Days of Our Lives 2022 Year in Review: From the Devil and a Peacock to Unexpected Reunions and Heartbreaking Goodbyes
2022 saw stunning returns, tragic deaths, diabolical plots, and explosive weddings.
Salem was a hotbed of activity in 2022 — and not just onscreen. NBC’s long-running soap made huge news when they exclusively moved to Peacock. Though the decision was controversial with many fans, it didn’t slow down the 57-year-old soap opera that gave us huge returns, exciting reunions, tragic deaths, and a steamy hook-up not before seen on daytime.
The year started out with a fickle Devil who went from Marlena to Johnny to Belle to Allie to Tripp. But the Devil’s reign finally ended, paving the way for more scandals to come. Such as Lani’s no-good bio-father coming to town, Craig leaving Nancy for Leo, of all people, Sami finally learning Lucas was her kidnapper, Jake’s death leading to Stefan’s resurrection, Ava killing Susan and bombing her funeral, and so much more.
Sadly fans were forced to say heart-wrenching goodbyes to Jake and Abigail onscreen and John Aniston offscreen, as Victor’s beloved portrayer passed away. Less devastating goodbyes were said to Ben and Ciara, and Eli and Lani — for two completely different storyline reasons. But, with the revolving door always spinning in Salem, it’s not a stretch to assume we’ll see them again soon. In fact, Eli just dropped by for Christmas, and Ciara is making an appearance next year.
Speaking of, the reunion fans never thought they’d see occurred in the latest chapter of Beyond Salem when Bo and Hope reunited in Heaven. They’ll get their Earthly reunion soon enough as they’ll be joining their daughter back on the mothership in 2023.
As 2022 comes to an end, couples find themselves in a state of flux, and long-held secrets are about to explode, setting up 2023 for must-see drama.
But before we welcome a new year, take a look at the photo gallery below to revisit the past 12 months in Salem.
<p>After months of terrorizing Salem, the devil left Marlena’s body — but jumped right into her grandson, Johnny.</p>
<p>After getting dumped by her new husband — a.k.a. the newly possessed Johnny — Chanel found comfort in the arms of his sister, Allie. </p>
<p>The Sarah mask continued to get a lot of airtime in 2022. But this year, Gwen and Ava took turns posing as Xander’s missing love, in order to make it look like she no longer loved the big lug.</p>
<p>In reality, Kristen was keeping Sarah locked away on a deserted DiMera island. With nothing to do but read Renee DuMonde’s old diaries, a drugged Sarah began to believe that’s who she was.</p>
<p>Chloe was thrilled when her parents, Craig and Nancy, came to Salem. That is until Craig broke Nancy’s heart by revealing he was gay — and in love with Leo Stark.</p>
<p>TR Coates came to Salem to produce Johnny’s movie about Marlena’s possession. However, he was also Paulina’s abusive ex and Lani’s biological father, Ray.</p>
<p>Despite TR’s claims that he was a changed man, Eli caught him buying drugs in the park. In return, TR shot his son-in-law, who landed in a coma.</p>
<p>Thanks to MarDevil helping Jan rape Shawn in 2021, Jan was able to claim he was the father of her baby. She, of course, used that as leverage to help her get out of prison and into Shawn’ custody on house arrest. Needless to say, that didn’t go over well with Belle. </p>
<p>When the Devil was done with Johnny’s body, the demon jumped to his twin sister Allie, but not before a pit stop in Belle. However, Satan’s final stop would be outside Marlena’s family.</p>
<p>When AllieDevil’s attempts to secure Ben and Ciara’s baby were thwarted, Satan threatened to kill Allie. Tripp invited the demon into his body instead and then jumped out a window killing himself, thereby finally vanquishing Salem of the devil.</p>
<p>Luckily, Ghost Bo made an appearance to resurrect Steve’s boy, Tripp. Though, not before he visited his “Little One” to assure Ciara and Ben that their newborn, a.k.a. his namesake, would be just fine.</p>
<p>Despite Rafe being involved with Ava, who was Nicole’s good friend, Rafe and Nicole acted on their long-simmering attraction and became a couple.</p>
<p>Rafe and Nicole even got married. Although, their quickie wedding probably lasted longer than their actual marriage, due to the fact that a newly returned and newly defrocked Eric returned to Salem.</p>
<p>Gwen and Leo’s brilliant plan to have a double wedding blew up in spectacular fashion. They were both outed for their crimes <em>during</em> the actual ceremony.</p>
<p>First, Chad exposed Leo for already being married to his friend and drag performer, Jackie Cox. Then, Craig learned he was Leo’s mark from the beginning. </p>
<p>Chad may have enjoyed exposing Leo, but no one took more joy on that day than Abigail. She gleefully announced her sister’s role in Sarah’s continued disappearance and memory issues in front of the groom and wedding guests.</p>
<p>Lani may have warmed up to her father, TR, but after he shot Eli, attacked Abe, and threatened to hurt Paulina, she had enough and shot him dead.</p>
<p>Unfortunately, killing her bio-dad landed Lani behind bars. Ever the devoted husband, Eli found a job near her prison in D.C. and moved with the twins to be close to his wife.</p>
<p>Thanks to JoDevil’s manipulations, Chad helped send EJ to prison for kidnapping Sami. When in reality, Sami was off traveling the world with her actual kidnapper, Lucas.</p>
