Days of Our Lives Review for the Week of 3-13-23: The Biggest Story in Years Relies on Classic Days TropesJack Ori at .
You didn't expect an easy reunion for Bo and Hope, did you?
Within minutes of Bo's return on Days of Our Lives during the week of 3-13-23, it was clear that something wasn't right. He didn't seem to know who Kayla was, acted like he was half out of it, and was fixated on getting back into the room where Megan had been knocked unconscious.
Kate should have known better than to listen to his story about locked doors, which didn't add up. Bo's been brainwashed, which is par for the course with Dimera resurrections, so he's temporarily on the wrong side and not to be trusted.
Telling this story now is risky, even though it's a throwback to over 40 years of classic DAYS stories. There have been so many recent resurrections, brainwashings, and amnesiacs thinking they're in love with their worst enemy that viewers might be burned out on these stories.
Still, the story involves a ton of classic couples, some newer fan favorites, and is more firmly rooted in DAYS history than other stories of this nature.
In DAYS' golden era, super couples had to fight supreme evil together instead of breaking up every five seconds. This story is a throwback to that wonderful era; John, Steve, and Roman will soon learn that their wives are alive and in trouble, and Hope will have work to do to un-brainwash Bo.
The story gives these veteran characters -- who often are back burnered or have no story beyond advising younger characters -- a ton to do.
Of course, there's no getting around the fact that these leading actors are in their 70s now. Megan's presence in this story is a stark reminder of the passage of time; Joe Mascolo is no longer with us, so we needed a second-generation Dimera to do what he would typically do to cause trouble.
We also got a second-generation super couple in the making out of this, as Paul and Andrew struggled to overcome living on opposite coasts to be together.
I always love John and Paul's interactions, but John's insistence on Paul giving Andrew a second shot came across as overly harsh!
Paul: It's not like Andrew and I had a falling out.
John: You just said that you and Andrew aren't talking to each other about anything, so how is that not a falling out?
Paul: No, I just mean we didn't get into a big fight or anything. And it wasn't that we didn't get along, We did.
John: Getting along. That seems pretty tepid. So in other words, no heat?
Paul: Oh, Dad!
John: Oh Dad, what? Come on! You told me when you two were in Hong Kong there was a lot of chemistry there. So what happened? He comes here to visit and what, the movie doesn't live up to the preview?
Paul: What happened was we had a great time together and we thought we could make it work. But then reality set in. He lives in DC. I live here [in San Francisco]. He's got a demanding job. I'm transitioning to become a coach. You know, long distance relationships, they involve, well, a lot of logistics.
John: I see. And it's too hard for a couple of middle-aged farts to make adjustments.
Paul: We're not middle-aged.
John: Well you know what? You could have fooled me. Come on, you got a secret agent, you got a superstar athlete, and the two of you act like a couple of insurance adjusters. So, no, you're fine. You know what? You sit here all alone and you just keep convincing yourself that logistics are too complicated to be with someone who could actually make you happy!
John's grieving the "death" of Marlena, so it's understandable that he wants to encourage his son to follow his heart and not allow distance or other obstacles to get in the way of being with the man he loves.
But he was borderline mean about it and dismissed Paul's valid concerns.
Long-distance relationships aren't easy. For that reason, Will and Sonny left Salem together, and Eric and Nicole imploded after Eric remained on the other side of the world for over a year.
Andrew obviously can travel to see Paul when he wants to since he magically showed up on Paul's doorstep moments after talking to Steve in his DC office! But in the past, Paul and Andrew couldn't find time to see each other, so why would Paul put up with that endlessly?
Paul and Andrew have a few choices. One of them can find a way to move to where the other is located, they can schedule specific times to talk and to visit and stick to them, or they can accept that this isn't going to work out.
In true Salem fashion (even though neither of them is in Salem!), they decided to put discussing it off until they finished having sex -- although this time, the sex was interrupted before it started when Andrew's phone rang.
