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DAYS Freddie Smith Interview: From Gay Bashing and Bullying to the Will and Sonny Romance!

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Things take a turn for the worse for Sonny Kiriakis this week on Days of our Lives.  First, he attempts to kiss his best friend, Will Horton.  Then he gets gay-bashed, and from there Sonny’s world as he believes and knows it takes a devastating turn!

On-Air On-Soaps chatted with Freddie Smith (Sonny) to discuss the gay-bashing and bullying story arc that begins to unfold, Will and Sonny’s impending romance, and how Freddie feels after waiting so long for a story to sink his teeth into, after being brought on the Salem canvas as the first gay character in the history of the legendary NBC soap opera.

Here’s what Freddie had to say about it all and a preview of what is ahead for Sonny!

This week on DAYS, Sonny attempts to kiss Will (Chandler Massey), and that doesn’t quite work out so well!

FREDDIE:  No, it doesn’t.   He loves Will as a best friend and any situation in real life where you get involved with your best friend, where you begin to have a crush on them; it is that whole cat and mouse where it’s about, “Do I tell him, I like him? Or, do I not tell him because of the friendship?” And with Will, Sonny did not know if he was O.K.  He thought he could have been dead from the whole disaster that just transpired.  I think all of his emotions spilled out. He was just so happy that I don’t think he thought anything. Sonny just went in for the kiss and Will is caught off guard. So it was all of Sonny’s emotions that were built up that came to the surface.

So you had to play it that deep down Sonny had crush on him, or did he just realize this spur of the moment?

Photo Credit: Adam Campbell

FREDDIE: I think something like this can happen in a situation that brings it to the extreme, where your life is at stake. There are a lot of times in real life like that people come forward with their feelings.   It was more like, “I almost lost you, and you need to know how I feel.”   But Sonny has always had a crush on Will.  He is a good looking dude, and funny and clever.  They are best friends.  I think in real life a lot of relationships start that way.

Will then goes running to Gabi and they have sex! Does Sonny find out about this?

FREDDIE: I cannot touch upon the fallout of that yet, as a lot goes into it.

The big thing then this week is Sonny is a victim of some gay bashing! What goes down?

FREDDIE: “T” comes back to Salem and Sonny and “T” never had a resolution.  Things just ended poorly.   He doesn’t like Sonny, and Sonny is like, “Well, dude.  I don’t like you, either.”    He did not like Sonny because he is gay, and he is gay basher.  He is close-minded and he is not comfortable with it for whatever reason.  He comes back to town and this time what gets him even more fired up is when he finds out that his best friend, Will, has now come out of the closet.  “T” is blaming Sonny for it.  So there is this whole issue that happens and he is just lit! He is so mad. It gets very intense and it plays out and it’s an on-going storyline that is going to play out over a couple of weeks.   You will see the repercussions of what happens and the negative effects. You see how people on “T” and Sonny’s end handle it.   It’s a very good storyline. I am excited to see how it all turned out on the air shows!

Sonny is victimized obviously, and does this send Sonny on a downward spiral?

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

FREDDIE:  This is more of an internal thought: Sonny has a scene with his dad, Justin. I feel that Sonny has gone through the coming out process and the gay bashing. He finally came to terms with who he is, and he thought all of this was in his past.  And to have somebody start stuff with him, I think it just brings him back to “Dad, I thought this was over? Is this always going to continue to happen?  What is going on?”  I think he has that vulnerable moment to where he is taken aback.  Sonny is a positive character, and he does bring himself back from this, but he does have that moment where he is like, “Oh, man!”

Hopefully, Will comes to Sonny aid?

FREDDIE: Absolutely! He does and that is what is important and in real life too. It is having family and friends who are there for people who are bullied and any other situation that is bad, of course.  It is nice that his friends and family are there to pick Sonny up.

Freddie, you got to Washington D.C. to speak to congress recently on bullying that must have been very gratifying.

