Television

Days of Our Lives Review Week of 12-17-21: Going Off


master mentalism tricks

Philip may be alive, but he’s not himself.

After revealing to Kate that he was still among the living on Days of Our Lives during the week of 12-17-21, he boasted about his brilliant plan to frame Brady for his “murder” and exploded when Kate tried to talk some sense into him.

Character assassination might not be a punishable offense, but it was certainly painful to sit through!

Kate's Stunning Discovery / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Philip’s plans for Brady were so over-the-top that even the ordinarily unfazed-by-murder Kate thought he’d gone too far.

Philip: You even said that Chloe was probably sleeping with Brady behind my back.
Kate: I did say that. I was hoping you would break up with her, not do something crazy.

The saddest part about all of this wasn’t that Philip only came to see her because he wanted to brag about what he’d done. That was bad enough, but it was clear he’d become unhinged, and Kate was powerless to do anything about it.

If this mess was in the hands of writers who took mental health issues seriously and focused on family dynamics, it could be a fascinating story.Kate Blames Chloe and Brady / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Kate could realize that Philip had taken his cues from her rotten behavior toward anyone who crossed her and that her attempts to meddle with Philip and Chloe’s relationship helped push her son over the edge.

I’d love for her to fight to get Philip the help he needed despite his belief that she’s not on his side if she doesn’t support this nonsense.

But I’m not getting my hopes up.

Given the current writers’ disdain for mental health treatment, most likely, this will turn into Kate ruining her relationship with Roman by hiding Philip. The truth will eventually come out, and Chloe will probably then decide that Brady is the love of her life because he tried to warn her about Philip months ago.

John Confronts MarDevil Again / Tall - Days of Our Lives

To be clear: Philip’s behavior is not okay, and Chloe SHOULDN’T be with someone who resorts to such drastic measures, especially not when this is the 27th time Philip has jumped to the wrong conclusion about Chloe and Brady from an out-of-context bit of dialogue.

The problem is, though, that the writers twisted Philip’s character out of shape for the sake of making Brady/Chloe endgame here.

Philip has always had a difficult relationship with his parents, especially Victor because he chose to take the high road and rejected their ends-justify-the-means mentality.

So the only way that his faking his death to get the ultimate revenge on Brady and Chloe makes sense is if Philip has lost his damn mind.

A Scratchy Encounter / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Years ago, Chloe checked herself into a mental hospital after doing a series of ridiculous things to try to break up Daniel and Jennifer. If this story ends with Philip doing the same thing, she might eventually take him back.

But the writers have been spoon-feeding viewers an alternative history for Philip for months, one in which Philip has always been insanely jealous of Brady and where his violent, controlling behavior and this diabolical scheme to punish his enemies is par for the course for him.

It’s always irritating when Days of Our Lives completely changes a character to suit some ridiculous plot. It’s doubly upsetting when that character is half of a couple with a big fanbase, and the character assassination serves no purpose other than to dash fans’ hopes about their favorite ship ever sailing!

Phloe shippers were excited beyond belief that Jay Kenneth Johnston was returning as Philip and that Philip and Chloe might get another chance t romance, only to have their hopes shattered. And Days of Our Lives does this ALL THE TIME, constantly exciting fanbases only to pull the rug out from under them.

Susan Gets EJ to Open Up / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Not cool, Days of Our Lives. Not cool at all.

The lead-up to the Philip fake death reveal was just as silly, with Kate and Victor agreeing to sign papers to the effect that they believed Philip to be dead.

The cops wanted solid evidence that Brady killed Philip before they arrested him. A paper saying Philip’s parents think he’s dead doesn’t change anything. It’s not additional evidence. The case should be just as weak as it was before.

In real life, of course, you don’t need a body to charge someone with murder. But even by Salem standards, this was silly.  Philip’s been missing what, two days? Three? There’s no way anyone should be able to declare him legally dead at this point.

Allie Encourages Lucas / Tall - Days of Our Lives

These scenes were well-acted, and I always love it when they give John Aniston screentime. But the premise was nonsensical.

The best part of this was Eli telling Trask that she was not his boss and that he was not arresting Brady just because she said so. That might have been the first time in her long career intimidating police officers that anyone told Trask no. It was about time someone did!

Elsewhere, Allie tried to convince Lucas not to give up on Sami at the same time as Susan gave EJ a pep talk about his ex-wife.

I’m firmly on Lucas’ side with this. EJ/Sami needs to be over. Their relationship was never based on love or even respect for each other. And Sami moved on twice, only for EJ to bully her back into a relationship with him even though she was in love with someone else.

Sami Plants a Kiss / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Lucas and Allie’s agreement that EJ/Sami makes no sense was one of the highlights of the week of 12-13-21 for me. They said everything that I’ve been thinking for months.

Allie: If my husband slept with another woman, I’d leave him.
Lucas: Good. That’s what I’d want you to do. But your mom is wired differently, especially when it comes to EJ. This is just going to make her more determined to get him back.