Hopefully, Paul will decide to accompany Andrew if Andrew has to leave. Paul wanted to go with John, but John wouldn't let him, and he needs to be part of this adventure!
Realistically, Paul can't leave San Francisco when he's coaching a team through their first game tomorrow, but that's never stopped anyone on Days of Our Lives. And if Andrew runs off alone again, the relationship could implode.
At Megan's compound, Kate held her own with Megan, a refreshing change from the usual damsel in distress trope.
Megan: I heard you and my dear departed brother André enjoyed martinis together.
Kate: Shaken, not injected.
That's why it was so frustrating that Kate fell easily for Bo's lies about why they needed to return to that room! It was obvious that the doors didn't automatically lock -- if they did, they wouldn't be able to get back into Megan's room.
Now Kate's in a dangerous situation all over again. At least she had the sense to smash the vial, though she should have threatened to do it if Bo didn't drop the gun so she'd be in less trouble.
Bo's transformation into a Dimera goon in love with his worst enemy has been done before. Yet, somehow it wasn't nearly as annoying as Steve being turned into Stefano or Ciara's amnesia-fueled hatred of Ben.
Bo and Megan's relationship rests on solid DAYS history. It's also a strong vehicle for Hope to break Megan's hold on Bo and be reunited with her true love.
I hated it when DAYS sacrificed Aiden, turning him into a bad guy so that Bo could kill him shortly before dying himself. That was pointless and unnecessary.
But Bo and Hope have always been a strong couple, and Hope fighting for Bo is a pleasant reversal from all those stories of Bo saving her from evil boyfriends.
This Bo brainwashing story is also easier to take than the Li/Stefan nonsense. For one thing, Bo/Hope is a more compelling couple than Gabi/Stefan, and Megan is a more riveting villain than smarmy Li.
The story likely will end with Bo and Hope riding off into the sunset together, perhaps literally -- although Ciara has his motorcycle, so I'm not sure how that'll work.
Hope's reintroduction was odd. Why was she sitting in a locked room alone if she was supposed to be searching for Megan?
Still, her interactions with Steve and John were natural, although, for a while, I wondered if she also had been brainwashed by Megan. Hope is prone to being turned into Princess Gina, after all!
Instead, Hope reached out to Andrew to get her in touch with Harris Michaels, the ex who Megan brainwashed into trying to kill her on their wedding day.
This plan is risky; God only knows what kind of shape Harris is in and if Hope will fall for him again while trying to interrogate him.
I'd hoped that Hope would get Bo back into his right mind, but will Bo come to his senses first and once again rescue Hope from an evil boyfriend?
Ugh. I know it's a trope for this couple, but I REALLY don't want to go there! Let's have Hope fix Bo this time instead.
The stories and sets for this storyline felt like they were meant for a third chapter of Beyond Salem. Meanwhile, plenty was going on in Salem proper, but sadly, it wasn't all compelling.
Gwen, Leo, and Xander took up entirely too much screen time.
Gwen has not shown any redeeming values; now that she has blackmailed Jack into giving her the Spectator, she's become even more one-note.
Gwen: I'm sorry. I don't recall inviting you to sit here.
Alex: You didn't.
Gwen: Then why are you here?
Alex: Because we members of the Bad Day Club have to stick together.
She doesn't have any story or purpose beyond her obsession with Xander, and her revenge sex with Alex doesn't make her any more likable.
Alex and Gwen's drunken sexcapade wasn't any different than Alex and Allie's similar hookup. Maybe these two useless characters deserve each other since neither has any substance and are both entitled brats.
Alex didn't "deserve" Maggie's job. He came to town to steal the company out from under Sonny, and now that Sonny's gone, he thinks he should automatically be given it.
He keeps making misogynistic digs at Maggie and can't stand the idea of having to report to her. He thought he could get Victor to control Maggie as if women have to do what their husbands say.
Now he's having a pity party and having sex with Gwen to make himself feel better. How soon before these two get involved in some scheme to blackmail Maggie into giving Alex her job?
