For a soap opera, Valentine's Day is often the most important day of the year.
Soaps are built on love and romance, and viewers are hungry for marriage proposals, weddings, and declarations of love on the day most dedicated to romance.
But during the week of 2-10-20, Days of Our Lives built up some fake love stories and it all came to a head on Valentine's Day.
A good chunk of screen time was dedicated to Stevano convincing Kayla to help hide him from the authorities.
Kayla didn't know that's what she was doing, of course. She thought she was helping her ex-husband recover from a gunshot wound.
The whole Kayla/Stevano encounter was bizarre. It was almost as if the writers were trying to give "Stayla" fans the reunion they longed for...except that they really didn't because Steve wasn't Steve.
He kept going back and forth between being Steve and being Stevano, and Kayla should have been smart enough to see through it.
She and Steve have had a connection for over 30 years. It is as deep, passionate, and abiding as Kayla claimed it to be.
So how could she not realize something was off, especially given that Steve left Salem more in love with her than ever and Stevano returned with no feelings for her whatsoever?
Yes, Kayla is hurt by how "Steve" treated her, but this isn't the first time she's dealt with him not being himself and all sorts of alarm bells should be going off.
Plus, Roman should be concerned since she never answered his message warning her about Stevano and never showed up to do Julie's pacemaker procedure.
It's so annoying when characters become stupid for the sake of the plot, and Days of Our Lives needs to stop doing that.
At least the secret about Gina is mostly out, though the aftermath of that isn't any more logical than anything else in this silly story.
It was especially ridiculous that Rafe, who is supposed to be a former FBI agent, couldn't see through Gina pretending to turn back into Hope.
Rafe always gets stupid when he's around Hope, but this one took the cake. It would have been too much of a coincidence for Gina to hit her head and turn back into Hope just as she was about to be arrested.
Besides, the first step is always to disarm the suspect. Why did Rafe allow her to keep that knife?
And once Gina was taken back to Salem, it suddenly turned into another Dissociative Identity Disorder storyline.
Shawn's pleas to Hope to "keep fighting" and to remember who she was were eerily reminiscent of how characters tried to get through to Abigail when "Gabby" had taken over and wreaked havoc with her life.
In addition, there was no reason not to do a brain scan to find the microchip that had turned Hope into Gina except for that would be the end of this story.
Rafe said they didn't have time to get a court order because he could only hold Gina for 48 hours without charging her. But Gina had kidnapped Marlena, tried to kill John, and tried to kill Rafe.
So why not arraign her on those charges while the cops were working on their court order for the microchip? If later, it was proven that the chip was the cause of Gina's bad behavior, they could go back to court to claim Hope wasn't in control of her actions and get her out of jail.
Besides, since when do cops in Salem worry about court orders? They perform blatantly illegal searches whenever the plot demands, so why should this be any different?
One of the stupidest aspects of this whole thing was that nobody bothered to warn Ciara about her mother's switched identity until after the fact.
Shawn was in town for days while Rafe and Roman were searching for Gina. Yet he never once reached out to his younger sister until after Gina had been arrested.
This was information that Ciara needed to know. Gina could easily have used her false identity to kidnap Ciara and use her as leverage to make Shawn and Rafe back off.
But Ciara has been effectively siloed for months. Ever since the time jump, she has no interest in anything other than Ben's plight. She never noticed anything off about her mother and isn't particularly concerned that she hasn't heard from her while in the middle of a crisis.
This was made painfully obvious by the aftermath of Ben's choice to escape.
Breaking out of jail is a Days of Our Lives staple, but this particular jailbreak was not well thought out.
Clyde sacrificed his own freedom so Ben could escape, which didn't fit either his character or the story, and then instead of going on the run for real, Ben and Ciara went to the gatehouse and argued about whether Ciara should be part of this.
Ben: We have to face reality. It's time to say goodbye.
Ciara: Were you not listening when I said I will never say goodbye?
Ben: This is no kind of life for you, living on the run.
Ciara: But I don't have a life without you.
This was an old, tired argument. This whole story has been about Ben telling Ciara it's too dangerous to help him and Ciara insisting that she had no life without him.
