New Writers Wish List
Here's what I want from the new writers:
1) Get rid of Dena Higley's creations
I'm looking at you Melanie, Daniel, Rafe, Gabi, Dario, and Quinn! These characters, especially the first three, have consumed Days of Our Lives in the past three years, and thanks to them, this show is barely recognizable. As for Chad, it could go either way---he has the DiMera connection, so the new writers could exploit that and turn him into a really interesting character.
2) Address poor casting choices
First off, why is Josh Taylor still on contract? Put him on recurring! Also, recast Abby. This new actress is just not working. And stop calling her Abigail---it's annoying and old-fashioned! She's Abby, for God's sake! Also, where is Celeste and why hasn't she been around to support Lexie ever since Theo was diagnosed as autistic? Bring her back!
3) Bring back old faves
I'm talking Marlena, John, Lucas, Carrie and Austin for starters. Marlena is the face of Days of Our Lives, its most iconic character, and she and John are one of the show's most popular supercouples. There is still plenty of story to tell with these characters. With Will "going gay", it makes sense for daddy Lucas to be part of this show. Plus he's a Horton and the show needs all the Hortons it can get. I love Carrie and Austin and would love to see them back on the show, either driving their own story or appearing in a supporting role like Justin and Adrienne.
4) Fix EJ's history
Not Higley's fault, but I hate that Days retconned EJ's history and erased his mother Susan's happy ending. Susan had one of the best exits in Days history and it's horrible that she supposedly lost her son to Stefano offscreen soon afterward. I'd make it so Susan raised EJ to adulthood, at which point Stefano found him and gave him false memories to make him think he'd been raised by Stefano.
5) Better pacing
Higley dragged her stories out too long. The difference between her and writers like James E. Reilly and William Bell, both of whom are notorious for slow-burning storylines, is that their stories were methodically paced. There may have been a long time between the beginning and end of a story, but there were several ups and downs (and PROGRESS) along the way that keep things moving. And every story is different. One story could take place over the course of 6 weeks whereas another story might need 6 months to tell.
6) More excitement and creativity
Higley's stories were just plain bad. They utilized tired soap cliches and were essentially rehashes of stories we've already seen on Days in the past 15 years. In addition to being slow, some of the stories were just plain boring! For example, I don't want to see Stefano diagnosed with diabetes or Theo diagnosed with autism. I want to see Stefano kidnap Marlena and plot to destroy all of Salem. I want Stefano, who would do anything for his family, use one of Dr. Rolf's experimental serums to cure Theo's autism (imagine the drama this would create for Lexie and Abe!). Stop trying to be so "realistic" (aka boring) and go back to being exciting!
7) A coherent identity
To please everyone, Days is going to have to combine its many identities into one. Is Days the family-relationships show, the supercouples show, or the sci-fi/supernatural/action-adventure show? If you lean too much in one direction, you risk alienating a large portion of the fanbase. To make the entire fanbase happy, a good writer will balance all these aspects of the show so everyone is satisfied.
Supercouples like Bo/Hope, Jack/Jennifer, and John/Marlena are so beyond love triangles. But that's not true for the young crowd! Where are the love triangles that used to drive this show? I'm talking about the kind that featured a young ingenue (i.e., Carrie, Marlena), a semi-clueless hunk (i.e, Austin, John) and a psycho bitch (i.e., Sami, Kristen)! Or how about a heroic hunk (i.e., Jack) fighting a diabolical villain (i.e., Peter) for a beautiful heroine (i.e., Jennifer)? How can there be romance on this show when there are no clearly defined couples to root for?
9) Actually evil villains
Under Higley, Stefano and Vivian were extremely neutered/spayed versions of their former selves. Remember when they committed deeds that were actually evil and despicable? Nothing they've done under Higley came close to anything they did in the past. Come on Days, make the villains truly villainous again!
10) Don't forget the comedy
Comedy helps balance the show and keep it from getting too dark or too serious. Characters like Calliope and Bonnie are examples who have lightened up the show in the past. I'm not saying bring them back specifically (although Judi Evans could play a dual role and Bonnie could be Adrienne's long-lost twin), but we need some light-hearted fun! Remember the hilarious situations Vivian and Ivan would find themselves in? Not so with her and Gus! Ditch Gus and bring back Ivan! Hopefully Jack's return is a sign of some fun hijinks. Don't turn him into a walking joke or anything, but Jack and Jennifer have always been known for their more light-hearted, rom-com-esque adventures.
11) Stop creating new characters!
There are plenty of pre-existing characters not on the show who deserve to be in Salem more than newcomers. For example, Daniel should have been Mike Horton. Melanie should have been Sarah Horton. There are several other young Bradys and Hortons out there who could come onto the show: Andrew and Jeannie Donovan, Eric Brady, Nicholas Alamain, Jeremy Horton---reach into Days' history and use characters who already exist instead of making up new ones!
12) Respect history
Remember Kim and Shane's blink-and-you'll-miss-it reunion last summer? Days should at least bring them back for a handful of episodes and have them remarry onscreen. They could use the opportunity to introduce Jeannie and Andrew to the young set. Days only seems to respect history when it comes to funerals.