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Days Of Our Lives

RATINGS: Soaps Finish Off 2015 On High Note! Y&R, B&B, GH and DAYS Score Huge Viewer Gains!



Wowza! The ratings week between Christmas and New Year’s, (December 28th, 2015 to January 1, 2016) saw major quantum leaps in the total viewer category for all four network daytime drama series.  It was quite impressive, especially given it was the holiday season.

Let’s break this exciting news down.  First off, The Young and the Restless gained the most total viewers for the week  averaging +665,000. While New Year’s themed episodes  featured:  the Wedding of Abby (Melissa Ordway) and Ben (Sean Carrigan), Ashley (Eileen Davidson) admitting she was dying, and Billy (then Burgess Jenkins) being run over by Noah’s car and tires (Robert Adamson) leaving him fighting for his life, Y&R brought their total to over 5.5 million viewers for the week.


Elsewhere, as previously mentioned, The Bold and the Beautiful scored a 9-year high for the week!   B&B added +532,000 total viewers to the party, bringing it well over the 4.2 million mark in total audience numbers for the first time in a very long time.  The week featured episodes involving Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) revealing she has never gotten over Bill (Don Diamont), and Ivy (Ashleigh Brewer) falling down a flight of stairs over another confrontation with Steffy (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood).  This time over Liam (Scott Clifton).

For General Hospital, it was the best news that new co-head writers Jean Passanante and Shelly Altman could hope for!  They scored a total viewer high since they have been in charge of mapping out the stories in Port Charles.


GH added + 525,000 for the week, and averaged 3.375 million viewers for the ratings period.  In a few story highlights, Patrick (Jason Thompson) told Sam (Kelly Monaco) where he stood with Robin (Kimberly McCullough), while Robin met Jason (Billy Miller) on the bridge, and New Year’s Eve was sentimental for some couples.

And finally, Days of our Lives had a strong comeback!  With the New Year’s Eve car crash that eventually killed Daniel (Shawn Christian) and the Chad/Abigail (Billy Flynn and Kate Mansi) and baby Thomas story to name a few, the NBC soap increased +348,000 for the week, with an average tally of 2.813 million total viewers.  The week garnered the largest audience under the current head writing regime of Josh Griffith and Dena Higley.


In key demos, all four soaps showed solid gains in the 18-49 demo, as well as in 25-54 women.  All soaps were on the positive side as well in women 18-34.    View the entire ratings picture via SON here.

Numbers are based on Live+Same Day ratings

(Compared to Last Week/Compared to Last Year)

Total Viewers
1. Y&R 5,504,000 (+665,000/+460,000)
2. B&B 4,215,000 (+532,000/+362,000) <—— 9 year high
3. GH 3,375,000 (+525,000/+375,000)
4. DAYS 2,813,000 (+348,000/+319,000)

So, what do you think of the performance of the four network shows during the holidays? Which soap was the best during the final week of 2015?  Which soap looks strong at the beginning of the year storywise? Do you think the four soaps can sustain these numbers for the next ratings period? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!



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Of course ALL the soaps were up..
It was the season..
People were off and home, time to look in, others clicking in, others giving a long awaited second look..
When people are home they are apt to click-in and click-in and a quick scan/watch will count in the numbers…
These ratings, during that week may be deceiving..

The next 3 weeks will be telling, I will wait for those ratings ..

Su, I agree, albeit I don’t pay much attention to ratings. Y&R will always top the charts with a great shiny star. What you say is very logical and the next few week will be very telling. I had lost some faith in my favorite soap (Y&R), but the stories are reinventing themselves….so much more compelling. By some mystical reason, Billy will survive….something which happens in real life more often than we know. Supernatural or heavenly intervention? One of the most phenomenal mysteries of the universe. There is a storyline to be had right there.
However, be that as it may, Y&R will always come out smelling like a winner.

Awww, Suzie Q. Why so humble?!. I will agree with you when the situation warrants it. You know I agree with you most of the time.

You mean you didn’t win the billion? Lol. What does someone do with all that money, anyway?
I would probably give it all away to charity. There is always someone out there who needs it more than the next person. I am very happy with what I have.
However, I like the idea of writing for the soaps….later, babes.

Lol! Su0000, this might be the 1Time I agree with you.

Hey CeeCee and Matilda..
If I win the Billion+ in powerball, I’ll create a new soap and both you can be writers!!

And until then.. you don’t have to agree with me, sometimes I don’t even agree with me, but I’m sad for my GH and need a hug ;(

you rate the shows that are tuned in daily,
What about the thousands of people who recorded them on DVR
Because they’re at work or have other things to attend to
I don’t understand how you get the numbers if you’re not including people who are recording the shows daily
I love my soaps I’ve been watching but 30 years the Bo and Hope Brady 30 years, along with all the rest of the soaps, and as a fan I would be crushed if they took these off

Nielsen ratings are now Live+3, meaning live viewership + 3 days of DVR recorded watching after. There’s also a Live+7 rating that is used to adjust ratings either up or down. But, the one most often reported is Live+3.

