Days of Our Lives Review: Some Long-Awaited Karma

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In Salem, crime generally pays.

The jails are full of people who were falsely arrested for someone else's crime, while those who cheat, steal, or murder get to walk on the flimsiest of excuses.

But on Days of Our Lives during the week of 2-17-20, Gabi got a dose of karma -- at least for now. How long will it last?

(TALL) A Crashed Wedding - Days of Our Lives

Knowing how these things usually work, Gabi will likely get herself out of jail in some annoyingly manipulative way.

But God, it was satisfying to see her wedding crumble into chaos, not to mention the dressing down Sonny gave her after she was arrested.

Gabi has an app on her phone that can manipulate your heart.

Lani

There was only one problem with the whole wedding setup: Lani was about 18 months too late.

I was thrilled that she'd FINALLY found her backbone,but come on.

(TALL) Lani Crashes the Wedding - Days of Our Lives

Lani was a cop when this whole thing started.

There was no reason she couldn't arrest Gabi herself when Gabi demonstrated her ability to mess with Julie's pacemaker, nor was there a real reason not to tell her also-a-cop fiance what his ex was threatening to do to his grandmother.

So her tears about how she couldn't do anything all that time were an annoying distraction from some pretty satisfying drama, even if it was perfect karma for Lani to ruin Eli and Gabi's wedding just like Gabi had ruined Eli and Lani's.

That aside, this was fun. The best part was Julie's reaction.

Julie was at her best, alternately pretending to be suffering a heart attack and telling that "mendacious little bitch" exactly what she thought of her.

(TALL) Protecting Julie - Days of Our Lives

She cursed Gabi in the only way that counted, by warning her that the entire rest of Gabi's life would be spent alone, while also pretending to be having heart problems to help inspire Gabi to confess to her crimes in front of half of Salem.

Julie even got another jab in about how Gabi killed her beloved Nick, and Gabi didn't realize the irony in complaining that Julie says the same thing over and over before launching into her 950th monologue about how she went to jail and now can't have more children.

JJ, too, got a few moments in the spotlight, which he rarely gets. Too bad it was his last story before a low-key exit that hasn't yet been acknowledged on air. 

But if he had to go out, at least his last scenes displayed the strength JJ has always been capable of and rarely was allowed to display.

(TALL) Jennifer Gets Sad News - Days of Our Lives

JJ and Julie both got bad news right after they defeated Gabi, both because it facilitated JJ's exit and because Days of Our Lives wanted to pay tribute to Bill Hayes' 50 years with Days of Our Lives.

The whole trope of legacy characters dying off-screen smacks of cheap drama, but this time it worked.

Unlike when David was killed off in 2015 to facilitate Eli's introduction as David's son, Bill Horton at least got a proper send-off, complete with flashbacks from decades ago.

Viewers love those kinds of trips down memory lane, and with good reason.

Days of Our Lives has changed a lot over the years, but many viewers have been watching for decades. Super old flashbacks have nostalgia value for them.

And for newer viewers, these types of flashbacks help introduce them to Days of Our Lives' rich history and gives them even more to enjoy than what they are currently watching.

One of the most interesting things about the Bill flashbacks was how similar Bill and Doug's friendship in jail was to Will and Ben's jailhouse friendship. Bill even took the top bunk like Will does now.

Since we're probably not going to see an actual funeral, these flashbacks also served as an effective means of saying goodbye to a legacy character.

As mentioned earlier, this sudden death was also a vehicle for saying goodbye to a current character.

Jack and JJ's conversation in Doug's Place was Casey Moss' last scene on Days of Our Lives, and as sad as I was to see JJ go, it couldn't have been a more perfect ending.

(TALL) Making His Move - Days of Our Lives

It brought tears to my eyes when Jack told JJ how proud he was of him, not only because it was true, but because it allowed JJ's story to come full circle before he left.

When JJ came to Salem in 2013, he was an angry, self-hating mini-Jack who missed his supposedly dead father while also feeling like he was disappointing his entire family with his bad behavior.

And he left after his now-alive father told him he was proud of him and thought what he'd done to save Lani from Gabi was heroic.

You couldn't ask for a better ending to JJ's story. If he had to go at all, this was the way to do it.

(TALL) Stevano's Shocking Reveal - Days of Our Lives

It's too bad we won't get to see the funeral or JJ's decision to stay in Africa, but still, his ending was strong and it left the door open for him to return someday.

Maybe if he does, whatever writing team is in charge will give him proper stories instead of shoving him into the background so that viewers barely notice it when he's gone.

Life in Salem goes on, though, and there was some strong movement in some other storylines.

Stevano's secret is out, mostly because he's too damn cocky to continue pretending to be Steve.

(TALL) A Sweet Moment - Days of Our Lives

The scenes with Stevano and Kayla were bittersweet, both because "Stayla" fans would prefer the real Steve reunite with his Sweetness and because Kayla should have known that this wasn't Steve.

After all, Hope went through the same thing with Bo sending back divorce papers in the mail, only for it to turn out that he was being held captive and Dimera operatives sent the papers.

And after learning that Hope had been replaced by a doppelganger, the truth should have been doubly obvious to everybody.

