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 Two Scoops: December 18, 2006 columns
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Brandon Beemer
Happy Holidays
For the Week of December 18, 2006
Brandon Beemer seems to just fit right in with the rest of the cast, and his scenes this past week with his parents were fantastic, and long overdue.
Happy Holidays to everyone! In whichever way you choose to celebrate the Holidays - I wish you peace, love and good health. And also good food! What would the Holidays be without a pile of sinfully good food? Not to mention the good friends and family to share it with. Yep, it makes me feel warm and fuzzy all over just thinking about it. Don't forget to donate your boxed and tinned foods to the local food banks, and shelters! At this time of year, it's important to remember those who are less fortunate and each give what we can. Every person should have the opportunity to share in the spirit of the Holidays and if nothing else; a full belly and warm place to sleep can't be too much to ask or provide. Thanks for listening. And now…on with the show…

Oy! Hope changed her mind about trusting Bo again. I guess she's decided that she wants back on the 'ride' with him? I think I almost got whiplash, the story turned on a dime so fast. Oh well, they're back together again and that is exactly what I've wanted all along. I can't really complain. At least they didn't drag the story out for a year and a day (a la Reilly) so again; can't complain. The saving grace, in terms of accepting Hope's rapid change of heart, was the various conversations they had throughout the week. I thought that they covered a lot of ground - with Bo coming to some big time realizations about his past actions. He was humbled, he was apologetic and most of all - he learned from his mistakes. Case in point was when he agreed to let Hope handle Patrick and the whole-stupid-trip-business on her own. Which I still can't believe she's going on by the way…I mean, doesn't she realize that it's just a trick to get her away from Bo? Duh… Well, let's just hope that Patrick meets his maker before that happens. Or that Bo and Hope discover the truth about the baby's paternity before then. I'm seriously tired of hearing everyone - from Bonnie to freakin Willow (of all people) - referring to Bo's baby as Patrick's. Ugh. Get it over with soon.

Whenever the truth does come out, it won't be a moment too soon. And it is sure to be the cement that will bond the fractured little Brady family back together again. That's one of the definite marks that Hogan Sheffer has made since he's become Head Writer: re-emphasis on the family. And this is one viewer who is VERY happy about that. Friday's scenes with Bo and Hope as they helped Shawn deal with Wacky-Willow's arson attempt are just one example (there are too many to cite them all…but I also wanted to point to Roman and Bo's extremely calm discussion about Victor's involvement in Claire's disappearance. Wasn't it great to see the two brothers bonding and sharing knowledge together?) Is it just me or does Brandon Beemer just fits right in? Well, I think so anyhow. His has been one of the smoothest 'recast' transitions in recent memory. Good for him. And good for the casting group ;) I thought that Shawn's scenes with his parents - Bo especially - were fantastic and long overdue. Aaaand they went a long way to restoring Shawn's character in my eyes. I thought it was hilarious that Bo pretended to act surprised when Shawn finally admitted what he was really doing for EJ. I love when Peter Reckell gets material that does not involve yelling and thumping his chest. He simply glows with energy and is truly a pleasure to watch. Bo and Hope: together again. Yup, I like it. And now that Shawn has agreed to move back home, and since Belle and Claire are all ready living there, I think we'll be seeing a very Merry Christmas at the Brady home this year.

Up until this point; I hadn't been Belle and Shawn's biggest fan, but I'm pulling for them now. Between the business with Willow and Victor's decision to pursue some kind of vendetta on Philip's behalf - I am becoming more and more sympathetic to them each day. They've each made bad decisions (though I think that Shawn takes the cake there) but they are trying to take responsibility for their actions. I like how the story has been written, and I hope that both of the characters can continue in this vein. Belle and Shawn discussed their feelings for each other - long overdue - and have decided to pull together for Claire's sake. And not a moment too soon as Victor and Philip get set to battle against them in their attempt to remove Claire from their custody. I don't know what grounds Victor thinks that Phil has to stand on however. He basically abandoned his wife and child soon after he found out that she was not his. How can he claim any kind of devotion? And I don't think the fact that Claire disappeared for a few hours would be enough to prove Belle unfit. Not in the real world anyhow. We'll see where this goes but my spider senses tell me that Belle and Shawn will end up having a quickie wedding in order to show that theirs is the more stable and loving home for Claire. Will it be enough is the question? And what 'da hell are Bo and Caroline going to say when they find out? Can Victor spin a yarn good enough to appease them?

