Days of Our Lives Review Week of 7-11-21: Another Nasty Surprise

Oh, Samantha Gene, why do you have to be so mean?

Sami is an iconic character, and there are times I love her, most of them involving Lucas reining her in before she goes too far.

But her nasty streak has gotten worse over the years, and her desire to break up Nicole and Eric on Days of Our Lives during the week of 7-11-21 was just cruel.

Sami Tries to Make a Deal / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I’m not sure which was worse: Sami’s hypocrisy or the way she casually threw around terms like “slut” when explaining why she just HAD to get Eric to hate Nicole.

Sami’s marriage is in trouble for the same reason that Nicole’s is. They both slept with someone else after their husband had been absent, physically and spiritually, for months.

Sami at least slept with someone good for her, but still. These women should be supporting each other through this difficult time instead of trying to stab one another in the back.

And Sami’s choice terms for Nicole were disgusting, too.

Sami In Trouble / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I’m not a fan of calling women sluts, tramps, and other such words just because they slept with a man other than their husband.

I doubly hate it when it comes to Nicole because those words have been used against her so often to describe acts she was forced to partake in when under her predator father’s control.

And it’s bad enough when old curmudgeons like VIctor, who presumably has not changed with the changing times, call every woman a slut or a tramp. But the slut-shaming from Sami, who loves jumping impulsively into bed with her exes, is even harder to take.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, her ill-thought-out plan doesn’t just hurt Nicole. She thinks she’s protecting Eric by exposing Nicole for what she did, but did she ever stop for a second to think about how her choices might affect him?

A Joyous Reunion / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Announcing publicly that Nicole cheated on Eric will humiliate him. He was already humiliated in front of his friends and family enough when Kristen played that doctored sex tape after she raped him.

Not to mention that he’s going to be hurt and heartbroken just as he was about to recommit to Nicole.

If Sami really cared about Eric, she wouldn’t put him in that position. Even Xander felt it would be better to talk to Eric privately if anything needed to be said at all.

Not that Eric has been a saint either. Despite pretty much all of Salem singing his praises, the truth is that he has been neglecting his marriage for the last year.

A Last-Minute Party / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Eric seems to be at least aware of this. He’s said several times that Nicole was supposed to be his priority and failed to make her so.

Eric: I will only be gone a few weeks and then I’ll be back to stay.
Nicole: But what about the people in Africa?
Eric: I will always care about the people in Africa. But you are the most important person in my life and I have done a terrible job of showing it.

But everyone else is acting like Eric is so wonderful to have sacrificed time with his new bride to go to Africa for nearly a year. Nicole herself is probably the worst offender here, and it was aggravating me.

Nicole kept acting like she was wrong for not just accepting Eric going to Africa for an indefinite period of time. He was only supposed to be gone a few weeks, a couple of months at most. But he kept extending the time and kept canceling plans to come home to see his wife and stepdaughter.

Nicole's Huge Surprise / Tall - Days of Our Lives

His sweet anniversary surprise didn’t even begin to make up for that. And then the situation was swept mostly under the rug, with Eric saying that he would only be returning to Africa for a few weeks and Nicole apologizing for wanting him to be home with her.

Leaving aside how ridiculous the idea is of someone traveling from Africa to the States for only one day, there’s the fact that Nicole can’t trust that these three weeks to wrap things up won’t turn into three years.

Eric keeps getting talked into extending his contract, and once Nicole is out of sight, he could easily forget his promise to put her first from now on. If I were Nicole, I would have insisted on going with him to make sure that he really did wrap things up and come back!

The problem in their relationship is bigger than this issue, though.

Sami's Latest Deception / Tall - Days of Our Lives

The distance doesn’t help, and neither does Sami’s constant manipulations, but the most serious problem is Nicole’s refusal to share her real feelings with Eric most of the time.

She didn’t want to admit she doesn’t want him to go back to Africa, nor did she want to state unequivocally that she’d rather Sami not be invited to the anniversary party.