FREDDIE:  I got to speak in front of congress and men and women at the nation’s capital.  So it was something I will never forget.  I got to talk about bullying and my main point of interest is what I think can help stop bullying is parents getting involved in their kids life at an early age, and to bring awareness that this is not something that just goes on to middle school or high school.   People and kids grow up and are carrying this with them as an adult, and I mean everyone.  As an adult, you can think back to how you were bullied.  You never forget that.  That is why it is important to stop it at a young age, and why it is important to have parents help their kids and understand not to bully others. It is causing a lot of trouble in the world.

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Where you bullied as a kid?

FREDDIE:  It was more bullying moments.  I was not bullied every day. I think everyone has been bullied at one time or another in life.  We get it as adults too, honestly. There are a lot of people and groups and programs hopping on board to stop bullying, so it’s great, and if I can be a small part of that to bring some awareness of it through my role on daytime television, that is great too.

Are you getting exiting that the Will and Sonny romance is finally going to kick-off big time after so many presumed starts?  It seems now a story has been built that is so intricate?

FREDDIE: Me, as an actor and as the audience, we have all been waiting for Sonny to have these storylines, but I also think it was important to wait.  When I first came on the show and was being interviewed, it was all about being the first gay character.  A year and half later people are like, “So Sonny is doing so and so in his life.”   He just became Sonny, not labeled just the first gay character. I think it was great that they came to know Sonny for Sonny.  I think fans that waited will be very happy that they waited and hung in there with us.  Now, Sonny is going to take Salem by storm and people can start to invest and enjoy in his storylines.

Courtesy/NBC

It’s all good because it sets up emotional obstacles and problems for Will and Sonny to be able get together.  And as with any soap couple, fans are then rooting for them to get together and that is needed to keep it interesting!  And so it doesn’t then just languish on the back-burner, hopefully!

FREDDIE:  If it was a fairytale the story would die in two days and people would not care. The producers and the writers have done a phenomenal job at setting this up. I am so excited I have this material to work with.  It begins this week on air! I am looking forward to seeing all the scenes from an audience perspective.  There are a lot of emotions in this, as you will see.

So soapers, what do you think of the story point where Sonny will be gay bashed?  Are you looking forward to the Will and Sonny romance?  How do you feel about Will running to Gabi and having sex after Sonny makes a pass at him?  Are you happy to see DAYS tackling a bullying arc?  Let us know all of your thoughts!

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EDDIE EMMONS
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EDDIE EMMONS

The “romance” has taken entirely too long.

Scott
Guest
Scott

I love the friendship between Sonny and Will. Sonny is definitely an underrated and undeused character. I miss him being on my screen! He’s amazing. Freddie Smith is a fantastic actor. Definitely my kind of guy!

Kane
Guest
Kane

I love the fact they address it verbally with Will and physically with Sonny. They’re both very powerful. The romance I’m looking forward to and they’re making it like a romantic slow trip you take to true love. But I think they hit a pot hole in the trip when they put in the WillGabi sex. They say it’s romantic history, insecurities and comfort. But how can you touch someone you couldn’t touch after the first time. I know Will is insecure in his feelings. But to make him test if he’s gay or not by screwing someone he didn’t… Read more »

Dmitri
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Dmitri

I agree 100%. Will knows he has feelings for Sonny. After seeing Sonny with Brian and misunderstanding, I think Will was probably trying to get revenge. But this was SO stupid! Like THE EJami grief sex.

maddiehayes
Guest
maddiehayes

this is just going to confuse my mom further, who has been asking me “Will’s not going to STAY gay, is he?’ lol

David
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David

I find the Will/Gabi storyline insulting. It would be more realistic if he slept with another man.

maddiehayes
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maddiehayes

They are kind of making it look like Will is “bi”. Soaps always do outlandish things with the gay characters, like having AMC’s Bianca fall in love with straight women, and then those women magically “turn gay”. The weirdest was when she fell for the transsexual, LOL. Of course, the straight characters have outlandish stories too, so I guess it’s fair.

