Kayla/Steve, Tripp surprised, Chad yelling, Sarah mashup days jpi
Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI (4)

Just stop already… before it’s too late! 

We seem to be in a bit of a reprieve in Days of Our Lives‘ death/heaven/surprise devil story at the moment, so we thought, while we were, maybe it’s time to have a little talk.

Last week, we were pretty sure we hit upon the reason for all the loss in Salem. There’s a point, we suppose, to why they killed off (for a couple weeks, at least) Kate, Kayla, Marlena — even Susan. Days of Our Lives is using it as a way to shift around the couples, shake up Salem’s romance department and take love stories in new directions.

And that’s all well and good, we suppose, except… it kind of isn’t.

For one thing, it’s all these deaths. We don’t believe them. It’s a law of diminishing returns and we care about them less and less each time. Heart donated to someone else? Who cares? They’ll be back. Right, Stefan? Cremated? So? They’ll still return. Right, Tony and (we’re positive) Kate?

A purple urn with a silver lid rests on the Brady Pub Bar.

No body? No problem. Prepare for resurrection in three… two… one…

Credit: Peacock screenshot

Go over a cliff in an exploding car? Ava’s got that covered. And since Susan’s being impersonated in the afterlife, we’re sure she’s next. This problem started a long time ago and all the soaps fall into it, but it’s like Days of Our Lives doesn’t even try to pretend death exists.

As Deidre Hall noted recently, “Keep calm. Carry on.”

If it seems like it’s gotten worse, that’s probably because it has. Because now we’re back to what we noted last year about this story being a vehicle for shifting romance. The show wouldn’t need to do this if it could actually handle telling stories about long-term romance. They don’t commit to romance for romance’s sake.

If someone isn’t being kidnapped (Sarah’s extensive disappearance, Sami’s disappearance, heck, even Bonnie and Stefan…) or killed (see… never mind, there’s too many), it’s snooze city in their minds. In short, the Powers That Be have completely forgotten the supercouple model that made the show a hit in the first place.

Instead of remembering what they did to create the John and Marlenas or Steve and Kaylas, the show’s using our investment in the actual long-term romances to switch around budding love stories before they can even get a foothold. Stephanie’s moving from Alex to Chad? Well, we didn’t really have long enough to get invested so, sure, why not? And we’re sure she’ll be back before get invested in her and Chad.

Even worse? Given what we know, we wouldn’t be surprised if Abigail popped up alive again as soon as Chad and Stephanie hook up!

And don’t even get us started on the show teasing Wendy, Joey and Tripp, only to start getting us excited about her and Johnny, then use the latest deaths to pull them apart and push Tripp back again. What in blazes is going on?

With an air of intimacy, Johnny stands behind Wendy and drapes a wrap over her shoulders in the DiMera living room.

“Thank you Joe — Tri — um, Johnny? Never mind, I’ll just call you Tripp anyway. Not like it matters.”

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

More: You guide to Days of Our Lives’ real life loves [PHOTOS]

Obstacles area  necessary part of romance to help build a couple. Give them something to overcome and we’ll cheer for them all the more. But don’t just constantly resort to increasingly unbelievable tricks like fake deaths and zero-stakes kidnappings to shift folks around. Those aren’t obstacles. They’re just irrelevant plot points that make the resulting fall-out seem even more pointless the second they’re undone.

And mark our words, they will be undone. In Salem, that’s probably going to happen sooner, rather than later. But if we ever got some actual romance stories, it wouldn’t have to.

Confused about where everyone is? Check out our updated Days of Our Lives couples gallery to keep track!