Will always miss are Bo Brady a hero for the books even if it was just TV

What this tells me is what I’ve always felt in my heart, IF you write good stories and be loyal to the shows history and keep or favorites around and give them something to do, ALL four of our daytime delights will SURVIVE and THRIVE!

I’m ever hopeful that GH will climb to #2….if there were
6-7 soaps on and it remained at a steady #3 then we’re o.k.

I dont think it will happen. This week [1-11 to 1-15] so far has been horrible! Not ONE story has progressed! VERY disappointed.

@Tlmmm….I know your right. On a happier note Sappy/Sabrina
has left the building, fingers crossed… PERMANENTLY !!!

i’m holding on , some; major hopeful

that the reincarnation and stimulus plan… for the re-emergence of …

Carlos and Sabrina !

GH Writers ! what an opportune time… to re-invent… and forward with; diversity; people of color

I enjoy this couple

win lose or draw

Carlos and Sabrina layer Port Charles

bring them back… after her maternity leave… that much more forward… assertive… bold… energized… and take hold their own journey and put a stamp on how much Fun watching CARLOS and his lady love belong

Glad to see all shows can still attract viewers and especially happy for GH, which IMO is finally watchable again with more intelligent writing.

GH viewers did NOT want to miss the “happy ever after” ending of Patrick and Robin–they had waited so long for SOMETHING POSITIVE happening at GH. Again, thanks to the professionalism of the two leads–Kimberly Mc and to JT–and to all the other actors who made the scenes memorable and emotional; in short, TPTB gave loyal viewers what the justly deserved after following this great love story. (Maybe the new writing team learned a lesson from the old regime re that point after the debacle and the aftershocks of their 52nd anniversary episode (and TG’s “leaving”–his way, or be damned, it seemed) that left loyal viewers outraged.
Over at DAYs–what can I say?–TPTB have figured out how to create emotional tension–and how to sustain it–but they also know when to give the viewers what they want–and are doing it so well. And they know just how long to keep a story going; GH could benefit from DAY’s lead on this one for sure. I think Days will continue to get–and hold–strong numbers. Go Team Days!

ratings for that wonderful wedding and Scorpio family reunion should be out this week, can’t wait to see what they were .. it generated an excitement I’ve not felt since Robert & Anna rescued Robin from Cassadine island two years ago! I was glued to my screen. Loved the montage, the warm family moments. I’m mad they cut out a heartfelt Robert & Anna scene to make room for Nick & Hayden, though 🙁 But at least ABC had the decency to show it to us later.

Huge monster numbers for GH and the third straight week they are up in viewership and sixth time in the last ten weeks they’ve posted gains. The last time that GH was over 3 million for the week was in mid March 2015, but that was only at 3.2 million for that week, and these ratings for the end of December 2015 have them at 3.3 million for the week. ABC needs to issue a press release. I want to know the last time GH scored 3.3 million viewers.

It is clear that Robin Scorpio Drake and the entire Scorpio family brings in viewers. As for DAYS, it is the best it’s been since Jack Deveraux was killed off. Glad to see ratings reflecting that.

Its hard to pick the best when i dont watch all four…i watch Days everyday if i can…only watch GH a few times a week and Y&R only once in awhile…im just happy they all did well for now-thats what really matters…its the holidays with schools closed and some people off of work that helped…now that school is open and people are back working only time well tell if the soaps can keep those ratings…its up to the soaps to keep viewers tuning in…we need good more down to earth stories and some romantic moments…a nice uninterupted weddings…ive been watching some recently uploaded Another World episodes i thought were lost forever…two from the 60s…the 1964 episode was copied off a screen and scenes are partially cut off but this is a rare find from Another Worlds early days…also the wedding of Walter and Lenore from 1968…its in b&w and on kinescope but this wedding on AW is beautiful and my all time favorite soap wedding…the church is full of guests…there is no predictable moments with someone stopping the wedding…the wedding party so realistic…guest signing guest book and congratulating the bride and groom, the newlyweds cutting the cake, the rice thrown, music and dancing and a rare glimpse of Audra Lynley as Liz Mathews no.2… Steve first meets Alice…this is a real treat…i know soaps have to keep costs down but we need more beautiful wedding episodes like this…also episodes from AW in the 70s are from 73, 74, 76 , 77 and many from 1979 with rare glimpses of Steve, Alice, 1st Sharlene, Molly, Sven(very brief) and so many more…i felt like i died and gone to Soap Heaven…the remaining soaps need to look back at all these old soap episodes on youtube and just maybe they will realize what is missing today…good storytelling that makes you tune in tomorrow…any any soap fan if you watched AW or not should take a glance at those episodes especially the 1968 wedding episode…they are a real treat from soaps golden era!!!

Im a soap addict…ive watched those old epps over several times and the wedding one over a dozen times so far…

Jim, I watch Y&R and GH but my watching for both has been spotty at best. I watch Y&R for Michael E Knight and now for Jason Thompson as Billy Abbott. The stories are becoming rather absurd. Victor blackmailing his son with non malignant information is really irksome to me.
I barely watch GH at all unless there is going to be a Scorpio sighting–or at least, Anna. Even Jason is boring me to tears and hate this Lulu-Johnny-Valerie-Dante story with the heat of a thousand suns.
I have no use for Sexis or Nico. To me, Nico is just Stinko.
If they write decent stories for Mac, Felicia, Robert, Jason, Laura, Tracy, Lucas and Monica I will be there for GH 24/7.

