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Days of our Lives First Three Episodes By Writing Regime Of Griffith & Higley! What Were Your Impressions?

Courtesy/NBC

Last week, Days of our Lives kicked-off it’s latest revitalization under the writing regime of Josh Griffith and Dena Higley! Viewers saw their first three episodes play out Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

While there is still so much more to watch and see before doing a full critique, as the writers first have to get out of the last regimes stories, fans were commenting on some of the changes they noticed, or did not notice, over the last several days on social media and message boards.

It seemed clear, especially from Thursday and Friday’s episode that the series was giving long standing super couple: John (Drake Hogestyn) and Marlena (Deidre Hall) a story.  John is headed back to the ISA, which seems to foretell he will have something to do with bringing Bo (Peter Reckell) back to Salem, or a bigger umbrella story.  We know that come later this week, Serena played by Melissa Archer, will be the first victim of the new serial killer storyline, as well.

Courtesy/NBC

It was also clear that long time fan favorite and DAYS icon, Kristian Alfonso (Hope) will be front and center in a story with plenty of romantic entanglements! Aiden (Daniel Cosgrove) is keeping some very dangerous secrets from Hope.  She has clearly now given her heart to him.

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Meanwhile, the name “Bo Brady” was brought up for the first time in a long time in Salem by many characters last week including: Victor (John Aniston) and Caroline (Peggy McCay), Bo’s bio-parents, who also shared scenes at Caroline’s hospital bed.

But there seems to be another strong, undeniable suitor for the beautiful Hope and that is Rafe Hernandez (Galen Gering). Rafe is going back to work at the Salem PD with an emphasis on bringing down Clyde Weston (James Read).  Weston beat the crap out of Aiden Jennings, and threatened Hope, Ciara, and Aiden’s son, Chase in the process.  In the Friday cliffhanger, Hope takes Aiden home to tend to his wounds and to comfort him, and to share her bed with her.  This was a big step for Hope, since this was the bed she shared with Bo.  When Hope falls asleep, Aiden slips out and meets Clyde, promising he’ll never report the guy to the cops for what he did.  Aiden privately vows he’ll deal with Clyde … but what is the info and secret he has on the guy?  What else is Aiden hiding?

Elsewhere, JJ (Casey Moss) is trying to get the goods for the DEA to put an end to Kyle’s drug dealing and to save Paige (True O’Brien) from the guy.  Meanwhile, Eve (Kassie DePaiva) has planted a bug in Jennifer’s (Melissa Reeves) home and hears JJ’s plan to put a stop to Kyle’s crimes, because he reveals to Jen that he knows Paige still loves him.  Eve is apoplectic!  And what is up with Victor and Dr. Salinas? Victor is mysteriously asking for a progress report.  He is fit-to-be-tied with the news he gets.

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Longer two-person scenes, mainstay characters and beloved couples being focused upon, seem to be the order of the day on quick glance.   So, what were your impressions of the the last three episodes of DAYS under head scribes: Griffith and Higley?  Do you think it looks very promising for long time DAYS fans as we head into a big week that sees the first major return … that of Stephen Nichols (Patch)?  Notice any differences?  Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

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MBmomof3
MBmomof3

I love it! Romance, mystery, suspense, action. Soapy goodness.

I may be the only one, but I loved the fight scene with Aiden and Clyde. Usually fight scenes on soaps are cheesy (Victor punching anyone on Y&R ), but I thought this scene was executed very well. I would like to see Aiden take out Clyde for threatening his family, and just because Clyde is scum. Kudos to James Read. Clyde is loathsome.

Margie
Margie

I agree, it was an excellent fight scene.
James Read as Clyde is the best soap villian I’ve seen in ages. I hope Days keeps him for a long time.

Tom Jenkins
Tom Jenkins

I agree as well, the fight scene was at least believable and it didn’t seem like they used stunt doubles, and if they did it was pretty seamless.
I really want Clyde to get what’s coming to him so James Read must be a pretty skilled actor to make me hate Clyde so much….

Kelly
Kelly

I’m thinking that Clyde is the serial killer.

Ray
Ray

I agree with your comments. I loved the scenes with Victor/Maggie and Victor/Caroline. I can see a HUGE difference in the dialogue. I am not a huge fan of John and Marlena’s (as a couple), but at least their scenes weren’t forced and sappy. Deidra acted like the Marlena we loved in the 80s and 90s. My goal is to see Theresa be redeemed and become a legimate obstacle for Abigail and Chad. I think that sounds like the equivalent of Sami/EJ/Nicole.

Ray
Ray

May I also say how great it was seeing Hope’s bedroom and outside her house again?

Kelly
Kelly

The only way that Theresa can ever be redeemed is for her to publicly admit and take responsibility for all the harm she did. Theresa also have to stop trying to force herself on Brady; accept the fact that he does not love and/or want her.

Eddie
Eddie

I enjoyed this fight scene also. And, I also would have liked to see Aiden take out Clyde.

I’ve been a Days fan for only 4 yrs, so all this Bo/Hope super couple excitement means nothing to me. If anything, Bo is Hope’s past, and Aiden should have been her future.

Rafe is a great character, but I don’t see Hope & Rafe as a long-term couple.

I read on another site that a lot of this character cutting has to do with new union rules about pay which has forced Days to clean house to meet its budget goals.

I just hope that Days hasn’t cut off its nose to spite its face.

Llanviewer717
Llanviewer717

You’re so right about the great fight scene between Aiden and Clyde. James Read and Daniel Cosgrove are terrific actors. I’d love it if there was a layer of Aiden that hasn’t been revealed yet and he would get down and dirty to take down that scum Clyde for threatening his family.

I’ve only watch this show for a little over a year. I don’t know anything about Bo and Hope. I really enjoy Hope and Aiden. They are so cute together.

Mateo
Mateo

Half of the cast has to be eliminated on Days. Yet they insist on bringing in new characters. The idea of bringing in my youth to this show is not a good idea. Youth centered storylines always end up with the same tired plot devices, i.e, get them into bed, get pregnant, trap them into marriage blah blah blah…..i like the idea of the serial killer plot device. Those are fun normally. But let’s face it, the “love” story of John and Marlena is so tired. He wants it, then he doesn’t want it. She wants it but can’t forgive his past blah blah……just do it already……again….when both of the actors involved are pushing 70 i think it’s time to let them settle down already…i mean please….

