Days of Our Lives Review for the Week of 12-26-22: Gabi Regains Her Memory!

Spoilers

Wow! Gabi’s wedding became a must-see drama when Gabi began to recall Rolf’s confession about brainwashing Stefan.

Wedding disasters are so common in Salem that Jada might have been serious when she said she studied them during her police academy training.

Despite the silly premise of this brainwashing story, Gabi’s realization that her new husband had betrayed her on Days of Our Lives during the week of 12-26-22 was one of the best, most riveting reveals the soap has ever had.

Rafe Arrests Li - Days of Our Lives

The pieces were set for yet another wedding where someone interrupts to reveal the truth. Wendy and Johnny had been arguing for weeks over whether to keep their knowledge to themselves (thank God those tedious conversations are over now!) and Wendy was Gabi’s maid of honor.

Gabi poured it on thick, as characters about to be betrayed tend to do, giving Wendy a bracelet inscribed with the word hermanas, which is Spanish for sisters, and going on and on about how glad she is that Wendy will soon be like a sister to her.

Gabi even mentioned that Wendy helped ease the pain of losing Gabi’s older sister, who passed away years ago. She was so effusive in her praise of Wendy that I thought she was secretly in love with her instead of Wendy’s brother!

Given Gabi’s over-attachment to Wendy and Wendy’s extreme guilt over keeping this secret, I was sure Wendy would blab. And true to form, Wendy jumped up as soon as the Justice of the Peace asked if anyone objected.

Sometimes, Days of Our Lives commits to the predictable route, but this time it was a fakeout — Wendy chickened out and stammered about how happy she was that her brother and her favorite new person were getting married.

That left viewers wondering how the heck this secret would come out. The writers couldn’t leave Gabi married to the man who ordered Rolf to brainwash Stefan, but it appeared the wedding was going full steam ahead.

Arresting the Groom - Days of Our Lives

We soon found out, as Rolf frantically tried to reach Li to warn him that the memory drug he gave Gabi might wear off, and Gabi suddenly began having flashes of memory.

Camilla Banus did excellent work as Gabi slowly began to remember the truth and became increasingly horrified. Eric Martsolf’s facial expressions when Brady learned that Kristen was involved in this scheme also deserve mention here, as they added a lot to the scene without Brady saying a word.

Kristen: What do you think you’re doing?
Rafe: My job.
Kristen: You know, this is ludicrous.
Li: She’s right. You’re really going to arrest us?
Kristen: Yeah, based solely on the recovered, perhaps fabricated memory of clearly an unstable woman. I mean, come on, look at her dress. It alone proves she’s not in her right mind.

The post-reveal scenes were also intense, with Li denying everything for as long as he could and Kristen making snarky and uncalled-for comments even as Rafe and Jada dragged her away for her part in the scheme.

The only disappointment here was that Gabi didn’t realize that Wendy knew the truth all along.

Gabi had overheard Wendy saying that she was keeping a secret from the bride, and Wendy didn’t seem shocked that her brother had brainwashed his rival. She should have realized that the woman she’d just called her adopted sister had betrayed her too.

Gabi's World Crumbles - Days of Our Lives

Is the payoff for Gabi’s sudden closeness with Wendy still coming, or will that secret stay dead and buried now that Gabi knows the more important truth?

While Wendy knew about the brainwashing and was willing to keep that secret, she did get a nasty surprise when Gabi said that Li had tried to kill Stefan. That was a bridge too far for Wendy, and she disowned her brother after he got out of jail.

Brothers and sisters don’t often stay estranged for long on Days of Our Lives, but the fallout here should be interesting. Wendy has fought for years for her brother to see her as an equal despite her gender, and he currently holds the keys to her employment.

Could Li use that to blackmail Wendy into forgiving him or helping him get Gabi to take him back? Conversely, Wendy could threaten to tell their father the entire truth if Li doesn’t do what she wants.

Gabi Remembers - Days of Our Lives

The arrest/release scenario was confusing. I don’t understand Rafe’s plan here, especially since the evidence he needs is on Li’s phone.

Setting Li free means Li can delete that voicemail. In real life, the police could probably retrieve it, but in Salem, gone might mean gone.

In any case, what sense did it make to let Li and Kristen go? Rafe had 72 hours before the DA had to charge or release them, and it would have made more sense to leave them in jail where they wouldn’t be able to destroy evidence while Rafe looked further into this.

It’s also not clear what crime Rafe was arresting them for. Is there a Salem statute against conspiracy to brainwash people? Rafe never said exactly what he was hoping to charge them with, although if he can prove that Li tried to kill Stefan, that would be a good start.

Nancy Shares Her Opinion - Days of Our Lives

Since Gabi’s reveal scenes were juxtaposed with Chloe and Stefan kissing, I’d hoped that Stefan would begin to regain his memories too. Chloe was dressed in a white outfit and had long, dark hair similar to Gabi’s, so it seemed like it was going to trigger the memories Rolf had tried to eliminate.