All four soaps had good stories to end the year indeed, and it is heartening to see renewed viewership. I do not believe for a minute interest in daytime dramas has ebbed. Our culture has changed, yes: fewer at-home viewers through the day part, corporate budget squeeze, passing fads and fancies, more viewing options… Look even broadcast primetime audiences have eroded. I pray for a renewed interest and launch of another soap some day soon. The artistry and talent it takes to tell good stories is prevalent and appreciated.

DAYS is doing a phenomenal job as of late. But one thing I’m really not impressed with is all the death since Josh Griffith and Dena Higley took over. In the last 6 months, 7 characters have been killed: Serena, Paige, Will, Aiden, Bo, Daniel and Stefano. Was all this death really necessary? I understand that some was needed to facilitate the necktie killer story, but once Will died, things began going downhill for me.

On top of that, Greg Vaughan, Kassie DePaiva and now Kate Mansi are all leaving the show in the near future, meaning that DAYS is losing 3 more very talented actors and, even worse, 3 great characters. Hopefully neither one of them exit the show in a body bag, but with this version of DAYS, you can’t be sure of anything. All of these departures since August have made it very difficult to watch DAYS because there doesn’t seem to be any stability with the show’s cast yet.

It’s only made worse by the fact that these departures are making way for newbie characters like Eduardo, Finn, Lani, Deimos, Alla Korot’s new character Janet, and the entire teen scene. Don’t get me wrong, while additions like A. Martinez, Jordi Vilasuso and Vincent Irizzary to the cast are great, I would rather continue seeing Eric, Eve and Abigail on screen.

I really hope Josh and Dena can turn the tide, but if history repeats itself, there will be another “reboot” in a couple of years. It’s been a trend for DAYS to hire a new head writing duo after firing the previous pair, and make massive cast changed in the process. When Higley was fired, DAYS hired Marlene McPherson and Darrel Ray Thomas, then they were fired a year later and replaced with Gary Tomlin and Chris Whitesell, then they were let go and in comes Josh and Dena.

Each time this has happened, major changes were made in front of the camera. This causes major instability in long-term story because it feels like DAYS reinvents itself and becomes a new show every few years. There are very few comparisons between DAYS now and this time last year. It might be a good thing, but unless DAYS is able to create and maintain a long-term story plan to utilize their whole cast and prevent the revolving door of exits, debuts and returns we’ve seen as of late, the show will always feel in the midst of a reboot.

network execs – take note…..

Step one would be for the execs in charge of hiring writers to INSIST that past storylines NOT be retconned.

Days of OUR Lives : Arianna Zucker’ Nicole Walker

Arianna Zucker is riveting

Nicole Walker’ : it’s so heartbreaking… watching her “going” to and fro aimlessly not wanting to acknowledge, move forward, and deal in any way shape or form… the love of her life (Daniel ) gone

watching her breakdown… w/Marlena; w/Chloe; w/Maggie and Melanie

tearful stuff !

at least: it seems… we are truly seeing a character finish out a character death. the pain she’s going through… AZ has this…

sidebar: Jennifer came out of this 3 car crash… with Brady, Eric, and Daniel. it’s interesting… that she came out of this… with just a few scratches and bruises… ???? what ???
if ???

it’s later revealed… (because her character, is not needed ) that it was she… who caused the accident… ) and this lets THE ACTOR… and I say this… because of how beloved Greg Vaughan… Eric… is so loved, by the audience… and he’s going through all the guilt… but… it’s Melissa Reeves’ Jennifer who did this… what if she should fall in a coma… and it’s all revealed whilst she’s in… (angelic Jack comes back ) and when she awakens… or should she

and it’s all of SAlem PD… around HER !

with DAYS of OUR Lives; REELING 6 months ahead of schedule

it’s a danged shame… because… John Paul Lavoisier, is so not working out… as the nuPhillip. he looks so much older than Lucas and Brady! I don’t see any kinship, camaraderie, or heck !!!! talent to further this character…

DAYS clearly should have hired… ex- Chance Chancellor, John Driscoll
or…. ex- Noah, Kevin Schmidt. both from Y and R.

im still pissed that greg vaughan has been given the cold shoulder at days… his eric is beautiful inside and out! … first he s given that horrendous elephant story line but it was still great to see him and nicole pine for eachother than nicole choose s daniel over him and now he kills daniel in a drunken bender ? i wonder what he did to piss off the days brass?
i want to find out the reason he decided to leave or was let go? eric and nicole were days for me!

Damien: I’m with you; 110%

I’ve loved DAYS for a million years!