James
James

Cast turnover is nothing new. Vets can’t carry the show alone and there won’t be any of them if there are no new characters coming in over the years to settle down long-term.

Tom Jenkins
Tom Jenkins

Well, I have respect for long-time viewers, I am relatively new, just under two years. But I feel like suddenly there won’t be a storyline involving Will, Sonny, Derrick or Paul – it just seems like there’s this abrupt shift. I don’t dislike the characters of Marlene and John, but geez these are not kids, settle down already.
Also, I have admiration for older actors, but Hospital scenes involving Victor with his old love are only compelling (albeit sweet) to a degree.
Are the new writers going to do anything to resolve the Sonny / Paul / Will / Derrick friendship(s) or whatever they were – will the character of Sonny just be recast? I just feel like things were left up in the air – what happened to Derrick the one time Bell Hop? He was back, said he wanted a chance with Paul and it just seemed like the writers didn’t develop that arc at all – Is Spencer Neville still with the show or did he have a limited Contract?

4ever DAYS
4ever DAYS

Derrick is/was a recurring character. They’re leaving the door open for Freddie Smith’s return. Christopher Sean recently said he is still taping. Will might be a victim of the serial killer or actor Guy Wilson will be replaced.

Pam
Pam

Drake is only 61! You must be under 40 to think that there cannot be love or romance over 50! Look at Maggie and Victor & Doug and Julie. There’s lots to do with the core characters instead of all these newbies.

Scott (ATWT Fan)
Scott (ATWT Fan)

When Josh Griffith and Dena Higley’s material first aired on Wednesday, August 19, 2015, it felt like an automatic change to Days of Our Lives. The scenes were written in greater, more character-driven quality, and they even did less in the episodes in terms of who appeared, resulting in longer conversations between the characters. The rich use of history is slowly returning, and it’s already erasing the mess that the previous writers brought to the show during their tenure. If this is a sign of what’s to come, then we are in for something truly spectacular. I cannot wait to see what else comes out as we head further into the fiftieth anniversary of the sole remaining NBC soap opera.

Jeremy
Jeremy

totally, with you, Scott. Wednesday and Thursday the episodes were tight, and scenes were relatively strong, full substance. I need to watch Friday’s episode. and, like you, I am so eager for the months proceeding the 50th. even, the scene with Paige and Kyle in his pad with JJ hiding was full of push/pull of the characters wants. The new writing team, or Josh, now as it were, is onward to making DAYS a winner for best daytime 2016, I see it and believe it. GH is definitely out of the running for that category. DAYS all the way!!! So proud.

Scott (ATWT Fan)
Scott (ATWT Fan)

If DAYS continues with what they’re giving us and live up to the hype, they could walk away with Best Outstanding Drama in 2016, especially with all of the cast shakeups.

Jeremy
Jeremy

@ Scott, I’m already feeling it. No tie in 2016, just one winner: DAYS OF OUR LIVES.

mollie
mollie

Well said. I agree 100% 🙂

Iakovos
Iakovos

I often agree with your thoughts on this site, Scott (ATWT Fan). I agree here, too. With my (our?!) beloved ATWT gone, DAYS seems to fit the bill for me as my soap home in recent years. Salem is not perfect but I do enjoy visiting day to day. And the shift in writers bodes well, I think.

Scott (ATWT Fan)
Scott (ATWT Fan)

It’s definitely boding well for DAYS; both with the fans and the cast. I haven’t seen this much positivity from DAYS in forever.

Scott H
Scott H

I posted this on an earlier article (didn’t know this one was going to appear) LOL…

Even though I’m looking forward to the 50th anniversary and the return of Patch and Bo and all the others, today’s writing (Fri, Aug 22) showed that Josh and Dena are getting back to the roots…..I know a lot of people crave the excitement and adventure of serial killings and drug dealers and crazy Clyde, but I really enjoyed the tender moments today between Victor and Caroline, Maggie and Caroline…Marlena and John….the dance…these scenes pulled at my heartstrings and dare I say, I shedded a little tear getting all emotional. This is what a good show is about…connecting with the audience….DAYS can only get better, I predict!!!!!!! Here’s to 50 more…

maddiehayes
maddiehayes

And I completely agreed with you in the earlier article, lol. This episode pulled at the heartstrings in a way I have not seen on DAYS in a long, long time. Victor and Caroline – OMG, I was bawling! John asking Marlena to dance .. this kind of romance is what has been lacking. DAYS’ idea of romance has been, “show them in bed”. Nuh-uh! We want to see them on a romantic date, dinner, dancing, just like was shown on Friday, and I’m hoping this kind of thing is what’s n store for the other couples as well.

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

I agree Maddie…i want romance too…no bed hopping!!!

Laurie
Laurie

It’s been very good! After that horrible sendoff for Sonny Tuesday, it felt like a completely different show Wednesday, the 1st day the new writers material aired!! Hallelujah! Praise the Lord & pass the ammunition. Longer scenes, greater depth, romance!! Is this the same show?? What was Y&R thinking letting Josh Griffith resign over Jill Farren Phelps? They should’ve kept him & ejected her.

For the 1st time in a year I actually enjoyed JJ & Paige’s scenes-esp when she snapped out of it & helped him escape Kyle’s apt. Since the day Clyde Weston has stepped into Salem I’ve been bashing my head on the table & screaming for Days to get rid of him. The fight scenes w/Aiden & his sarcastic back & forth w/Rafe at the club was the first time I’ve ever, ever enjoyed the character!! Why, oh why, couldn’t they have written for him like that? I guess because they weren’t there yet. Look, if JG can get me to enjoy Clyde, I say give him the Emmy now & carry on!! He’s a miracle worker!

My only complaint is why are they axing Daniel Cosgrove? Probably because PR’s returning as Bo. I guess Aiden will find his dark side. Boo!

mollie
mollie

Yes! I loved the two character scenes, better dialogue, use of history and friendships etc. MUCH better. The change in writers was obvious.

