There isn't a single realistic storyline on Days of Our Lives.
We have doppelgangers who are controlled by microchips in their heads, a son who has been turned into a brainwashed servant of his evil father, and an evil woman going free after using an app to turn a pacemaker into a weapon.
Some of these campy stories are standard soap fare, while others are ridiculous. But Days of Our Lives during the week of 3-02-20 focused almost exclusively on the absurd, leaving me to wonder how relatable these stories are for viewers.
It's not that there isn't anything enjoyable on Days of Our Lives.
Julie ripping into Gabi was satisfying, it's a relief to finally start wrapping up the Ben in jail saga, and Maggie and Victor had some great scenes.
But some of these stories are so outlandish that it's hard to suspend disbelief, and that's a problem.
I know you're too stubborn to be taken over by a microchip.Kayla
Magic microchips and the like have always been part of Days of Our Lives, but not to this extent. Since Ron Carlivati took over as head writer in 2017, all this has happened:
- Abigail developed Dissociative Identity Disorder and began dressing like Gabi and calling herself by the same name
- Hattie and Bonnie broke out of jail and took over Marlena and Adrienne's lives
- Marlena developed a life-threatening infection after surgery and John switched her and Hattie so that she would not be taken off of her ventilator
- Chad put on Stefano's ring and it made him act more like Stefano, so eventually, he took it off
- Kristen returned to Salem wearing a mask that made her look and sound exactly like Nicole
- Dr. Rolf kidnapped Hope and implanted a microchip in her brain to make her think she is Princess Gina
- Steve returned to Salem and it was quickly revealed he believed himself to be Stefano
- Hattie returned to Salem and switched places with Marlena to thwart Stevano's latest plan
- Stevano drugged Chad's drink and somehow brainwashed him so that he put the ring back on and now talks in a monotone about how loyal he is to his father
That's nine separate doppelganger or other mistaken identity incidents. And that list doesn't even count other super-unrealistic nonsense like Gabi being able to control Julie's pacemaker with an app on her phone.
Simply put, the doppelgangers are taking over Salem, and it's not good for Days of Our Lives to keep going down this path.
Throughout the week, the focus was on the latest Stevano plot, but unfortunately, it didn't mean an end to this ridiculous story.
The Stevano kidnapping Kayla plot was irritating, but there was a silver lining: unlike most of the women who get kidnapped in Salem, Kayla held her own.
Sure, she tried to get through to Steve as if he had DID like Abby did, but that was better than sitting around waiting to get rescued.
The worst part of this story -- besides the fact that it's not over yet -- is that it contained a lot of unnecessary violence.
Stevano tied Kayla up and held a gun to her head as well as threatening to shoot Justin at various times, while Rolf knocked John out.
This was a pretty typical botched rescue plot, but it was so violence-laden, especially considering the Evan storyline going on elsewhere.
Plus, it was handled stupidly. You don't deal with a hostage situation by having one guy try to launch a surprise attack by himself.
Although the Gina storyline is also annoying, at least we got some funny lines out of it.
There was no reason for Jennifer to confront Gina about pushing her off the balcony or anything else, but Shawn breaking up the fight was amusing, and I loved how Gina relaxed somewhat because of his sarcastically calling her "Your Highness."
Hopefully, the MRI leads to discovering the microchip and this is the beginning of the end of this stupid story.
Chad is hearing your voice in his head. What did you do to him?Kate [to Stefano's portrait]
It probably is, since now Chad is brainwashed, making him the latest person in Salem to not act like himself.
This Chad brainwashing story has been done several times before. The whole La Familia turning him into a zombie predates the current writing team, but it was silly the first time and didn't need to be revisited now.
And neither does this idea that wearing Stefano's ring turns Chad into Stefano.
At least Kate seems to be aware that something's wrong, so maybe she'll actually have learned her lesson and tell someone instead of going along with the plan.