Days resurgence isn’t perfect… or given a let

I’m still festering and soapboxing… how remiss DAYS production misjudged the audience care, love, and attentiveness;

6 things ; out of the box

1. Kassie DePaiva, the actress. this is their biggest blunder… or near the top

2. killing off the character of Will. HUGE mistake. send him off in to the sunset to explore life outside Salem… and return all the more lived in.. OUT

3. Greg Vaughan… on the male side… the biggest waste of talent. bar none

4. for all the long time fans of ; it’s a sorry state of affairs that Bo died

5. I still miss Aiden….

6. I still miss Lauren Boles… as the hugely loved Ciera Alice


2 wish listing (s)

1. hire Michael Muhney or Ted King… as Peter Blake.. or even Jason Brooks
2. give PAUL a storyline ! wouldn’t this be a huge inroad to all the newbie fan

i’m sure there’s more.

its an amazing thing to hold close to ones heart… just how much an actor REELS… when given quality scripts. I still cant’ get over how good Greg Vaughan was… on General Hospital.

He was a dynamo… as Father Eric…. and it seemed like things were set in motion for the audience to swoon and go gaga over this stud muffin with TALENT. after Kristen left. Nicole chose Daniel over Eric… go figure!

to no avail…. he has a huge following with tons of screen presence… what a let down….

4 characters I don’t mind going front burner

Ava : at first I was … seriously? her lying to Steve and kayla about having Leukemia? does she really have to go to great lengths to get Steve attention? even tho it’s been played out a million times… the twist was in telling Steve their child was sold off… woah! heated intrigue … Tamara Braun is getting it

Fynn: LOVE the accent… his looks are on par plus… meh on his attraction to Nicole… ??? I hope it’s with Ava or Chloe… he has a really fun playful side that Ava and Chloe can go with…. teasing all around… his good for the hospital

Eduardo: tip my hat off to A Martinez ! i’m so looking forward to his pairings with Kate… love the eye to eye meeting of the minds… stimuli all around! and I’m really liking the father/son power play… yet yearning that they bond…. Gabs is so near the cutest of the cute… her and JJ have arrived.

gawd! it’s painful … to watch just how much magic Eduardo has with Eve…. what a huge disappointment that this is all we’re getting.

Anne: I’ll actually miss her at the hospital… giving Jennifer and Abs… much needed BS. her busy body antics will be missed. what is her backstory… history lesson DAYS … PLEASE! she’s a fun in your face.. tell it like it is!

Paul: I miss him… i’m not the only one ! Hello DAYS ! the camera loves him… fans love him… he’s a quality draw who stirs temptations

Chloe : captivating looks… plenty ! I was never that caught up in her act… but… I’m giving her a big prop! either to stir up past feelings… with… both Lucas and Brady! GO

Adrienne and Justin : OK … you erred so big… in taking them off contract… and alerting the fans ire. what is it with not featuring and frontburnering… INTELLIGENCE … you have it in spades with these two! Vincent Irrizary is on his way… let’s lay the groundwork and foundation… and get VI’ Deimos running… he’s bar none… THE BEST !

2016 soapbox

It does boggle the mind, does it not, damien?. If Greg is to leave, why have him leave as a criminal. Odd! Don’t know whether to be sad or pissed off.
Now, we must believe that Brady is having dreams of Nicole because he has Daniel’s heart. And, of course, we think with our hearts, not our brain. Ha! So, here we go again with another triangle….Nicole, Brady and Theresa. What else is new. I don’t know how I feel about this yet. I guess it depends on the writing….if done with purpose and conviction, it may have possibilities, albeit a repetition of so many storylines.

ITA, Eric & Nicole were pretty much the only thing holding me to DAYS until the new writers came along. Didn’t watch very often once Serena was introduced. Now I have Patch & Kayla and Chabby (until she leaves, wahhh) but I’m still upset at how GV has been WASTED this past year.

I don’t watch Days but I have always felt Greg Vaughn is vastly underrated.
He had the daunting task of filling Jonathan Jackson’s shoes as GH’s Lucky.
I think that would be as daunting as trying to follow Billy Miller as Billy Abbott.
When GV played a strung out pain pill addict, he was firing on all cylinders thus proving he has great acting prowess. Even Tony Geary lauded his performance in an interview. Lucky is needed in Port Charles and JJ is busy in Nashville.
Bring him back–he is the true love of Lizzy’s life, not Jason as she keeps asserting.

I’m always glad to see soap opera ratings increase, but B&B is at an all time low; I thought when we got ride of Hope and her arrogance (and that incredibly annoying Kim Matula with THAT laugh) we’d got out of that cycle of Liam Spencer love triangles but oh no we’re back to the same old crap again now but with Ivy and Wyatt, it’s BORING and the stories are stupid, Ivy’s constant accidents, Liam accidentally flying to Oz, come on Bell you can do better than this.