Ryan
Ryan

I loved the dancing scene with John and Marlene ..very sweet 🙂

Mister Media
Mister Media

This is the honest-to-God truth – normally I watch the 1st half hour of Days and then, bored senseless, switch over to The Bold And The Beautiful. On Wednesday, completely unaware of the writing switch, I felt compelled to stick with Days for its second half. I did the same thing on Thursday and Friday. The longer scenes and extended dialogue drew me in. Having now learned about the new writers, I’m looking forward to seeing more.

Patrick
Patrick

“… I felt compelled to stick with Days for its second half”

NICE!

pressing for all it takes! Days of OUR Lives; LIVES

Kelly
Kelly

It was fantastic watching my beloved Days come back to life. The longer scenes had more depth and greater flow than they’ve had in the last 3 years. The sound effects, lighting and the added music enhanced every detail of the J&M scenes. I’m looking forward to seeing what Dena & Josh have up their sleeves. As long as Doc isn’t a serial killer again and her & John get the much longed for reunion, I think I’m going to be one very happy fan!

Claire
Claire

So far it’s a lot better. Can’t wait to see Steve.

Michelle
Michelle

Considering they had so much to fix,I thought the improvement was going to be gradual. It was hard to imagine how exactly they were going to implement major changes in a timely fashion without it looking a little awkward. However,[so far] this has proved to be the most profound and graceful turnaround any show has ever taken. Instead of back tracking, writing apologetically or piling on explanations the writers and tptb are moving forward by concentrating on the things that made Days shine at its best; Family, TRUE love, high drama the complexities of all kinds of relationships, and the messes and S**T we get ourselves into just being human. The dialogue has been wonderful, as well as the time they are giving for each scene to play out. Not only the direction, but the sets and lighting have done a 180 as well. The scene with Clyde and Aidan where we see the exterior of Hopes house was amazing, beautiful camera work, lighting and ambiance; atmospheric noise and a breeze blowing. This new team is the best thing that ever happened to Days. Can’t thank them enough for caring as much about Days as the fans do , and listening to us. I haven’t appreciated being glued to my TV in the afternoon this much in 24 years.

Patrick
Patrick

applause

bravo

so much thought

3 things to ring in: DOOL is back

1. “…the improvement was going to be gradual. ”

2. “…this has proved to be the most profound and graceful turnaround any show has ever taken. ”

3, “… complexities of all kinds”

As, a major, DAYS fan… with… i’m just pressing… how profound I endear fans of!

YES!

Laurie
Laurie

The difference is literally night & day. I loved the scenes on Hope’s porch. When I heard all the dialogue and saw the longer scenes I had memories of yesteryear when soaps were grand. It made me jealous as a GH viewer to see writers get that that’s what fans want. I can only hope GH’s new team that will start airing their shows next month follows suit!! If DAYS continues on this path they will be the best soap of the remaining. Hopefully the ratings will follow.

CeeCee
CeeCee

Inasmuch as I hate bloody and violent encounters of any kind, yes, the fight may have been pretty realistic, but, the end result makes Aiden look like a fool and loser. I am not talking about losing the physical fight here….which I find ridiculous anyway…..
I am referring to the fact that Aiden is supposedly a first-rate, tough lawyer……he ceded to Clyde’s mental fight, which infuriates me….no way could a man with such tenure give into this creep. Aiden’s cowering to this hillbilly, by tucking his tail between his legs and then covering the ‘incident’ up is not digestible for me. I do not buy it. Sooooo, there are no accolades here. JMO.

CeeCee
CeeCee

Excellent commentary, Michelle. And, I truly see what YOU see on Days, lately. I have only been watching for seven years, but I always caught a glimpse here and there at my grandmother’s, growing up. I love Days, so I am finding it gratifying that plot lines are moving, as you say, in a timely fashion….that is, not dragging. I was away for three weeks and, it seems, that Days is the only soap that has moved in a steady direction.
I am still catching up. But, has Rafe fallen for Hope? It appears that way to me….then again, I am always the romantic. I would love to see that. Aiden has just never cut it for me. Boring character, that he is!!!!

Robin
Robin

I was over the moon happy. Finally seeing John and Marlena together, having a real conversation about their relationship was awesome. I have never understood how you could have the “Queen of Daytime” on your show and not use her amazing talent more. I hope this means old school romance and intrigue. I’m hopeful for what’s to come.

Tony
Tony

Marlena referring to Julie and Doug as role models was a step in the right direction. The previous regime at times made them(especially Julie) as the town joke. The Hayes and their characters are finally getting the respect they deserve.

Mary SF
Mary SF

As I watched Hope clean the blood off Aiden’s face I understood and related to her love for him more than I ever did with all the so called “hot” sex scenes soaps rely on to “convey” love. I mean when she asked him to share her bed at home and he then used the same cloth to wipe her tears– I was a puddle and in soap viewer heaven. Really guys it that simple– sincere, honest emotion, peppered with a dash of mystery and a couple doses of humor and I’m a happy camper.

Patrick
Patrick

“…Really guys it that simple”

yeah, it is

as i tear up and well be damned

Laurie
Laurie

I agree, Mary! It’s that simple. Those Aiden/Hope scenes are now etched into my brain. I will remember them for those little gestures. Daniel Cosgrove is a fantastic actor & oozes w/charm. I have been smitten w/Aiden anyway, but those scenes last w/Hope-just WOW!!! I hear he is on his way out. Not happy if so.

I’m such a fan of the new Chad. I think his acting is stellar. I love the chemistry w/Kate Mansi & I can only imagine since I’ve loved their work this past month how they will shine w/this new teams material!! Honestly, I’m like a schoolgirl waiting w/anticipation!!

Really guys, its that simple-honest emotion! When fans post on social media & view scenes from days past on youtube, it’s always the real love scenes, the passionate, honest scenes. Youtube is full of them & even after many years they stand the test of time. You would think writers would pay attention to that. What are they watching on youtube & take a HINT. I think this new team must have. Here’s hoping it remains.

elm51
elm51

what i noticed right away was the conversations were much more in depth & the scenes were longer…………………..what a breath of fresh air!

