On Days of Our Lives during the week of 3-09-20, everything came together for Gina to literally be excised from Hope's skull.
This is the end of this particular doppelganger story but is it enough?
The Princess Gina storyline has turned out to be one of the least popular stories in recent Days of Our Lives history.
For months, fans have cringed at this campy storyline, Gina's ridiculous fake accent, and how oblivious everyone seemed to be.
So the end of this story is cause for celebration... or it would be if there weren't still so many other doppelgangers and ridiculous stories in Salem.
Gina may be on her way out, but we still have a brainwashed Chad and a kidnapped and microchipped Marlena to deal with.
As far as Gina goes, though, the end of this nonsense is satisfying, even if the solution is as farfetched and ridiculous as the rest of it.
Gina was dragged kicking and screaming to the hospital, where doctors found the microchip but were unable to remove it because it was too close to her spinal cord.
While this is semi-realistic, I don't understand what Rolf can do that they can't.
The microchip is the technological equivalent of a brain tumor that is making Hope act weird. Just because Rolf created it doesn't mean he can magically remove it without risking the same paralysis that anyone else would be risking.
I suppose he could deactivate it somehow, but that doesn't sound like what he's going to be asked to do.
Anyway, it's a moot point since Rolf was found and arrested.
It didn't make sense that he was hiding out at the Dimera mansion while Stevano spirited Marlena away -- surely Stevano needed him to keep Marlena in line.
And it also didn't make sense that John first dragged him downstairs and showed him to Chad, other than that was a convenient interruption when Chad was about to stab Kate.
But if capturing Rolf is a step toward ending this story, I'm for it no matter how little sense of any of it makes.
Let's talk about the Chad brainwashing, though.
Viewers should have seen this one coming. One doppelganger story can't end without another one popping up to take its place, and Chad was vulnerable. He was talking to Stevano online and his wife is out of town.
So he was the best candidate to be the newest not-really-himself resident of Salem.
The way it's done, though, is a hodgepodge of stuff that's been done before with Chad, plus he's terrible at carrying out Stefano's murderous plans.
Last time around, Chad eventually rejected Stefano's ring because he felt it was turning him into Stefano. So there's no reason he put it on now.
And La Familia has been used to trigger a trance in Chad before, although last time was even sillier.
At least this time there's no Clockwork Orange like setup with photos of bugs and flowers to make Chad hate Abby and fall for Belle while under a spell.
But quite frankly, this adds nothing of value to the story. It's not entertaining and it doesn't enhance the plot in any way. It's just goofy.
Chad hears Stevano's voice in his head and goes on random murderous rages. Is this supposed to bring him closer to Abby because he understands what it was like for her to have DID and not be aware of what she was doing?
Seriously, there is no good reason for this. Hopefully, Kate is aware that something is going on with Chad so that we can get rid of this nonsense sooner rather than later.
Meanwhile, let's hope that Marlena holds out and the microchip Stevano put in her head doesn't take over.
First of all, we have more than enough microchipped people running around Salem. That's a plot device that needs to die sooner rather than later.
Secondly, this isn't good campy fun. Stevano putting a chip in Marlena's head to lower her resistance to his advances may be unrealistic, but it's a form of rape. Again.
Days of Our Lives seems to always be finding new and inventive ways to be irresponsible when it comes to depicting sexual assault. This new story is a high-tech version of giving someone date rape drugs.
For now, Marlena is still resisting, but still. This story should not be written as anything other than it is: Stevano raping Marlena.
Leaving that aside, Marlena gets kidnapped so often it's a joke.
The one saving grace of the whole Stevano story thus far has been that while held captive, Kayla was an actual strong woman who held her own with Stevano and attempted to escape rather than waiting for her knight in shining armor to rescue her.
Unfortunately, when Justin and John did locate her, they went with a stupid plan that was likely to get them in trouble, leading to Marlena being kidnapped again.
This is the second time in as many months. Enough already.
It was also a little weird that Kayla went from needing medical attention for carbon monoxide poisoning to being back on doctor duty in a matter of minutes. But that's Salem, I guess. After all, Sarah was also tending to patients while her daughter was in the hospital.
Justin is coming off as likable throughout this whole mess, though.