Glad ratings were up. As someone said because of Hoilday breaks, I watched Days more than I usually am able to. There were some good performances and drama, but Dena seems to descend into a little too much darkness for me. When she was head writer last time, I think she did the baby switch storyline which was good, but then the show started to get too dark, ugly, and mean. I hope that they will start to let up on the constant murders and deaths. You can only watch so much of that, and it starts to get too sad and depressing for a show that is supposed to be a more pleasant escape from reality. As I said, we can watch the news for that. Perhaps, they had to clean house or make some changes, and unfortunately, death and murders are a part of life, but now they have had so many one after another. They need to change it up. I like the Chad/Abigail romance, love seeing Steve and Kayla, Belle and Phillip, Brady and Theresa. Good to have some intriguing story lines, and couples working together to solve mysteries, and problems, but let’s move away from so many deaths and murders.

Just want to add – of course, I love Maggie and Victor, John/Marlena, and others, but I was writing about some of the newer romances (or returning romances). Of course, I would also like to see Kate, Nicole, and Hope in romances and good storylines- they always give strong performances. It will take time for Nicole to move on from Daniel, Hope and Rafe are moving closer, and possibly Kate and Eduardo. Hopefully, Days will move in this direction. As it is the 50th year of Days it would be good to see some storylines that can give cause to celebrate some happiness!

Well I am into 15 minutes of Y&R Jason Thompson is owning the role of Billy Abbott! Bravo I do not care for JFP but she made a good call this time he has brought the humor everything. Now if Pratt could write this show like todays I will start to enjoy it again. Please don’t miss todays episode.

When I am wrong I admit it he looks like he is having the time of his life!!!

I can’t wait until MF has a thread tonight about Jason Thompson’s performance today in all my years of watching soaps I have never seen an actor command the character the first day. WOW!


I don’t need the sigh of relief… because I did not feel the slightest bit of urgency for Jason Thompson.

but… LOL

when fans are cheering from the sidelines… the best for…

whew! take Genoa City Billy Abbott !

1. I really like your candid post (s)

ie: slightest bit of urgency….

should read: I wasn’t in the least bit worried that Jason Thompson would not pull of this feat

congrats to the big guy

inasmuch as fans may not care for Amelia Heinle… it is my fervent wish… that these two do in fact have chemistry… they may not be together… but a fun wistful at ease camaraderie

heck ! I hope they tease the heck out of each other

All My Children

Soap Favorites Jason Cook, Brytni Sarpy and Jacob Young Visit the Michael Fairman Channel

On Wednesday night, February 28, Four for Fun, the movie written and directed by former Days of our Lives and General Hospital star, Jason Cook (ex-Shawn-Douglas; ex-Matt, respectively), which stars Brytni Sarpy (Elena, Y&R) and Jacob Young (ex-JR, AMC, Lucky, GH, and Rick, B&B), will have its premiere as part of The Golden State Film Festival.

If you’re in the Southern California area, tickets for the festival and to see Four for Fun showing at 7:30pm PT can be found here.

In the premise of the film, a dinner party between two couples experiencing eleven different endings, all of which points to the same conclusion – the best possible life comes from the one lived the most in the present. Sarpy and Young play one of the couples and actors Donovan Patton and Annika Foster, play the other.

Photo: FourforFun

After its premiere at the festival, on the next night, Jason, Brytni and Jacob will visit You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel for a livestream conversation about the making of the film, working with each other, and a discussion on their numerous soap opera roles and much more.

It all begins on Thursday night, February 29th beginning at 8 pm ET/5 pm PT. Make sure to join us in the live chat, so you can ask your questions and share your comments with this talented trio.

Photo: FourforFun

Check out the trailer for Four for Fun below, followed by how to watch the livestream interview.

Then, drop any questions you would like us to pose to Jason, Brytni and Jacob in the comment section, and we just might ask it live on Thursday night.


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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Blake Berris to Chat Live on the Michael Fairman Channel as Everett & Bobby’s Story Heats Up

The tale of Everett Lynch and Bobby Stein is starting to reveal itself on Peacock’s Days of our Lives, which puts returning cast member, Blake Berris front and center in story.

On Monday’s, February 26th episode of DAYS, the results of Everett’s CAT scan indicate he suffered a traumatic brain injury which jives with his story that he was in a car accident and spent in a year in a coma, or does it?

Stephanie (Abigail Klein) and Everett are reeling that Everett as Bobby Stein was married to Jada Hunter (Elia Cantu) and treated her badly. While Everett claims he doesn’t remember anything about his time as Bobby, despite his fingerprints matching those of Robert Stein’s, Marlena (Deidre Hall) ponders if he could be suffering from PTSD, which might explain his memory loss.


Everett wonders if he has a brain tumor, but Marlena points out that they would have found it on the CAT scan. While there is no obvious reason for his memory loss, Kayla wonders if he is faking his amnesia? Marlena tells Everett that she is a psychiatrist and they should set up sessions immediately. Will it be revealed that Everett and Bobby are split personalities living inside one man?

Blake Berris is set to chat about the latest storyline developments and more, when he visits the Michael Fairman Channel on Wednesday, February 28th beginning at 3 pm ET/Noon PT.  Make sure to join Michael and Blake in the live chat for your turn to share your questions and thoughts on the story.

Photo: JPI

Days of our Lives fans first met Blake when he played the character of Nick Fallon who was eventually murdered in 2014. Later, Nick made a few return appearances from ‘the grave’, in 2021 and 2023. Recently, Blake returned to the show in his newly-minted role of Everett Lynch at the end of October of last year.