Instead, she kept saying some version of it, not being fair to Eric for her to want what she wanted.

What happened to our strong, take-no-prisoners, Nicole? This constant deferral to Eric’s wishes is unhealthy and leads to Nicole becoming self-destructive instead of communicating.

Lucas and Philip vs Ejami / Tall- Days of Our Lives

Anniversary parties, or any party in Salem for that matter, are notorious for falling apart when some big secret comes out.

This was no different, but viewers had to suffer through some particularly obnoxious behavior in the meantime.

Brady and EJ were vying for most repugnant. Both of them took it upon themselves to assert control by demanding that their rival not speak to the object of their affection!

I wish Lucas had told Sami what EJ had actually said. I’d love to know what mental gymnastics she’d have gone through to try to prove that EJ demanding the father of her children never talks to her again was somehow appropriate.

Brady Kisses Chloe / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Brady wasn’t much better, though. First of all, Chloe isn’t even his girlfriend — she’s dating Philip right now! And anyway, people don’t go to parties and expect to only talk to one person.

Philip had every right to talk to Chloe and Nicole. I think he was hoping Nicole would deliver the letter to EJ, blowing up Sami and EJ’s marriage, but that doesn’t matter.

The point is, Philip wasn’t doing anything wrong by approaching Chloe, and she wouldn’t appreciate Brady trying to control who talks to her in that way.

Philip and Brady’s constant attempts to one-up each other are annoying, too, and I had to laugh at Philip pointing out this was high school all over again because that’s the problem with this storyline.

Philip, Chloe, and Brady are closer to 40 than 30, and it’s beyond time to stop repeating the storylines that were popular when they were sixteen.

If there’s to be a love triangle again between these three, it should be a more mature storyline, not Brady and Philip’s eternal pissing contest. Sheesh.

That said, Philip and Lucas teaming up are one of the best things to come out of these messy storylines!

The brothers have not spent nearly enough time together since Philip returned to Salem, and that’s a shame. I’d love more of them supporting each other and discussing ways to deal with their hardheaded mother.

Kate's Bombshell Revelation / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I wasn’t sold on this plan to blow up EJ and Sami’s marriage, but I”m glad that Lucas was the one who stole that letter out of the fireplace!

It would have been a terrible idea for Lucas to be the one to give it to EJ. That’s just asking for him to ask EJ to take it out on him and Sami.

But Lucas having that letter opens up all sorts of possibilities, everything from Lucas doing some blackmail of his own to what Days of Our Lives appears to have done: have him team up with Philip to somehow get that letter to EJ.

It would serve Sami right if Lucas leaked the letter to the press so that all of Salem can read about her indiscretion and see how she likes it. But Lucas loves her too much to do that, so we’ll have to settle for whatever Philip comes up with.

Meanwhile, what’s with so many of our friends in Salem being on the EJami side?

Yes, I’m looking at you, Marlena and Eric.  Knowing what they know about both the Dimeras and how EJ has treated Sami in the past, these two should be praying for Sami to come to her senses and leave EJ, not for them to heal their relationship!

But the absolute worst was Belle.

Belle doesn’t even like Sami. She spent most of her conversation with EJ trashing Sami, for God’s sake. So why would she be happy that Sami and EJ are back together? And why is she even talking to EJ outside of business matters?

The only ones who seem to see EJ for what he is are Rafe, Lucas, and Jake!

This happens way too much on Days of Our Lives. The writers seem to think making everyone agree about a certain person will make the fans go along with it.

That’s lazy, manipulative writing, and it doesn’t work. It would be MUCH better if characters had a variety of opinions and viewers were allowed to make up their own minds.

Speaking of Jake, I’m not happy with his and Gabi’s new plan.

Gabi's Devious Plot / Tall - Days of Our Lives

Gabi and Philip are friends as well as co-workers and even dated for a little bit. Now Gabi is hoping to throw Philip under the bus to install Jake as the new CEO of Titan.