Anne
Guest
Anne

So happy that Sonny is finally getting a major story. Freddie has been so underutilized since being hired. Yes, the romance has taken way too long for Sonny and Will. I just hope the wait was worth it. Kyle and Fish have the standard set. I guess only time will tell if DOOL can out do that and I’m not so sure with how conservative they have been toward the gay storyline since it started. Hoping that was the fault of the old writers. Again, only time will tell.

David B
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David B

I can’t wait to see it play out but i feel that this is a rehash of Tomlin’s old storyline from OLTL with Kish all over again. Will rejects Sonny & runs to Gabi & later sleeps with her, probably gets her pregnant, then Gabi uses it to try to hold on to Will as Wilson are getting closer.

David
Guest
David

OLTL’s gay storyline was conservative too, and it does appear as a rehash. But Fish was drunk/drugged and it made sense because at that time he did not fully realize who he was. But again to say that, other conflcted men don’t have similar sexual encounters when in doubt or acting upon revenge, would be unrealistic too. Nonetheless, I find it insulting, almost disngenuious, like another twist in plot could not be used, instead of Will hooking up with Gabi. Will was interested another man who provided him with an alibi. What about him? Anyway, Gabi may wind up pregnant.… Read more »

TRW
Guest
TRW

Tomlin was not at OLTL for Kish. That was Carlivati/Valentini

Jules
Guest
Jules

Excited for this story to get off the ground some more, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed Will and Gabi are going to be making whoppie. The story, since November 2011 IMO has been moving forward one beautiful and precise step at a time. And it still sounds that way to me, with exception of Will turning to Gabi, which takes everything a giant leap back.

I’ll watch and see how it plays out, but I wish they didn’t take this route.

Ann
Guest
Ann

Will sleeping with Gabi is not only stupid but insulting! With the way soaps treat their gay characters and storylines, I don’t know why fans even bother anymore. Look at how Luke & Noah were treated on ATWT and Kyle & Fish on OLTL.. And those are just two examples because I could name more! These shows like the attention they receive from these storylines but they never fully deliver what fans really want to see. Look how long things have taken with Sonny and Will. If they were a straight pairing things wouldn’t have taken this long. Inevitably, fans… Read more »

Chaz
Guest
Chaz

Freddie Smith finally gets some story…hooray! But, this Will/Gabi thing is crap. It would have been an okay plot device BEFORE Will came out. Now, it is a slap in the face. Is this someone’s grand plan to keep Gabi on the show? Because, frankly I would like nothing better than seeing her go off to a convent or something. The character is annoying and a waste of screen time.

Maggie
Guest
Maggie

Good interview! I’m interested to hear Freddie’s take on things. Sonny’s a likable character and I’m hoping with more Sonny comes more Justin and Adrienne. I am looking forward to seeing Sonny and Will’s romance take off. We’ve waited a long time for this, and I don’t want to be disappointed by crummy writing now. I have to say, I’m not happy with the Will/Gabi sex thing, and I especially don’t want to see something as predictable as an unwanted pregnancy to come out of it. Even if it were well-written, I just don’t want to see something so mundane… Read more »

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Brandon Barash On Stefan’s Resurrection: “You’ll See Some Revenge, Corporate Takeovers, Losing a Memory … Maybe Gaining of Memories”

Dr. Rolf is at it again on Days of our Lives! While Jake DiMera has met his maker, apparently his twin brother, Stefan O DiMera is coming back to life.  That sets the stage for Brandon Barash to reprise his original DAYS role.

In a brand new interview with his on-screen brother, Dan Feuerriegel (EJ) on the Days of our Lives You Tube Channel, Barash talks on what viewers can expect once Stefan is completely back in action, and how he feels about taking on the darker twin once again.