Blake will talk about portraying Everett/Bobby, plus working his co-stars, and being a dad to his three boys, and more.  You can catch the livestream below.

Now, let us know, what is your theory about Everett Lynch and Bobby Stein? Looking forward to hearing what Blake has to say? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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Days Of Our Lives

Days of our Lives Legendary Susan Seaforth Hayes Talks on the Horton House Fire Storyline, Mourning the Loss of Husband Bill Hayes & His Near-to-Final Performances

It has been an emotional time for longtime fans of Days of our Lives and beloved veteran, Susan Seaforth Hayes (Julie Williams). On-screen, the iconic Horton home was burned to the ground in what appears to be a storyline-dictated decision that shocked many. In real life, Susan is mourning the loss of her husband and DAYS enduring favorite, Bill Hayes (Doug Williams), who passed away at 98 in January. Over the weekend, during the 2024 SAG Awards In Memoriam tribute, Hayes was remembered along with other motion pictures and television stars whom we lost over the past year.

Since the Peacock streaming soap opera tapes months ahead of air, the Horton home fire and its aftermath are currently playing out in all-new episodes with more on this story featuring Susan to come. Bill Hayes also appeared in several of these episodes making it all the more touching and heartfelt.

When Julie came back to the Horton home to see what remained of it after the fire, Days of our Lives fans were treated to a heart-tugging episode that streamed last Wednesday, February 21st. In it, newly-taped scenes of a young Tom (Zach Chyz) and Alice (Sydney Kathrann Smith) Horton telling the story of how they came to live in the house to raise their children, juxtaposed with Julie and Doug (and members of their family and friends), surveying what’s left of the beloved house, brought many a tear.

Michael Fairman TV talked with Susan Seaforth Hayes for this very candid and heartfelt conversation to get her feelings on the Horton house fire, and being given the opportunity to have a storyline at this point in her storied career. In addition, Susan provides some insight on what it was like for her ailing late husband to tape scenes at DAYS shortly before his death, what the series plans to do about writing off the character of Doug while honoring the legacy of Bill Hayes, and how she knew she had the greatest love affair that anyone could hope for in their lifetime, which in turn, has inspired all of us.

Photo: JPI

I was shocked when they decided to burn down the Horton house. Were you at first devastated … and did you know that there would be a big story surrounding it?

SUSAN: I did not know how big a story was with it. I knew that many years ago, another regime had planned on trashing the set and getting rid of the set because nobody cared about the Hortons anymore. It was stopped by one person, and I was eternally grateful for that. This time I thought, “Oh, my goodness! I guess I’ll be meeting people for a cup of coffee at the Horton Square. No home, no roots, no reason to be called in,” and thinking that’s the end of Julie. That’s the end of Doug and Julie. Then, when they began to structure a story around it, I think all of this came up during the writer’s strike. So of course, I was curious to see how this was going to turn out. I enjoyed the aftermath, because in the aftermath, and a little bit before the fire, if you saw the show, I get to talk a bit about the history of the household and the people in it.

Photo: JPI

In the special episode that aired last Wednesday, Julie gave Leo (Greg Rikaart) the family tree history of the Hortons for his story in the Spectactor.

SUSAN:  I’ve had a couple of good long soliloquies about the past. I’m fated to be the character that does that because I’m the one still standing. I must say, I do enjoy doing them. Emotionally, all I have to do is rerun some of the actors and my own family in my mind and the emotion starts to come, you know, the emotion starts to flow.

Julie talks to Maggie (Suzanne Rogers) immediately after the fire. She is upset that the Horton family Christmas ornaments are gone. Fans were not happy that they could possibly have burned up. Thank God! There was a happy ending when they were located and unscathed, or there would have been hell to pay! 

SUSAN: I knew that they were in the prop room and that they still existed. But how much they were going to put a story around their loss, I did not know. We don’t get to ponder the plot. We just get to show up and start doing it. I think on this particular matter, something as important as a structure of the original set of the show, there’s been quite a bit of interest. So, I can appreciate that.

Photo: JPI

I was thinking, ‘Did they decide to burn the house down, because they were finally retiring the old Horton home set?’ What was the purpose of it?

SUSAN: They’ve done everything to make quicker set changes, which is remarkable and very efficient right now. The set designer said, “I’ll be interested in your input,” which was nice. The one thing that I loved that had been done, didn’t work. You couldn’t shoot into it. It was a federal mirror over the mantle. I loved it. The size was perfect. I was just delighted. And then, we tried to shoot it, and because of the roundness of the mirror, you got a perfect view of camera one and camera three. So, it came down.

This is Julie’s project to renovate the home. She’s determined to bring back all the memories and redo it?

SUSAN: Absolutely, which is another nice note to play for my character. She’s determined to make the house something that her grandparents would recognize and still feel comfortable in.

Photo: JPI

What did you think of the episode that just aired where the show incorporated flashbacks of a young Tom and Alice Horton?

