Xander Kiriakis’s litany of crimes could fill a police station’s roster of wanted posters. From international diamond smuggling to kidnapping Nicole and Holly to shooting Brady and leaving him for dead, he’s done it all and then some. Yet, somehow Days of our Lives has managed to transform him from heinous thug to viable leading man.
Days of our Lives Bad Boy Reforms
How is that possible? It all started with a special friendship. Then add a few altruistic deeds into the mix and, suddenly, he was on his way from heel to kind of/sort of hero.
The Maggie Factor
Step one in Xander’s road to respectability took place the day he had a heart-to-heart talk with Maggie (Suzanne Rogers). He opened up to his Uncle Victor’s (John Aniston) wife about his troubled childhood and the heartbreaking loss of his mother.
It was viewers’ first glance at a vulnerable and woeful Xander. Maggie sympathized with Xander’s pain and felt for the wounded little boy inside him. She reached out to him with kindness and compassion. She was understanding, and it touched Xander deep down in his soul.
Doing Good Deeds
Maggie’s genuine affection sparked something in Xander. Suddenly, someone cared and was concerned about him, and it prompted him to try to do better. When he found out Maggie needed Dr. Rolf’s diary to help save Will’s life, Xander came through and delivered it. It was his first good deed and it quickly begot another.
When Kristen ordered him to kill Ted and Kate, he defied her; instead locking the pair up in the DiMera tunnels. And, later, when he thought Maggie had caused the fateful Mother’s Day accident that claimed Adrienne and Sarah’s baby’s life, he pulled out all the stops to spare her from a drunk driving arrest.
Falling for Sarah
The final step in Xander’s thug turnaround came when he found himself instantly smitten with Sarah (Linsey Godfrey). As his feelings grew to head-over-heels love, he did absolutely anything and everything to capture her attention and, in turn, heart. He was by Sarah’s side throughout her pregnancy and even delivered her baby girl. And when that baby girl tragically died, he did the unthinkable – switched her daughter with Brady (Eric Martsolf) and Kristen’s (Stacy Haiduk) live infant to spare Sarah the pain of losing a child.
Obviously, it was wrong and ended up causing Sarah heartbreak in the end, when she had to relinquish the little girl to her real mother. But the bottom line is that Xander had done it all for love — a key attribute to being a daytime leading man. Days of our Lives (DOOL) airs weekdays on NBC. Check your local listings for airtimes.