Meanwhile, the Ben in prison story could have been a compelling story, but it took yet another turn into the absurd instead.
Ciara found out at the last minute that Evan's real name was Christian Maddox and he killed Jordan in a fit of rage because she wouldn't let him see their son. Fine.
The flashbacks filled in the blanks and we finally got the full solution to that mystery.
But then things got seriously stupid.
Ciara confronted Evan, got his gun away from him... and then took him at gunpoint into the execution chamber to confess.
There is no way any of this would have gone down the way it did in real life. And yes, this is a soap opera, but the unreality here was so glaring it was impossible to believe any of this.
First of all, it was incredulous that a woman could get into a prison compound while holding someone at gunpoint.
But for the sake of argument, let's say she could. It would then become a hostage situation. The prison would be locked down and a SWAT team and hostage negotiators assembled.
It wouldn't end well, and it certainly wouldn't result in everyone standing around arguing about whether a confession coerced at gunpoint was a reason to halt an execution.
And so far during this story, Ciara has assaulted a cop, declared she has no future without Ben, told an armed law enforcement agent to shoot her, and forced someone to confess to a crime at gunpoint.
She clearly needs help. She also needs to face some consequences for her actions.
Instead, Rafe spent about two seconds warning her that her actions were reckless and dangerous before shifting into telling her he was proud of her.
There was no mention of the fact that what she should have done was called Rafe and told him she'd made a citizen's arrest and that Evan had confessed to murdering Jordan.
Yes, time was of the essence, but the people in charge of executions would be more likely to listen to a police officer than a crazed gunwoman.
Ben flatlining was surely meant to be done for dramatic effect, but that petered out since right after he flatlined, Marlena came back and told John that Ben was okay now so that we could get on with the Stevano story.
After all that, we didn't even get a Ben/'Ciara reunion scene.
Maybe it's still coming, but sheesh.
The only story that is remotely realistic is the baby switch story.
It's unlikely that a doctor would really switch a dead and live baby and change a bunch of records, but at least bribery and doing shady things in exchange for money are things that happen in the real world.
They're also things that happen routinely in soap world that don't involve doppelgangers and science fiction devices, though I suppose technically the baby is a doppelganger since it's not really Sarah's baby.
The best thing about this story is that Nicole is in investigative mode.
Nicole is at her best when she's trying to put together the pieces and figure out someone else's secret. She used to be an investigative reporter and is much better at it than Abigail.
Instead of doing nothing with JJ and Nicole's friendship after she helped protect him after Theresa's overdose in 2013, Days of Our Lives should have had them work together as investigative reporters. Sadly, that ship has sailed since JJ is no longer on canvas, but at least Nicole is back to investigating.
The bad news is that she's investigating a secret related to Sarah and Eric.
Days of Our Lives insists on this annoying pattern where Nicole finds out a secret, doesn't tell Eric, and then gets raked over the coals for months for it when he finds out.
Nobody wants to see that. So let's hope they don't go there this time -- but they probably will.
Finally, Maggie's guilt and shame now that she knows she is the one who killed Adrienne is well-done.
This is the one story that could actually happen, for the most part.
Maggie was right, too: she has to take responsibility for her actions and Summer's showing up wasn't an excuse for drinking.
I still think it'll turn out Maggie was drugged and framed too and that either Summer or some other person (Evan, maybe?) ran Adrienne off the road. But for now, Maggie has the right attitude, though beating herself up won't do any good.
Victor, on the other hand, needs some tough love.
Yes, he did this latest thing for Maggie, but he ruined a bunch of lives and made it harder for her to cope with the news.
And wait until she finds out that baby isn't Sarah's and that she did kill her granddaughter that night.
Maggie was a little bit too quick to forgive Victor, and Sarah forgave Xander right away, but when that bombshell drops, they may not be so forgiving.
Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics.
Hit the blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know your thoughts about Days of Our Lives during the week of 3-02-20.
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.