Gmbenet
Gmbenet

It is too soon to give a full critique. Except for the Jarlena scenes it was basically a continuation of what was before. As old stories are wrapped up, new stories will be introduced. But all we can do right now is speculate how the new stories will unfold. Let’s give it more time before giving a full critique.

However, regarding an old story, I am ready for the JJ-Paige to end – the sooner the better. That story was ruined when JJ slept with Paige’s mother. There is no going back! The most interesting possibility I heard about that story is the idea of Paige getting involved with Ben! That would be a good story. If Clyde is not killed off (and I hope he is not), can’t you see him matching whits with Eve? That would be a great story!

Llanviewer717
Llanviewer717

Eve and Clyde going toe to toe. That would be very interesting.

Margie
Margie

ITA! Kassie and James would make a powerhouse couple. It would be great fun – something this show desperately needs.

Patrick
Patrick

inasmuch, as fans “detest” that much? the character of Clyde… writing has stalemated… and no reprieve is in order?

I REALLY like …. Aiden and Clyde…. listen up.. for the man SHOWmanship

lets compare them to; Eric, Daniel, Brady… the featured

I’d take Aiden, Clyde, and Xander… any day

Margie
Margie

Ditto. Clyde, Aiden, Xander, Chad, Eve, Nicole – those are the characters that I love.

Gmbenet
Gmbenet

By now I’ve seen five or six episodes by the new head writers. Verdict: So far so good! Enjoyed Nicole’s triumph over Xander and Serena in court. Also enjoyed the plans for the Bicentennial and the Chad-Serena scenes. Intrigued by Aiden’s secret. Is he working for Stefano? Jarlena is always good, as are Doug and Julie.

Believed the hype that Xander would be killed off! Now believe he could be the killer!

Old stories I don’t like are JJ and Chad-Abigail-Ben. Those stories cannot wrap too soon for me! Can’t and don’t fault the new writers for that because they inherited those stories.

Like I said, so far so good!

Georgie saylor
Georgie saylor

I loved that the new writers are bringing back the characters I love and is days of our lives. I stopped watching before because I didn’t recognize the show any longer but the last 3 days were so exciting I loved to see romantic scene ‘s between john & marlena and it was good as the writers are hinting of bo ‘s return I know that he would never abandoned his family I hate how the show portrayed him because him and hope belong together and I’m once again a fan of days.

Billy
Billy

I have to say I enjoyed the past few episodes!! I Loved the John and Marlena scenes. I also liked the Aiden/Clyde scenes. I’m intrigued about the Victor/Caroline/Maggie stuff. I love Victor and Maggie. I hope they don’t screw up what they have. I also thought the characters were more realistic and natural. I also loved seeing Bo and Hope’s house set again! And it was nice to get a little realistic stuff again like bugs chirping to cars passing. That little stuff makes things more believable!

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

Im starting to enjoy Days again…its more character driven and the scenes seem longer(take notes GH)…but please Mr.Fairmen, its already revealed Serena is the first victim of the serial killer, in the future do not reveal the identity of any other victims…it kills(pun) the suspense!!!

Dylan
Dylan

Hi Jim. Love your posts! I disagree that it kills the suspense. Back in 03 when they did the Faux Killer, it was announced pretty much each week who would be “killed” and that made people tune in. In this day and age, I dont know why soaps think that surprises should be kept secret!! These shows are desperate for viewers. If I know an exciting story is coming, I will tune in. Otherwise, I might miss it as I do not watch every day. True surprises on soaps are very few and far between, so announce them! Promote them, publicize them!! Do you think if they hadnt announced the triumphant retuen of all these vets, that viewers would be excited? Not this guy! I sat through two major anniversaries of this show…in 1995 and 2005 (30th and 40th)… Both penned by Jim Reilly, and there was not so much as a mention of an anniversary, or a flashback or any returning favourite. Jim Reilly was plot driven drivel at it worst and he had no respect for the show’s hiatory or fans…it was all plot point after absurd plot point, much like Carlivati’s GH. DAYS needs to publicize the #(?!”; out of its stories, ita vets, and the excitement in the air will keep building. Thats all. 🙂

Terri
Terri

I am sad about Serena leaving and they are keeping Xander?

Dylan
Dylan

Oh..you’re the one fan who is sad about Serena!!! May I ask why? Poorly conceived, horribly written, breaking into various rooms for 6 months looking for an elephant..really????? Melissa so should have been cast as Sarah Horton, or Cassie Brady, or someone the audience and characters have a connection to. Archer was 21, and thrust into One Life to Live as the daughter of Grande Dame Victoria Lord! Thats a tall order, and ahe delivered. I dont gwt why current regimes cast name actors in these throwaway meaningless roles…cough Archer…Cough Stause.

Terri
Terri

I agree her character was poorly conceived she should have been brought in as part of an established family. She is a fun actress to watch.

Margie
Margie

No, she’s not the only fan sorry to see Serena go. Serena could’ve been a great character, but what a horrible story poor MA had to play out.

blake
blake

It’s great, I’m so glad the new writers’ stories are airing now. I can’t wait to see what happens now.

Eddie
Eddie

I do enjoy the writing style of the new team, and the scene editing changes that have come with it. It’s nice to see the longer conversations, and not the chop, chop, chop too common before.

I started watching Days for the WilSon story line. Whether I stay a Days watcher will depend on how Paul and Will are treated. If Will is one of the serial killer’s victims then I doubt that I will keep watching.

missmeka1987
missmeka1987

Good way to start for sure I enjoyed it 🙂

Allen saint james
Allen saint james

The energy was palpable. The show had a pulse and a soul. Days is at its best with action adventure and mystery so I got excited especially when John announced going back to the Isa. So far so good. Gh follow suit

4ever DAYS
4ever DAYS

DAYS is in full recovery and propelling mode…HOT STUFF!!!!!

