Days of Our Lives’ Riveting ‘Elani’ Drama Highlights the Need For Other Stories to Wrap Up

March 14 - 18

Three photo collage of Lani hovering over Eli on gurney; Abe facing off with TR; and Eli lying lifeless on the ground. Days of Our Lives

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

Eli getting shot on Days of Our Lives, or rather, the ensuing drama was the hands-down highlight of the week. In displaying the soap’s capacity for genuine drama, it put a spotlight on the need for the drawn-out, campier stories to wrap up. Let’s get to it…

Good Old Fashioned Drama

Suan Seaforth Hayes, James Reynolds, William Christian, Sal Stowers, Jackee Harry, paulina, julie, abe, tr, lani

The aftermath of Eli’s shooting was fantastic soap, which only highlights how much more of grounded drama is needed on Days — and with the Carver/Price/Grant family specifically. Camp is a staple of the NBC soap opera, but watching Lani break down over having to give her husband CPR because he didn’t have a pulse and then tell a comatose Eli to take all the time he needed to come back to her and the twins was must-see.

In addition, Eli’s mother, Val returned, because of course she’d be there after her son was shot, unlike Hope who always runs into plane trouble when her children need her. Not to mention, Abe struck the perfect note as Lani’s support system, and then when he pushed back against TR. It’s all been great family drama between beloved characters with top-notch performances given by the actors — even those playing comatose. I mean, who else was seriously panicked by Eli’s convulsions?

It by far trumped all the devil/Renee DuMonde/Leo Stark shenanigans this week.

Classic Tropes on the Way?

Outdoors, Eli leans against TR, as he slumps to the ground. TR holds a gun in his hand. Days of Our Lives

Of course, it wasn’t all perfect. Specifically, when Eli didn’t protect Beth at all from her abuser when he told TR she came to make a statement against him. That led to TR tracking her down in no time flat. I thought he was threatening to expose deep dark secrets they shared in order to keep her quiet about his abuse, but all he had to do was wave a movie role in her face and she caved. It didn’t feel true or earned in the moment. Instead, it felt like a mockery of the Me Too movement.

All of it made me wonder if TR has a split personality. His immediate reaction upon shooting Eli was panic and self-flagellation, but then, his face hardened on a dime and he pulled it together. “Enough of that,” he said as if talking to someone else. “I have to clean this up.” Could all his claims of not using drugs or hitting women anymore come from TR, the personality who thinks he’s on the straight and narrow, but Ray is the one who shot Eli and abused Beth?

TR is kind of written as all over place, so that theory would make sense. But I can also see this going the murder mystery route when all his secrets come out. Or, he’ll just continue to be a straight-up villain because redemption without a handy dandy soap trope would be a tough sell.

Odds and Ends

• Belle as the devil was super fun, but the drawn-out storyline still needs to end. And while I love seeing Shawn in action investigating Eli’s shooting, Marlena’s explanation for not immediately telling him his wife was possessed didn’t cut it. It was definitely something he should have known ASAP.

• Allie being so upfront about wanting to pursue a relationship with Chanel was a nice change of pace. Of course, it was probably done that way because the devil’s gotta leave Johnny sometime. And when he does, Chanel will presumably feel torn over wanting to support him in the aftermath while also wanting to be with his sister. And that’s when the juicy drama will come into play.

• I wonder if the same reasoning will hold true for Brady and Chloe. They reunited in a pretty anticlimactic fashion, which leads me to wonder if Philip’s return is imminent to throw a wrench into things. I’m in no hurry for it, but what’s the story if not that?

• I’m with Tony when it comes to Anna vs. Sarah/Renee. Renee isn’t really back, and therefore, not a threat. While it’d of course be annoying to watch another woman openly try to reunite with your husband, Sarah’s not in her right mind. Anna might want to cut her some slack.

• Speaking of, Sarah needs to find her right mind. The actual drama of Xander feeling torn between two women, learning of Gwen’s betrayal, and ultimately reuniting with the love he thought broke his heart is where the story is at. Not the campiness of Sarah running around trying to steal Tony away from Anna because she thinks she’s an almost 70-year-old woman.

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 and then catch up with your favorite former Llanview residents in our then and now photo gallery below.


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