When it comes to casting one actor in multiple roles, Days of our Lives has gone where few other daytime dramas have dared to — continually bringing back popular stars from yesteryear to portray totally new and different characters.
Days of our Lives: Double Duty
It’s an acting challenge, but several performers have risen to the occasion. Most recently, Emily O’Brien checked out as Gwen, and seconds later, checked back in as Theresa. Here’s a list of others who have done something similar.
Cast as blue-collar cop Roman Brady in 1981, Wayne Northrop became an instant Salem hero and created supercouple magic with Deidre Hall’s Marlena. In 2005, he resurfaced as psychiatrist Alex North, Marlena’s abusive ex-husband. It was a major shift, but Northrop handled it with aplomb.
Renee Jones made her DAYS debut back in 1982 as Nikki Wade, a young secretary at the Salem Police Department with a major crush on Abe Carver (James Reynolds). She returned to the soap as Lexie, a cop, in 1993, and this time around became Abe’s wife.
Thaao Penghlis has wavered back and forth between two characters during his long tenure in Salem that began back in 1981 — dashing, debonair Count Tony DiMera and his ruthless evil cousin, Andre.
After years of playing feisty heroine Hope Williams Brady, the role she was cast in in 1983, and being paired with Peter Reckell’s Bo Brady, Kristian Alfonso veered over the dark side in 1999. Suddenly, she portrayed twisted Princess Gina Von Amberg, a woman obsessed with John Black (Drake Hogestyn).
Josh Taylor went from playboy to family man during his two stints at DAYS. He originally played restaurant owner Chris Kositchek on and off from 1977 to 1987. In 1997, he returned to the show as Roman Brady – a father of five: Carrie, Sami, Eric, Rex, and Cassie.
DAYS fans first met Judi Evans when she won the role of shy, sweet Adrienne Johnson in 1986, the woman who won Justin Kiriakis’s (Wally Kurth) heart. In 2003, she resurfaced as brash and sassy Bonnie Lockhart, who, ironically, ended up marrying Justin, too.
Galen Gering began his DAYS reign as FBI agent Rafe Hernandez in 2008, a man devoted to serving and protecting the town’s citizens. In 2011, he had a six-month run as Arnold Feniger, a small-time criminal who had plastic surgery to look like Rafe and was hired by the DiMeras to infiltrate the cop’s life.
Eileen Davidson tackled four alter egos during her years at DAYS. She started out as the devious Kristen DiMera in 1993. A few years later, she was portraying wacky Susan Banks – a quadruplet, along with her siblings Sister Mary Moira, Penelope Kent, and Thomas Banks.
When Stacy Haiduk took over as the new Kristen in 2018, she jumped on the multi-character bandwagon too. Before long, she was also playing Susan Banks and even tackled Sister Mary Moira in 2023.
Originally cast as mob princess Ava Vitali in 2008, Tamara Braun’s character was obsessed with her ex, Steve Johnson (Stephen Nichols), and posed a threat to his relationship with Kayla (Mary Beth Evans). In 2011, Braun briefly appeared on the soap as Nicole’s (Arianne Zucker) sister, Taylor, and rival for EJ DiMera.
Beloved as Dr. Marlena Evans since her debut in 1976, Deidre Hall has played Salem’s most trusted psychiatrist for nearly five decades. In 2004, she took on the role of Marlena’s lookalike, a shifty gum-smacking broad named Hattie Adams, the character that had been originated by her real-life sister, Andrea Hall.
Deidre Hall isn’t the only Hall sister who’s done double duty on DAYS. Her twin, Andrea Hall, portrayed Marlena’s twin, Samantha, for a multi-year stint that began in 1977. After a long hiatus, Andrea took on the role of Hattie Adams in 2000.
Former General Hospital star Brandon Barash took over the role of Stefan O. DiMera in 2020, the latest heir to the late great Stefano. In between the character dying and being brought back to life in 2022, he also portrayed his twin brother Jake DiMera, a former auto mechanic turned corporate businessman.
Kyle Lowder started his run in Salem as John Black’s (Drake Hogestyn) belligerent son Brady Black in 2000, eventually falling in love with Chloe (Nadia Bjorlin) and exiting the soap in 2005. In 2018, he was back on the canvas as Dr. Rex Brady, a role originated by Eric Winter.
Robert Scott Wilson
In 2014, Robert Scott Wison began a long run as Ben Weston, the Necktie Killer, who was eventually rehabilitated and became Ciara’s (Victoria Konefal) devoted husband. A few weeks after the couple sailed off into the sunset together in 2022, the actor was back on the canvas as ladies’ man Alex Kiriakis, donning a new hairstyle and spectacles.
Stephen Nichols burst onto the daytime scene as Steve “Patch” Johnson in 1985, a one-eyed thug, who promptly terrorized Kayla (Mary Beth Evans) and then ended up falling madly in love with her. In a crazy DAYS twist, Nichols re-emerged as the late Stefano in 2019, his essence and memories implanted into Steve’s subconscious.
Days of our Lives airs weekdays on Peacock+ in the U.S. and The W Network or Global TV App in Canada. For more about what’s coming up in Salem, check out all the latest DAYS spoilers, and for an in-depth look at the show’s history, click here.
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