Leo isn't much better. He's wandering around town trying to get salacious dirt for his Lady Whistleblower column, and worse, he's acting like Xander being honest was the height of evil.
Gwen had no reason to think Xander would be with her anytime soon. He told her about 15,429 times that he wasn't over Sarah and couldn't commit to her, and now she's acting like he led her on because the divorce decree didn't magically change that.
Yet Leo is acting as if Gwen is the victim here. And when Xander, based on Leo's claims, was concerned that Gwen was heartbroken, she got angry that Xander thought she was that weak.
She should be angry at Leo, who started that rumor, but everything her amoral bestie does is fine with her, and she's mad that Xander won't be with her, so now she wants to say or do whatever she can to hurt him.
Go away! Gwen and Leo's bad behavior is a waste of screen time.
Sloan/Eric/Nicole is equally annoying. I agree with Belle that Sloan has nothing going for her that Eric should find attractive. And I'm not convinced Sloan isn't playing Eric, either -- she switched from hate to love (or at least lust) far too quickly.
In any case, Belle and Sloan's truce lasted five seconds. Stefan agreed to press charges, the women decided they still hated each other, and that was that. It was such a non-event that it wasn't worth the spoiler about it!
Nicole needs to forget Eric and move on once and for all. She's dating EJ, and they're scheming together, so she doesn't need to be sad when Sloan and Eric pass by.
EJ's plan backfired in an utterly predictable way, though I still don't get how nobody saw Stefan put those drugs in EJ's drink or switch the glasses back. Shin and Nicole were sitting right there.
It would have been more fun if Shin got the drugged drink. That would have caused significant complications and been somewhat of a twist.
Shin also should see through Stefan's eagerness for him to fire EJ. How can the man entrusted with so much power be that dense?
After this debacle, neither Stefan nor EJ should believe the other wants to move past their problems with each other. These two are locked into a battle to the death, and it'll be far more interesting if they both know it.
It's also too bad Vivian is in jail. Vivian has her own evil doctor, the herbalist Dr. Wu, and a battle involving EJ, Nicole, and Dr. Rolf against Stefan, Vivian, and Dr. Wu would be fascinating.
Li tried to appeal to Gabi's sense of ambition once he realized his attempts to force romance weren't working, but Gabi COULD turn the tables easily.
Taking advantage of his business contacts doesn't mean she has to be indebted to Li or fall for him. I've wanted her and Wendy to forget Dimera Enterprises and go into business together for a while.
If Gabi and Wendy worked on the new fashion label together, that would be the ultimate revenge -- Gabi could use Li's contacts to go into business with his sister and then shut him out.
Wendy is still somewhat loyal to Li, but this would be a better conflict than her anger over Johnny taking Tripp's badge.
Wendy acted like Johnny had cheated on her. While taking the badge wasn't a great thing to do, she was the one who wanted him to use any means necessary to get that drug report.
He didn't lie to her -- it's not as if he told her Tripp happily gave him access. He simply said he wasn't going to talk about how he got his hands on it, and if Wendy didn't realize that meant he'd done something untoward, that was her problem.
Her anger at him was short-lived, but does anyone doubt that Wendy and Tripp are endgame here? She is far more loyal to and interested in Tripp, and her father approves of her relationship with Johnny, so Wendy/Johnny's days are numbered.
Finally, Roman extended an olive branch to Lucas, but could there be hope for Lucas/Sami?
Sami is currently MIA while Lucas is in jail, and Lucas is "well aware" that Sami will never forgive him.
Lucas: I know it's not exactly the same, but this is how I feel about Sami too.
Roman: Sami is not dead.
Lucas: I know. But I'm dead to her. I have never loved anyone the way I loved Sami and I blew it. She's never going to forgive me.
That seems like a perfect set-up for them to reunite someday.
What did you think, Days of Our Lives fanatics? Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know!
Don't forget to check back on Sunday for the latest Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion.
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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.