♥ Strike Out ♥

♥ Strike Out ♥

Note on soap magazine publication dates and content of articles/interviews regarding multiple soap stars: Many of the monthly or every other month (and sometimes quarterly) magazines back in the 1980's would be on the newsstands a long time before the date on the actual magazine. We've tried to date the articles to match the date on the magazine, regardless of when the events talked about took place. Hopefully it will make sense as you go along!

We've also edited some of the articles/interviews to just include John's storyline, since this is a Drake/John website. We've left out comments and sections about other actors or storylines unless they're involved with John's storyline. This too should be very apparent and clear when we've done that so it makes sense and you don't have to skim through a long article to find the "John parts."


Thumbs Up! And Down!
Best Of Show Or Worse For Wear?
Blue Ribbons And Booby Prizes

Thumbs Down! DAYS OF OUR LIVES - Three's A Crowd:

Let's just say it: The love triangle between John, Marlena and Roman on DAYS OF OUR LIVES doesn't sizzle. We've been waiting for it to catch fire since Roman came back-from-the-dead, but this plot is non-combustible.

Why? Well, there's the fact that no one (except Eric and Sami) is rooting for Roman. When he was a dying man who just wanted to reunite with his ex before he kicked the bucket, we felt sorry for him. But ever since he recovered and learned that John and Marlena are in love, Roman's been pursuing Marlena, shamelessly dredging up the past in an effort to reconnect. (By the way, we haven't forgotten that a terminally ill Roman previously gave his blessing to John and Marlena via a letter.)

As for Marlena, her character has taken a beating. She and John triumphed over countless earthly (and unearthly) obstacles to be together. Suddenly, when the path is clear, she's not sure? No matter what happened to Marlena, she always upheld her honor.

Of the three, John has fared best. Steadfast in his love, he's nonetheless losing patience, and we can't blame him. (Nearly every week, he begs Marlena to choose.) As for Marlena's kids, will someone please smack Eric and Sami and remind them that John spent years being their devoted dad?

Bottom line: DAYS did such a great job cementing John and Marlena as a couple that viewers find it hard to see them with anyone else.



Thumbs Up! And Down!
Best Of Show Or Worse For Wear?
Blue Ribbons And Booby Prizes

Thumbs Down! DAYS OF OUR LIVES - Lost Passion:

We realize that there are a lot of characters on DAYS OF OUR LIVES, and not everyone can be front-burner. That said, we still have a question: What the heck is going on - or to put it more accurately, not going on - with John and Marlena?

The popular couple that overcame every imaginable (and unimaginable) obstacle to be together is now languishing in Limbo Land. Where's the romance and excitement that we expect - and need - from this pair? After months of watching a chaste triangle, Roman bowed out of the competition for Doc's heart. John and Marlena reunited, and had a little fun in New Orleans, but since then, it's been slim pickings in the passion department, and the audience feels cheated. Granted, life hasn't exactly been a bed of roses on the homefront, what with Sami being jailed for killing Franco and that eternal, infernal investigation of John's murky past, but ya know what? If John and Marlena waited for things to quiet down in Salem before getting in some quality time together, it'd never happen.

So, here's another question for DAYS: Can't John and Marlena cope with their pesky problems and still have a great love life? They're about the only happy couple left in town, and viewers are starving for a little romance.



Rates Ghostly Visions

Heavenly visits to help loved ones through difficult times tug at our heartstrings. For the best ghostly love stories to truly and believably work, the ghost needs to impact their loved one and move their story forward. If the ghost simply returns as a ratings stunt, the storyline flatlines. See which of your favorite shows had the best ghost stories...

Return Rating Five - Isabella Finds John In His Darkest Hour On DAYS:

We love seeing Staci Greason reprise the popular role of Isabella in ghostly form on DAYS, but her last comeback wasn't what it should have been. Last summer, she saved Eric from death and visited John, but we wish she had come again when son Brady needed her. Isabella's return could have illuminated how deeply Brady hurts inside because he never got to know the woman who gave birth to him. Why she would come to Eric in his time of need and not her son is a mystery to us. Curtis Reed's visit in virtual reality was much more effective because Curtis always reminds Austin where he came from and what he has survived...



Hit...Or Miss!
Miss - DAYS' Fizzling
Family Feud

DAYS OF OUR LIVES brought back the DiMera clan to at long last explain the reason for their hatred of the Bradys, but DAYS hasn't exactly followed through to the letter(s).

Fraught with silly weekly calamities keeping University Hospital in business (and even sillier flashbacks), the biggest fumble has been the criminal underuse of John, Marlena, Bo, Hope and Roman - ya know, the actual people the DiMeras tormented. They played story hour for most of the summer while other key players like Doug, Julie, Lexie and Celeste barely rated at all.

Sure, Sami and EJ represent the Salem of tomorrow, but double the pleasure at the expense of the vets is overkill. Putting aside the THORN BIRDS redux of Colleen and Santo, how is it that Stefano and Grandpa Shawn, who have known Sami for years, never before noticed her resemblance to her sainted aunt? Och, saints preserve us!

DAYS needs to preserve its actual history. Instead of locking ginormously pregnant Sami in a sauna with EJ and giving their fans a scantily clad "kiss" in the form of CPR, how about breathing life back into John's hatred of Stefano? The Phoenix's hired gun has been reduced to eating beer nuts at the Brady Pub while his beloved Doc worries about Belle's relationship. Shouldn't these two, who suffered so greatly at Stefano's hands (Hello, multi-year captivity!), get to kick some DiMera ass?

Their enemies have fared no better. Though André and Tony dogpiling on baby of the family "Elvis" is always hilarious, sticking class act Thaao Penghlis in a habit and an ugly wig is no laughing matter. Maybe showing him with Leann Hunley's Anna takes too much time away from the naughty novice and the winsome widower?

"Leather folios, love letters, that doesn't cut it," Steve told Bo during one of their rare scenes together. No kidding: DAYS needs to put the FAMILY back in their FAMILY FEUD.

Or so our survey says.



Critical Mass
Miss DAYS: You Call That
A Supercouple Send-Off?!

If DAYS OF OUR LIVES' intention was to soothe fans furious over the ousting of Drake Hogestyn and Deidre Hall by reuniting John and Marlena and writing them off together, the show missed the mark - by a few thousand miles.

Let's face it, having hero John leave town a quadriplegic with a devoted Marlena by his side isn't exactly the stuff happily-ever-afters are made of. And the story leading up to the pair's departure was ludicrous. John's devoted therapist suddenly went mad and tried to off Marlena, but instead ended up injecting John with her debilitating serum. Physician, shrink thyself!

While John was fighting for his life, one year of brilliant, complex storyline - the character's memory loss and emergence into an enigmatic new man - was wrapped up in two scenes. John was suddenly flooded with flashes of his old life. Where was the drama? The intrigue for fans on the edge of their seats wondering whether John would finally recall all? Nonexistent.

Instead, John opened his eyes, announced, "I remember," and reconciled with Marlena. Hogestyn and Hall salvaged the moment - a credit to their chemistry and devotion to their characters - but then John was pronounced paralyzed, his only hope of recovery a facility in Switzerland.

John and Marlena remarried in a ceremony so fast that viewers were probably grateful the pair actually recited vows instead of text-messaging each other on their way to the airport. For fans who have been following the couple for two decades, the rapid exit and rushed "I do's" were a bona fide don't.

Janet Di Lauro, SOAP OPERA WEEKLY, 2/17/09

Return to Home Plate