Kevin Conner
Kevin Conner

I love DOOL and like all other’s have said, the more indepth conversations for I love character driven stories…The only thing and I don’t know how others feel about this…I feel out of the 4 soaps left, DOOL has the worst background music and I wish it was back to like when Marty Davich was composing the music for DOOL…I feel the background music is so important to our soaps…It’s like when Y&R did away with their beautiful background music, the show doesn’t have the same feel. I feel that B&B has the best background music. Ken Corday, would you be so kind to work on this? then DOOL would be perfect.

Dylan
Dylan

I enjoyed Dena Higley ‘s previous work on Days, but not so much her OLTL work. I have been impressed with Griffith’s work on the late great Santa Barbara, while I felt his tenure at Y and R was mind numbingly boring and pointless. Some writers just fit at certain shows, and I think this collaboration has great potential!! Is Lorraine Broderick still in the building?? She elevates the quality of any show. With all the returns of fan favourites (except for Tamara Braun…I dont get that at all) I hope some have been unannounced, including some beloved Hortons like BilL, Marie, Melissa, etc. I love how Stephen Nichols spoke out about GH and spoke up for some of the vets who returned for GH’s 50th, and wound up seeing their characters completely trashed (Luke, Laura, Brenda, Lucy, etc etc) or wound up playing ridiculous caricatures of their former roles. I dont think Griffith and Higley had a big ahip to turn around, they just had to do some retooling and priming to put on a dazzling 50th! GH on the other hand…I would NOT want to be Altman and Passanante taking over the sprawling, expansive mess that is currently airing!! They have MAJOR damage control to do, as cancellation is justifiably looming. If I was them, my first order of business would be to get at least 15-20 characters on,a plane, on a train, metro court explosion, germ warfare quarantine…ANY disaster that would eliminate characters like Nina,, Franco, Madeline, Rosalie, Brad, Sonny, TJ, Julian, Ava, Hayden, Valerie, Kiki, Nunikolas (unless he has been mind altered or doppelganged by,Helena), Obrecht, Nathan, etc. That would clear up a lot of budget which they always boast that Valentini is so good at keeping in check!! There is a wholeLotta fat to trim off of GH, and I hope they can do it. Back in the mid 90’s, As The World Turns was almost written off after a brief disastrous writing stint by Stern and Black, but a powerhouse team led by Felicia Minei Behr and quickly turned it around, until Hogan Sheffer came on and made the show an Emmy champ, a ratings success, and a fan favourite. Two women led GH to a resurgence and glory (Wendy Riche and Claire Labine), so I hope A and P can turn the sinking ship around.

Rj
Rj

Did not see all of the show, but was glad to see Marlena and John together. It is the nostalgia of the show and the characters from the past that makes me want to tune in and watch. It may be strange to say but there is a familiarity and comfort to seeing them. I am all for adding in some new characters and contemporary storylines to keep the show fresh and current, but the vets should play central roles as they ground and anchor the show. They make Days of our Lives the special and unique show that has made it to 50 years. Glad to see that the show is returning to that. I will be watching again.

Mo
Mo

The shows are better.

Tim Key
Tim Key

I really enjoyed watching Victor and Caroline . Maggie is my favorite character on the show and this aspect of her relationship with both Victor and Caroline is so refreshing. The mention of Bo looks like an interesting story but how long is he going to stay? I really like Aiden with Hope. I will be seriously ticked off if he was planted there all along. His storyline about his dead wife was actually a surprise. Never saw it coming that his son killed his Mother. If all that was a lie….I will be disappointed. Not a big fan of serial killers on shows. Kind of a cop out. After all they have done this lots of times before. The fans seem to want Jack back. I don’t. He is dead . Leave him dead. On the other hand …if Eve causes Jennifer to act crazy she could see Jack in her mind. Wouldn’t that be a way to bring him back for the 50th anniversary? In her mind. I seem to be alone in my view but I really liked her with Daniel.

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Promo: What’s Going To Happen At Jarlena’s Wedding Anniversary Shindig?

Coming up next week on Days of our Lives, prepare for drama, drama, and more drama! From the looks of the latest promo for the NBC soap opera, the action takes place at Marlena (Deidre Hall) and John’s (Drake Hogestyn) surprise one-year wedding anniversary soirée, where things could take a deadly turn!

But with the Kristen (Stacy Haiduk) masquerading as “Nicole” plot reaching new heights, Anna DiMera (Leann Hunley) and Tony DiMera (Thaao Penghlis) back in Salem, and the promo telling viewers “For one guest, the party, is over” followed by Sonny (Freddie Smith) yelling, “She’s got a gun!” and Brady’s (Eric Martsolf) ending line, “Oh, my God!” there is plenty to conjecture.

Also seen in the teaser is Kate (Lauren Koslow) trying to rip off the face of Susan Banks (Stacy Haiduk), and Stefan (Brandon Barash) and Gabi (Camila Banus) getting hot and heavy and Eric (Greg Vaughan) yelling, “No!”

So, check out the promo below and then let us know via the comment section below, what you think is about to go down at Jarlena’s party, where last August at their nuptials … things did not go off without a hitch, either!

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Stacy Haiduk and Eric Martsolf Talk Kristen & Brady’s Twisted Relationship : The Mask, The Deception, The Sex

Last week on Days of our Lives, Kristen (Stacy Haiduk) was able to get the man she craves in between the sheets.  So, just how did that happen when Brady Black (Eric Martsolf) had no idea she was alive?  Well … he still doesn’t, really.  You see, Kristen returned to Salem disguised as another ex flame of Brady’s, Nicole Walker (who everyone believed died in the warehouse explosion).  And Kristen has been parading around town donning an incredible likeness of Nicole’s face – via a prosthetic mask – and some other tricks to sound and look just like her!

Kristen’s goal is to infiltrate Salem, remind Brady of the love and passion they shared, take over DiMera Enterprises, and who knows what else!  And everyone who stands in her way, better watch out as we have seen! We are speaking to you (the late) Ted, and (once kidnapped) Kate, et al.

Fans of the NBC daytime drama series have followed the tortured relationship between Kristen and Brady for years and through many plots; Kristen was first played and brought to life by Eileen Davidson, and for well over a year now by Stacy Haiduk.  Not only has Haiduk reprised the role of a frustrated, vengeful Kristen, she is also playing at times multiple roles: the wacky and often misunderstood, Susan Banks, Kristen playing Susan, or Kristen pretending to be Sister Mary Moira.

