It may not make much sense given what’s come before it, but the Days of our Lives late in life coming out storyline continues to be the gift that keeps on giving as far as award-worthy performances are concerned. This week, it was Patrika Darbo who shone brightest. Soap Hub is bestowing Performer of the Week for DAYS’ honors on Darbo for her righteous indignation as Nancy Wesley.
Patrika Darbo – Performer of the Week
Darbo’s alter ego was initially all sweetness and light, bubbly and vivacious. Nancy Wesley, you see, is on a mission to reunite her daughter, Chloe Lane (Nadia Bjorlin) with Brady Black (Eric Martsolf), and she’d formulated a plan: a double date; the two of them, and Nancy and Craig Wesley (Kevin Spirtas).
Chloe blanched at the idea, then finally agreed to meet her folks, with Brady in tow, for coffee and desserts. Pacified, Nancy scampered off with Craig.
At the Brady Pub, Nancy was awash in nostalgia, and Darbo’s face brightened as she waxed lyrically about the establishment’s never-changing interior and of feeling like she’d be reunited with the late Caroline Brady at any moment.
A prickly Roman Brady (Josh Taylor) brought Nancy back down to earth, but in a matter of minutes, she had him firmly on her side and ready to forgive her and Craig for the heartache they’d caused his poor daughter decades prior.
Time passed. Nancy continued chit-chatting. Finally, Craig lowered the boom. His wife had been right all along. He was seeing someone else.
Nancy’s all-consuming rage was palpable. You could see it in her body language – especially in those fists balled tight – hear it her vocal inflection which Darbo raised an octave with each successive sentence.
When Roman tried to intervene Nancy momentarily directed her ire towards him – “You mean me! You want me to keep my voice down because I’m the one who’s being loud…” – before resuming her castigation of Craig, that “sleazy little wimp,” whom she eventually doused in piping hot clam chowder. It was a glorious scene, made even more so by Nancy’s parting shot. “I hope it melts your privates!”
Honorable Mention: Kevin Spirtas
Real talent is required to elevate character assassinating material, and Spirtas has got it in spades. When he issued his apologies to Darbo’s Nancy, the sincerity was oh so evident. And when he finally choked out Craig Wesley’s truth – “I’m in love with a man” – it was delivered with a mixture of regret and relief that only a true master of his craft could muster.
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.