Ever since Tamara Braun’s Ava Vitali checked back into Days of our Lives in August, we learned the character’s been working on her mental health during her court-ordered time in Bayview. The last few weeks, she found herself on the business end of Susan Banks’s telepathic messages. She helped engineer an across-the-pond rescue of Elvis’s mom. And she may even be falling in love. Has Ava earned the redemptive stripes the show is clearly trying to give her?
Ava Vitali’s Road to Redemption
Ava’s history involves criminal activity of all kinds, including drugging, kidnapping, shooting, blackmailing, stalking, planting evidence, and more kidnapping. In fact, her going off a literal and metaphorical deep end to get back at EJ (Dan Feuerriegel) is what landed her in Bayview.
Most of Ava’s time in Salem’s psychiatric facility happened off-screen. So, we never got to see any intense therapy sessions with the doctors. Instead, we picked the story up with her hallucinations turning out to be Susan’s (Stacy Haiduk) psychic DMs. Once she and Harris figured out Susan was really alive, they broke out of Bayview to flee the hitman EJ hired to kill her and headed to London, where they stumbled upon a chained-up, very alive Susan.
After spending quality time with Harris (Steve Burton) in Bayview and on the run in London, Ava and Harris have been flirting and getting closer and closer. After all is said and done, Harris has admitted to Marlena (Deidre Hall) that he’s into Ava. The two have even shared steamy looks in the police station’s interrogation room and finally had their first kiss.
Ava’s fans are piling up. Marlena’s vouching for her. Tripp (Lucas Adams) and his girlfriend, Wendy (Victoria Grace), broke the law to forge the passports Ava and Harris needed to get to England. And a rescued Susan embraced her ex-captor. How did Ava go from kidnapper to a hugger all of a sudden? Now Susan’s telling Rafe (Galen Gering) she doesn’t want to press charges. Meanwhile, Johnny (Carson Boatman) scolds his dad, telling him to take it easy on Ava, and Nicole (Arianne Zucker) says things like, “Well, I think Ava may have redeemed herself this time.”
Ava’s Redemption Grade: C-
Has Ava redeemed herself? Now that she’s free (she’s not going to prison and doesn’t have to go back to Bayview), she says she “plans to walk the straight and narrow.” Is that even possible for a character like this? Her first instinct is almost always to do the wrong thing. Honestly, we’re not sure Ava’s traveled the road to redemption long enough.
Right now, it feels like the writers are working overtime to redeem the former mafia princess in order to sell this love story with Harris. It’s going to be a while before we believe Ava’s criminalistic urges have faded away. There’s one saving grace: If anyone can get us to believe in Ava’s redemption, it’s Tamara Braun.
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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