As for Daytime Emmy winner, Eric Martsolf, this latest story arc puts him front and center as viewers watch to see if what Brady senses, and the clues, and the feelings he is having, bring him to the conclusion that he has been duped by Kristen, and that her horrendous scheme – pretending to be Nicole (Arianne Zucker), and dumping Nicole’s longtime love Eric (Greg Vaughan) to be with him have a result that is unexpected or catastrophic!

Michael Fairman TV sat down with Stacy and Eric for this conversation about: all the plot twists, and playing the drama and the humor of the situations they find themselves in as actors in a wild story that only head writer Ron Carlivati could pen and keep the audience on the edge of their seats in the process. Check out this oh-so-fun, direct, and enlightening chat with two of DAYS most shining stars.

Photo: JPI

Eric, what has it been like working in this part of your storyline; where there’s the character of Kristen in its many forms: Arianne Zucker playing “Nicole” (but it’s really Kristen), Kristen as Susan, and the real Kristen, etc?

ERIC:  It’s been a nightmare Michael.  (Laughs)  I don’t know who I’m sleeping with anymore.  I’m at the point where I go home at night, and I just tug on my wife’s cheek just to make sure that she is not my ex-girlfriend from high school.

When you first heard of this storyline, and that it was going to facilitate how Arianne was going to come back to the show… and that it was supposed to be Kristen in a Nicole Walker prosthetic mask with a voice alternator, what went through your mind?

ERIC:  I think in the back of Ron’s Carlivati’s (head writer, DAYS) mind, he was thinking to himself, “This dude started his soap career on Passions, he’s okay with this kind of thing,” and honestly, nothing surprises me anymore.  When you’re thrown into that supernatural, crazy reality, doesn’t-live-here sort of atmosphere for you first soap gig, you don’t sweat a mask and a voice modulator.  That’s just par for the course.  My biggest problem was the body thing … that Brady is not able to distinguish one body from the other, because I would as Eric.  My God, I know every inch of my wife’s body.  So, it’s difficult to get my head around that, but at the same time, I’m going with the whole “love is blind” thing here. (Laughs)

Courtesy/NBC

(Laughs) I was going just going to say that Brady would absolutely know Kristen’s body from how passionate their relationship has been in the past, as well, he would Nicole’s body from his relationship with her.

ERIC:  Since Kristen did finally just succeed – let’s use the word in “seducing” him, and using her wonderful feminine wiles as only Kristen has to get Brady in to bed, there was also another twist.  What plays after that is that he notices the tattoo that’s been removed, and she plays it off as scarring from the fire.  What’s going through his mind as he is making love to Nicole is a “Kristen train”.  He can’t get Kristen out of his mind, and the guilt that he feels about that is horrendous.

Right! Brady is thinking: “Why am I feeling this when I am supposed to be with Nicole!?”

ERIC:  Right!  Brady has been waiting for a relationship for God knows how many years now – at least a successful one.  He is so eager to have this work, even though he has been concerned about how Eric (Greg Vaughan) would feel about this.  In Brady’s mind, Eric is done with Nicole.  He’s good.  He loves Sarah (Linsey Godfrey).  This is fair game.  Brady and Nicole have always been close … they’ve been close before … so, for him, it’s, why not give it a fair try?   However, he finds himself now thinking about another woman the whole time.  That’s rough.

Courtesy/NBC

Do you think in the back of his mind, that this whole time, he possibly knew that “Nicole” was Kristen?

ERIC:  Well, you just have to wait.  There will be a reveal eventually, obviously, but until then, let the games play on.

So, once Brady and “Nicole” have sex, he keeps thinking about Kristen?

ERIC:  Constantly!  She just plagues his mind.  I think he’s realizing that his affection for Kristen is anything but dead and is very alive, and I think this is Kristen’s master plan from the very beginning.  She knows that she pervades his soul, and once she does reveal herself, I would guess he would probably be surprised, maybe a little angry, but in the end … you can’t deny what your heart and your body wants, right?

One of my favorite recent scenes had Brady half-naked and Kristen as Susan getting into his room, because she was looking for the MIA Nicole mask she so desperately needed.  She finds herself gawking and lusting after Brady under her disguise, and he tries to remove himself from the situation and says, “Susan, I’m going to get in the shower…”

ERIC:  Yeah! And, “It’s not going to happen, baby.”

What was that like doing that scene?

STACY:  I loved it!  I thought Eric was brilliant in it.  I watched it, and I thought, “Oh, my God!”  (Laughs) It is one of my all-time favorite scenes.

Photo: JPI

ERIC:  Kristen is a tiger.

STACY:  She is a tiger.  She’s got a goal, and she is going to go after that.  She has obstacles that are going to come in-between her goal, but she will go after whatever she wants.

When Stacy comes in to Brady’s room as Susan, were you not laughing?

ERIC: No!  I thought she was hot. (Laughs)

STACY:  He did … he loved it.  You liked me, didn’t you baby? (Laughs)

ERIC:  I don’t think anybody can deny that Stacy Haiduk’s portrayal of Susan Banks is ridiculously good.  Everything from her delivery … to her facial expressions.  I think it is amazing.  I mean, it is corny, and it is fun, and soaps need characters like that once in a while to lighten the load of the heavy dialogue and the drama.  It’s a welcomed addition.  So, I love playing scenes with Susan.

Photo: JPI

Eric, you always have been able play the straight-man so well in comedic scenes with impeccable timing,

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STACY:  You’re brilliant, Eric.

ERIC:  You guys are being very nice to me.

STACY:  You are.  I remember on the day how much fun we had, but then, seeing it back and the crap that I was giving you, and just the stuff you were giving back was so beautiful, and innocent, and so alive.  It was so funny.

Does Kristen think that now that she finally got Brady into bed that she won … that she got what she wanted … even if she had to don a “Nicole” mask to do it?

