The rest of Salem needs to take lessons from the way Justin and Steve are handling their rivalry over Kayla.
Sure, both of these men have had their moments. Justin's insecurity and Steve's boneheaded decision to give up because Justin was never turned into a bad guy were low points.
But on the whole, this is a story about adults trying to do the best thing. Some other people's problems on Days of Our Lives during the week of 5-25-20, not so much.
Even though it was utterly predictable that Justin's proposal was going to collide with Steve's newfound desire to pursue Kayla, these scenes were highly enjoyable.
The best of them was Justin's graveside visit to Adrienne.
All too often on Days of Our Lives, people move on quickly without any more than an afterthought of the person who has died, even when that person was the love of their life. So it was beautiful for Justin to not only visit Adrienne's grave, but reminisce about her, miss her, and ask Sonny to stand in her place and give him a blessing to marry Kayla.
I've been sitting here a while and it is so still. No wind, no birds overhead... it reminds me of how you used to get so mad at me you'd cross your arms and turn your back and go silent. That was scarier than when you yelled at me. I know you're crazy about Kayla, but maybe you like her better as a sister-in-law than as my new wife. So I'm going to flat-out say it. I need a sign.Justin
It was hard to believe this was the same man who almost threw his life away to kill Orpheus earlier in the week.
Those silly Justin-with-a-gun scenes were entirely out of character, especially since everyone keeps telling Kayla she should be with level-headed Justin instead of impuslive, needing-to-save-the-world Steve.
It was even more ridiculous that Justin never caught on to why Steve didn't follow through with killing Orpheus after getting the gun away from Justin. Come on! Surely Justin understands how hostage negotiation tactics work.
His frustration with Orpheus was enjoyable, but it could have been done without the gun. The only thing that ended up being assassinated during those scenes was Justin's character.
Of course, it's possible that he was trying to compete with Steve. He wanted to go on the mission to rescue John, which was also out of character, and he might have been afraid he was too mundane a guy for Kayla.
But this motivation wasn't explored beyond Justin saying that Orpheus claimed he lacked a killer instinct and was quickly squashed by Kayla saying she wanted normality.
Also, nobody mentioned the irony in what Justin wanted to do.
Orpheus' villainy began with wanting to get Roman back for accidentally killing his wife (yes, it was originally Roman, despite the recent retcon to make John the culprit!), and Justin proclaimed that Orpheus accidentally killed HIS wife and was going to pay.
Yet that never came up. Not once. You'd think Orpheus would at least laugh at the way things had come full circle as part of his attempt to undercut Justin's self-confidence.
That would have been a better homage to Orpheus' history than this silly bomb storyline.
Orpheus planted a bomb in
Roman John and Marlena's home shortly before kidnapping Marlena and making her take care of his children, but there was no need for a redux.
First of all, it was in such an obvious place that I was shocked nobody saw it before Hope and John began ransacking the house.
And it was an unnecessary storyline with a silly ending. Hope ran into the hall with an exploding bomb, didn't get hurt, and then had a story about how she carried it downstairs and threw it into the dumpster.
Okay then. That makes almost as much sense as little David, who on-screen says nothing but "yeah," telling Rafe that Grandpa said he was playing one last game with the tied up man.
Anyway, once Justin got past that nonsense about wanting to kill Orpheus., he went back to being sane, level-headed Justin, and his conversations both with Adrienne's grave and with Sonny were refreshingly honest.
Sonny: So how long have you been thinking about marriage?
Justin: Not long. It's in the air. Eli proposed to Lani and as you know, Eric and Nicole are engaged.
Sonny: So all the cool kids are doing it, is that it?
Justin: Thank you for thinking I'm seventeen. But no. It's just that life is short, you know, and things can change in a heartbeat.
Sonny's initial reaction was both hilarious and on point.
Justin did make it sound like getting married was the fashionable thing to do, and I loved that Sonny wasn't afraid to call him on it. Justin is neither a teenager nor one of the cool kids, and I feel bad that this whole thing is eventually going to end in heartbreak for him.
His gorgeous proposal was, as I expected, ruined by Steve standing around watching. Steve'll back off for now, probably, but that's only because it's more dramatic if Steve makes a big proclamation of love at the wedding.
Meanwhile, Eric and Nicole's engagement has gone a little too smoothly.
I'm glad that Marlena has had a miraculous turn-around when it comes to Nicole -- her previous behavior toward Nicole was obnoxious. And I'm thrilled that for once a couple is going TOGETHER to share the good news with friends and family.
It always seemed ridiculous that couples left the task of telling disapproving family members to the partner whose family disapproved. That felt cowardly and unsupportive.
But so far, the only conflict has been Sami sending an angry text to Eric.
Everyone's desire not to be the one to tell Sami was cute, but there has to be something bigger coming. Smooth sailing toward the wedding doesn't make for great drama, after all.
At least it's better than this goofy Ben/Ciara story.
Ben was attacked by the most ridiculous pair of goons in Days of Our Lives history, and that's saying a lot.
