Days of Our Lives Missed Out Big Time When They Teased the Explosive Stories They *Won’t* Be Telling

gabi stefan kristen mashup jpi days

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI (3)

It was mismatched couples week on Days of Our Lives, but mostly it felt like we were just getting a lot of B-plots lumped into one grouping. The problem is, some of these stories should be front-burners, but they just aren’t feeling like it.

Why did I feel like nothing much happened this week? Maybe part of the problem is that November sweeps is just around the corner and the show’s in a holding pattern until then. Or maybe it’s that the Days of Our Lives has drawn some of these stories out too long and we’ve lost some sizzle.

Take Eric and Nicole. They’ve come full-circle with her modeling for him, which is how they first fell for each other a few decades back. Passions are inflamed, etc., etc. But rather than feeling like a steady buildup of forbidden love, their dance has just felt dragged out and frustrating. When Eric first came back, I was excited to see this play out, but I’m not even really rooting for them anymore.

Nicole, divorce Rafe already. You’re just being cruel at this point. It’s not even a question of being torn between two men. Or if it is, Days isn’t doing a decent job of showing that. She wants Eric over Rafe. Period.

So Close, But So Far

I really believed we were going to get an exciting twist when Gabi tracked Rolf down and forced the truth out of him with a scalpel to his throat. Ah ha, I thought. I hadn’t seen this coming, but now Gabi can play a game of cat and mouse with Li as they build up to their wedding and then destroy him at the altar!

But then it was all, quite literally, erased with Rolf’s magical memory-killing serum and the story’s momentum drifted lazily back down to next-to-nonexistent.

In a robe, Li stands behind Gabi with his hand on her shoulder. She express a wry look, while wearing a black catsuit and cat ears

That’s Gabi’s wistful look as she realized this as close to cat-and-mouse as we’re getting.

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

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That really hit home as Li tried doing damage control with a no-longer-in-Salem Dr. Rolf. “Why in God’s name did you have to erase her memory?” I don’t know, Li, maybe the more important question is: Why in God’s name are you calling Rolf while Gabi’s home with you? I’m sorry, but she’s too smart to keep buying all of Li’s lame excuses whenever she walks in on him sloppily plotting. That’s not building tension, just annoyance.

And I know we’re supposed to be rooting for Brady/Chloe and Stefan/Gabi… but Stefan and Chloe are actually cute. And his comment to that with her he feels like he’s more than just a power-hungry corporate machine with her was sweet. Still, the sparks keep flying between him and Gabi, so maybe I’ll get more excited about them. Or they’ll just drag it out like the rest of the lukewarm relationships…

As for Brady, yes, Chloe, Kristen moving in before you finished moving out is, indeed, “so absurd.” Everything about this is. I don’t know what to say other than that Brady’s not the brightest. Clearly, he needs help. Gabi could’ve been a really fun ally in taking Kristen down if she’d kept her memories… but nope, that story opportunity went away too.

So why wouldn’t he tell his loved ones what’s actually going on? Is he worried they can’t keep a secret? His dad’s a former spy and his step-mom’s a master of the human mind — they can help.

Too Little, Too Late?

Are we getting a bit of an Alex/Stephanie reset? Well, maybe not a reset so much as an evolution to where they should have started. Her breaking in to find Alex handcuffed to Sloane’s bed was a ridiculous farce… but it’s one I could get behind. I was actually a bit dismayed to find myself on team-Alex in this one. Stephanie was awfully judgmental, demanding to know what Alex was doing there while she was breaking and entering. She was deflecting, granted, but it’s still none of her business.

A shirtless Alex's wrist is handcuffed to a headboard

See? Alex is shocked I agree with him too.

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

But then they got to some verbal sparring, and this is how I really wish they’d begun their relationship. Starting from a place of mutual distaste is a time-honored romantic trope, and the sparks that fly between insults can be downright electric. Alex could have been the cocky playboy Stephanie shot down, leading the two to butt heads as they worked together.

But Days of Our Lives started from a place of harassment and discomfort, and it’s tougher to move into the next phase from there. At least for me. But now Stephanie needs Alex’s help with Sloane, so let’s hope the show can pull off the relationship setup they’re pushing forward with one way or another.

Twin Talk

With so much focus on Stephanie’s attempts to get the dirt from Sloane, the whole devastating Chanel secret felt like it was missing one important element: Chanel! Actually, the whole week did, other than her not being able tell Allie what’s going on and some scattered awkward moments… like word of the threesome spreading around to the participants’ family members.

And that excuse Allie made to Chanel about getting together with Alex again? “The sooner we go back to hanging out, the less awkward it will be?” You weren’t hanging out before! It’s not like he’s your bestie. You just ran into each other a few times and went out drinking together once.

At the apartment, Chanel grimaces at Allie

“But I thought this was supposed to be my story! Why am I hardly in it, Horton??”

Credit: Peacock screenshot

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On the plus side, as bizarre as her staying with Chanel and Allie is, I’m loving Wendy more and more. She was wonderfully incredulous as Johnny explained the whole twins with separate fathers/ex-wife with sister/devil-ruined marriage/into Tripp’s mom thing. Because it’s all full-on crazy. But then she was also sympathetic to Johnny’s pain… and put him nicely in his place at Allie and Chanel’s. He needs more of this in his bratty moments.

Right now, we’ve been seeing these two together more as they plot against their respective family members, but the duo talked enough about Tripp this week to make it clear that they’re headed straight for a triangle. Even if I still feel like they did mess up by removing Joey from the equation.

Stray Thoughts

• Ava’s plotting against EJ should be a bright spot… but we had a few words to say on that elsewhere.

• You know how we know the holiday season is kicking off? They trotted out the kids. We got Rachel, Holly and even a new Ari.

At Basic Black, Nicole lovingly watches Eric talk with Holly

“And who are you dressed up as for Halloween? A latchkey kid?”

Credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

• Forget about what would have happened if Alex had to use the bathroom while Sloan was gone. Has no one seen Gerald’s Game? What if something happened and she never came back??

• Stephanie’s constant reassurances to Paulina are ridiculous. “I just keep digging myself deeper.” Yes, you do. Promising what you can’t deliver isn’t just foolish, it’s not professional!

• I feel like John figuring out what was going on with Brady off a single line was a bit of a logic leap, even if it was the right one. “Eureka! Not only is Kristen responsible for the serum, we’ll need more of it down the line, which we didn’t know before!”

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