When I was a junior in high school, the teachers went on strike. It was only for a week, but when you're 16 there's quite possibly nothing better than bonus summer -- a few more days of it-doesn't-matter-ness to occupy your time until things get real again.
Well, friends, DAYS is in bonus summer. The new writers' material starts September 6. And if recent (okay, all) history means anything, a good chunk of what we are seeing now is going to get blown up. So, why not enjoy this bonus summer while we have it?
And for my money, putting Belle Black front and center of an episode is the best DAYS has been in ages. In case you haven't heard it before, I'm downright fuming that Martha Madison and Brandon Beemer were let go from DAYS. But there will be a whole Alex North Memorial Awards devoted to that blockhead move.
For now, it's critical that we all soak up this bonus summer with Belle. She's our guide through Salem.
Or, specifically, Jennifer's crazy world.
First, addiction or not, I get Jen's frustration at wanting to be weak. She has always been the "sane one" next to someone else's antics. It has to be frustrating when she wants to have a moment of weakness and Jack is all, "Nope! You're not allowed! You're the strong one."
Second, Jennifer is grieving for Abigail. It doesn't matter how old she is. A parent shouldn't ever outlive their child. Missy Reeve's great performances made me feel for Jennifer. Belle is a pillar of class for showing her totally appropriate compassion in that moment. However, I have a strong fear that Belle's act of stellar decency will go unrewarded.
I'm going to need people -- and right now I'm talking to Kayla, Julie, and Doug when he gets back from playing cards -- to shut down this madness about Jennifer suing for custody. It was a ludicrous idea before she fell off the wagon. Now that she has, Thomas is in real danger. And Thomas' safety is worth more than Jennifer's ego.
I know it's the addiction talking, so I'm not entirely mad at Jennifer herself. But everyone around her who doesn't line up to back Chad in this lawsuit is enabling Jennifer's addiction. That's not good for Jennifer. And it sure isn't good for Thomas.
Someone get Lucas on the phone right away, if not sooner. He can relate to Jen's struggles with addiction, as well as speak to what it's like when a crazy lady tries to take your kid from you.
Speaking of grieving fathers, Brady hit the roof when he heard Victor answer the burner phone, so he had the old guy arrested immediately. In Brady's defense, if my kid went missing, I'd lose my mind a bit too. But I think he's jumping to the wrong conclusion here.
I'm all but certain that Deimos was behind the Tate-napping. Why? Well, aside from the fact that removing Justin from the D.A.'s office was waaay too coincidental for it not to be planned, Sonny is suspicious of Deimos. And I trust Sonny. Sure, Maggie can go ahead and forgive him because that's Maggie's thing. But not me. And not Sonny. Nope, we're onto you D-bag.
Maggie's surgery was successful! It looks like she'll dance again -- in red shoes, no less! I love the nod to history with Maggie getting a pair of shoes from her love. I have to admit that I'd been preparing myself for a Victor/Maggie split. But Maggie made probably the best argument for them. Getting married at their age isn't about kids or a future. It's about right now. And so I want them to make it.
I love Aiden as a shady character. I love Rafe vs. Aiden. And, yes, Rafe "I covered up a murder and never paid for it" Hernandez kinda needs to watch getting too high up on that horse around Aiden. But this feud over Hope is rooted in both of them having genuine feelings for her. And the actors work well together. So I hope this one makes it into the fall.
Below are my actual notes during the scene when Ciara confessed her "love" for Chad: • Oh, no. Nope. My boy does not need her drama draped over his shoulders right now at all. • Thank gawd he shut that crap down. He can't be more direct than, "I don't love you." • Girl, stop whining. He just found out that his wife died, and you're standing in his living room, pouting because he doesn't "like you like that" back. You are both out of your league and mind.
Thrady made it through the Tate-napping together. That makes me worried that they're going to have a crash-and-burn breakup to usher Theresa out of Salem. I'm not really looking forward to that. I like both of these characters and don't think that either of them is due any heartbreak.
Normally, I'm against hiding the baby from the daddy on soaps. But I do like that Philip offered. It was equal parts disdain for Deimos and full support of his long friendship with Chloe. Plus, John Paul Lavoisier's Philip is never better than when he's opposite Nadia Bjorlin's Chloe.
Theo has about seven seconds to get over that drip Ciara and realize Claire Bear is the shizz, or else I'm going to Salem to have a talk to him.
Yes! to Paul doing P.I. work for Belle. I love these siblings sharing scenes.
Abe and Roman told Rafe to just accept Justin's ousting and not ask any questions. Yup, that should go over well.
She's not perfect. And that's exactly the point of why she's great. No one is making excuses for her. Her pedestal is removed, and she's free to stand on her own two feet. And stand tall on them -- not stomp them -- is indeed what she does.
For ultimate proof, take her brilliant scene with Chad on Tuesday. Two things occurred to me during their scene. One, Billy Flynn and Martha Madison have too few chances in which to show off their fantastic partnership to soap viewers. Two, Belle is the first friend Chad has had in years. Belle was there supporting Chad without wanting or needing anything back from him in return. And she did it all in between patching things up with the love of her life, putting aside her own ego for her kid's dreams, and showing the ultimate compassion for a fellow mother. Get it, Belle.
I was hoping the Nicole/Deimos pairing would go the way of Lochte's endorsements over the Olympic break. But, alas, Nicole still seems to be into this clown. And that has me nervous. Everything out of this guy's mouth is a lie. So this storyline has gone from me not shipping this couple to me not wanting Nicole to look like a chump. I think I'm going to be disappointed on both fronts.
LINE OF THE WEEK:
Kate: "I've finished my dinner, though I might have to take something to keep it down if I continue to look at you."
Chloe: "Oh, I hope whatever you take it isn't poison. I'm assuming you have some left over? (Kate storms out) I thought that went rather well!"
You guys, Chloe is funny now! I like it!
Belle (about Claire): "Ugh! I never shoulda bought her that damn nightclub!"
I had to laugh. I mean, what parent hasn't uttered those words?
I like how Chad chills around the house in a sports coat.
It seems like ages ago that Rafe was thanking Aiden for miraculously getting Gabi out of jail.
It was really swell of the Salem High guidance counselor to give Chloe all of those brochures.
I'm always shocked that the Salem P.D. questions suspects in a room with a board displaying evidence from whatever other cases they're working on at the moment.
Um, Chad, the specific moment everything went to hell was when Abigail went back to Ben after schlupping you on the garden.
Where was Shawn during the Kiriakis family meeting at the police station?
Any flashback that concerns Christmas is okay with me.
I loved Kate's green nails.
Yikes! Claire said Abigail always knew what she wanted in life. I'm thinking Cameron and Ben would disagree with that statement. Not being able to decide which guy you want is kinda Abigail's jam.
I do like Chloe and Claire together. But wouldn't it make more sense if Claire was Parker's nanny, not Chloe's personal assistant? You know, since Chloe hasn't actually started working on a song yet.
"We kissed because we're upset that Abigail died" is the best/worst excuse I've heard for making out with your friend.
Man, Brandon Beemer has that proud dad smile down pat. I loved watching Shawn listen to Claire sing.
What are your thoughts on Days of our Lives? What did you think of this week's Two Scoops? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.