Brandon teased: “You’ll see some revenge, corporate takeovers, losing a memory … maybe gaining of memories.”  With Stefan back in the DiMera mix, look for the two brothers to not always see eye-to-eye. Barashs shared that they’ll be, “Butting heads for sure”.

Meanwhile, will Stefan and his true love, Gabi (Camila Banus) reunite once she knows he is alive? Barash weighs-in on that and more ‘burning’ questions.

You can check out the chat below.

Now, let us know, are you glad that Stefan O DiMera is back on the Salem canvas? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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Breaking News

BREAKING NEWS: Days of our Lives Ending Its Run on NBC, Moving to Peacock Starting in September

In a major move, Days of our Lives, the longest-running scripted series of all-time on NBC, is exiting the television network and will now be in its new home on the NBCUniversal streaming platform, Peacock.

The shift marks the end of DAYS’ nearly 57 year-run on broadcast television. Days of our Lives debuted on NBC back on November 8th, 1965.

Look for all-new episodes daily of the series to begin on Peacock starting on September 12th, along with the show’s library already available to stream for Peacock Premium subscribers.  According to a press release from Peacock, “The historic move to Peacock creates the ultimate destination for daytime fans to access the library, new episodes and Peacock Original Days of Our Lives: Beyond Salem in one place.”

In its place, NBC will fill the daytime drama’s current timeslot with NBC News Now, an hour-long news show anchored by Kate Snow, Aaron Gilchrist, Vicky Nguyen and Morgan Radford. According to The Hollywood Reporter, NBC affiliates will also have the option to add local news to the hour.

In a statement, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming chairman Mark Lazarus shares: “This programming shift benefits both Peacock and NBC and is reflective of our broader strategy to utilize our portfolio to maximize reach and strengthen engagement. With a large percentage of the Days of Our Lives audience already watching digitally, this move enables us to build the show’s loyal fanbase on streaming while simultaneously bolstering the network daytime offering with an urgent, live programming opportunity for partners and consumers.”

NBC’s decision means it leaves only three daytime soaps on American broadcast TV: General Hospital, The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful. 

DAYS has found recent streaming success with its limited-series, Days of our Lives: Beyond Salem Chapters 1 and 2, which introduced the viewing audience to the Peacock platform.

To watch Days of our Lives on Peacock, you will need a premium-tier paid subscription at $4.99 per month. The service offers an an ad-free experience at $9.99 per month.

We will have more on this developing story.

So, what do you think of NBC removing DAYS from its daytime line-up, while moving it to their owned-streaming platform, Peacock? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Days Of Our Lives

Brandan Barash Shares Reaction to Jake’s Death on Days of our Lives: “It Was Fun Getting To Know You”

This week on Days of our Lives, Jake (Brandon Barash) met his untimely demise, when he was shot by a mugger.  Thus, signaling what would seem to be the end of the line for the character.

However, on today’s episode of the NBC soap opera, Jake visited a grieving Ava (Tamara Braun), so perhaps there is more than a ‘ghost of a chance’ that Barash is sticking around.

Photo: JPI

As previewed exclusively last month during our virtual interview with DAYS head writer, Ron Carlivati …the Salem scribe revealed there would be another death in Salem, following the murder of Abigail Deveraux DiMera (Marci Miller), and the character would be ‘dead-dead’.

However, speculation is running wild that with the return of Dr. Rolf, that perhaps Jake will be resurrected … or Barash will once again play Jake’s twin, Stefan O. DiMera!

On Instagram, Barash had some fun with Jake’s demise with comparison side-by-side photos – one of which features Barash as Jake covered in blood, and reading the Handbook for the Recently Deceased!

Barash captioned his pic: “How it started/how it’s going. #ripjake It was fun getting to know you. 🙏🥃”

So, what do you think about DAYS killing Jake? Do you think Brandon will be sticking around Salem? If so, as who? Comment below.

 

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A post shared by Brandon Barash (@brandonjbarash)

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