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March 27-31
Salem, April 2, 2000 As the travelers prepared to return home it was evident that their problems would accompany them back to Salem.

Bo and John tried to get Kurt to reveal what he knew about Stefano and Gina, but he clamped up as tight as the straight jacket he was wearing and not even the Starsky and Hutch routine John and Bo put on made him talk.

Hope struggled with thoughts of what she might have done as Gina and what the real princess might have done when she passed herself off as Hope. Bo was determined to keep his Fancy Face in the dark until she is well enough to know the truth. In soap opera talk that means that the baby will be ready to head off to college before we know whom the father is.

There was a big welcome home shindig for Hope at the pub but the air was heavy with unanswered questions about the baby. Later, when Bo and Hope had dinner with John and Marlena at Tuscany the tension was as thick as the Taco Bell dog's accent. Hope asked John if he is content with having so many years of his life taken away from him and not knowing what he did as Stefano's pawn. He replied that Marlena's love is all he needs and that she should put aside her curiosity for now and work on her relationship with Bo. We all know why he doesn't want Hope poking into her past as Gina, don't we? When John and Marlena were dancing he begged her to promise him that she will never leave him. She went into her wifely speech about how she is still amazed at the fact that she is married to this extraordinary man. I'm still amazed at how fertile his sperm is.

Greta and Eric pondered how their relationship would change now that they will be leading relatively normal lives. If Nicole has anything to say about it there won't be a relationship to worry about.

Nicole went to see Rex Collins to persuade him to take her on as a client. She put on an act that would have made Sharon Stone proud and he acceded. Unfortunately when he tried to "collect" on what she had been hinting at, she whacked him over the head with what looked liked a cigarette box. When he came to he told her she needed psychiatric help and that he did not need that kind of trouble. She went into sex kitten mode and they got it on in his office. That girl would put an alley cat to shame.

Victor was in high spirits, for a change, as he thought of recovering his 5,000,000 dollars. Kate also seemed more relaxed now that Nicholas seems to be out of the picture. Whatever happened to that storyline? Those writers change their minds more often than Elizabeth Taylor changes husbands.

Brandon advised Sami to dump Austin if she wants to regain custody of Will. He explained to her that she will have to fight dirty in order to go up against Lucas and Austin is too much of a straight shooter to condone any devious tactics. That Brandon is a real piece of work. It's one thing to live your life as a scumbag but to recruit people to do the same is pathetic. While he and Sami were talking in Salem Place, some poor guy accidentally brushed up against her and Brandon almost ripped his head off.

Austin decided to go back to his old job at Titan. I can't quite remember exactly what that was but that's another matter. He ran into Greta at .Com and they talked about the intricacies of dating. Remember it was Greta and Austin talking. Those two would think that a Magna Doodle is complicated.

Stefano returned to Salem with Lexie and she tried to get Abe to soften his position on daddy dearest. Abe was as receptive to that as Charlton Heston is to the proposal of stiffer gun control laws. It's too bad Lexie wasn't there when Steffy was roughing up Rolf. Then maybe she would have realized that a leopard can't change its spots.

Other tidbits:

There was an altercation at Salem Place when Brandon accused John of walking too close to Sami. John pulled out a bazooka and blew him to smithereens.

John decided to give up caffeine to see if that makes him less inclined to hurt people on a whim.

Sami tried to get on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" but Regis refused to have her as a contestant and explained that he has already done his penance by having to work with Kathie Lee for so many years.

Now that Maggie is the owner of Tuscany she will make some changes in the menu to represent life in Salem. Some new items will be:

Silly Salad
Lying Lima Bean Soup
Checkered Past Chicken
Treachery Trout
Lusty Loin of Pork
Conniving Peach Cobbler
Chocolate Loose Cake
Testy Tea

That's all for this week.

Note: There will be no review next week as I'll be on vacation.

March 20-24
Salem, March 26, 2000 Hope and Stefano were saved from the burning castle and not a moment too soon as an explosion obliterated the entire structure. John was the one who got to Stefano and he contemplated letting him burn but couldn't go through with it. I guess his tough guy demeanor is only meant for pushing women around.

Bo was reunited with his Fancy Face but the news of her pregnancy somewhat diminished his joy as he wrestled with the idea that another man had slept with the love of his life. I can't wait to see when he finds out it was two men who got to know Hope in the biblical sense.

