Days of Our Lives Review Week of 9-20-21: Return of the Yellow-Eyed MonsterJack Ori at .
The yellow-eyed monster is back!
It was predictable that Marlena's eyes would glow yellow sooner or later once the Devil demanded she let it in, or she'd watch Doug pay the price.
The first time it happened was creepy anyway. But can this possession story sustain viewers' interest for more than a few days?
So far, this possession storyline seems like yet another variation on the doppelganger/split personality storylines that the current writing team loves.
John has noticed that Marlena isn't herself but hasn't put the pieces together yet despite her strange behavior, and it's not much different than when Hattie has taken over her life in the past, except for the yellow eyes and weird voice, of course.
These types of stories always seem to rely on characters being clueless, and this is no exception.
Marlena has been replaced by Hattie more than once, so even if John doesn't realize that Marlena has been possessed again (which seems silly considering how obsessed he is with the idea that Johnny's movie will open the door for the devil to return!), he should be suspicious that something's going on.
It would be a fun twist for John to assume Hattie has switched places with Marlena, though!
I don't know why he wasn't suspicious at all when Marlena had an adverse reaction to the Bible, mumbled under her breath about John having thought he was a priest and was cold to Julie on the phone.
You'd think since he's got this paranoia about the devil returning, he'd be looking for signs of it everywhere.
Meanwhile, the Devil was the talk of the town, between Johnny's dream of making a movie and John's concerns.
The meta-commentary about this story is hilarious.
Nobody can believe that Marlena was possessed once and wait until they realize it's happened again.
I'd have preferred the meta-commentary without the redux of this silly story, but the fallout of this should be interesting anyway.
I just hope that the Devil leaves Doug alone from now on.
It seems like he expelled it, at least thus far, leaving his family confused about what's going on.
Doug: He went out of me and into her...
Julie: What? Who? What are you talking about?
Doug's family will likely continue believing that he has dementia and not put the pieces together. I'm not sure how I feel about that.
I was super invested in the dementia storyline and incredibly disappointed that it went in this goofy direction.
It seems like we may still get the meaty grief scenes from Doug's family, except it isn't real.
Days of Our Lives has done this before. We were treated to months of scenes of Chad grieving Abigail's "death" while knowing full well she was alive.
It cheapens the drama when the series does this. Yes, the characters' pain is real, but it makes me eager for the truth to come out so that we can stop wasting energy on unnecessary grief.
But that'll be preferable to the Devil continuing to mess with Doug, and from the cliffhanger, it seems like that's where we're headed.
Meanwhile, the story seems to be taking over the canvas thanks to everyone talking about the Devil or its last attempt at possessing Marlena.
The most annoying one of these sub-stories was, sadly, Johnny and Chanel's movie date.
I generally enjoy Johnny and think he and Chanel make a cute couple, but these scenes were obnoxious!
If I were on a date and my partner kept insisting I watch a movie that I hated and found scary, that would be the end of the date.
I understand that Johnny's passionate about film and wanted Chanel to understand why he thought The Exorcist was brilliant, but it came off as highly inconsiderate.
Forcing someone to watch a movie that disturbs them is not cool, even if Chanel did say that it meant that Johnny owed her.
And Johnny's decision afterward to make his movie all about Marlena's possession was irritating.
As Chanel pointed out, John would have a huge problem with that.
And in terms of marketability, while Hollywood sometimes seems to have an overabundance of reboots, why would viewers flock to see Johnny's devil possession movie when there's already a classic dealing with the same topic?
If this were written realistically, Johnny would have trouble getting money from his family for this project and prove to big-name investors that he could market this successfully. But since this is Salem, who knows what'll happen.
Some non-devil-oriented stuff was going on, too, although everyone was talking about Doug's strange behavior somewhere along the way.
One of the more important stories was Philip's resurrected romance with Chloe and Victor's silly idea about destroying it.
Victor should be sharper than this. Why he thinks that Brady blowing up Philip/Chloe would cause Philip to forget her and get back to work is beyond me.
If Brady went along with this idea, it would just increase the rivalry and hostility between Brady and Philip, and we've had more than enough of that.
Philip and Ava's alliance was a welcome respite from that nonsense, though!
Gabi has been needling Ava constantly because she doesn't like the idea of Rafe dating a reformed Mafia princess, and that's a stupid thing to do.