This is a mess now, though, with Sami determined to get EJ back and Lucas equally determined to win Sami’s heart again.

Lucas SHOULD walk away for his self-respect, even though I don’t want him to. He’s always there for Sami, only for her to rush back to EJ as soon as Lucas gets her out of whatever mess she’s in. Lucas deserves better than that!

But as a Lucas/Sami shipper, I don’t want Lucas to walk away. I want Sami to come to her senses and stop trying to pursue the man who only wants her when it’s convenient instead of the one who loves her no matter what.

Sami becomes insufferable when she’s around EJ, too.

As soon as these two are in the same room, she becomes sarcastic, bitter, and mean. Some people enjoy that side of Sami, but I’m not one of them, and it just makes me wish she would stop spending time with someone who brings out the worst in her!

Lucas knows how to get through to Sami so that she doesn’t go through with her worst plans, and she does the same for him. But EJ and Sami encourage each other’s worst traits. It’s a sick, twisted pseudo-relationship that the writers are determined to force on viewers. Ugh.

Kate's Difficult Decision / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Also, this trope where people plant a kiss on the object of their affection to try to spark feelings needs to go.

Rafe and Sami both did that to people who claimed not to be interested in them. It’s not romantic or sexy. It’s non-consensual, and too many TV shows glamorize this awful behavior.

The writing hasn’t done Rafe many favors anyway. He’s become boorish and annoying, stringing Ava along while pining away for Nicole. I have shipped Rafe/Nicole since 2012, but this isn’t how I want them to get together!

Is it too much to ask for ONE story where the writers don’t destroy someone’s character to fit an outlandish plot? Sheesh.

Gwen's Latest Scheme / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I don’t like revenge plots, and we have far too many of them as it is on Days of Our Lives, but I’m thrilled that Ava saw Rafe kiss Nicole and is keeping it to herself.

Quite frankly, Rafe deserves whatever revenge scheme she cooks up. She’s given him multiple opportunities to admit he wants Nicole instead, but he continually insists he doesn’t while feeling the opposite.

There’s no legitimate reason for Rafe and Nicole to stay away from each other. They’re both dating other people when that’s not who they want to be with.

It seems there’s a simple fix for that: admit they want to be together and end it with their respective partners. Problem solved.

Xander Receives Surprising Info / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Of course, that takes courage and self-esteem, and neither Rafe nor Nicole possesses much of that at the moment.

Rafe is spending way too much time complaining about Nicole being with EJ when he could have stopped that whole mess from happening by breaking up with Ava and pursuing the woman he wants to be with.

Nicole doesn’t want to hurt Ava, but all of this pent-up sexual tension and the secret liaison on the conference room table will cause more damage in the long run than if these two just admitted they wanted each other and ended these other relationships!

Elsewhere, the truth is finally out about Sarah, or the beginning of it, anyway.

Rafe Questions Xander / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Gwen’s schemes were all for naught. Thank goodness!

While whiny Sarah was never my favorite character, she’s an improvement upon always-scheming Gwen. Gwen should NEVER have given into Kristen’s manipulations, and she certainly shouldn’t have told Xander a ridiculous, made-up story about some guy at the coffee cart sexually harassing her.

The sooner this unravels, the better. Maybe Gwen can take that flight to London alone and not return.

Also unnecessary: the Devil’s latest tricks.

Caught In a Web of Lies / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I’m glad Ben and Ciara are finally out of that stupid cabin. MarDevil making up stories about being domestically abused is even worse than Gwen making them up about being harassed while buying coffee.

When will Days of Our Lives start taking sexual and domestic abuse issues seriously?

And if we have to have a Devil story, can it be about the Devil and not about some dark wizard who can magically make neckties appear around people’s necks and throw phones across the room?

A coherent plan would also be nice. The Devil wanted to possess Marlena because it’s missed her for 25 years. Then it wanted Ben and Ciara’s baby. Then it brought people back from the dead for no apparent reason. Now it’s gotten sidetracked again and wants revenge on Belle and Shawn.

It all adds up to a lot of random silliness with no real point to it. Even bringing back Jan Spears makes little sense and seems to be done for shock value rather than because it fits into a coherent story.

Are we ever going to find out how the Devil possessed Doug in the first place? And even more importantly, can we get on with the business of exorcising it now rather than having it engage in more random acts of mischief?

Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics! Hit that big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know what you thought of Days of Our Lives during the week of 12-13-21.

Eager for more DAYS chat? Be sure to check back on Sunday for the latest Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion.

Days of Our Lives airs on NBC on weekday afternoons. Check your local listings for airtimes or watch on Peacock TV weeknights after 9 PM EST / 5 PM PST.

Jack Ori is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. His debut young adult novel, Reinventing Hannah, is available on Amazon. Follow him on Twitter.

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