Days of Our Lives is at its best when it mixes family and relationships with the crazier Salem goings-on.
That's exactly what happened this week, as JJ's awkward time at the Hernandez family lunch led into Ari and Gabi coming down with a serious, mysterious illness, just a day after the same illness interfered with John and Paul's father-son time.
Meanwhile, Abigail started therapy with the world's most incompetent psychiatrist and Chad found himself having to parent Ciara on top of all his other worries.
If only we hadn't had to sit through Summer and Dario being the latest couple to hide a dead body, it would have been a near perfect week.
Rafe and the rest of the Hernandez clan got together for CInco de Mayo, and boy did the fireworks fly. I don't blame JJ for wanting to leave, though I was surprised it took him until the following episode to admit that he thinks the Hernandezes need to forgive Eduardo since he's alive, unlike Jack.
The JJ I know and love would have said so, strongly, to Dario whether or not it was actually his place to do so.
Dario really needs to grow up. When he was a bartender in LA who keenly felt his family's disapproval, he was an interesting character. But this extreme animosity whenever he sees Eduardo has got to go. Dario's anger is as predictable as it is annoying, and he's way too old for it.
Too bad he wasn't in town about three years ago, when angry teen JJ burst onto the scene. They might have bonded better in those days.
You killed him, he goes in your trunk.Dario
If Dario's petulance upon seeing Eduardo wasn't enough, he then had to go help Summer hide a dead body. Dario's assertion that if they told the cops, Rafe would end up interrogating him was amusing considering Rafe did the very same thing after Hope killed Stefano! So did Gabi after Nick tried to rape her several years back.
Eduardo may be an ex-assassin, but apparently all his kids have the gene for covering up murders and hiding the body. Enough already. And if Mami Hernandez is this worried about Rafe dating a co-worker, what would she say about all of her kids behaving like this?
Why are you making this about ME? It isn't my problem, it's hers.Theresa
There was also some more nonsense between Brady and Theresa this week because Brady refuses to see that giving thousands of dollars to a woman you barely know, rushing over to apologize after your fiancee told the woman to stop interfering with the two of you, and insisting the woman be at your wedding because her mother would appreciate the gesture are all questionable behaviors.
Theresa is determined not to let Summer get between them, but at this point I have to wonder what she wants Brady for. All he does is devote 100% of his time to some other woman while insisting that Theresa is too insecure whenever she calls him on it.
Gabi, I was really mad at my dad for a long time, but I would do anything to have him back.JJ
JJ and Gabi's scenes were really sweet, as usual. I'm worried about this mysterious illness that interrupted their date. This can't be good. With Gabi and Ari both catching the virus and JJ kissing Gabi right before, it's likely that he'll come down with it next. The three of them had better come out unscathed.
Trade in your gun for a night of romance.Hope (reading)
Hope and Rafe's scenes were very romantic, but it wasn't lost on me that Hope got pretty tipsy before declaring she loved Rafe and wanted to go to bed with him. That doesn't exactly scream true love.
It's also very convenient that Hope, who has had no romantic interest in Rafe for the last nine months or so, suddenly is extremely interested seconds before Aiden walks through the door.
I'm super excited that Aiden's back. The writers butchered his and Hope's love story for no good reason, and I'm hoping that this is an attempt to redeem him rather than another round of character assassination. Hopefully this isn't an Andre trick meant to put obstacles in between Hope and Rafe.
The story would have been stronger if Hope and Rafe's relationship had been built up naturally. Right now this just seems like contrived drama because the relationship itself came out of nowhere.
Finally, Abigail started therapy at Shady Hills. These scenes were nearly impossible to watch even though Kate Mansi again knocked her scenes out of the park. The therapist is written to be so incredibly incompetent I could barely stand to watch her interact with Abigail.
The therapist had no empathy, tried to argue Abigail out of her delusions and wouldn't even lock the door during their session to help her feel more comfortable. Then she prescribed an anti-psychotic without making any effort to actually understand or get to the root of Abigail's problems.
Has Andre hired this therapist to keep Abby drugged and incapacitated? That's the only way this incredibly incompetent treatment makes any sense.
While Abby was being tormented by her therapist, Chad was dealing with Ciara's crisis. Ciara's solution to Hope worrying about her mental health post-rape is to decide to move in with Claire even though neither of them can afford an apartment. Poor Chad is finding himself parenting his teenage nanny in addition to his infant son because of this.
I like Chad using the guest house that Ciara wants to live in as a bargaining chip to get her to stay in school. Hopefully he will be a good mentor to her and not end up needing therapy himself over all of this.
What was your favorite storyline this week? Weigh in below, and don't forget to check back for the Days of Our Lives Round Table Discussion on Sunday!
Jack Ori is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.