It’s rare for a soap to have one actor appear in five straight episodes, but DAYS knew that powerhouse Tamara Braun – the latest recipient of Soap Hub’s Performer of the Week kudos – could shoulder the burden.
Tamara Braun – Performer of the Week
From the get-go, Braun had her work cut out for her. Early emotions she was called to portray included concern (for the pain being endured by her alter ego’s significant other), bemusement (at the haughty ramblings of her and Jake’s unwanted houseguest), bewilderment (again, courtesy of Kristen “Overstaying Her Welcome” DiMera), and just plain irritation – and all of that took place in a single scene!
Then came Ava’s internal battle with the green-eyed monster, a byproduct of Jake having wondered aloud if he should warn his ex-girlfriend that trouble in the form of Kristen might be headed her way.
Braun paced the bedroom set, fists clenching, eyes firmly shut, mouth repeating the same phrase over and over again – “Don’t be an idiot!” It would have been funny if we weren’t keenly aware of what tends to happen when Ava gets overly jealous.
Jake managed to soothe the beast within Ava, and he even got her to vocalize a previously mute realization – “I think I’m falling for you…I didn’t plan it, but there it is.”
Surprise, surprise – or maybe not at all – that’s exactly how Jake felt about Ava, except he didn’t think that he’d fallen for her, he knew that he’d fallen for her; and he wanted to make it known just how far he’d fallen by putting a ring on Ava’s finger.
But fate would not be kind to the lovers. A gunman with nothing left to lose fired a bullet into Jake when he refused to follow a few simple demands, and the prognosis by all accounts was bleak.
At the hospital, a disillusioned, devastated Ava collapsed into a chair took in the sight of her bloodstained hands. When a Good Samaritan came to check on her, Braun was at once hostile and then, having allowed her character to recognize the spirit in which she had been approached, she softened.
No doubt Tamara Braun’s shining moment came during Ava’s farewell exchange with Jake’s spirit. She was alternatively harsh and dulcet, reproving and resolute. It was a performance that won’t soon be forgotten.
Days of our Lives (DOOL) airs weekdays on NBC. Check your local listings for airtimes. For more about what’s coming up in Salem, check out all the latest that’s been posted on DAYS spoilers, and for an in-depth look at the show’s history, click here.