How do I love thee? Let me count the DAYS! That's right. I'm a happy Scooper this week. Not only am I riding high off celebrating the show's 47th Anniversary, but last week was a good one. And it should have been! It was Sweeps, after all. So let's dive right in, grab a round, and discuss!
NICOLE, DR. DAN, JENNIFER, and COMPANY
Well, the fat lady has sung for Nicole. It's all over. Her schemes are out in the open, and she's been reduced to a suicidal, even hotter mess than before. I can't say that I'm sad that this storyline has wrapped up. Now we're just left with the aftermath, and that's okay. I know I'm ready to pick up the pieces and move on. But let's look at how it played out…
Thankfully, Dr. Dan started to piece things together. Good! He was starting to look like a chump. He finally started to use his noggin again. Again, good! Smart is a much better look on him than duh.
So, after stringing a few things together, Dr. Dan even enlisted Rafe for help. That was a smart move, and for once, I'm not being sarcastic. Rafe always knows someone who knows someone who knows someone nearly everywhere on the planet, and for the first time, this didn't bug me.
In fact, Rafe didn't bug me at all last week. I know, I know. I was surprised, too. It's amazing what not being a sanctimonious goober glued to Sami's side can do for his character. I dig his friendship with Dr. Dan, and I thought it was an "aw!" moment when he showed compassion to Nicole during her outing. For one who usually waves a judgmental finger, Rafe really stepped up as a friend during her time of need. That was noble. Okay, okay, all this being nice to Rafe is getting uncomfortable. I'm not used to it. Moving on!
I love that Sami the Schemer is back and can still spot B.S. from a mile away. She knew Nicole was hiding something and was quick to offer Jennifer help. That was a classy move, but Ms. Horton only seemed interested in shooing Sami out the door as quickly as possible. Yeah, that was a smart idea. Sami definitely doesn't know anything about scheming or Nicole. Ugh. The even bigger shocker is that grieving widow Jennifer seldom passes on a chance to talk about Dr. Dan. Go figure.
Everything eventually came to a head in the Horton living room, and everyone was there. Yes, yes, and yes! This is how a Sweeps reveal should happen. The last time I can remember a secret blowing up this big was Parker's paternity bombshell. DAYS was due for a good, mass outing, and this one worked. There were tears, screaming, and drama galore.
Some had issues with Abigail lashing out at Nicole, but I was like, "Go, Abs!" I love my Nicole, but she had that coming. Abigail called a spade a spade. True, Nicole was knee deep in a mental breakdown, but that doesn't negate what she did to Abigail's mother or that she lied to Abigail herself. And unlike Jennifer, Abigail has been shown grieving for Jack. Her raw emotions aren't a secret (just ask Cameron or Chad). Plus, Nicole had other, more appropriate sources for compassion.
Of course there's the big question -- did Nicole really get what's coming to her? No doubt, what Nicole did was heinously wrong. Everyone knows that. Losing her second miracle baby was harsh punishment, but that doesn't refute the fact that she used the loss of said second miracle baby to her advantage several times over. In fact, she was using the baby all along to get what she wanted. That's pretty inexcusable.
However, Nicole's a hot mess right now. She tried to kill herself. That's pretty telling that she's not all with it. That's not an excuse, but she's definitely suffered emotionally and mentally, and her legal comeuppance is still TBD. So, there's still a chance she'll pay for her crimes and see the error of her way, right? Okay, stop laughing. I guess no one should actually hold my their breath about that.
The only thing I can hope for is that once the dust settles, Nicole will pick herself up by the bootstraps and rediscover her inner fabulousness. I'm talking about the witty, sarcastic, martini martini-loving Nicole who's a lot easier (and more fun) to root for. Fingers crossing in five, four, three, two, and one!
As for Jennifer, I am glad she's been cleared of all wrong doing and can relax again. It's good not too be accused of baby murder. I just hope that now the writers use this time to straighten out her character, too. Like Nicole, Jennifer got a little hard to root for at times, and that was a shame.
I also hope that Lucas is part of that process with Jennifer. That's one sibling relationship that needs to be further explored. Not only do they have a lot in common, but it will simply give Lucas something to do. And he needs something to do. It will be a win/win if done correctly.
One thing, thoughtthough, that's never sat right with me is the excuse that Jennifer was so engulfed with sorrow over losing Jack that she redirected her energy into helping Dr. Dan. Whereas that might be partly true, I think that explanation falls under the category of "Too Little, Too Late." So, sorry, writers. It was a valiant effort to save face, but it's probably not going to spare you an Alex North Memorial Award at the end of the year.
MARLENA, JOHN, KRISTEN, and COMPANY
Okay, this storyline is working for me on so many different levels! Mostly it's because there are so many deliciously different levels to choose from. However, before I begin gushing, I'd like to dispel the rumor that I don't like Marlena.
On average, I do like Doc. I can't say that she's my bestest friend ever or that we exchange holiday gifts, but c'est la vie. Sometimes I think she absolutely rocks, and other times I believe the writers destroy her coolness with too much whining, whimpering, and hypocrisy. Ultimately, she's an interesting legacy character, and I have oodles of fond memories of our adventures together (Vintage Roman sleeping on Marlena's floor, anyone? A pink pantsuited pant-suited Marlena reuniting with Roman/John on a foggy pier!? Marlena and Will's relationship! Exactly!) So, nope, don't hate her.