Stefano who was unplugged more times than a concert on MTV, made it through the week and Lexie was at his side ready to defend him. He was convinced that his daughter's love is what got him through and he's already making plans for Hope's baby as he thinks there is a 50% chance that it's his.

Sami was dealt another blow when Micky informed her of the report that was issued by the judge in the custody case. It is the opinion of the court that Will is thriving in his present environment so unless Sami can dig up or make up some dirt regarding Lucas and Nicole, her chances of getting her son back are virtually nil. None the less, she continued to try to sway Austin to think that Lucas is a threat to Will but this time he wasn't buying it. In fact, Austin even brought up the possibility that maybe Sami misinterpreted Lucas' action the night that she accused him of hitting Will. That is two weeks in a row that Austin has exhibited signs of being able to have perceptive thoughts. Maybe all those punches to the head are good for him after all.

Kate and Victor commenced their sting operation on Nicole. They pretended they had the inside line on a very hot tip and then Victor let it slip that Rex Rollins has a weakness for beautiful women. Nicole, who fancies herself the hottest thing since Cleopatra, decided to hook Rex and get the tip herself but not before she put the moves on Victor as she figures she can put him under her spell as well. The last time I saw an ego that inflated I was reading Geraldo
Rivera's autobiography.

Greta decided to return to her mother's grave for one final goodbye. Let's see, that would make it farewell number 27 if I'm not mistaken. When she and Eric arrived at the gravesite they saw a deranged Kurt who had dug up Gina's coffin and was professing his love to her and planning to take her with him. Wouldn't an inflatable doll have been more easily accessible?

Lilli said farewell to Greta and wished her well with Eric. It's ironic that while they were talking, Eric was in the middle of an erotic fantasy involving Nicole. It must be true what they say that a man never forgets his first slut, I mean love.

Brandon finally convinced Larry to sue Abe and to use Benitez as his lawyer.

Other tidbits:

Nicole tried to seduce the Pope.

Stefano will be appearing in Conyers, Georgia next month.

Kurt signed up for a 12 step program for people who find decomposing cadavers desirable.

John asked a doctor in the Paris hospital to perform a vasectomy on him and backdate the records. Marlena offered to do the procedure without the use of anesthesia.

That's all for this week.

March 13-17
Salem, March 19, 2000 Abe and Lexie had dinner at Lady Vi's and ran into Brandon and Nicole. The photographers were strategically placed so that Abe and Brandon would reconcile and Abe tried but Brandon let him know, out of Lexie's earshot, that this war is far from over. Poor Abe, he's looked like a buffoon so many times lately, I'm surprised he hasn't been recruited by Puff Daddy to work as his PR person.

Sami realized she needed a job in order to try to get full custody of Will. She first resorted to her old techniques and tried to blackmail Kate. It didn't work as now Kate feels she has Victor in her corner and would be able to crush Sami in a second. So the raven-haired schemer had no choice but to try to get a job the old fashioned way. She applied for a clerical position at the hospital and Nancy gave her grief but then Brandon, Super Psychologist, persuaded the usually surly Mrs. Wesley to give Sami a chance to turn her life around. If that guy put as much effort in helping himself as he does in helping others maybe he wouldn't be so obnoxious.

Austin felt pressured by two women as Sami tried to dupe him into marrying her and Nicole unabashedly came on to him. Austin was able to fight off both Jezebels, but how long will he be able to resist either getting hitched to the town con artist or bedding the town slut? Decisions, decisions. Maybe he should write to Ann Landers.

Nicole bent on getting Sami and Will out of her life, tried to convince Lucas to let Sami have full custody of the little tyke. Is there no end to that woman's treachery? She makes Lady MacBeth look saintly.

Maggie, who obviously has found some of her old spunk, announced to Micky that she is bored with her complacent existence and wants to embark on a new adventure. She wants to open a restaurant. Later, they had dinner with Austin and Sami and the news Micky delivered was grim. It looks like by the time Sami gets custody of Will, he'll be eligible for Medicare.

Phillip went to see Chloe to convince her to give him her Chemistry notes so that he and his cronies could copy them. When she refused a headless chicken was left at the Wesley home. Nancy made a beeline over to the Kiriakis Mansion and gave Victor "what for" about his idiotic son. Victor ordered his son to make amends to Chloe and he did. The young Kiriakis seems to be developing feelings for Chloe. Now there's a couple. Gothic meets "Caulk Head."