Not cool. Also, doomed to failure. Victor is not going to let Jake Dimera be in charge of Titan Industries no matter what.

Across town, yet another love triangle heated up between Tripp, Allie, and Chanel.

Some viewers cringed when a clearly heartbroken Chanel tried to kiss Theo, but I’m failing to understand what the outrage is all about. Nearly everyone in Salem jumps into bed with a random person when the one they really want rejects them.

Chanel Confesses Her Feelings / Tall - Days of Our Lives

The only difference between Chanel and everyone else is that Chanel is attracted to more than one gender. Otherwise, this is the standard operating procedure in Salem.

At least Theo had the sense to pull away, which is more than I can say for half of Salem’s residents.

That said, I hope Chanel doesn’t go back to her old ways now that her bakery appears to be a lost cause. I’m not a fan of scheming, con artist Chanel and have no desire for a repeat of the way she was when she first came to town.

Instead, I’d like for Chanel and Allie to find a way around Paulina’s manipulations. Kate has just as much money as Paulina, and so does Julie — surely the two of them can do something to help get the bakery up and running after all!

Lani Cuts Paulina Out / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I also hope that Allie isn’t trying too hard to convince herself she’s not attracted to women too.

The more this goes on, the more I miss Will. Allie REALLY needs to talk to her big brother about the confusion surrounding her sexual orientation!

Anyway, it just seemed like she was rushing to the bedroom with Tripp to try to prove to herself that she didn’t want Chanel. That’s going to blow up in her face one day, as well as deeply hurt Tripp.

He would have understood if she needed space now to figure out what she wanted, but if Allie drops the bombshell that she wants to be with Chanel after months of dating — or worse, cheats on Tripp — that’s not going to be so easy to forgive.

Chanel telling Paulina off again was satisfying, though. It reminded me of how Paige felt about Eve after the whole Eve/JJ debacle.

I was glad that Lani also stuck to her guns. Lani doesn’t always have the backbone she should, especially when it comes to Paulina, but it seemed like she finally found her voice now that Paulina has hurt her father.

Speaking of which, Abe had some strong scenes, too. He is clearly heartbroken and wants to forgive Paulina, but he can’t unless she undoes the mess she made.

And it’s terrible that constituents are taking it out on him when this whole thing was the opposite of his idea.

Fighting Over Justin / Tall - Days of Our Lives

I wish Abe had called Justin to try to get an injunction instead of saying that some off-screen lawyer said he had no recourse.

That would have been a better use of Justin than either of the two big stories Justin was involved in.

Ben and Ciara arguing over who Justin should represent were purely obnoxious. I don’t blame Justin for deciding he didn’t want anything to do with either of them, though I wanted him to choose Ben.

After all, Ben was there first, actually had an appointment, and doesn’t act like he’s entitled to the world.

Theo Shares Exciting News / Tall - Days of Our Lives

The Bonnie proposal scenes weren’t much better, either.

These two have been dating for a very short period of time, Justin was engaged to Kayla a little over a year ago, and there’s still the question of whether Justin is really attracted to Bonnie or thinks he is because she looks like Adrienne.

Oh well. At least Justin wasn’t actively mean to Ben like Chad was. Talk about unnecessary, fillerish scenes!

Ben’s storyline seems doomed to always being told by SOMEONE that he’s not good enough for Ciara. But in this case, it doesn’t really matter because Ciara will probably leave Theo at the altar for Ben anyway.

Ciara was competing with Sami for the meanest person, too. There’s no need to rush into a marriage with Theo, especially since she hasn’t succeeded in getting divorced yet!

And doing it on her and Ben’s anniversary? That’s just hateful.

Your turns, Days of Our Lives fanatics. Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know what you thought of Days of Our Lives during the week of 7-05-21.

Hungry for more Days of Our Lives chat? Be sure to check back on Sunday for our latest Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion.

Days of Our Lives airs on NBC on weekday afternoons. Check your local listings for airtimes.

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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