Lately we’ve seen quite a bit of promotion of Days in the press. Dena Higley along with the involving actors were on the Today show this week. Additionally we’ve had an actual press release of the upcoming story and last week’s promo gave a small hint of what was to come.
Theo Carver has been diagnosed with Autism. Many families have experienced this tragic scenario firsthand, including Dena herself. The fact our illustrious head writer on the show has her own autistic child should mean this story is going to be treated with a combination of sensitivity, realism and quality. I should be looking forward to this story so much, as it’s so different than the other plots of stolen disks, shipping wars and bad romances we’ve been forced to endure right?
Well I’m not. First, the biggest issue is it’s Lexie and Abe. I’ve never cared about them as a couple and I certainly don’t root for them to stay together. After Lexie’s many affairs, I don’t know why she and Abe are still together, especially since Dena decided it would be a good idea to write in marital difficulties before Theo was even mentioned. Why she chose to do that, instead of allowing friction to occur naturally because their son has been having behavioral problems at school and home is beyond me, as that could be somewhat sympathetic. However, if Abe and Lexie can’t seem to find a middle ground with each other in their careers and marriage after all this time, how would they survive this challenge? And more importantly do I want them to survive?
My next problem is, as usual, Dena decides to introduce a romance idea where one isn’t needed. Lexie and Daniel have been having scenes lately and like the improper timing of Chan starting up during Bo’s pancreas story which distracted me from RM’s awesome performances, this is totally distracting me from whatever was going on with Theo. However this time, I hope it’s not just an anti-shipping reaction I’m having here, but I do see sparks between RJ and SC and wouldn’t’ mind a chance for Lexie and Abe to fall apart naturally and let Lexie move on (properly this time) with a co-worker who she no doubt has a great deal in common with (if you take away his surfer talk). And God knows Daniel needs to date a woman, not a girl, so I can take him seriously as a romantic lead.
But that isn’t what they are going for, I’m sure. Another issue I am having is that Theo, as Paxton pointed out on TWoP, is a soap child. Mustering up any real concern for a soap child is difficult. With the exception of Claire, we rarely get a young child with dedicated screentime or significant lines. Their role is either to sit around looking cute or to be kidnapped by someone to draw the parents of the child closer. Soap children are never a bother as always a family member can always “watch” them so the parents of said child can go off gallivanting around to another country, have sex with each other/someone else, or sit at the hospital to “be there” for a loved one. Ciara and Joe are two children who come to mind that I do care for, but only because of my devotion to their parents while Johnny and Ali are two babies are REALLY don’t care for, simply cause two of the three parents are annoying me right now (usually). Perhaps this means an equation should be made to measure likability of soap children:
Child Welfare's Importance = (Parent1's importance + Parent2's importance )/Current Likability
But wait! I see Maxematician* is coming in telling me my formula is flawed, since Claire obviously outranked her onscreen parents in importance, likability and even acting. Well the point is if we lined up all the soap children in order of my caring about them from front to back, Theo would be last, simply because I keep forgetting the Carvers have a child to begin with, and it’s difficult to get worked up about two characters who have never interested me in the past.
However, it seems that Dena is already dropping the ball and it’s only begun! What would be the most important, I mean, PIVOTAL scene for this story? The diagnosis scene of course! That revelation moment where we get lots of soapy goodness of a random doctor to come in and tell Abe and Lexie what is the matter with their son! That was offscreen. Oh yes it was! Also what bothers me is I checked out on Sony’s DOOL site to look for pics as I always do in their “week in review” section. Abe and Lexie weren’t even included! This is the story they have been propping in print and interviews for weeks now and they don’t even include it in the weekly pictoral recap. Oh, I don’t have much faith in this.
*Thanks to Nolebucgrl for the nickname. I also have to add in she has an awesome NICKname for Nick in his new role on the show as the Max Whisperer!