The acting on Days of Our Lives has been amazing despite the stories leaving something to be desired.
It's hard to know what to think when the hour flies by even though half the stories are reruns that weren't great the first time.
Days of Our Lives ended the week of 11-4-19 with the shocking reveal that an entire year had passed -- a first in soap opera history. The jury is still out on whether it will help fix anything.
The time jump was the latest well-done piece of a storyline I could have done without.
Jack and Jennifer fans have been through the wringer since Jack's return on New Years' Eve 2018.
It's bad enough that Jack lost his memory for nearly eight months on top of him having been presumed dead for six long years.
But then Jennifer fell from the balcony after her wedding in an entirely unnecessary re-do of Marlena's coma story from August 2018.
And to make matters worse, the fall happened at the end of a beautiful double wedding that more or less followed the tradition of old-school DAYS weddings.
Except for the fact that the venue opened up thanks to Lani giving in to Gabi's blackmail, the double wedding was perfect.
Adrienne and Jack arguing over who gets to get married and Eve's drunken attempt at upending the whole thing used the typical blend of comic relief and pathos that DAYS used to be famous for.
And of course, it ended with the happy couples overcoming all that nonsense to tie the knot.
That was enough. Jennifer didn't need to check out Rolf's flash drive at the reception (really, who does that on their wedding day?) and we certainly didn't need Gina pushing her off the balcony.
Not to mention that if Jennifer fully understood that Rolf wanted to turn Hope into Gina, she should have been smart enough to realize that Hope's sudden interest in walking around with a snooty air and a ton of pearls around her neck meant she'd already been compromised.
Rafe: How did she fall?
Jack: You're the detective! You find out! I...
[Jack throws himself on the ground next to Jennifer's body and takes her hand.]
Jack: I'll take your hand and you'll take mine. We came together to reach this... this hour of our happiness. We did it. Jennifer, we did it. You and me. We've overcome everything, every obstacle. This is our time to be happy. I will not lose you.
But the aftermath was so well-done, it was almost forgivable.
Jack's impassioned plea for Jennifer to wake up while they waited for an ambulance brought tears to my eyes, and Matthew Ashford and Casey Moss both brought their A-game to waiting around the hospital on what was supposed to be the happiest day of Jennifer's life.
More could have been made out of JJ being an EMT who couldn't save his mother, but the little bit of grief that JJ was allowed was spectacular.
But here's the problem: we just went through a very similar situation.
It's bad enough that Marlena was also in a coma after her wedding, but it's barely been a month since Jennifer was helping her half-brother Lucas say goodbye to Kate, who appeared to be in an irreversible coma.
Each of these stories was emotional in its own right, but when viewers see them over and over, they become desensitized no matter how good the performances are.
The time jump at least added some originality to an otherwise uncreative story.
Every one of these hospital stories includes the patient getting worse because an evildoer sneaks into her room to finish her off, and this one was no exception.
Luckily, Princess Gina got interrupted every time she tried to be the latest person to smother a hospital patient with a pillow.
Ciara, Ben, and Rafe all unwittingly foiled her, but it's hard to believe that in the entire year that Jennifer was in a coma, Gina never tried again.
That's the biggest issue with the time jump: too many stories left hanging.
It remains to be seen how DAYS handles it, of course -- the twist just happened.
Are we going to be treated to multiple timelines a la This Is Us? That seems like the most logical way to proceed, but DAYS isn't always known for its logic, and there's no guarantee that This Is Us' award-winning multi-timeline format will work as well on a daily soap.
Anyway, Friday's show tried to wrap up a few stories in preparation for the time jump, but it left more questions than answers.
It was almost as if there were regular cliffhangers that may or may not ever be resolved.
Nicole told Eric that Sarah was pregnant, Brady kissed Kristen... and then Jennifer woke up 12 months in the future.
Hopefully, we'll get some answers soon, because right now it doesn't make a lot of sense.
On the other hand, the story of a coma survivor waking up and feeling like it's 12 months earlier than it is could be compelling, and Melissa Reeves, Matthew Ashford, and Casey Moss can pull it off.
And if it gets the least compelling current stories off-screen for a bit, that's good news.
It's not distance that heals, sweetheart. It's time. And all the miles you put between you and everyone who loves you won't help.Maggie
Sarah spent most of the week of 11-04-19 insisting she had to leave town so that Eric wouldn't find out she was pregnant.
That nonsense has been going on for weeks, and it isn't any more reasonable now than it was when it started.
If anything, it's more ridiculous than ever after Sarah witnessed Eve's stupid stunt at the double wedding.
When Eve tried to derail things by claiming to be pregnant with Jack's baby, Jennifer told her in no uncertain terms that even if that were true (which everyone knew it wasn't), it wouldn't stop Jack from marrying her instead of Eve.
That should have made Sarah realize how ridiculous she's being.
Nicole also should know better, since she was married to Daniel, who had a child with Chloe and who had made it clear to Chloe that it wasn't going to stop him from moving on with someone else.
But instead, we got Nicole and Sarah agreeing that Eric must never know he had a child with Sarah because that's the only way to stop him from deciding he has to dump a woman he loves for one he doesn't.
Kristen was a bizarre choice for the story's messenger in the story, too.
She hasn't shown any signs of caring about anything but whether Brady sleeps with her, yet out of the blue she decided she needed to be a better person and that she was going to start by telling Eric he was going to be a father.
Maybe her pregnancy scare got the better of her, but it seemed like it came out of nowhere.
Either way, Eric's confrontation with Sarah would be more exciting if we were sure we were going to get the rest of the story.
That was an odd place to end if DAYS was going to jump a year ahead.
The Brady/Kristen and Eric/Sarah drama has been going around in circles for a long time, though. The most interesting cliffhanger was Ben's finding a body.
With Ben continually dreaming that he killed Jordan and Rafe warning him not to take matters into his own hands, it's a foregone conclusion that the body is Jordan's and Ben will be made to answer for it.
Many viewers have speculated that he will be in jail for murder after the time jump -- something which remains to be seen.
The question is, if that IS Jordan, what happened to her and how did she end up at the gatehouse?
My guess is that Victor ordered a hit on her and ordered that Ben be framed for it so that he could excise Ben from Ciara's life.
If there's one story that could benefit most from the time jump, it's the Lani/Gabi/Eli nonsense.
I have a bone to pick with the writers here. They've continually written it as if viewers are supposed to believe that Lani had no choice but to go along with Gabi's demands.
It's a lie. Lani had a ton of choices.
She could have arrested Gabi for threatening a cop, recorded Gabi's threats and arrested her for attempting to kill Julie when she demonstrated the use of the app, told Eli, told Abe, told Rafe... the list goes on and on.
Instead, she whined a lot about how mean Gabi was, went along with Gabi's plan, broke Eli's heart... and THEN punched Gabi.
That's right. The one time Lani stood up to Gabi, it was in a way that accomplished absolutely nothing.
Gabi is cruel and Lani is pathetic.
That doesn't make for compelling drama, and I'd be fine with the story resolving after the time jump, never to be mentioned again.
Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics!
Are you excited about the time jump, or would you rather Days of Our Lives told a linear story?
Which cliffhangers do you hope get explained?
Which stories do you hope will die a natural death now that we've jumped a year ahead?
Share your thoughts in the comments, and don't forget to check back on Sunday for our Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion.
Days of Our Lives continues to air on NBC on weekday afternoons. Check your local listings for airtimes.
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Jack Ori is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.