The second question -- has my love for Kristen caused me to become harder on Marlena? Nah. I've always been hard on Mar Mar when warranted. There's an entire Two Scoops archive to prove that. But she's tough and can take it, ; don't worry. Plus, I've praised Doc many times, and I've even presented her with a Golden Doughnut Award. So, don't worry about Marlena and Ime. We'll be just fine.
Although, I can't say the same for Marlena herself at the moment. She's unraveling a bit since Kristen's been back in town. And her concerns are absolutely justifiable. However, her spinning is doing wonders for Marlena. She's going on the offense and not letting herself become a sniveling victim. THAT That is the Marlena I can always get behind.
I also love that Marlena has a large support system now. Kayla, Hope, Brady, and even Kate are in her corner. That gives so many great characters so much to do. I particularly love the idea of a Marlena/Brady/Kate alliance. This needs to happen!
I already enjoy Kate and Brady's odd bond, but adding Marlena into it would be interesting. Whereas Marlena always tries to do what's right, neither Kate nor Brady are is averse to getting their hands dirty when needed. We know Kate's track record, but give Brady a sarcophagus and a webcam, and he can be downright vengeful when pushed. Not to mention that where Brady goes, Victor is sure to pop up. Um, yes, please!
And then there is John. I applauded that he got sassy with Kristen! Like Marlena, it's great to see John's feisty side come out. He doesn't trust Kristen. He shouldn't. He's a smart guy, after all, but she said something that sums up his struggle perfectly and made me wonder if it will eventually be his Achilles' heel. That is, Marlena never particularly liked Kristen, but Kristen and John were legitimately in love. Hmm!
John is an upstanding guy (when not brainwashed). We know he's fully committed to Marlena, but his love generally runs deep. And the sneaky Ms. DiMera is reminding him of the old-school, social working Kristen he fell in love with. I repeat, "Hmm!"
Now, Kristen says she only wants John's forgiveness, but methinks she might be telling a tinsy teensy fib about that. Just maybe. And Kristen is certainly up to something with Sami, which, I don't mind at all. If Kristen is working towards putting E.J. and Sami together, I'm not going to complain. In the meantime, the Kristen and Sami scenes have been hysterical, and I love the idea of those two versus Kate and company. Yep, levels upon levels, and things are getting good. I'm in!
WILL, SONNY, and COMPANY
So, Will and Sonny got a little help from friends to mend their broken hearts. But before I go on, I'll confess that I'm a little shocked Sonny considered their relationship over after one fight. Sure, it was a biggie, but couples who play break up/let's get back together ping pong annoy me. Let's hope this was a once off case, and they can, I don't know, talk it out sooner next time.
Gabi was glad to play matchmaker (go, Gabi!), but the shocking part is that one of those aforementioned friends that helped was T! After a little prodding from his date, Audrey (and here I thought he was making her up akin to Jan Brady's "George Glass"), he reached out to Sonny and later Will, who in turn reached out to each other. I'm glad these two agreed to sit down and talk. Smart move, gentleman!
It was a nice touch that both Sami and E.J. have remembered what Dr. Dan has done for their family, especially Johnny. Well, nice on Sami's part. As for E.J., it just kept him from vengefully murdering the good doc. I guess that's progress!
Brady apologized to Jennifer. Jennifer forgave Brady in a flash. I'm beginning to think Jennifer is just really -- I mean really -- good at moving on quickly. She mourned Jack for all of ten minutes and gave Brady the "It's okay, pal" after he accused her of murder. I wonder how long it will take her to hug things out with Nicole.
With Maggie officially a Kiriakis now, I'd nearly forgot forgotten the close bond she's always shared with Brady. I enjoy their relationship and am glad the writers gave them a few scenes. Then again, a few scenes are what Brady gets these days, in lieu of his own storyline.
On topic, Victor seems to be rubbing off on Maggie a bit. She called Nicole an "opportunistic tramp." I'm okay with feisty, protective Mama Bear Mags, but I hope she doesn't totally lose her lovable, compassionate side.
I adore Victor for wanting to help Dr. Dan, but pimping out Brady was not one of his best ideas. That train of thought was like gathering up smelly garbage from the kitchen and moving it to the living room. Either way, it's still going to stink to have around.
Oh, KatieKate! I know she loves Stefano and doesn't want to give up on her marriage, but ticking off the Phoenix might not be in her best interest. Consider this! Their marriage only happened because he had the goods on her and blackmailed her down the aisle. Stefano still has said goods and would probably use them if cornered. Sign the papers, Kate. Sign the papers!
Rafe asked Roman for a favor. He asked him to look the other way. He claims he doesn't take liberties often, but I think he's wrong about that. Rafe taking liberties seems to be a common occurrence. Plus, was he really the most impartial person to take Nicole's statement? Probably not.
In two seconds, Sami figured out that Gabi and Nick were sleeping together. That's my girl! Old-school Sami is inching her way back toward us. More so, I enjoy that Sami is still looking out for Gabi. It goes to show that no matter what, she does want to protect the people she cares about, and Sami needs that humanizing touch from time to time. Plus, I dig that she's trying to recruit Nick. It would be interesting to see him working with Sami and Kristen against Kate and ex-one-night-stand Billie (nope, sorry, Nick, didn't forget that one).
I'm in love with Kristen and E.J.'s relationship! I crack up at the way she approaches him with such vigor. You can tell he tries to act irritated, but secretly likes the doting. More, please!