As Days of Our Lives Kills the Last of the Trio, It Looks Like We’re Going to Get Not Just One, But *Two* Major Mysteries

Marlena dying on John's shoulder, Kristen and orchid, steve angry ej and stefan shaking mashup peacock

Credit: Peacock screenshots (4)

As virtually everyone in town made it clear that Kristen’s gone way too far, Marlena got her final sendoff. In short, this week hit home just how sprawling a story this poisoning saga has become. But can all the good that’s coming from it outweigh the bad? 

Better Than It Should Be

I’m going to come right out and say it: I’ve been enjoying the Orchid Saga Redux: Part II far more than I was expecting. It got off to a rough start with how fast it went from sneeze to Kate and Kayla being dead, but the performances have been great. Still, it seems kind of mean that they went out in a blink of an eye while Marlena got a big farewell. I mean, I get it, John and Marlena are the Days of Our Lives couple, but the others could have gotten a bit more.

At the DiMera mansion, Kristen cowers from Steve who leans toward her.

With that said, we’re seeing a ton of emotion, from Belle’s heartbreak to Stephanie’s anger and horror. Then there was Steve’s rage as he confronted Kristen. I have to hand it to him for his “act.” Except, I don’t think it was an act. That fury was dangerously real. As was virtually everyone’s who confronted Kristen. Is there anyone who doesn’t want to kill her? I really, really hope we get a murder mystery out of this. The show’s practically going out of its way to tee this up at this point. 

Plus, we’re getting characters who we rarely see interact but should finally get moments together. Allie and Brady, a flash of the Eric we all thought we knew as he led his family in prayer. Then there are the returns. Will and Belle are back, along with Tripp and Joey — could they please stick around?! Conspicuously absent, though, is Sami. And that’s stretching credibility. But it is what it is.

And it touches nearly every aspect of the canvas. Johnny and Chanel are thrown back together with sparks still flying (I’m iffy on this, though), Stephanie’s pushed Alex aside and bonded with Chad and EJ’s come clean to Stefan about using his brainwashing for a power grab.

The Good and the Bad

In short, this saga is doing everything a major story should do, including touching on the past. Marlena even reminded us of John’s heartbreaking farewell to Isabella. But that’s also exposed the story’s glaring weakness. Back when Isabella died, death at least meant something. Now… not so much.

It looks like Marlena died at the at end of Friday’s episode, but don’t worry, she’s coming back after her trip to heaven, likely with Kate and Kayla in tow. And now that we’ve gotten a preview of that, we’ve even started wondering if she’ll come back with a fourth person in tow!

On a rooftop at night, John and Marlena sit on a couch. A blanket covers her lap and John holds out a strawberry.

The journey has been surprisingly strong, but there’s still a hollowness in the center knowing that all this mourning is mostly pointless. I know fans don’t want to see their favorite characters killed off or leave the show and death should be used sparingly. But it should mean something when it is used. And I’ve got the sneaking suspicion that this story will make it even more meaningless than it already is.

But the tale’s not over yet and I’m sure we’ve got more twists in store. After all, we still have yet to find out what happened to the orchid. My bet? It’s got something to do with Megan Hathaway and Bo’s return. As Kristen snorted with Rafe asking about the “secret room,” they should find a new name for it at this point, but a DiMera would know how to get in and out unnoticed and it would tie this all into another major story. Why she would have taken it, though, I’m still trying to piece together.

The Fire and the Fury

Does anyone else feel like more people should be ticked at Brady? He really isn’t the brightest bulb out there, but I guess that’s what makes him loveable. He keeps bemoaning his role in this and I kind of agree with him after it became stunningly clear how easy it would have been to get the orchid away from Kristen earlier if he’d tried. It took Eric five minutes to come up with a working plan.

EJ stefan playing chess peacock days

I loved Kristen and EJ’s face off over Rachel. There were the barbs they threw at each other, the mistrust, the threats. DiMeras fighting DiMeras always makes for great viewing. And Kristen’s comments wondering whether Stefan would take after Stefano or Vivian if he found out what his brother did was a fun reminder that he’s got some dark blood in his veins. And it’s a reminder that was brought back into focus as Stefan vowed revenge on EJ.

I kind of wish that had gone unsaid, though. All those chess metaphors made it clear he was plotting without hitting us over the head with it. I also would have like if EJ hadn’t backed down with Rachel. While him telling Stefan about his role in the brainwashing during a chess game made for some great scenes, being willing to sacrifice himself to protect his niece would have shown real growth.

But EJ is still EJ.

A Spade’s a Spade

Stephanie talking about Alex this week was, once again, harsh. “I told Alex numerous times I wasn’t ready to get involved. He wore me down, I guess.” She did, ultimately, agree to give him a chance (even when I thought she shouldn’t) and he did seem to do a good amount of growing with her.

Sitting on Steve and Kayla's couch, Joe looks intently at Stephanie.

But there was also a lot of emotional manipulation that went into the two of them getting together, and I’m glad this gave Stephanie (and the show) the opportunity to acknowledge it. Alex has a lot more growing to do. A lot. As Robert Scott Wilson himself said, the guy needs therapy.

Stray Thoughts…

• I hate to say it, but Li may be right about still having a shot with Gabi… And with how selfish she was about Marlena this week, I say those two may deserve each other after all.

In the Square, Gabi dumps a bucket of ice over Li's head.

• Rafe had some good snark this week. “This is the part where I’m supposed to think like Kristen DiMera… I’d rather die.”

• Will Ava be back sooner rather than later? I appreciate that Tripp acknowledged that she’s still around and ran out to check in on her.

• I could actually see Sarah doing things to save Marlena’s life. It was a far cry from putting Kate in a hospital bed and Rex bemoaning his nonexistent efforts to save her.

• Xander’s saga is about the only story that doesn’t touch on the orchid stuff, so it’s not surprising we didn’t see much beyond the drunken comedy of errors this week.

• Sure, let’s make drinks in someone else’s house as we discuss legal matters. Everyone does it. Or they will after seeing the trendsetters that are Leo and Sloan.

Check out our photo gallery of real-life partners of stars from all across the Law & Order franchise! 


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