‘Days of Our Lives’ Product Placement Goes Viral

Days of Our Lives (NBC)

Days of Our Lives (NBC)

Non-Soap Blogs Discover ‘Days of Our Lives’ Product Placement

Days of Our Lives‘ fans have been amused by the show’s blatant product placement for years.  I, and other soap bloggers, have cringed at the embarrassing conversations about Midol and numerous other brands that paid to be incorporated into the scripts.

This week a YouTube compilation of them went viral.  It all started on Twitter.   On November 13th comedian Kristen Schaal posted a couple of the clips under the hash tag #soapoperaproductplacement.  A viral video sensation was born. Monday, Gawker TV posted five of the most notorious scenes, including Sami educating E.J. about chex mix on a picnic and Arianna and Gabi’s conversation about Midol.  By the end of the week, the clips had been posted on numerous sites including Fox News, CNN and The Hollywood Reporter.

I must admit, watching the clips back to back is hilarious.  In all fairness, an equally funny compilation could exist for the ABC soaps and the Campbell’s Soup Go Red Ball or the CW, which has sold its soul to Bing and various cell phone companies, or Alison Sweeney’s primetime series, ‘The Biggest Loser.’ This is probably not the publicity ‘Days’ was hoping for on its 45th anniversary, but it certainly has people talking about the show.  Executive Producer Ken Corday should send Schaal a thank you note.

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Daisy the Soap Opera Wrecking Machine

Some soap characters are albatrosses that seemingly drag entire shows down with the sheer weight of their own lameness.  The energy drainers tend to be young women with tangential connections to the rest of the characters played by uncharismatic actresses who, upon their arrival on the show, are immediately placed at the center of frontburner umbrella storylines.

Last year, Stacey (Crystal Hunt) ruined months of ‘One Life To Live.’   Something similar happened with Sabrina (Raya Meddine) on ‘The Young & the Restless.’

Y&R is doing  it again with the return of Daisy (Yvonne Zima). Viewers were not interested in the character the first time around.   Now that she is pregnant, apparently with Daniel’s (Michael Grazadei’s) child, she is suddenly the most important person in Genoa City.

Phyllis (Michelle Stafford) has offered to be her guardian while she is pregnant.  Kevin (Greg Rikaart) wants to adopt her child.  Daniel must figure out whether he wants her kid.  Lauren (Tracey Bregman) and Jana (Emily O’Brien) are angered by her presence.  Really? With all of the interesting characters in Genoa City, some of whom have been languishing on the backburner, the show is going to put Daisy at the center of the action?  I do not understand.

Diane has just returned.  She’s a trouble making character, now being played by an Emmy award-winning actress, who already has ongoing, non-contrived ties to multiple major characters.  Yet Daisy seems to be getting just as much, if not more, airtime.

Saddling the freespirited Daniel with a child will age him.   Giving the chronically wimpy Kevin a desire to be a single parent to someone else’s child makes him seem like even less of a leading man. (I really wish Y&R had not pointed out that he and Chloe have a ‘Will & Grace‘ vibe.  It makes it difficult to see them as a potential romantic couple.)  Phyllis versus Daisy is like a pit bull versus a guppy.

There is no reason for all of these characters to orbit around Daisy.  Unless Zima is going to bring some as yet unseen depth to her portrayal, Daisy will never be interesting or rootable in her own right.  It’s not too late for the show to reverse course.  I’ll take a late term miscarriage, a revelation that Daisy has a giant hairball in her stomach, or even her slinking out of town never to be seen again.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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