Breakups, shake-ups, and need-to-wake-ups

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Are Craig and Leo perfect for each other? What will the devil do with Allie? And are Nicole and Rafe the most insufferable couple in Salem? Let's talk about it all in this edition of Two Scoops!

It's that time of year, DAYS fans! The days are longer, we've gotten some warm days, and it's time for spring cleaning in Salem! There are new relationships, new alliances, and a list of things we need to take to Goodwill -- a.k.a. some people in Salem who need to wake up and smell the time change.

In an utterly cringeworthy scene, Leo turned the tables on Chad and offered him as a gift to his boyfriend. What is this? Game of Thrones? We're offering people as gifts? Sure, Chad was scheming and got caught. But Leo's reaction was gross. He could have just turned Chad down. Because, you know, he's a changed man now, remember?

But that's just it. Leo can't help but be a bit of a garbage person. He doesn't have any other side that we've seen -- which is the biggest problem with this cat. Walking into Brady's bedroom just to gloat and attempt to trash his fiancÚ's relationship with his daughter was obnoxious but very Leo. Because Leo's gonna Leo.

I loved Nancy (no stranger to the garbage person club herself, to be fair) blackmailing Craig right back to save Marlena's job. Craig and Leo have gotten to dunk on everyone they've come in contact with thus far in Salem. They need to have some balance.

Speaking of bringing balance to the force, Allie finally confronted her brother for acting out of character. Thank goodness!! That earned her an audience with Lucifer's eyes, which I hope will straighten her out a bit. It's at this point, though, that I have to demand Sami Gene's return. Her sister, son, and now daughter have been bullied by the devil. Sami, my dear, you've been training your whole life for this face-off. Get back here, now.

Moving on to other devils, I'm the first to admit that T.R. is insanely charming publicly. He's striking all the right moves and capitalized on being in the right place at the right time. And that's exactly why he's so dangerous. No one sees him coming -- even those who should absolutely, positively know better.

I have a hard time reconciling Lani giving T.R. a second chance with what I know her job is. She's definitely arrested men like him before. Lani's career is critically important to her. Her stance of "I need all the support I can get right now" just doesn't hold up. In fact, pushing him away right now makes more sense under the stance of her having no extra emotional bandwidth to deal with it.

My dear, lovely Paulina is baffling me here, too. She's a lot of things. Dumb isn't one of them. I really hope she's playing T.R. here because she looks downright foolish around him. I can appreciate her wanting to put their past behind them, and that's the right move for her own mental health. However, there's about a thousand steps between "My entire family agreed to lie to my child for decades so she doesn't learn you're her father" and "Come in and help me take care of my grandchildren".

Loose Ends

Speaking of people who shouldn't be so chummy with their abuser, Ben campaigning for Clyde is hard to watch. I don't think it's fair at all to expect Ciara to just give Clyde a chance because she gave Ben one. The difference here is that Ben didn't ever think he was entitled to a chance. Clyde, on the other hand, feels entitled at best -- or worse, completely indifferent to whether or not Ciara approves of it. I adore James Read and want any scenes with him and Rob Scott Wilson. But that leaves me conflicted about Ben letting Clyde back into his life.

The Sarah-Renee storyline is getting a bit stale. Maggie is desperate. Tony is kinda a piece of meat. Anna looks deranged. This was fun on the island -- not so much on the mainland. Hopefully, some combination of Xander/Abigail/Chad will get to Rolf soon and they can find a cure. Kayla's got some free time if they need another medical brain. Heck, give Eric a call and see if he can exorcise another demon. Although I worry that Gwen may get to her old friend Dr. Rolf first and convince him to keep Sarah in her delusional state.

Kate managed to plant evidence on Belle's computer, making Belle think she framed E.J. Feeling horrible, Belle went right to E.J. to tell him he's definitely getting out of jail, though someone else is going to file his appeal. Look, it's impossible not to notice the chemistry between E.J. and his sister-in-lawyer. But I kind of hope they keep it as this friendship stage. One, I don't want anything to happen to Shelle. They're a solid couple and should remain that way. Two, wouldn't it be nice for someone in Sami's family to actually be on E.J.'s team? Rafe and Lucas have plenty of fans.

If we're counting fans, get me my Ava and Jake T-shirt! This is a bit of a cheat because DAYS took two of its most charismatic performers and put them in a storyline together. That's like saying, "Gee...I wonder if peanut butter and chocolate would be good together?" Still, I'm all in. I want to see them navigate the straight and narrow.

E.J. making an uneasy alliance with both Clyde and Orpheus seems strange, mainly because I find it hard to believe that the DiMeras don't have any allies in prison. Also, he's an attorney. He could offer to work on appeals for a few key people to assure his safety there, right?

I loved Broe's reunion! Truth be told, this is the healthiest relationship either of them has had in years. Even when Brady tried to play dirty earlier, Chloe called him on it. And he respected her boundaries. They made the decision to get back together at a time they're both emotionally and mentally available. Their relationship is based on a genuine friendship. Maturity! Imagine that! I'm rooting for these two so hard right now.

Extra Scoops

This week gave us a bunch of classic pairings that we don't get to see enough of!

First, Chanel came to support Lani at the hospital. These three (Eli included) have come such a long way since Chanel was a lurker staying on their couch. I credit so much of that to the divine Raven Bowens, who is such a fantastic performer. This tender relationship between Lani and Chanel is a relief from the usual not-so-sisterly bonds we see on soaps.

Next, Abe and Nicole will never not make me happy. I love that Nicole is worried about Abe and wanting to help. I hope we do that dinner between the three of them. Abe is fantastic for both Rafe and Nicole.