Victor decided to employ the help of Rex Rollins, a renowned Wall Street investment banker, to fleece Nicole out of the five million dollars Kate gave her to marry Lucas. He told Rex to put together a sting and he and Kate would help him snare her, as they are good, "baiters and hookers." If he only knew.

In Paris, Gina was given a proper burial. Well, at least it started off that way but then the usual dramatics prevailed when the casket fell over and the Princess' body spilled out with her dainty hand pointing to the window of the turret. The last time I saw such a pathetic display, I was watching a foreign film on Bravo.

Although Kurt gave more clues than Regis Philbin everyone failed to discern that Hope was in the castle. John did find a secret entry in the garden that led to the dungeon where Stefano had hidden all the art treasures he had John and Gina steal for him. Lilli walked in and saw her Rennets and demanded that they be returned to her. John did what comes so naturally to him these days and man handled her out of the way, telling her that those paintings are evidence and cannot be touched.

Speaking of John, he was on a roll this week as he almost strangled Kurt to get him to talk and shoved Marlena aside because he was in the middle of one of his episodes as he was trying to look for clues. Does he always look like there is a foul odor amidst, or is it just me.

In the turret Stefano and Hope made one more desperate attempt to make their presence known and started a fire in the hearthstone, which quickly spread out of control. As they were all leaving Alice noticed the smoke coming out of the castle.

Other tidbits:

John won the Chris Rock Sensitivity Award.

Marlena decided to use a new radical treatment on John, which involves slapping him silly while she reminds him that he is so close to Divorce Land his passport is already stamped.

Stefano's heavy breathing won him a role in a training film for telephone perverts.

Greta and Eric had to be surgically separated.

That's all for this week.

March 6-10
Salem, March 12, 2000 Abe came out looking like an idiot at the arbitration hearing courtesy of Brandon as he followed him into the bathroom and goaded him into a little shoving match just as the arbitrator was walking in. You'd think a police commander would know better than to fall for such an obvious trick but then again the way Abe is being written nowadays, it's a wonder if he can walk and chew gum at the same time. Later at the hearing a contrite Brandon said he didn't want Abe fired or demoted and that furthermore any money he would get from the settlement he would donate to the South Side Athletic Fund. This is all part of his plan to get Larry Morris to be the one to take Abe down.

Victor, fed up with his freeloading houseguests, gave them all a month to move out. Nicole and Sami seized the opportunity to work on their respective guys. Nicole tried to get Lucas to give up custody of Will insisting that it would make the little tyke hate him if he separates him from his mother. Over in her camp, Sami worked on Austin to get him to marry her so that she would have a better chance of getting custody of her son. Austin declined, saying that a decision like that should be thought out. For once, those brain cells did what they are supposed to do; think.

As Stefano teetered on the edge of life, he saw himself turning into a Phoenix and rising from the ashes. It would have been better if he could turn himself into a smaller bird so that he can fit under the door of the turret and make his getaway. Food for thought.

The castaways were rescued off the island but not before we were treated to a talent show they put on to entertain themselves. Lilli did a rousing rendition of, "I'm still here" and Shawn accompanied her on a tiny piano that sounded like a 100-piece orchestra and then he sang a song, which he dedicated to his mom. Not to be outdone, Mimi and Belle did their version of Gilligan's Island appropriately titled Alice's Isle. I have a bit of advice for all of them except Lilli; keep your day jobs. The best part of the show was when Alice mentioned that it was her wedding anniversary and they all sang "Always" as she reminisced about Tom. We need more love stories like theirs.

Marlena worried about John after she mentioned the word submarine and he went ballistic. Maybe she should give him some of those tranquilizers that seem to work wonders for Lilli. Oh well, at least their lovemaking didn't skip a beat as they "did it" all over the island.

Bo made his way to Paris and tried to get the Duke and Duchess of Harriman to help him find Hope but they had their bodyguards rough him up instead, so he had no choice but to kick all their butts. He made Rambo look like Snow White. He then went on to the castle and told Kurt he was there to search it. After a solid two-minute quest he decided that his Fancy Face was not there. Hope tried to send him a telepathic message but I guess her transmitter was on the fritz.