STACY:  Well, no, because she still can’t be really Kristen.  I think she is grateful that she gets to be with him.  That’s one of her biggest goals: to be with Brady and she wants to have him fall back in love with her again.  But for her, now it’s all about, “How do I reveal myself so that he doesn’t get scared away?”  That’s the toughest part for her.  Kristen’s love is so deep that it goes beyond this mask.  So, how is it going to be when he sees her?   Is he going to freak out?  What’s going to happen?

ERIC:  Did you think Kristen would be a little pissed off and think, “Oh my God.  He did go for Nicole?”

STACY:  Yes!  I do, because she’s like, “Finally, I got him!  But wait a minute … did I get him because I was Nicole … or because I was Kristen?”  As Kristen, she always believes there is something deeper between them and a deep connection.  That remains a driving force to her.

Photo: JPI

ERIC:  That’s why I love these characters so much, because of you and the history of Kristen with Brady.  She’s always wanted him as much as he has wanted her.  She’s always wanted to be loved.

STACY:  Yes … and very much so.

ERIC:  Kristen had always wanted to be a part of the DiMera Empire, just as Brady has always wanted to be a part of the Kiriakis Empire, and they’ve always wanted love.  They’ve never had it.  They believe in the back of their minds that anything is attainable.  So, I can see why Kristen would just forgo the Nicole disguise and just go, “He wants me.”

STACY:  Kristen wants to believe that Brady knows it.  She says to herself, “He knows it’s me inside and behind the mask.  When he finds out, he will fall back in love with me.”

Now that she actually had sex with Brady, wouldn’t that make Kristen even more insatiable to be with him? Like, “I’ve got to have him!?”

STACY:  The fear is still .. what happens she takes this mask off?  She always says, “I’ll reveal myself, but I have to do it slowly when it is the right time.”  I think there is that built up frustration now for her, absolutely!

Photo: JPI Studios

Arianne Zucker really has Stacy’s mannerisms down as Kristen.  It really comes into in scenes where “Nicole” goes off on someone or loses her temper.  Eric, you have worked with Arianne for years on this show.  What do you think about her performances in this storyline?

ERIC:  I have worked with Ari over the years, and I have enjoyed it a lot.  Ari did do her homework.  She did study Stacy’s tape, and she watched her mannerisms, and she took it very seriously.  I know that because she is a hard worker, as much as a goofball as she is, she does work hard, and she wanted it to be good.  I think my favorite parts were the Kristen meltdowns.  You have to understand though; Stacy and Ari get along very well!  They’re kind of two peas in a pod.  So, it wasn’t a big stretch for her to take on how Stacy would play those types of scenes.  They’re both animated, they’re both wild people by nature, and so, it was a good fit.  It was a smart idea from the writers.

STACY:  It was a good fit!

ERIC:  I’ve been out with the two of them, and it’s hard to tell the two of them apart. (Laughs)

STACY:  We are just like two cuddly bunnies.

ERIC:  They’re like flirting with each other, and hugging each other.  You find yourself thinking, “Are they going to start ordering the same food at the same time?  This is getting weird. (Laughs)

Courtesy/NBC

In the recent scene that aired; where Kristen as “Nicole” turns off the light while having sex with Brady, is she worried her plan will now go awry?

STACY:  Yes.  I think she is worried about her body because it is burned.  You know, how they take a tattoo off, and it’s as painful as can be.  Not that I’ve had that done personally.  I like my tats, but I hear it is painful.  So, in the storyline, the burn is that pain that she has and the tattoo. There’s a part of her that thinks,  she has to cover it up, and turn the lights down low.

ERIC:  “Nicole” is sleeping, and Brady is rubbing his hands over her shoulder and touching her body, and as he goes over the burn marks.  He sees a flash of the tattoo!  That is a pivotal moment when he starts to put some pieces together.   He thinks, “Woah! That’s exactly where that tattoo was.”  It’s a slow little rollercoaster ride.

Courtesy/NBC

In the past, Kristen then played by Eileen Davidson, drugged and raped Father Eric.  Stacy, did you ever see that story arc?  Literally the sex scene is playing on the screen at Kristen’s wedding to Brady and then all hell breaks loose.  This to say Kristen is notorious for the ways and the lengths she goes to get her men into bed.

STACY:  Yes! I saw her Eileen do those scenes.

ERIC:  You also saw how close Kristen and Brady were to their dream, to their happiness, their goal, which was they were going to marry each other.  Brady is looking upon his loved ones in this town and thinking, “I know what you all think of her, but I’m going to show you our love on this screen, and once you see the connection that we have here as a couple, you all are going to be convinced that we belong together as well.  This is the happiest day of my life,” and the screen comes up and it’s his brother banging Kristen instead.

Marlena (Deidre Hall) played the wrong DVD!

STACY:  It was so good.  See, I try to find as much info as I can on the character’s past, because all of the time I’m trying to find where these characters have been in their dark and twisted past.

Photo: JPI

ERIC:  You’re putting your own stamp on Kristen.  You got a direct call from DAYS casting department, didn’t you … when they were recasting the role?

STACY:  Yes.  You have to understand, I had two really separate characters to play when I was on Y&R.  One was a doctor, and one was this crazy passionate, wild, little minx.

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ERIC:  I will say to find the wild and the beauty in one package is not easy in any town, yet alone Los Angeles.  I’m glad they called you, because you have that.  You have that villainous nature, but you also are able to show a vulnerable side to Kristen that is going to be a lot of fun and interesting to see.

Stacy is one of those people that will leap off of the screen at you and you will remember her.  She is one actress that will have fans talking about their work, like when you played crazy Patty Williams on Y&R.  The audience was on the edge of their seats going, “Oh, my God!  What is Patty going to do next?”

STACY:  I never knew what she was going to do!

Photo: JPI

Eric, has Stacy come to you at any point where she been overwhelmed by the task at hand; playing Susan while playing Kristen, etc, and the two of you have a moment where you work through some of the challenges of complex scenes  … and ones where she is playing multiple characters?

ERIC:  We’ve had many moments  to speak of.

STACY:  I always come into Eric’s room, and am like, “I’m scared!”