Sadly, that was not to be.

Instead, Days of Our Lives went for the usual trope of someone walking in on their loved one having sex with a rival.

Gabi really should not be shocked by this. She knew that Stefan and Chloe were on a romantic getaway and that Stefan believes he hates Gabi and loves Chloe.

Maybe Gabi will rein in her anger and jealousy for long enough to tell Stefan and Chloe what happened at her wedding. Let’s hope so!

Stephanie and Alex Kiss - Days of Our Lives

The arrest almost derailed Eric and Brady’s kidnapping plan. I wish it had stayed that way.

This plan is stupid and unnecessary, and Eric made it super obvious that he’d taken Rachel. Rachel also should have remembered that she’s not supposed to keep trips secret from Mommy and Daddy since Brady talked with her about that after Kristen tried the same trick while on the run.

If Eric and Brady were going to go this route, they should have involved John and Marlena. All four want to get rid of Kristen, and Marlena needs to know that her health could still be compromised.

There was no reason for them to be working at cross-purposes here. And having Brady pretend to want to take Kristen on a date is a terrible idea. It’ll only encourage her delusions.

John Aniston's Final Appearance - Days of Our Lives

There were few weaknesses in the wedding reveal story, and the ones that existed were more annoying than anything.

One problem: Ari’s exclusion from the wedding. She was off-screen during the entire wedding prep scene. Gabi was bringing her tea because Ari was wired and needed to calm down, only to return with the news that Ari was ill and throwing up.

It felt like the writers forgot what dialogue they’d already written and went in a different direction without warning. Obviously, they wanted a reason to keep her away from the wedding disaster, but how it was handled created unnecessary confusion.

There were a few silly things, such as trying to save money on sets by having the wedding ceremony in the reception venue. This wasn’t a problem in and of itself, but it seemed like the wedding was interrupting the party, which was strange.

Bonnie Inadvertently Raises Sarah's Suspicions - Days of Our Lives

Still, the reveal was so strong that these minor details were easy to overlook.

Nicole and EJ’s honest conversation was the best thing to come out of this mess.

EJ: Now that you know the truth, you must think I’m a terrible person.
Nicole: This hasn’t changed my impression of you. I always thought you were a terrible person. But it’s okay, because I’m one too.

These two have had a horrible past, with EJ being so horribly abusive toward Nicole that she tried to keep it secret from him that she was pregnant with his baby. That makes it difficult to believe EJ doesn’t have some dark agenda behind his kindness toward Nicole now.

But since all of Salem feels a need to treat Nicole like she’s scum on the bottom of their shoes, EJ’s support of her and his belief that she’s a decent person underneath are refreshing.

I still don’t ship them and wish that Rafe would stop acting like a middle schooler when it comes to Nicole, but at least someone treats Nicole like a human being.

Eli Visits Paulina - Days of Our Lives

Gabi’s shock paralleled another big reveal: Sarah discovered that Xander had been the creepy clown behind Bonnie and Susan’s kidnapping.

Sarah and Xander have been down this road far too many times already. Xander always swears to be a changed man while being anything but, and Sarah eventually discovers his latest crime and dumps him.

But she’s right — Xander contributed to Susan’s death (assuming she’s really not among the living anymore!) and Bonnie’s mental health issues, and an apology isn’t nearly enough to make up for it.

Days of Our Lives also featured John Aniston’s final scenes, followed by a tribute full of clips of Victor over the years. This was a bittersweet, beautiful memorial to the actor and character.

Is Sonny Sleeping With Leo? - Days of Our Lives

Victor was his snarky self up until the end. His voice was more frail and shaky than it had ever been, and he could no longer stand and had to sit for his final scenes, but everything he said to Sonny was either hilarious, made perfect sense, or both.

Sonny has lost his mind when it comes to Leo. He’s putting Leo’s needs above everything — not only Victor’s wishes when Victor owns the house but also Sonny’s marriage to Will.

Victor was right when he said that Sonny’s attitude toward Leo was the stupidest thing he had ever heard. Had John Aniston been able to continue contributing to Days of Our Lives, Victor likely would have been able to give a glorious I-Told-You-So at the end of this mess, and when Will showed up, I wondered if Victor had called him to try to get rid of Leo.

I will miss Victor terribly. How about you, Days of Our Lives fanatics?

In Memory of John Aniston - Days of Our Lives

Hit the big, blue SHOW COMMENTS button and let us know your thoughts. And if you’d like to chat more about Days of Our Lives, check out the latest Days of Our Lives Round Table discussion on Sunday!

Days of Our Lives streams exclusively on Peacock. New episodes drop on weekdays at 6 AM EST / 3 AM PST.

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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