Other tidbits:

Fed up with the manipulating women in their lives, Austin and Lucas decided to form a duo and take their act on the road. They'll be known as The Snooze Brothers.

Alice decided to stay in Paris and show those French people what donuts taste like.

Shawn serenaded Belle and was bombarded by shoes as people thought he was an alley cat looking for a mate.

Belle was offered a job singing back up for Alvin and the Chipmunks.

Lilli opens at the Blue Note next month.

That's all for this week.

February 28-March 3
Salem, March 5, 2000 DAYS came out of its recent lethargy as Rolf's power trip resulted in the downing of the jet. John almost single-handedly saved the day and the action scenes were worth watching. Alice was a real trooper and kept spirits high as the plane did a belly land in the ocean near an island. The castaways settled in and not a moment too soon a helicopter showed up. Everyone encouraged Bo to go on ahead and find Hope and the rest of them would wait for a rescue boat as the island did not have enough clearing for the chopper to land.

Bo and Marlena realized something was wrong with John as he was unable to snap out of his "commando on
amphetamines" mode. He insisted that all he needed was Marlena's love to see him through but by week's end it was evident that he was losing ground to hi s mercenary past.

Kate fretted about how Vivian was holding all the cards but Nicholas assured her that his aunt was gone for good and posed no threat. She still suggested that he leave town but he refused, stating that he now controls Vivian's shares at Titan and he intends to keep a firm grip on the business. We all know what he wants to have a firm grip on but that's another matter. Victor remained oblivious but was sure he and Kate would be able to get back on an even keel. Yes Victor, and Jennifer Lopez's dress at the Grammys made her look as dignified as Audrey Hepburn.

Abe overheard Lexie and Brandon talking and realized that his wife was handing his head over to his worst enemy on a silver platter so he exploded. Lexie was hurt by Abe's words and insisted she had done nothing wrong and that Brandon is innocent of trying to railroad him. When will she see the writing on the wall? When Abe is tarred, feathered and run out of town?

Nicole went to see her mother to try to find out why Brandon is so obsessed with destroying Abe. She plied Faye with tequila to try to get her to talk but she continued to feign ignorance. If this storyline were any duller they would have to threaten our loved ones to get us to watch.

Nancy tried to connect with Chloe by dressing like her. Excuse my "Romanisn" but what the hell was that all about? It looked to me like a feeble attempt to fill in time but then I'm probably just being cynical. In any case, the experiment failed miserably and Chloe blew up because she felt Nancy was mocking her. Craig tried to intervene but the usual teary scene ensued in which Nancy wonders what she's doing wrong. Well, for starters she acts more like an immature teenager than Chloe does. Maybe when Mrs. Wesley grows up and realizes she can't expect the daughter she abandoned to just forget the past without feeling hurt and betrayed those two will be able to make some headway in their relationship.

Sami and Austin went on another date and it was as exciting as watching ice cream melt. Austin is trying too hard and Sami acts as desperate as a liquor salesman in Amish country.

Greta and Eric went for a romantic swim in a lagoon on the island and just as they were getting hot and heavy, Gina's body surfaced next to them. I've heard of interfering mothers but this is ridiculous.

In the chateau, Kurt called his friend, a physician, and asked him to take care of Hope. Upon examining her he found that she was bleeding. He said that she should be taken to a nearby hospital and be seen by an obstetrician but Kurt persuaded him to treat her himself. Kurt reminds me of a Timex watch; he takes a licking but keeps on ticking.

Other tidbits (from the island, of course):

The Salem castaways found themselves on Gilligan's Island and they all tried to outdo each other with the following inventions, contraptions and discoveries:

Eric made a transmitter out of branches and the fillings in Lilli's teeth.

John made a car out of Alice's deep fryer and used Doug's glasses as the windshield.

Marlena came up with a formula to color her hair.

Lilli was able to put together a still and started a moonshine business.

Doug and Julie made an enormous slingshot and used it to try to propel themselves off the island and back to Paris

Alice came up with a recipe for banana donuts.

Belle and Shawn worked together on a solution to make their teeth brighter.

Mimi came up with an anti-obnoxious elixir to give to Phillip when they get back to Salem.

Greta made mud pies.

That's all for this week.


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