Speaking of stable versus unstable…Hope called it: Willow scares me! She really does! I mean…kudos to the actress and all but…Willow gave me the heebie-jeebies when she was "talking" to Hope. It was the eyes I think. And I wouldn't exactly call what Willow was doing as 'talking'; it alternated between yelling/threatening and pleading/crying. Psycho! I mean - who the heck goes to the house of the parents of the man who just dumped you and demand that they do something about it? That was so weird. And her viewpoint of the whole situation is more than a little skewed. I won't even go in to her goobledy-gook about how Shawn chose Belle simply to please his parents and that Hope needs to tell Shawn to be with Willow and not Belle. Yada…yada…crazy freak! Good thing Hope finally kicked her out. Okay sure, Willow feels used and is hurting; and yes, Shawn could have been 'nicer' about the way in which he dumped her. But does that deserve torching his friggin apartment? I think not. His timing may have been off but what was he supposed to do? Let her hang around like a dirty shirt until after Christmas so as to spare her feelings? Besides, when Shawn first moved in, Willow played on his sympathies in order to get in his bed and the condition was that it was only temporary until she found her own place. Her 'poor me' cries don't move me…she knew exactly what she was getting in to; especially with regard to the Belle situation. Willow is the one that needs to 'Deal With It". I just hope she's gone soon. My fear is that she won't be - because she's secretly working on Victor's behalf or something - but I'd really like to see the back-end of this character sooner rather than later.

Speaking of Victor…his transformation back to the malevolent type of character that he was when first introduced in the 80's is almost complete. The cold way that he spoke to Shawn and the underhanded way in which he's plotting to take Claire away from him is something that the Victor, as he's been written over the past few years, would have never even considered. We've been led to believe over the past 2 years that Victor was so in love with Caroline Brady that he would do anything to please her. Well…messing around with Shawn, manipulating him, treating him like an enemy and stealing his daughter are things that are bound to make Caroline the exact opposite of pleased. What is he thinking? Clearly - given his softening of feelings toward Kate (witness the cheek-to-cheek dance they shared?) he is not thinking. Having said that however, I'm cautiously optimistic about Kate's reunion with Victor. I have to admit that back in the day - when Kate was married to Victor - she wasn't half bad. She certainly did not plot and plan and destroy lives as much as she does these days. Victor seemed to be the only person who could a) keep Kate in line and b) talk sense in to her when she was contemplating some crazy scheme. Of course - now it is Victor's turn to come up with a crazy scheme and Kate is the one who tried to talk him out of it. What a switch! That didn't last long of course and she is now firmly on board the "Philip's side" train. I know that she's done some fairly terrible things in the past but tricking Max and Mimi so that Victor can get them "in the same place at the same time" is deliberately evil. And doesn't it occur to her that Max will tell the cops that Kate called lured him and Mimi to the garage in the first place? If they are ever found that is. Anyhow…as I was saying - Kate is tolerable when she is with Victor so, here's hoping that Hogan has an idea for restoring her character as well. So far, his magic pen has spun out gold for others; let's see what it can do for Kate Roberts. I wouldn't be at all opposed to them hooking up again. I know that a lot of people are expressing disappointment in Victor's behaviour but personally; I'm enjoying the change. It's been too long since Victor has occupied the kindly old grandfather role. I would prefer to see the sharp, canny, 'one-step-ahead-of-everyone' Victor Kiriakis that we remember so well.

What can I say about Steve and Kayla's reunion? Fantastic, beautiful, romantic, well worth the wait, awesome…I could go on and on…maybe it would be easier to say what didn't I like? That would be a big fat: Nothing. I loved it all. The flashbacks were amazing, so many that I couldn't be sure what each of them were exactly, but it was great to see them anyway. I thought their bath together was sweet and amazing and very reminiscent of the old Patch and Kayla scenes. It wasn't only their reunion; but it was also one for those of us who watched them then and are watching them now. Thank you once again to Hogan and his talented team of writers for giving us such beautiful scenes. And thank you to Steven and Mary Beth for portraying the scenes with such passion and intensity. The old magic is back. Which means…poor Billie…she's about to get her heart stomped on again. C'est-la-vie however and hopefully this will give Billie the opportunity to find a man who didn't belong to anyone else first. I hear that the character of Stephanie is about to exit the canvas. Though it would be a strange time for her to leave, what with how darn adamant she's been about getting her parents back together, to leave just as that happens seems contradictory. However, it is also fairly evident that the character has run out of story. Better to get her out of the way - off to college or to race somewhere internationally - so that Kayla and Steve can embark on the mystery of who faked Steve's death and erased his memories.

Speaking of mysteries…John and Marlena have just solved one of their own over in Italy. Stefano DiMera is alive and well ladies and gents. Now, don't get excited. From what I hear, we will only see an arm and hand - never a face to go along with it :( Anyway…I bring up John and Marlena because I wanted to outline how much fun this current adventure of theirs has been to watch. Sure it has been somewhat silly and far-fetched in parts (like…wassup with the big gold letters announcing 'DIMERA' on the door to his room? Not very discreet for a supposed dead man) but overall, it has been fun to watch. Which is exactly contrary to any of the so-called adventures that Reilly attempted to write for the couple. Anyhow, I got a kick out of John's throaty little laugh when Rico was threatening him with a gun to his throat. Thankfully; Marlena didn't let John down and she appeared with her own gun to threaten Rico. Go girl! I love strong, brave and determined Marlena. She's so much better than wimpy and weak Marlena. It's good to have her back.