He has too much integrity to try to stop the real Steve from being restored just because Kayla might return to Steve, and Gina's shock that he wouldn't squash the court order to remove her microchip was satisfying.
Of course, Kayla said the fatal words that Steve is her past, which means Justin will get his heart broken shortly.
But who knows? With all these doppelgangers running around, it could turn out that Bonnie was killed instead of Adrienne, or Adrienne could turn out to be alive for some other reason.
Anyway, the baby switch story is quickly becoming my favorite story. It doesn't involve microchips, magic masks, or anything else supernatural. Instead, we have more traditional soap fare here, making it much more enjoyable.
Nicole is the perfect person to investigate this mess, or would be if it didn't involve Eric.
Now that she's put the pieces together about Xander bothering that doctor, she has some decisions to make.
Many fans are worried that she might decide to keep this secret from Eric. Then when he finds out, he'll lash out at her just like he did when she kept it secret that he was the father of Sarah's baby in the first place.
Let's hope not. That's obnoxious and most viewers have had enough of that kind of problem between Eric and Nicole.
Of course, if Nicole does tell Eric, there's no guarantee he'll believe her. He'll probably think that Kristen's baby and his baby just happen to have the same birthmark.
Raynor: Sarah is my friend and colleague and she is a wreck. So even though Mackenzie isn't really hers -
Xander: Don't ever say that again!
Raynor: All right, fine. I'm just saying that as a doctor, I took an oath. And when you save a life, you feel responsible for it.
Xander: You should worry about your own life.
I was surprised that Kristen didn't realize that Mackenzie has the same face that she remembers her baby having, especially those big eyes. But now we have this random birthmark instead, so this is going to unravel very soon.
In any case, Xander needs to stop talking in public about the baby switch.
I don't care what Victor said. Confronting Raynor was stupid.
Raynor is Mackenzie's doctor. In real life, obstetricians don't also practice pediatric oncology, but still. In the world of the show, she's taking care of a baby with cancer.
It's not realistic to think that Sarah won't wonder why this doctor suddenly left town, and Xander's behavior since he found out about Raynor's presence at the hospital contradicts his desire to be a stepfather to Mackenzie.
Plus, Sarah and Nicole both saw and heard suspicious interactions between Xander and Raynor.
And if Raynor does leave town, what stops her from telling anyone what really went on once she's out of Victor and Xander's sight?
So no, this plan was unnecessarily risky and Xander should have left well enough alone.
The best part of this story continues to be Kristen's scenes, though.
God knows how she'll react when she finds out this was her baby all along.
She killed Haley over losing the baby, missed six months of her life, and grieved every day.
The grief Kristen is expressing right now is making for some compelling television, so her reaction to learning her baby is alive should be even better.
Ciara continued to spend all of her time with Ben until he insisted she check on her mother.
Her love story with Ben is falling flat because she's so focused on him. It's like she has nothing else in her life that matters. That's not romantic. It's pathetic, and it sends a terrible message to young women.
Most of the women on Days of Our Lives are interested in modeling and similar careers, and now Ciara has no life whatsoever outside of her boyfriend.
Regardless of whether Ben's impending execution was a crisis, she should have interests of her own -- including concerns about her own family.
Finally, it looks like this Rafe/Evan story is going to take a while.
Evan: I'm glad I was able to lose the cops that Rafe had tailing me.
Orpheus: Of course you did. You learned from the best. You learned from Orpheus.
Orpheus' reappearance was a nice twist. Back in the 1980s, Orpheus had two young kids that he forced Marlena to take care of. Could Evan be one of those kids all grown up?
That said, parental kidnapping is still kidnapping and should be treated as such. Of course, if the police department consisted of more than Rafe, that would help.
Lani and Eli should get their old jobs back instead of spending all their time making out and talking about how they want to make up for lost time. Then there should be a full investigation into what happened to David.
Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics.
What did you think of Days of Our Lives during the week of 3-09-20?
Are you glad Orpheus is back? Are you sick of the campiness yet? And how do you think Kristen will react to the baby switch?
Hit SHOW COMMENTS and let us know your thoughts.
And don't forget to check back on Sunday for our Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion.
Days of Our Lives continues to air on NBC on weekday afternoons. Check your local listings for airtimes.