Anyway, Stevano probably needs an operation to remove the Stefano microchip from his brain, but if anyone can get through to him, it's Kayla.

She did it once before when Steve had amnesia, so maybe she can do it again. Let's hope it takes less time than Jack's journey from amnesiac to Jennifer's husband did.

(TALL) Jarlena Bring On the Romance  - Days of Our Lives

Kayla's plight wasn't helped by the lack of attention the short-staffed anti-Stefano squad was giving to her disappearance.

Roman didn't seem overly concerned that Kayla never called him back after he told her that Steve wasn't Steve and John was too busy convincing Marlena that their love was enough to overcome anything Stevano threw in their path.

That left Rafe, and he was busy arresting Gabi for her misdeeds and searching for Ben.

The Salem PD needs more people stat. It took three days for anyone to realize Kayla was missing, and if Justin hadn't run into Rafe her disappearance might still be a secret.

(TALL) Sharing a New Theory - Days of Our Lives

Ciara and Ben's story was stalled for a bit while the pair had their thousandth fight over whether or not Ciara should risk her future for Ben.

That girl really needs something going for her besides this relationship.

Jennifer: Your grandpa Bill died today.
Chad: I'll call a travel agent.
Abigail: I don't want you to come with me.

It is not romantic to say that she has no future without Ben and nothing worth living for. If anything, it is pathetic.

Ciara not only refused for the millionth time to leave Ben's side, but threw a tantrum when Rafe tried to arrest Ben, screaming at him while his gun was pointed at her and then hitting him over the head with a baseball bat.

Finding the Fugitives - Days of Our Lives

Ciara insisted on being arrested, mostly because of her false belief that her mother would never let the charges stand. Talk about spoiled and entitled.

And the DA overheard that she was harboring a fugitive, but since Ben went straight to the police station to turn himself in as soon as Ciara attacked Rafe, that probably won't matter either.

Ciara will most likely be out of jail with no permanent marks on her record in no time and then become a hero when she finds Jordan's real killer before Ben can be killed.

That killer will most likely turn out to be Evan -- will this all come out before Sonny ends up in danger too?

(TALL) Recalling Last Valentine's Day - Days of Our Lives

Hopefully, there will be something a little less predictable in store for Sonny. His confrontation of Gabi was particularly strong, and I'd like to see more of THAT Sonny and less of his romantic misadventures.

Sonny: You know, this morning I found myself wishing the prisons were co-ed so I could cut down on my drive time when I bring Ari to see her Mommy and her Daddy.
Gabi: Stop being so horrible!
Sonny: I GET TO!!! I get to because I want to reach across this table to smack you across the face because you have this beautiful daughter that you care nothing about.

Sonny said everything that viewers have been saying about Gabi for months.

She claims that everything she does is for her daughter, but she never spends any time with her, and she never thought for a second about the potential consequences to her daughter before engaging in this latest scheme.

Of course, he might as well have saved his breath, because Gabi understood none of it and insisted she was the real victim here. But still, I'm sure I wasn't the only viewer cheering at his harsh words toward her.

Sarah is Shocked - Days of Our Lives

Finally, it looks like the baby switch story is unraveling...but is it really?

Victor and Xander insist on talking endlessly about how nobody can ever know about the baby switch, nor about Maggie's role in the real baby Mackenzie's death. So it's only a matter of time before their plan falls apart.

If nothing else, someone is going to overhear them. Sarah already did but it didn't register because she was too excited about the potential donor for Mackenzie.

Look, I will pull whatever strings I can to get you out of here earlier and I will make sure your daughter never wants for anything. But please, please don't tell her what you know. God saw fit to take that memory from her that night and I pray to God she never remembers.

Victor

Meanwhile, Victor's desperation to stop Will from telling Maggie the truth may be an exercise in futility.

(TALL) Processing The Truth - Days of Our Lives

At this point, it appears he's trying to stop the unstoppable.

Will gave Maggie enough hints that she's starting to think about that night, and she appeared to be in the kind of trance that only predates recovering lost memories.

Plus, Will has lost too much from being locked up for something someone else did.

He shouldn't have confessed to the crime -- even if he wasn't looking, he'd have known if he hit someone -- but that doesn't mean Victor can buy his silence the way he thinks he can.

(TALL) An Unsettling Dream - Days of Our Lives

And with both Sarah and Kristen seeming to subconsciously know that baby Mackenzie is really Kristen and Brady's baby, it's only a matter of time before that truth comes out, too.

The real question is what will happen when Mickey's parentage comes out. Eric's going to be heartbroken, and heartbroken Eric is never good news.

He lashes out at people, and Nicole will again be a handy target even though she has nothing to do with this.

Will Eric surprise us and let Nicole support him, or will he somehow blame her past refusal to tell him that he was the father of Sarah's baby for Maggie killing that baby in a drunk driving accident?

And how will Xander and Sarah -- arguably the most popular new couple on Days of Our Lives -- find their way back to each other after Sarah learns about Xander's latest deception?

Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics.

Hit SHOW COMMENTS and share your thoughts about Days of Our Lives during the week of 2-17-20.

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.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.8 / 5.0
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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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