SUSAN: Well, I set it up. They had their own their own lovely scenes. I read them, and I’m sure the audience was charmed.

What do you remember when you first came to DAYS, and you were in that house, in that set?

SUSAN: What did I notice about the set? I noticed that it was a strange shade of green. (Laughs) It was explained to me that that dull color meant that your face would pop on color TV. I understood that. I loved the little window up the staircase. I’ve always loved that. And at one time, there was a model of the house that sat on the set on its own little pedestal, a little playhouse of the exterior of the house. Whenever the house was on (and remember this is when we were a half-hour and practically live, but not live, because there was no editing), there would also be the sound of a barking dog whenever we reached the Horton house neighborhood. We never saw the dog, but I’m sure his name was “Spot”, and I’m sure he belonged to someone.

PhotoL JPI

You shared so many scenes with Frances Reid (Alice) and MacDonald Carey (Tom) in the Horton living room set and up till they passed. Did they get along well with Bill? Looking back, how was your relationship with them?

SUSAN: They loved him. Well, Mac and Billy had worked together before in theater. Mac was very kind to me at the beginning and helpful. Frances was as well. As Frances got older, she got a bit testy. When someone says, “You’re not going to read the line like that … are you?” It catches your attention. (Laughs). I got peeved at Frances from time to time, but her intent was always to make everything as good as it possibly could be. I saw her come back from her stroke. learn to talk again, learn to do it all again. Not do it easily, but to do it at all was wonderful, and the same with Mac. In his last shows, he was very frail, but we’re actors. We liked being there.

Photo: JPI

During the taping of the episodes surrounding the Horton house fire, Bill was mostly in them with you. How was Bill doing at the time you taped these scenes?

SUSAN: He was okay. He was up for it. He had difficulty moving at that point. So, they restricted his movement a lot. Bill always enjoyed coming to work a lot, and it was extremely difficult for him because he was blind, and didn’t move very well. And now, to do a scene with people who may or may not, have rehearsed with you, who may or may not, give you the exact cue, and when they are attempting to have you look each other in the eye, you can’t see who’s eyes they are, that was the hard part. The easy part was working with him, which was lovely and was a gift. It was a gift from Corday Productions that he was able to work within three weeks of his death, which I thought was super and extraordinary.

Photo: JPI

That is amazing. Did Bill understand everything that was going on at the time of the tapings?

SUSAN: Absolutely. He understood what was going on. He just couldn’t see it or touch it.

The timing couldn’t have been easy for you with Bill’s declining health, and that the show was going to burn down the Horton home where you shared so many scenes and memories.

SUSAN: Well, it hasn’t been my greatest stretch. But I knew that life would be like this. I’ve had five decades of an absolutely wonderful, blessed marriage and a chance to work and a chance to live in my own home and travel, all good. And now, we’re going to have the epilogue. And the epilogue is the hard part, seeing rapid change around you and losing the people that were the center of your life. I’ve just been very fortunate to have cultivated some wonderful friendships, and to have a wonderful large family of Hayeses.

Photo: JPI

You do realize that you and Bill were the gold-standard of what we all should be lucky enough to have in our lives. What an incredible, beautiful, passionate, loving marriage that the two of you had. You don’t see marriages like that anymore. We were all just in awe of the two of you. To us, it was the greatest love affair. You got to have that which is so extraordinary.

SUSAN: I know, and it was all Bill. I mean, any idiot could have been married to Bill Hayes and been deliriously happy. The guy was so perfect in every way that you really would have to pick something and blow it out of proportion to ever complain about any of his traits of character. He was just all good character, goodwill, and good humor. I just followed along and tried to live my life for him, with him, and follow his style, which I hope to carry on. I hope to be as good to people as he was to people, and, not be selfish.

Photo: JPI

I always remembered how the two of you would come to the studio with your suitcases, ready to work no matter what material, large or small, they gave you. You showed up. You just had such great work ethic and you don’t see that as much anymore.

SUSAN: At the moment, it’s hard to find it everywhere. I think it’s probably generational. You cannot get too angry at people that are still holding up their phones in the one rehearsal that we have. I think it’s more convenient to receive your work electronically, but somehow it doesn’t seem quite as real. You don’t have a script in your hand anymore unless you print one up yourself.  Sometimes you haven’t met the person you’re working with. Well, that’s not unusual, but no rehearsal at all, that’s kind of marvelously new.

Photo: JPI

Does Julie lean on anybody for emotional support as she tries to rebuild the Horton home. Who’s there for her?

SUSAN: As far as I can tell, nobody. I’m supposed to be the wise woman, and Marlena (Deidre Hall) is supposed to be the other wise woman. I haven’t had any scenes with Marlena for help. I would think Marlena would be the person I would be going to for grief counseling, for friendship, for all of that. I haven’t seen it in the scripts, yet. I’m still deeply entwined with Chad’s (Billy Flynn) storyline.

How is Billy Flynn to work with?

SUSAN: A pleasure. Billy Flynn has grown a lot as a human being and as an actor since I’ve known him. I’m really enjoying his company and really enjoying doing scenes with him. We rehearse and then we get on other subjects and laugh and talk and inform each other. We’re interested in a lot of the same things. He’s a new parent. He’s really devoting himself to that, to that experience in the best possible way. So, I’m lucky.