The goons made light out of potentially raping Ciara for a second time, which was offensive, only to give up and slink away because a mobile search confirmed that Ben was the Necktie Killer.
This was even more ludicrous than when Sarah got away with kidnapping Rex because the near-sighted neighbor mistook a tied-up Rex for Chad with a cold!
Days of Our Lives has got to stop finding stupid ways out of bad situations. If the writers can't figure out how to get the characters out of whatever corner they've backed them into, they shouldn't write them into the situation in the first place. These silly solutions insult viewers' intelligence
The bigger problem, though, is that Ciara is written as little more than a pretty face. Her whole reason for being on Days of Our Lives appears to be to look cute.
That might appeal to some viewers, but it's not appropriate. Hope and Bo's daughter deserves better than being treated as little more than a sex object.
Ciara is super clingy, pushes Ben around, and alternates between saving him from stupid situations and gushing about how much in love she is before having sex with him.
All of that nonsense cheapens Ciara as a character and Ciara and Ben as a couple.
And if I were Jake, I'd tell Ben to lose the girlfriend during working hours. Ben is constantly late because Ciara thinks sex is more important than being on time for his job and Jake has walked in more than once on Ben socializing with Ciara instead of working.
Of course, Jake is not really one to talk, since he keeps leaving work to deal with Gabi.
Gabi: Rolf said maybe someone else brought you back from the dead.
Jake: First of all, I've never been dead so no one brought me back. Second, your husband's heart was ripped out and given to someone else. And do you really think there's a gaggle of mad scientists lined up resurrecting people?
Jake provides hilarious meta-commentary on the ridiculousness of the situation with Gabi, but he's also conveniently absent every time the goons pay a visit.
I'm mildly interested in what his secret is, but the silliness of this whole set-up is making me less so over time. My guess is that his ex owed money to some bad guys and Jake is on the hook for it.
As for Gabi, I'm with Jake on this: I hope she does some hard time so I can get a break from her.
Gabi once again launched into her tale of woe. According to her, she's a total victim and the whole world has done her wrong.
It wasn't true and didn't work the first time she whined about the thirty seconds her daughter spent hating her and her misinterpretation of Kayla's diagnosis, which was that it was unlikely, but not impossible, for her to have more children.
It wasn't any more of a justification for the terrible things she's done now.
And she can stop with the ableist, anti-mental illness talk any time now. It's offensive and no one ever corrects her on it, either.
Another thing that has to go is this Brady/Sarah revenge storyline.
Days of Our Lives has done this a billion times before. Someone is always trying to destroy Titan from the inside, and Brady is forever pretending to be with someone as part of a revenge scheme, only to discover real feelings for his fake partner.
Sarah's behavior is ridiculous and childish, too. She and Brady just want to rub Xander's nose in the fact that Sarah's moved on so they can see him feel bad. What is this, seventh grade?
Adults do not act this way. It's obnoxious and the sooner Sarah cuts it out, the better.
John's confrontation of Victor wasn't much better.
I mentioned in the Days of Our Lives spoilers during the week of 5-25-20 that everyone ganging up on Victor while he's recovering from being stabbed in the heart was probably a bad idea. And surprise, surprise, Victor started having breathing problems while John was yell ing at him.
At least John felt guilty about it, but really, who didn't see this one coming?
Victor recently recovered from his third or fourth stroke, had a heart attack a few years ago, and is currently on oxygen following a stabbing. This is not the time to go in with guns blazing!
Meanwhile, Lani and Eli's story has promise if it's written properly. (And as a side note: I love Sal Stowers' new hairstyle.)
I still wish Days of Our Lives had gone for a Lani/Kristen romance, but Lani's new pregnancy has potential, even though it relies on the overused trope of Lani not realizing she missed her period until she looked at the calendar for another reason.
That's so unrealistic. What if she hadn't had to take out her calendar? Would she have gone blissfully about her business, unaware that she missed a period and may be pregnant?
Anyway, Lani's fear of losing this baby too could be a powerful story...as long as she doesn't have an abortion out of fear of having a miscarriage, which doesn't make a lot of sense.
There were a few amusing odds and ends like everyone's reaction to Kate working for Abe. But the only other big story was Abigail's exit.
Abigail's exit scenes were well done and emotional. Abby did a great job of explaining her illness to Thomas, though the lag between filming and broadcast made comments about taking Thomas to Universal Studios when this is all over woefully out of date.
It seemed unfair, though, that Abigail got half an episode's worth of goodbyes and JJ didn't even get an exit story. When Casey Moss left, JJ went to Africa with his family and then they returned and told everyone else he'd decided not to come home.
Now that Abby was going to Florida, Jack and Jennifer have no kids in Salem. It didn't have to be a big deal, but a line about how the grandchildren will make the house feel less empty now that both JJ and Abigail are gone would have been nice.
And no one even mentioned calling JJ or him knowing his sister was having hallucinations. It was as if he never existed now that he's gone. How ridiculous!
Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics.
What did you think of the parade of wedding proposals? Which wedding are you most looking forward to? And who do you think will or won't make it to the altar?
Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and share your thoughts!
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.