Soapbox

Jan’s Unwelcomed Return to Days of Our Lives Could Result in Juicy Story For Underused Characters — Plus, Could Another Problematic Villain Turn Hero?

April 4 - 8

Four side by side photos of Days of Our Lives' Johnny, Jan, Clyde and Gwen

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPi

Days of Our Lives has a massive villain problem. Not that they have them, but that they’re almost all rapists and abusers. What happened to good old-fashioned mustache twirlers who simply plotted world domination alongside willing sexual partners? Unfortunately, the problematic villains dominated the week, but there could be some positive results from their latest plots, so let’s get to it…

The Problem With Jan

In Statesville, Jan stands in the visitors' room, with her hand on her baby bump. Days of Our Lives

Why, oh, why does Days insist on bringing Jan back? It’s great to see Shawn and Belle in a story, but Jan is a one-note rapist whose sole focus every time she pops up is to try and get Shawn into bed. It’s not good story or entertaining or funny or in good taste. Plus, it’s doubtful Shawn will ever be seen processing the fact that he was raped. If history is any indication, they’ll just move on and focus on the fact that he lied to Belle and now has a baby with Jan. If that’s even the case. With the devil, and Jan, involved, you never know.

If the devil’s grand plan is just to break up all the couples of Salem though, he could have easily just planted seeds of doubt in Shawn over Belle and EJ’s working relationship, instead of facilitating the rape. The devil could have made Shawn misconstrue innocent touches and glances until his extreme jealousy pushed Belle into EJ’s arms. Or anything else… just not Jan getting everything she wanted by turning up pregnant with Shawn’s baby because she raped him.

The only positive is that it is seemingly heading toward a Belle/EJ hook up. That will add even more drama to Sami’s inevitable return and hopefully give Belle and Shawn, who deserve way more airtime then they usually get, more to do. But again, that could have happened without Jan.

Days’ Other Villain Problem

In an apron, Clyde appeals to a dispassionate Ciara. Days of Our Lives

Then there’s Clyde, who could be a fun villain if he were just a diabolical “hillbilly,” but he’s not. Considering his abusive past with Ben and Jordan, how does Ben think it’s a good idea to have him move in with his pregnant wife, who is visibly uncomfortable with the arrangement? Even worse, he left them alone together! Ben can have a relationship all he wants with his father and even believe he’s changed, but he should do it far away from his wife and unborn baby. However, I had to wonder if all of Clyde’s interest in his grandbaby is leading to him being the hero who saves them from the devil’s plans, whatever they may be.

Consolation Prize

A shirtless Xander has a towel wrapped around his waist in his Salem Inn room. He signs something as Sarah and Gwen look on. Days of Our Lives

The Xander/Gwen angst continued to be good soap this week. What we got of it anyway. Xander’s honesty about his need to help Sarah is refreshing, yet heartbreaking. I truly felt for Gwen (who has her own troubling sex history with Chad) when she expressed relief over his declaration that he’d marry her if the antidote didn’t work on Sarah. Her joy over the scraps of love she’ll accept was truly depressing, but, Gwen ruined any sympathy I had for her when she switched out Sarah’s antidote for more of Rolf’s drug.

Sarah reacted to that injection by claiming she was in fact Sarah, but in a very childlike manner. I did wonder if the drug did nothing and that was just “Renee” trolling Maggie, but since there’s been no follow-up yet, the logical conclusion is that we’re getting “young Sarah” for the foreseeable future. Which means, what?

Spoilers say Xander continues to try to get through to Sarah next week, but it looks like Gwen becomes his consolation prize as they make real wedding plans. With any luck, Sarah will regain all her memories just in time to put a stop to that. Or more classically, the actual wedding.

Odds and Ends

Johnny's biceps bulge, as his hands are shackled overhead in the DiMera crypt. Days of Our Lives

• Like Belle before her, Allie is fun as the devil, but please, let it end with her.

• While I support a Chanel/Allie coupling, for me, their chemistry doesn’t beat Chanel and Johnny’s. So, bring on Johnny trying to get his wife back!

• Jake finally verbalized what I’ve been saying for weeks — he and Ava both have been trying to be what they are not. Hopefully, they embrace their true selves and embark on fun, unproblematic shenanigans together.

• Rafe and Nicole are finally a happy couple, but there is zero story there. Eric’s imminent return could throw a wrench into their plans and liven up the pairing, but what’s this new direction, Greg Vaughan speaks of?

• Am I just starved for female friendships on Days or could Gwen and Gabi be fun BFFs?

• To borrow a phrase from Soapbox commenter NolaGirl, for the love of the hourglass, why were there no signs of Eli, Lani, TR, Paulina, Abe, Beth, or TR this week? Not only do the large gaps in between scenes kill the momentum, but this is actually good soap, even if there is an abusive villain at the center of it, because of course there is.

That’s all I got this time around. As always, these are just my opinions. Share yours in the comments!

Check out the updated photo gallery below of soap stars and their real-life kids.