Days of Our Lives Review: Daniel's Dead! Hope Murders Stefano?

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The new year opened in dramatic fashion in Salem as lives were lost, futures hung in the balance and no one will ever be the same. 

We’ll start with the epic Friday cliffhanger…where Hope Brady shot Stefano Dimera at point blank range while standing in the Dimera mansion!

Needless to say, Hope hasn’t been herself since Bo’s death. Even as Rafe begged her to let him handle the investigation, it was obvious that nothing he could say would get through to her. She even completely blew off Steve when he made it clear he had very bad news to tell her. 

Has Hope completely lost her mind? Ciara’s having nightmares. The girl needs stability and comfort, not vengeance but Hope seems to think she’s protecting her family with this vendetta when what she’s accomplishing is the exact opposite. Hope even left her emotionally distraught daughter sleeping alone on the sofa and left the house! Are we sure someone hasn’t brainwashed her?

And was it my imagination or was Stefano taunting Hope in order to make sure she really did shoot him?  He certainly hasn’t been himself. Was this the “graceful exit” he mentioned to Andre? He dies in tragic fashion but in doing so is able to destroy the Brady’s? 

With Hope already suspected of murdering Dr. Malcolm, how on earth does she not end up behind bars for the rest of her life after this…and who will take care of Ciara and Chase if that happens?

As shocking as the cliffhanger was, it still didn’t match the drama of the rest of the week. 

Eric’s drunk driving caused the death of Dr. Daniel Jonas, Salem’s super hero for many years. Never has there been a doctor who was able to perform brain surgery, cancer treatments, pediatric eye surgery, open heart surgery, etc., etc. For many years Danie's exploits were almost comical but as much as I wasn’t Daniel’s biggest fan, I still feel for his loss, and most especially for those who loved him. Starting with Nicole…

How much can one person take? Nicole has lost two unborn children and now the man she loved. Her former love just killed her fiance and he and her best friend’s life hang in the balance. Will Nicole ever be allowed any happiness?

The only upside of all of this is that she and Chloe appear to be bonding over their grief and their love of Daniel’s son, Parker. I also hope this tragedy helps Nicole and Theresa become closer. They can certainly both use friends. 

I’m also hoping to see more reactions to Daniel’s death, especially JJ. Although these two haven’t seemed close lately, Daniel played a big part in JJ turning his life around and I hope we see JJ deal with the fallout of his friend and mentor’s shocking death. 

One of the true highlights of this story was watching how Maggie and Victor handled the tragedy and the impossible decision she was faced with. Suzanne Rogers and John Aniston brought a gravitas and compassion to the scenes that not many other actors could muster. I was also impressed with how Victor never pushed Maggie towards saving Brady, his grandson. He knew that she’d just lost her son and that decision before her was horrific. Both characters handled it with grace and dignity. 

Now with Daniel gone and Brady on the mend, what is Eric’s fate? John was right, if he survives he will not only have to deal with killing his best friend but he will surely face serious legal consequences. Eric is another character that can never quite find any happiness but this definitely has the earmarks of a compelling story moving forward. 

As a matter of fact, done well it can have an effect on many characters in Salem. 

With all of that there was still one more storyline that came to a head…Chad finding out he is Thomas’ father. 

I’d always believed that Abby was carrying Chad’s baby so now that Ben is out of the picture I’m thankful they gave us this reveal now and not waited months or even years down the road. I also love that Chad and Abby are finally on the same page and working together to raise their son and hopefully keep the Dimeras at bay.

But I do have one question, will any of Andre’s trigger words still work on Chad or is this ridiculous brainwashing story really over?

So TV Fanatics,  in the first week of the New Year, which was your favorite storyline in Salem?

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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Days of Our Lives Quotes

Doug: I'm not Doug.
Marlena: I think you're confused. I'm Marlena Evans. You're Doug Williams.
Doug: I'm not confused. I know exactly who you are. [creepy voice] It's been 25 years, but did you really think I wasn't going to come back for you?

I've only read two e-mails from the woman and already I want to do a lot more than threaten her. My favorite type, a vindictive woman who can't spell.