Do Julie and Chad try to figure out who set the fire?

SUSAN: Oh yeah.

Photo: JPI

I kept thinking about how Julie got burned in the kitchen fire years ago and her face was scarred, At the time, your mother Elizabeth Harrower was writing DAYS and wrote that for Julie. Did you hate that story?

SUSAN: Well, I know where the story came from. It came up from something in mother’s own life. I knew the people involved, and I wasn’t crazy in love with the idea. Then, when it was supposed to go for six weeks and went on for months and months, I was concerned. Mainly, I was concerned that my face was going to be affected because of the appliance, the scars, that I was wearing. I was told by a dermatologist, “You’re going to have a little beard after this. Ripping your face every single day to get this off is going to be hard on you.” But, I seem to have survived.

Has the show even addressed with you how they plan to handle writing-off the character of Doug Williams, and how they want to honor Bill?

SUSAN: Only in the smallest way. I had a conference call with the producers and our head writer last Friday. I was informed about the immediate, immediate future. I’ve also been promised that they’re going to keep me busy. It’s a cast of over 40 people. I’ll be happy to show up and to be included.

Photo: JPI

I was just hoping that whatever they decide to do with the character of Doug that they were going to run it by you, first.

SUSAN: They have, and they have been very sweet about it.  I’ve got to tell you, this regime, they have a sign up on the wall now, that says, Things we expect on this stage.”  The first one at the top of the list is “kindness.”

Have you watched your work back all these years? I know some actor’s never like to watch the scenes they taped.

SUSAN: I think you learn by watching yourself, if you have an open mind, and if you are not hypercritical, or dismissive. I cannot be dismissive of a character that has given me such a wonderful life. I’m still interested in Julie, perhaps I wouldn’t have been if I’d been on the show for three years and never returned to it. But I’m quite interested in her now, and what she has to offer as a member of this ensemble.

Photo: JPI

Julie’s ties to the whole history of Days of our Lives from this point on are very important. How do you feel about that?

SUSAN:  There are those that don’t care about the history of the show. I know that. I know there are those that only care about continuing with something snappy to keep eyes on the screen through action, adventure, drama, death, kidnapping, missed opportunities, all that, which I suppose that’s what the audience craves. But, that’s not just what the show can do. What the show can do so well is character. There’s a lot of people over 70 who are still on the show now. I’m the oldest one, but I’m not the only one. We’re coming up on the 60th anniversary. I don’t think the show is worn out. And if it is, it’s had a remarkably successful six decades.

Lamon Archey (Eli) is back on DAYS for a stint. What has it been like to work with Lamon as his on-screen grandmother?

SUSAN: I think he’s terrific and visually he is so beautiful, so appealing. I think both Eli and Lani (Sal Stowers) are very appealing as characters. I’m delighted to be connected to Eli as a family member. That was a lucky break for me.

Photo: JPI

Do you think DAYS fans are going to continue to be emotional in the aftermath of this fire and all the story that comes out of it? Do you think we’ll be touched by what Julie goes through to get the remains all cleaned up for a new house?

SUSAN: I think anybody in America who’s gone through a disaster, and have unfortunately had the disruption of their home, will be sympathetic and interested in how it all turns out. It’s a nice note to play. We haven’t had to do that very often. We just go from one lovely apartment to another without much discussion. I think this is the one set that meant a lot to people. I was very sorry to lose “Julie’s Place,” as it turned into kind of a sandwich shop. I still loved having a business, a tangible place to be, and an alternate place for people to meet.

Photo: NBC

Upon reflection, what was your favorite scene with Bill? Was it when Julie and Doug got married on-screen, or was it something else that was much more intimate?

SUSAN: I think our last scene is going to be more important, emotionally. I think the first wedding was beautiful, but the material around the time of our second wedding, when Brenda Benet (ex-Lee) came back on the show and Doug stood up to her and says, “I’m not going to be manipulated anymore,” was also strong. There has been a lot of very important times – when Doug was killed-off by James Reilly, and we met in the tunnel of light. That was a day. That was a difficult day, which I certainly can’t revisit right now emotionally. When Julie found out Doug had run off and married her mother, Addie, that was a day. It was a day because, I went to the producer at the time, Jack Herzberg, and said, “Is this it? Am I not going to work with him anymore?”And he said, “Right! That’s it. You’re not working with Bill Hayes anymore.” We were not married at the time, and I thought I was going to go through the floor! That wasn’t a happy day.

Photo: JPI

In terms of Bill’s final day on the set with you, did you know that it was his last, and what would turn out to be his last scene?

SUSAN: Well, they didn’t know. But I knew. I had been allowed to rewrite it. So, I can’t tell you Bill’s last line now, of course, but I will in time.

What do you think about the sentiments shared by Susan on her late husband, and this storyline? How do hope the show properly honors Bill and Doug Williams when the series writes-off the character? Are you enjoying the Horton house fire story arc or does it upset you too much? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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