Finally, Gabi and Sonny reuniting is glorious! Gabi's spent way too much time being the fierce diva. It was wonderful for us to be reminded of her tender side and how she does have people she truly cares about and puts above herself.

I have so many questions about Nicole and Rafe. They just walked up from the kitchen. Who drew that bubble bath for them? Rafe had been sitting in a jail cell for days. He actually needed to bathe. Did Nicole want to marinate in that same water? Ewww!

I guess I should have taken this first scene as an idea of what's to come. Truthfully, their relationship has been inappropriate for many, many months, yet they see it as destiny. It started during Eric and Nicole's marriage and continued through Rafe and Ava's relationship. It included Duke the Bear, who surpassed Taylor and E.J.'s scarf as the most annoying relationship prop ever.

Now they can be seen in daylight together. Great? I thought Nicole both asked for and deserved that slap from Ava. Nicole had no right to slap Ava back. None. The fact that Nicole went crying to Rafe about it just keeps compounding their joint smugness. I don't think either of the two is an inherently bad person. But their complete refusal to shake hands with accountability is exhausting. There's always a "but" with these two. We shouldn't have slept together but... Ugh. Check, please.

Clyde's a creep, but he's got great comedic timing.

Clyde: "I'd take a bullet for that baby."
Ciara: "Yeah, I don't want bullets!"

(later in the same conversation)

Ben: "He shivved Orpheus to help us!"
Clyde: "Ya might have left out the part about the shiv."


I did love Abigail saying (paraphrasing), "Yeah, yeah, can we hurry up this fake seduction so that Chad and I can go see the mad scientist about a cure for the mind-altering drug for my cousin?" Only on soaps!

How does Johnny not know about T.R.'s past? It's pretty common knowledge.

I hope when we pick up on the scene in the pub again, Kate reminds Clyde the last time they met, she stopped him from stealing Henry. And she did it in heels. The power dynamic here is all pro-Kate.

You know the drink Chad had in Leo's room was at least $13. Those hotel minibars are not cheap!

Come on, Lani. I know you're going through a lot, but you don't turn down doughnut delivery. Get it together.

I could use a Chloe/Belle scene soon. These besties have a lot to catch up on over a glass of wine.

Likewise, Paulina and Kate need to get some martinis right away, if not sooner. Maybe Abe can see if his friend Kate could talk some sense into Paulina? They had that lovely scene at the hospital a few weeks ago. Let's build on that.

I know I've been hard on her, but I'm really looking forward to seeing Nicole's reaction to the Broe reunion. She genuinely cares for both of them and will be excited!

Bonus Section!

Thanks to all the partner swapping/breakups, it's time to start brainstorming a House Hunters: Salem Edition.

First, we've got people who are outright homeless:
1. Ava

Second, there are those too old/successful to be living with their parents:

2. Tripp
3. Brady
4. Chanel (This is the only one I might allow, since you know Paulina lives in a spacious penthouse. It's kind of like Tony and Chad still living in the DiMera mansion.)

Third, living at the Salem Inn is inexplicably a thing, despite this having to be much more expensive than renting an apartment:
5 & 6. Gwen and Xander
7. T.R.
8. Chloe
9 & 10. Craig and Leo

11. Nancy

12. Beth

Ava's going to move in with Jake for a bit, which I love, but it can't be forever. Using the garage as a front for mob money makes a ton of sense. Also, I'd love to see people come back after Jake, only to have Ava come in and hiss them away from him. Still, they'll need a bigger place, especially for Ava to spend time with Tripp and Henry. Maybe she can swing renting Lucas' house while he's out of town. Helping out Henry's grandmother seems like something Lucas would do, especially because Allie would encourage it. And Sami's got to be a fan of Ava now that they're both on the same side of the table against Nicole.

T.R. seems like a good candidate for Ben and Ciara's old apartment. It was small, but apparently that landlord will rent to anyone, so T.R. shouldn't have a problem passing the very loose background check.

Leo won't settle for anything less than posh, so I'm wondering if he talks Craig into "buying" the Martin House. Eli probably isn't paying attention to his property management tasks right now, and if there's an opportunity somewhere, Leo will find it. That would give Leo a job (keeper of the property) and give a place for Gwen, Xander, and possibly Chloe to live.

Brady's move must be to Bo and Hope's old house. He needs a place big enough for Rachel and him, plus regular stays from Chloe and Parker. (For real, Parker needs to be back in town.) And it seems fitting that he lives in the spot previously inhabited by a Kiriakis who didn't take over the family business.

I'd love it if there was space in Eli and Lani's building for Nancy. If they need a nanny, Nancy could be a good fit. She had Joy later in life and basically raised Parker for years! I can see Bonnie fronting her the money for first and last month's rent.

If Beth is going to stay around and be of use to Johnny, I can see him offering her the gardener's house on the DiMera property where Ben lived before. Maybe Beth will straighten that place up a bit! She seems to have style. (But really, Beth will probably end up being the Grant nanny so T.R. can manipulate her into letting him see the twins.)

There's another room above the Brady Pub, and Tripp seems like a good candidate for it. He probably doesn't have a lot of time for cooking, so it would be helpful for him to just pop downstairs for some chowder. This would give him a chance to hang out with Henry, too, as Roman routinely watches him. Plus, a little tutelage from Kate never hurts. I do not mean in a romantic sense at all. I mean in the Chad/Kate sense. Tripp needs to rebuild his confidence, and Kate is the Grand Dame of Swagger.

That's it for this week, DAYS fans! Tony will be back next week to see what the devil does with (in??? -- she types scared of the response) Allie now that Allie's seen the yellow eyes. He's got garlic, salt, a crucifix, and Eric on speed dial. I'm mixing evil spirits here, but that Tony is always prepared!

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

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