Soapbox

Before Its Olympic Break, Days of Our Lives Left Viewers With Low Expectations But High Hopes for Some Golden Opportunities

January 31 - February 3

Four photo collage of Days of Our Lives' JoDevil, Sarah, TR, and a crying Nancy

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

Days of Our Lives is officially on a two-week break while the Winter Olympics air in its place. While there were some exciting moments this week, it was surprising Thursday’s episode didn’t leave viewers on bigger cliffhangers. There were no big jaw-dropping, I-can’t-wait-for-the-next-two-weeks-to-be-over reveals or shocking twists. However, we were still left with a few questions just waiting to be answered. So, let’s get to it.

Is TR Truly Reformed?

I was pleasantly surprised how quickly TR and Lani learned about each other. Their interaction was definitely the highlight of Thursday’s episode, but are we to truly believe TR has changed? He seemed sincere while appealing to Lani, but then immediately darkened when Paulina arrived. Not knowing where TR is coming from certainly makes the storyline more compelling. Soaps have successfully redeemed abusers many times before, and with the charismatic William Christian in the role, I’m sure it can be done again. But should it be, or should TR be kept a bad guy who is out to sabotage Paulina while trying to win Lani over?

Lani leans in, and points to herself, while talking to TR in her apartment. Days of Our Lives

I did appreciate Christian sharing in an interview that his first reaction to hearing about the abusive character was, “Who would want to play that?” It was exactly my thought. Actually, that’s my thought about a lot of Days’ problematic villains. But the actor did go on to rave about how complex the character is, so hopefully, there’s a lot of layers to peel back on the man formerly known as Ray.

What’s Going on With Sarah?

Sarah’s reaction to Kristen was surprising. Though maybe it shouldn’t have been. The drug Kristen injected her with when she abducted her was pretty strong. In addition to her being happy to see her captor, the way Sarah kept saying she needed to get back to “him” was interesting. She didn’t say Xander — just “him.” So, could she think she is still in love with Rex? Or Eric? Or anyone other than Xander? Did Kristen brainwash her, or is Sarah putting on an act for her? Could there be a baby involved?

At a heavily draped window, Sarah forlornly looks over her shoulder. She has long curly hair, and wears a white dress. Days of Our Lives

Is Xander Playing Gwen?

Immediately after suspecting Gwen could have impersonated Sarah, Xander proposed to her. This leads me to wonder if he is just setting her up to get information about his true love. It’d be nice to see Xander played as smart enough to suspect his current, devious, and very jealous fiancée, so here’s hoping he’s playing the long game with her and there’s a secret recording device in that snow globe. I’m actually surprised Days didn’t end on the Sarah reveal/’Xwen’ proposal as the cliffhanger before the Olympics.

At the Salem Inn, Xander stands in front of Gwen, with an open ring box. Days of Our Lives

New Love For Nancy Already?

Now that the truth is out about Craig being gay, what’s next for Chloe’s parents? Considering their story isn’t really tied to anything else on the canvas, and Brady and Chloe could reunite all on their own, there’s not much of a cliffhanger here. Unless, the man Craig is in love with proves to be pivotal. The way he keeps talking about him, means he’ll probably be someone viewers know, but as I said last week, I really hope it’s not Leo.

As for Nancy, her interaction with Roman got me thinking she could move on to find love with the Pub owner. Roman may be happy to keep Kate’s secret about Philip, but he probably won’t be as understanding when he learns she also knows Lucas was Sami’s abductor. So, like Nancy, he could be looking to drown his sorrows sometime soon.

At the foot of their hotel bed, Nancy glowers, as she points a finger at Craig. Days of Our Lives

What Happens When the Truth Come Out?

Speaking of Sami’s kidnapping, it looks like she and Lucas will resurface after Days comes back — if the soap’s most recent promo is any indication. Assuming the truth about Lucas kidnapping her will be revealed shortly after, where the heck will that leave him? It’s going to be hard for him to bounce back from this one. Even his loving daughter Allie will probably turn her back on him.

It would seem the reveal could pave the way for EJ and Sami to reunite, but considering Alison Sweeney has no plans to return full-time, that would be tricky. Which lends itself to the speculation that EJ could move on with Belle. Or least have an affair with her. It’d probably drive Sami so crazy, she’d use it as an excuse for her next departure.

From behind, Lucas covers Sami's mouth with a cloth on Days of Our Lives

Will Someone Ever Clue In About Johnny?

Along with Kristen’s masks, why does no one stop to think, “Hey, maybe this is still happening,” where the devil is concerned? Precedent has already been set, and Johnny was in the room during the possession. Why can’t at least one character wonder if the devil got to Johnny (or anyone else in town, for that matter) to make him act so un-Johnny-like? Even as just a throwaway line, or joke. Like, after the second or third time Ben had to straighten the cross in his new hallway.

It’s why I’d like Marlena more involved. Surely, she and John would pick up on some clues. But then again, it’s not like the devil’s plans are exactly high stakes. I mean, he’s possessing people just to break up their love affairs? Maybe, bros, Jake and Ben can team up to figure it out. Ben’s immediate disdain of his wife’s cousin, and Jake’s obvious dislike for the player who’s after his lady is pretty entertaining.

Carson Boatman, Camila Banus, Johnny, JoDevil, Gabi, JPI, DAYS

That’s all I got this time around. As always, these are just my thoughts on the week in Salem. What are yours? Tell us in the comments!

In honor of Black History Month, join us in saluting some of daytime’s most important African-American characters of all time in the photo gallery below. 

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