<p>EJ’s time in prison turned out to be deadlier than he or Chad could have imagined. Once they were both freed, his former cellmate, Clyde Weston, killed Abigail in retalitation for EJ blabbing to Belle that he was the one who tried to kill him years ago.</p>
<p>A devastated Chad was the one to find Abby bleeding from a stab wound in their bedroom. After she succumed to her fatal wounds, Chad began the painful process of grieving the love of his life.</p>
<p>Not only did Sami go off with Lucas, but she planned to marry him. Well, until a vengeful, grief-stricken Chad outed Lucas as her kidnapper, and the one to set EJ up in the first place.</p>
<p>After protecting their newborn from the devil’s clutches, Ben and Ciara literally sailed off into the sunset after Hope gifted them a boat named, Living in Cin.</p>
<p>Clyde received his comeuppance, but not until <em>after</em> he convinced Nancy to fall in love with and agree to marry him. Luckily, the truth came out before Nancy could say ‘I do.’</p>
<p>In the <em>Beyond Salem </em>spin-off, Hope reunited with Bo and their son Zack in Heaven, after getting shot by hitman Thomas Banks. They bickered, danced to <em>Tonight,</em> <em>I Celebrate My Love</em>, and then said goodbye, as Hope was revived on Earth.</p>
<p>Hope may have left Bo in Heaven, but it won’t be the last she’ll see him until she gets there for real herself. Thanks to Megan Hathaway, he was brought back to life.</p>
<p>Before Lani was carted off to prison, she was able to attend her parents’ wedding. Abe and Paulina put all their troubles behind them (for the time being anyway) and married on Juneteenth.</p>
<p>Belle and EJ grew close while she represented him during his prison ordeal. Once he was free, and Belle separated from Shawn, the former in-laws gave in to their months-long attraction and slept together. </p>
<p>After Jan gave birth, Shawn learned Jan’s fellow inmate/Orpheus’ son, Christian was the true father. He forgave Belle’s affair with EJ, and she forgave how easily he let Jan manipulate him and they reunited.</p>
<p>Ava was on such a good path having rebounded from Rafe to a casual fling with Jake. But as soon as they made things official, Jake was shot by a mugger and died.</p>
<p>After Jake died, Rolf transplanted his heart into Stefan, who he’d been keeping hooked up to machines for years. When Li found out, he ordered the mad scientist to brainwash Stefan into hating Gabi, so she wouldn’t leave Li for the resurrected love of her life.</p>
<p>Li had his Stefan problem under control and even got engaged to Gabi, but things started to unravel when his little sister Wendy started sniffing around.</p>
<p>Playboy Alex Kiriakis came home to join the family business and play the field… until he laid eyes on Stephanie Johnson, who also recently returned to Salem.</p>
<p>It took a while for Alex to win Stephanie over, so he had some no-strings fun with shady lawyer Sloan, and a threesome with Chanel and Allie.</p>
<p>It was revealed that while in college, Chanel had an affair with a professor and accidentally contributed to his wife’s death when they fought about it. Chanel was arrested, thanks to the woman’s vengeful daughter, a.k.a. Alex’s bed buddy, Sloan.</p>
<p>While Chanel was released on bail, her mother took her place in jail for covering up the incident. No worries though, Belle got the charges dropped just in time for Christmas.</p>
<p>After Sarah’s memory was restored, she and Xander were finally married. It wasn’t all wedded bliss though, as a broke Xander reverted to his old ways. He kidnapped Susan (and innocent bystander Bonnie) for Ava in hopes of getting some blackmail cash from EJ.</p>
<p>Still bitter about things that happened decades ago, Orpheus poisoned Marlena, Kayla, and Kate. Luckily (?), Kristen discovered the cure in Rolf’s lab, but she only relinquished it when Brady agreed to dump Chloe and let Kristen move in with him and Rachel.</p>
<p>One good thing to come from the women’s time on death’s door, was that a newly reunited Roman and Kate tied the knot. Impending death may have forced the issue, but they didn’t have any regrets. </p>
<p>Nicole and Eric gave in to their passion despite her marriage to Rafe and his relationship with Jada. But their blink-and-you-missed-it reunion ended when a pregnant Jada had an abortion after Nicole imparted some “friendly” advice.</p>
<p>Eric spiraled after he learned about the abortion and dumped Nicole. He landed in jail and in his new lawyer Sloan’s (hi, again!) bed. He then came up with a plan to “kidnap” Rachel in order to take down Kristen with Brady.</p>
<p>Upon Jake’s death, Ava entered an all-out war with EJ, which led to Susan’s death. Ava then planted a bomb at Susan’s funeral before getting shipped off to Bayview for hallucinating her dead son Charlie.</p>
<p>One of the biggest things to happen with <em>Days of Our Lives </em>occurred offscreen, so to speak. The 57-year-old soap opera left NBC for Peacock, where hopefully, Salem’s shenanigans will continue streaming for decades to come.</p>
<p>Before 2022 came to a close, Victor got in one last epic snark during the late <a href="https://soaps.sheknows.com/days-of-our-lives/recaps/656054/days-of-our-lives-john-aniston-final-episode-victor-kiriakis/" target="_blank">John Aniston’s final appearance</a> as the iconic Kiriakis patriarch — reminding fans how much he’ll be missed. </p>
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