not recycle old ones. . Bringing back vets is not enough. Also they have to have appropriate storylines for the vets since time has moved on.

Jaime
Guest
Jaime

Always loved our Patch man. Just hope these writers do him justice. Gary Tomlin treated beloved characters horribly in order to justify his onslaught of Passions people. Tomlin just has zero respect for the history and the theme of Days. I hope these writers get it right.

Steph
Guest
Steph

Looking at the cover — what about Mathew Ashford? We watched him die. Please don’t bring a dead Jack back!

…..but. Remember after EJ’s death they had that split second scene of someone injecting him with something? That has to go somewhere eventually.

CeeCee
Guest
CeeCee

Out of context….I think Nicole will be pregnant! Who’s the baby daddy? Eric or Daniel…hmmmm.
Such a cliché!

Rose9
Guest
Rose9

Well he is saying all the right things, and I hope they are true. Unfortunately, their are so many things about this soap that have disappointing me for a lot of years now. Like the fact the show works over time on false red herrings and then goes nowhere with the actual story. Plus I’m so sick of this particular soap working so hard to preach at me about characters, actions, consequences or lack there of. Can’t I just watch and enjoy? No, I have to watch cheating stories and then be lectured about how the one cheated on was… Read more »

Becky
Guest
Becky

Please please bring Molly Burnett back; when Sammantha and EJ left she was the one thing that let me come back to watching show! How acting is impeccable and she makes you love her and what’s going on in her life! Please she 100 times better then Theresa poor poor acting. Don’t want to see another day with her!

Alice Reed
Guest
Alice Reed

I love days. But more than ever, when Marlena and John are happy together. Can’t she have some psychological input, for a recovering dope addict, or teenage bullies, or abusive parents, or deposed monarch? Especially important are the popular terms and definitions for the “nut-cakes” of the world. And touch on the well known facts of the day, ie: marajana cannot hurt you. It helps people deal with pain. Doctors and Nurses are hooked on perscription drugs. People don’t know how to stop a baby from crying. By the way I do. The point is, let her sit behind a… Read more »

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Billy Flynn Delivers The ‘Power Performance of the Week’

Let’s just start this by saying if you missed last Thursday’s episode of Days of our Lives on Peacock, you missed beautifully touching and effective performances by both Billy Flynn (Chad DiMera) and Marci Miller (ex-Abigail).

Leading up to it, Chad had a gut-wrenching week.  He figured out that Clyde (James Read) was the culprit that murdered his wife and later confronted him.  That led to key scenes where Chad confronts Clyde at Abigail’s gravesite and wants to hear all the gory details of how Clyde stabbed his wife, and then learned how the criminal covered his tracks, went after Sonny (Zach Tinker) and stabbed him, and framed Leo (Greg Rikaart) for the crimes.

Photo: JPI

Throughout the reveal, Billy Flynn played all of Chad’s pain and horror, while holding a gun at Clyde baiting him on – problem was Clyde is so despicable he had no problem telling Chad the grisly truth.  During a struggle for the gun with Chad, it is EJ (Dan Feuerriegel) who saves the day and shoots Clyde.  The two brothers bond over their shared disdain for Clyde.

Later at the Salem PD, EJ apologizes to Chad for bringing Clyde into their lives and for what happened to Abigail.  Chad takes it in but does not explode, rather appreciates his brother for saving his life.

Photo: JPI

However, the emotional rollercoaster that Chad went through, and the audience, in the expert hands of Flynn, was nothing compared to the heartbreaking scenes where Abigail visits Chad at her gravesite, now that he solved the murder mystery.

Abigail is proud that Chad found her killer and tells him that she wants him to love again and that it’s OK to move on.  She knows he will always love her, and she will always love him.  Then, when Abigail asks Chad to tell her what traits their children, Thomas and Charlotte, possess that remind him of Abigail, it was very tender and not overplayed.  When it was time for their final goodbyes, both Flynn and Miller reminded us all why #Chabby was one of the best duos in DAYS history.

Photo: JPI

In the end, it was Billy Flynn who carried the ball all the way to the end zone and scored a touchdown in the conclusion of Chad and Abigail’s love story.  It is always a nice to see when DAYS decides to write for and feature material which plays to Flynn’s strengths, and this did.

Photo: JPI

So, for all the reasons stated above, Michael Fairman TV names Billy Flynn’s work as the Power Performance of the Week.

