Victoria Konefal, Kristian Alfonso"Days of our Lives" SetNBC StudiosBurbank11/21/19© XJJohnson/jpistudios.com310-657-9661Episode # 13908U.S.Airdate 08/03/20

Jill Johnson/JPI

Sooner or later, the big question is going to have to be addressed!

When Days of Our Lives‘ Ciara left for Africa with Theo, viewers were told that she would be reuniting with mom Hope while there. But with both Victoria Konefal and her popular alter ego returning to Salem this week — supposedly in order for Ben and Ciara to enjoy some hard-earned happiness — we’re left wondering what it all means for Hope, who really no longer has any reason to stay away… especially should her daughter wind up sticking around.

“Because Hope initially left town to search for the daughter she refused to believe had died,” recapped Days’ headwriter Ron Carlivati, “it does become an issue we have to address every time Ciara returns.”

Well, that time has come again now that Ciara is returning to confront the husband she doesn’t remember about him not signing their divorce papers.

hope's reunited with ciara on days of our lives

“In the case of Ciara’s last exit,” Carlivati recounted, “Hope’s absence actually gave us a way to reunite them without Hope having to return to Salem. Ciara needed to get out of town, to get away from Ben, and so she arranged to meet her mother in Johannesburg.”

That was a fairly easy workaround, considering Hope would want to spend as much time as possible with Ciara no matter where in the world she was. But it doesn’t explain why she isn’t coming home with Ciara now. However, there are a few ways in which to deal with Mom’s continued absence.

For example, upon her return, Ciara could report that Hope fell in love with Johannesburg during her short time there and found some purpose — and maybe even a love interest. Or, after spending time reuniting with her not-as-dead-as-formerly-believed daughter, Hope jetted off on an undercover assignment. Then again, maybe she decided to continue her travels on a more personal journey of self-discovery and started with a visit to Jennifer in Boston.

shawn hope salem place

Those could all be reasonable explanations, but she still does have a son and granddaughter living in Salem who just went through a harrowing experience with Jan Spears. Shouldn’t she, you know, check in on them? Or, visit her father Doug and mother-in-law/half-sister Julie, in addition to her tons of other Horton family members?

Days is in a tricky situation considering it was Kristian Alfonso’s decision to permanently end her decades-long run as Hope Brady. But maybe it’s time to seriously consider a recast — perhaps with one of these actresses?

What do you think? Is it time to recast Hope or are you satisfied with hearing off-screen updates about her here and there? Tell us in the comments below and then look through our photo gallery below of Hope’s adventurous life in Salem. Then, get your free daily soap-opera fix for Days of Our Lives — and all of the other daytime dramas — delivered straight to your email inbox by signing up for Soaps.com’s newsletter.