Speaking of fun couples to watch…you know who I'm talking about: Sami and Lucas. I just can't say enough about how extremely satisfying the writing for this couple has been. I simply loved the conversation between the two of them when Sami asked Lucas to be the bigger person and let her go to Talladega by herself. It's unfortunate that he followed her anyway and that EJ ratted him out (big shocker), but the new and improved (thank god) Sami Brady is taking it in stride. I really think it bears saying again what a godsend Hogan and his writing team have been to this couple. I try not to dwell too much on the personalities and motivations of the characters because - let's face it - they're not real. But there's something about the two of them that makes me care. And, I'll admit it, it makes me happy to see them both maturing. They are now making the conscious decision to stop playing childish games and start focusing on each other as individuals and as a family. I think it's great, and much too long in coming. I realize that some may think it's silly to care about a Soap Opera but hey…you know…different strokes and all that jazz. Anyhowww… So, another really great bonus of the change in Head Writer, is that people actually overhear things now! Sami walked by an open door and heard EJ talking on the phone. Imagine that! And - Wonders of all Wonders - she overheard the part when EJ said that he didn't care what "DiMera said". So she knows that EJ is somehow involved with the Phoenix. The spoilers for next week showed that Sami tells Lucas and he insists that she leave immediately. If I know my gal, I can lay odds on the fact that Sami will disagree with Lucas and elect to stay on as a partner in order to try to get incriminating information on EJ. Interesting…our little Sami turning detective? . The great thing about the storyline is that we don't know where it will go next! It's moving along at a reasonable pace, twisting and turning and leading us to certain conclusions but…in the end; we have to tune in to see what will happen next. I love it!

Spoilers
Next week
John and Marlena figure out who EJ Wells really is this week.
Max and Mimi are held captive in a church basement . . . with a skeleton!
Abe starts having trouble hiding his eyesight problems from others.
Patrick, ordered to kill Hope by EJ, forced her at gunpoint to go away with him.
Hope goes into labor and Bo rescues her. Patrick tells Bo that Bo is the baby girl's father. The police then arrest Patrick.
EJ hints to John there is a second assassin in Salem, and then John is shot trying to get EJ's gun.
EJ gets away, grabbing Sami, who was returning from a getaway tryst with Lucas when their temporary shelter collapsed, trapping Lucas.
EJ forces Sami to have sex with him in return for saving Lucas. (I think I smell another who's the daddy storyline here! As well as another generation of the DiMera family becoming obsessed with a Brady woman)
Steve had a disturbing reaction when Benjy hands him a tarot card of the devil. Is Steve keeping a terrible secret?
Rhasaan Orange's (Tek) leave will coincide with that of co-star Renee Jones (Lexie). The duo will be written off together and will last air in January. Also airing last in January is Brody Hutzler (Patrick), who will leave Salem on the 3rd. Farah Fath (Mimi) is up in February, and the show has cast Mimi's mentioned-but-rarely-seen brother Connor to facilitate the exit. Insiders say the role of Mimi will be recast.

Reader Feedback: Thanks to everyone who wrote in! I love reading your comments and feedback about the show and this column - so keep them coming!

From Cindy Young-Johnson:"I've read all the rumors too. The one thing that strikes me in reading is that they can't possibly all come true. Days has been in the midst of money crunching for years now. They couldn't afford the salaries garnered for a Lawrence Alamain, Diana Coleville, Kristen Blake, etc. return. I've heard the rumors about a spring/summer death. If money is the issue then Marlena makes sense as Deidre Hall has the highest salary. But to me, it seems more logical for it to be Victor - who is in the middle of a more active storyline than he's been in for a few years and who has had health issues in real life. Then there is John, who we keep hearing is a DiMera and in danger. Just a few thoughts."

From Shirley Lee:"Hi Pamela. I just recently have come back to Days after not watching for about two years. Well, the way this is going I will be going away again. I cannot stand Patrick or Bonnie or the new Shawn. I hate the Bo and Hope separation. She is just acting downright stupid!!! How can she possibly trust a sleaze like Patrick? God!! These writers should be shot. I totally agree with you about the beating Bo allegedly gave Patrick. No evidence was even considered. And the police are just as idiotic as Hope is. I would love to see Tek go away and Patrick, and Bonnie. Ad if it is true that Marlena is going to die I will never, ever watch again. I despise Chelsea and I am sick of Billie getting in everybody's way and taking everybody's man. What so great about her anyway, and this creature that Shawn is involved with? Good god!!! All in all the writers leave a good deal to be desired."

Two Scoops is an opinion column. The views expressed are not designed to be indicative of the opinions of soapcentral.com or its advertisers. The Two Scoops section allows our Scoop staff to discuss what might happen, what has happened, and to take a look at the logistics of it all. They stand by their opinions and do not expect others to share the same view point.
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