What did you think of the Chad and Abigail goodbye scenes at her gravesite? What did you think of Billy’s performance and the reveal that Clyde Weston was Abigail’s murderer? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.  But first, check out our latest conversation with Billy, and his DAYS co-stars Greg Rikaart and Mary Beth Evans now on the Michael Fairman Channel below, where Billy discusses taping the pivotal scenes and more.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Billy Flynn, Greg Rikaart & Mary Beth Evans Talk On: Abigail’s Murderer Revealed, Orpheus’ Poisonous Plot & the Move to Peacock

September had been a pivotal month for Days of our Lives.  After nearly 57-years on broadcast television, the long-running soap opera shifted from NBC to exclusively streaming on Peacock.  While fans have been adjusting and wrapping their heads around the change, the stories of the characters you love to love, or love to hate, are continuing to play out in Salem.

This week, after months of a whodunit and who is to blame for the death of Chad’s wife, Abigail DiMera, DAYS fans finally learned that the actual killer was none other than Clyde Weston (James Read).  Meanwhile, Kayla has taken ill along with Marlena (Deidre Hall) and Kate (Lauren Koslow), all a part of Orpheus’ (George DelHoyo) longstanding feud with the women and the men in their lives.

Photo: JPI

Now on You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel, DAYS stars: Billy Flynn (Chad), Greg Rikaart (Leo) and Mary Beth Evans (Kayla) discuss their latest storylines, plus their thoughts on the soaps move on Peacock and its future.

As viewers witnessed on recent episodes, Chad figured out that it was Clyde who murdered Abigail, and went after him with a gun. Chad decided he wanted to hear the entire sordid story of how Clyde killed her.  This led to the showdown scenes at Abigail’s gravesite which included a visit by EJ (Dan Feuerriegel), who saved his brother from Clyde. During this interview, Billy weighs-in on taping the climatic scenes, what it was like to blame multiple characters for months for Abigail’s death, plus what the future holds in store for Chad as he moves on with his life post-Chabby.

Photo: JPI

Greg Rikaart shares his thoughts on if he ever thought Leo would turn out to be Abigail’s murderer since Leo had a revenge plot against those who wronged him. Rikaart also weighs-in on the story where Leo had a relationship with Craig Wesley, his enduring on-screen relationship with Emily O’Brien (Gwen, ex-Jana, Y&R) , plus working with Billy in the limited-series Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem, where Chad goes in drag as “Belinda Chinashop” and more.

Photo: JPI

Mary Beth talks on Kayla’s latest plight; that  being kidnapped by Orpheus along with Marlena and Kate, the good doctor has become very sick while trying to maintain order at University Hospital.  Evans also shares her thoughts on the arrival of Abigail Klein as her on-screen daughter Stephanie, the departure of Marci Miller as Abigail, and more.

Check out our full interview with Billy, Greg and Mary Beth below, and make sure to ‘subscribe’ to the Michael Fairman Channel for more celebrity interviews, music videos, game shows and special event coverage.

Now let us know, what did you think of Clyde being revealed as Abigail’s true killer? What did you think of the confrontation scenes between Billy Flynn and James Read? What has been your favorite Leo moment since Greg came to DAYS?  Will Kayla figure out what Orpheus has done to her and others? Finally, are you enjoying DAYS on Peacock after its first few weeks of the series exclusively streaming? Share your thoughts in the comment section,

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Days Of Our Lives

Roark Critchlow on His Return to DAYS and Working With Cady McClain

It’s been 12 years since Roark Critchlow appeared on Days of our Lives as Dr. Mike Horton, the brother of Jennifer Horton Deveraux (Cady McClain). However, fans have been excited to see him back on their screens when the series teased his appearance in the extended fall preview.

Now with Jennifer spiraling downward (now that her pill-popping addiction is back), it seems like a good time for Dr. Mike to return to Salem to help his sis. (And if the promo for this week’s DAYS is any indication, it certainly looks like Jennifer is going to be involved in a car crash and need medical assistance or at least some brotherly love.)

Photo: JPI

Roark initially appeared as Mike back in 1994 and left the soap back in 1999. He returned in 2010 for a few episodes honoring the late Frances Reid (Alice Horton) who was Mike’s grandmother.

In an interview about his return with Soap Opera Digest on newsstands now, Roark talks about working with McClain as Jennifer, when he previously worked with Missy Reeves in the part.

Critchlow expressed on sharing scenes with McClain: “Her character is going through a lot. She and I dropped in really easily, I felt. It was a very nice, natural care for each other. It wasn’t difficult, that’s for sure. Obviously, Missy is a super-duper person. But you don’t compare people. Cady and I chatted. We got on good. In terms of story, I thought we pulled it off nicely as being people who’ve known each other their whole lives.”

Look for Roark to make his DAYS re-emergence on the upcoming October 3rd episode of the Peacock streaming series.

So, looking forward to seeing Roark and Cady sharing scenes together? Share your thoughts in the comment section, but first check out this week’s promo for DAYS below.

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Airdate: 9-29-2022

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