ERIC:  It’s funny you mention it.  We have had some very emotional scenes, and Stacy – who cares so damn much about this job and portraying this character correctly – that she gets a little overwhelmed, and the material that they give her is overwhelming for any anybody on any level.  I have looked at her in the eyes, and said, “You’ve got this gig.  You are this character.  You are knocking it out of the park.  Just do it.  Just be you.”   I can’t wait for people to see some of the stuff we have shot recently and have been doing.

Photo: JPI

Stacy, do you think Kristen can be redeemed? Many characters on daytime … and on DAYS … have done horrible things and later turned over a new leaf.

STACY:  The thing is that villains are bad and all that other crap, but they’ve got a lot of stuff going on inside and insecurities, and they’ve got a heart.  I’m sorry, the villain with a heart of gold, can be very  true.  I never see villains (and I play them a lot) as bad.  You have to find where it comes from … how far does this go … where did that little seed change … and what made them go into the dark, but also, where is the good?  You want to bring the good to it, too.

ERIC:  Let’s face it!  Star Wars is all about Darth Vader and how he became that because it’s intriguing.

Because of the pace in which DAYS tapes its episodes; do the two of you find time to run lines together before you go hit the set?

ERIC:  We are running out of time to run lines.  It’s pretty wild.  Funnily enough, I was recently filming a movie and I was so underwhelmed at the pace of everything.  I’ve gotten so accustomed to moving at this militant style, that as hard as it is, it is preferable to me now.  I almost like it because you don’t have time to overthink what you are going to do, and you end up getting more visceral and natural reactions to the material.  You can overthink a scene, and you can come to a wrong performance that way.  When you burn your fingers on a hot stove, that’s the most natural reaction you are going to get.  You can’t have ten minutes to think about how you are going to scream about that pain.

Photo: JPI

But, would you like the pace of shooting the show to be a bit slower?

STACY:  I would like to, but I do think sometimes just jumping in, and going and seeing what happens is great.  I love that.  I do appreciate that.

ERIC:  It’s scary.

STACY:  It is scary.  I would love if we would get to do a rehearsal and then two takes just to see, and then they can mix  together what happens.  Sometimes I am hard on myself as an actress.  I’ve always been.  It’s that jumping in when you only get to do one take.  You have to just give it everything you’ve got.

ERIC:  You can have a second take.  Want me to give you a little secret?  All you have to do is screw up your last line.

STACY:  I can’t do that.   I don’t even need it to be perfect because nothing is perfect.  It doesn’t matter what I’ve done if I sometimes don’t feel it.  I need to feel it when I’m on that set.  I need to feel something because when I shut down, I close myself off.  It’s like an athlete who has just got to  train as hard as they can to reach their goal.

ERIC:  You’re an Olympic swimmer!

STACY:  You’ve got to do it as hard as you can.  You practice, and you practice, and you practice, and you practice, so that when you come to that day, you do the best you can, but sometimes you are disappointed because you didn’t get that one last thing you had hoped for.

Courtesy/NBC

How do you view what happened to Eric with Kristen, who disguised as Nicole, tricked Brady into bed with her?  Some fans commented that that they thought it was akin to a rape.

ERIC:  No, I would disagree with that theory.  I believe there is a high degree of deception in this, but there is a willingness on behalf of Brady.  He’s not drugged.  He’s not being forced to do anything.  Deception, yes.  Rape, no.

Stacy, what do you think?

STACY:  Total deception.  There is no rape.  There is absolutely no rape.  These are willing participants; he just doesn’t know exactly who he is dealing with.

ERIC:  I appreciate the context of how somebody could construe that, and the seriousness of the matter.  I don’t think it really has a place in this particular storyline.

Do you guys think that Brady and Kristen are each other’s star-crossed lovers in a weird, twisted, bizarre way?

ERIC:  I don’t know.  I think they’re magnetism can’t be denied.  I think the hurdles that they’ve jumped through are astronomical.  Will they end up together in the end?  Who knows!  Will there ever be an end?  Who knows!  It’s definitely been one of, if not the most, in-depth relationships Brady has ever had.

Photo: JPI

And intense!

ERIC:  Yeah.  They’ve just gone through so much to be together, and when you do that, anybody who is married knows that, that’s where the good stuff is; the wars that you win together and the battles that you go through.  When you come out of the war, and you’re still together, that’s the bond.  That’s what lasts.

What would Kristen do if she couldn’t have Brady in the end?  Would she find a new obsession?  What if she could not nab her man?

STACY:  Wow!  Hmmm. (Laughs)  She’s going to get her man.  She wants her man.  She wouldn’t settle.  She’d keep fighting.  I would say to her, “Kristen, keep fighting the good fight.”

So, do you think Kristen will reveal herself to Brady sooner than later? Will Brady figure out what Kristen has been doing to get to him?  Will Brady turn Kristen away if he knew she was alive and back in action  … or would he fall back into her arms? Share your theories via the comment section below.

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Breaking News

Daytime Emmys To Merge Younger Actor & Actress Category Into One As Gender-Inclusive Categories Are On The Rise

The upcoming 47th annual Daytime Emmys are already making some changes to key categories and specifically this one that affects daytime drama performers.  Word from Variety is that NATAS (National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) is going to announce that they are combining the Younger Actor and Actress categories into one gender-neutral category

Not only will the Younger performer category be gender-inclusive, but network soap performances will be combined with digital drama series performances for the category.  Previously, for this past Daytime Emmys, NATAS had changed the Guest Performer in a Drama Series to be gender-inclusive.

This category was initially created in 1985 when it was called the Outstanding Ingenue and then from there tweaked into Outstanding Juvenile Female and Male, and more recently that morphed into the Younger Actor and Actress categories.

Photo: JPI

Former GH star Hayley Erin (Ex-Kiki) and former DAYS star, Kyle Pettis (Ex-Theo) will now be the last female and male to win the two separate categories with this new move for 2020.

Fans of film and TV have noticed that on several award shows on MTV: their Movie and TV Awards and their VMA’s, there are several gender-inclusive categories, as well as the Television Critics Association Awards who for instance doles out Outstanding Individual Achievement in Drama in comedy.

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So, what do you think of the change; that there will now be one Younger performer category at the Daytime Emmys? Comment below.

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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