Suppose Gabi thinks Ava's former association with organized crime is a problem. In that case, she should also realize that pushing someone capable of that level of violence is probably not a good idea.
But alas, Gabi is so caught up in her quest to be Salem's most petty diva that she doesn't think at all, and now Ava is getting her revenge in a classy way: by teaming up with Philip, ruining Gabi's plans, and maybe making Gabi lose her position at Titan altogether.
As EJ said about kicking Gabi out of his house, the fun was just beginning!
I'm not a big EJ fan, and his insistence that he doesn't care where Sami is while wandering around town in a foul mood is aggravating.
But if he's going to use that evil energy to push back against Gabi's attempts to mess with the Dimeras, that's another story.
That house should have been EJ's in the first place, and just because Gabi was married to a Dimera for five minutes doesn't mean she can mess with Salem's most powerful crime family without consequences.
If anyone ever deserved to be taken down a peg or two, it's Gabi, and EJ did it beautifully.
Philip and Chloe's date was sweet, too.
Diehard Phloe shippers might have been disappointed that the flashbacks to their high school romance were short, but I thought they were perfect.
They caught viewers up with their long love story without dragging on or giving unnecessary information, which is exactly what flashbacks are supposed to do.
Plus, Philip and Chloe's relationship needs to focus on the present, not the past.
One of the big problems with this couple is that it often seems like they're trying to recapture what they had years ago instead of building something beautiful based on who they've become now.
Chloe was understandably wary after Philip exhibited the same jealousy of Brady as he did back then, and Philip's offer of the new sapling to replace the tree he'd chopped down was a nice symbol of his desire to start over.
Even better was his civility toward Brady at the Dimera Mansion, but was that genuine, or is Philip up to something?
If he's using Brady as part of some plot to prove Gabi is making trouble, Chloe won't be happy, and the peace won't last, so let's hope he isn't doing that.
Elsewhere, Gwen and Xander's romance began heating up. These two seemed to have replaced Ben and Ciara as the couple that spends all their time in bed and has serious conversations in between rounds of furious lovemaking.
I'm not particularly sold on this couple. At best, Gwen is a temporary distraction for Xander until he finds out Sarah still loves him, and then he will likely drop her as quickly as Eric did Jennifer when he learned Nicole hadn't dumped him by choice, if not faster.
Plus, Xander is encouraging Gwen to continue to lie to Jack, and that's not only the wrong thing to do but is going to cause more of a mess in the long run.
Eventually, the truth will come out, and Gwen's fragile truce with Abby will fall apart while Jack will end up stuck between his daughters and deeply disappointed by Gwen again.
Elsewhere, Ben confessed to Ciara that he was frightened of passing his bad genes to any potential children.
This isn't like when Jennifer was worried about passing on the genetic propensity for schizophrenia. That was realistic. This is silly, as there is no such genetic component to becoming a serial killer.
However, this could be a touching story if you ignore that problem and if Ciara would stop being so selfish!
Ciara displayed little empathy for Ben's concerns. All she cared about was that she wanted to have his baby and that she might not be able to.
She kept saying this was about "their" baby, but I didn't hear a word of caring about Ben's feelings or consideration about his concerns. It was all about her and what she wanted.
That doesn't bode well for any future babies they may have. The world has enough self-centered mothers who should not have had children without Ciara becoming one too.
Also, discussions about whether or not you both want to have children are best had before you make a lifetime commitment to one another. Just saying.
Finally, back in Salem, Abe seemed to be in an awfully big rush to marry Paulina.
It's great that Paulina makes him happy and that Steve and Kayla are on board.
But Abe is usually the slow, careful type, so it doesn't make sense for him to rush into a wedding after only a few months.
Yes, Paulina started this with her lie about why she called the babies her grandchildren.
But still. Abe has never thrown caution to the wind like this before and has already been burned by Paulina once. So why would he plan to propose to her within weeks of their reconciliation?
Your turn, Days of Our Lives fanatics.
What do you think of this possession redux and all the other drama in Salem?
Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know!
Hungry for more Days of Our Lives chat? Be sure to check back on Sunday for the latest Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion.
Days of Our Lives airs on NBC on weekday afternoons. Check your local listings for airtimes or watch online on Peacock TV after 8 PM EST on weeknights.
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.