Enough already. Chad wouldn't have caught the two of them if they hadn't wasted so much time arguing about whether Ciara was going to be part of this adventure or not and just got going.
Also, the place Ben lived prior to his arrest was not a great hiding spot.
If the Salem PD were at all competent, that would have been the first place they looked.
And it was idiotic to assume no one else had moved in there over a year later.
Anyway, once Chad found the fugitives, there was still no story movement. The argument shifted to Ciara trying to convince Chad that Ben was a good guy and Chad eventually giving them a reprieve because it was Valentine's Day.
Ciara's insistence that Ben "changed" in response to Chad's point that Ben was a former serial killer who murdered three people and tried to kill two others sounded ridiculous.
This is a soap opera, where serial killers can be instantly redeemed, and Ben's mostly redeemed himself, but that exchange just sounded silly.
Plus, Chad's discovery of the two fugitives was a lot of nothing. It was set-up so that Ciara and Ben could have sex.
It would have been one thing if the two had legitimately gone on the run, then realized while they were fighting for survival in the woods that it was Valentine's Day.
But there was no story here. Just two people having the same fight they always have and then having the same sex they always have.
I want to like this couple, and they have potential, but they need more to do than have the same argument over and over.
The other big story of the week of 2-10-20 was Eli and Gabi's "wedding."
Gabi's plan was doomed to fail long term, and she should have realized that.
Since her app drained the pacemaker's battery in just a couple of months and Julie needed another one, what was going to stop that from happening again?
Surely Doug, Julie, and Kayla would be suspicious if two pacemakers in a row turned out to have defective batteries.
It wasn't realistic for Julie to have pacemaker surgery in the morning and officiate a wedding in the afternoon, either. Even though technically what she had done wasn't surgery, her body should still have needed time to recover.
If anyone thinks these two should not be married, they should speak now or forever hold their peace. And they'll have to deal with me. Any takers?Julie
There were a few weird moments before the wedding got going, too.
When they first found out about the pacemaker, JJ told Lani that it didn't mean they were home free because Gabi knew and could get control over the new pacemaker.
Yet the better part of an episode was dedicated to JJ believing that the new pacemaker ended the problem and Lani telling him that Gabi could still get control over the new device.
And more importantly, in what universe did it make sense for Abigail to be helping Gabi with her wedding?
Abigail and Gabi might have been friends once, but they are bitter enemies now.
So there was no reason for Abby to be exhausted from helping Gabi get ready for the big day or to be in charge of Gabi's bouquet during the wedding
Also, why was Eli having the wedding in the same place that he had his failed wedding to Lani?
That was guaranteed to bring up bad memories, and who wants that on their wedding day?
That said, at least this story is just about over. Lani finally found her backbone after months of refusing to stand up to Gabi and hopefully she's doing karma's job now.
It was almost worth an entire hour of Lani skulking around in a floppy hat and trench coat to get that cliffhanger where she interrupted the wedding.
There was certainly no reason to juxtapose that with Brady and Kristen skipping the wedding to have sex, though.
That could have happened off-screen. Brady always gets both gullible and horny when he's with Kristen and their latest sexathon felt like filler.
Speaking of Brady and Kristen, did anyone else find it weird that neither of them was a bone marrow match with their baby?
While medically speaking, it's rare for parents and children to be optimal matches, the easiest way to make that storyline unravel would have been to ignore that and make both parents a match.
Days doesn't generally do a great job with making medical storylines realistic, and all of Salem would have wondered how two "unrelated" people who recently lost a child of their own were perfect matches for another baby.
I wish that by some sleight of hand that only makes sense in Salem, it would turn out that Xander is baby Mickey's father and that there was no baby switch, but that's not likely to happen.
There'd be too much fallout from finding out that Sarah and Eric's baby isn't theirs at all, starting with tearing Xander and Sarah apart when they just got together.
I'm dreading that happening.
They're the best couple on Days right now outside of classic couples such as Doug and Julie or Jack and Jennifer.
Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics.
Hit SHOW COMMENTS and share your thoughts on Days of Our Lives during the week of 2-10-20.
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Days of Our Lives continues to air on NBC on weekday afternoons. Check your local listings for airtimes.