Unbelievable Soap Opera Blunders Of 2021

Published on December 1, 2021.

Whether you’re a viewer of Days Of Our Lives (DOOL), General Hospital (GH), The Bold and the Beautiful (B&B) or The Young and the Restless (Y&R), there’s no denying that 2021 has been a special year in daytime drama. We’ve laughed, cried and stared wide-eyed at screens together, but we’ve also cringed together. Some soap opera storylines miss the mark, but others are such massive mistakes that viewers feel cheated. Read on for the unbelievable soap opera blunders of 2021!

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12. Eric Brady’s Return (DOOL)

Character returns can break viewers’ hearts. The hype is always exciting when an actor comes back to reprise a role, but it’s often unsaid whether they’ll be on canvas for years or… five minutes. In the case of DOOL’s Eric Brady, who returned to Salem only to find out that his wife, Nicole, had slept with Xander, it was definitely the latter. Eric would end things with Nicole and immediately catch a flight back to his missionary work in Africa. The move disappointed fans who had waited so long for this couple to reunite, and it was a tease to see actor Greg Vaughan so briefly. Let’s hope his Christmas visit lasts longer!

© XJJohnson/jpistudios.com

11. The Sutton Ames Trial (Y&R)

It wasn’t until Sutton Ames was convicted for his crimes in mid-November that Y&R viewers realized that the whole storyline had been told through exposition. Actress Mishael Morgan did a commendable job of conveying Amanda Sinclair’s search for justice against her grandfather, but fans couldn’t share her emotional journey because the entire trial (notwithstanding a few flashback shots of Amanda on the stand) occurred off canvas. Had Y&R dedicated more resources to this storyline, viewers could’ve taken part in the satisfaction of Sutton going down. Also, nobody would complain about seeing more of Imani and Naya!

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

10. Zoe’s Exit (B&B)

It’s always tough when a talented soaps actor finds a prime time role and abandons ship, but it’s hardly something that B&B show-runners haven’t encountered before. So why didn’t writers adapt when Kiara Barnes decided to stop playing Zoe Buckingham? Here they had an impulsive and volatile character who doesn’t take no for an answer, yet when she found out that her fiancé had been sleeping with her friend and confidante, she didn’t confront either of them. Instead, she slunk onto a jet and left LA. Viewers were expecting fireworks but B&B couldn’t even offer a fizzle.

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

9. Nixon Falls (GH)

Speaking of “fireworks”… we’re still waiting, Maurice! The storyline of Nina Reeves and Sonny Corinthos in Nixon Falls wasn’t a blunder because it moved so slowly, but because it failed to deliver after dragging on for so long. By keeping Sonny (played by fan-favorite Maurice Benard) out of Port Charles storylines, GH opted to pursue this storyline with one hand tied behind its back. However, two months after Sonny’s return, it remains unclear whether that detour served any worthwhile purpose. Sure, Carly is getting suspicious about what went on in Nixon Falls while Nina and Sonny low-key flirt, but surely there were far less infuriating ways that GH could’ve gotten us to this place.

©sean smith/jpistudios.com

8. No Paul Williams (Y&R)

It has been over a year since Paul Williams was last seen in Genoa City. The lengthy absence isn’t just unusual for a police commissioner, but also a celebrated legacy character who’s still technically part of the cast. Despite an overwhelming campaign from fans and co-stars to get Doug Davidson back on the canvas, Y&R have yet to respond to this strange case of neglect. “I find it remarkable that after 42.5 years, I haven’t heard from the network at all,” Davidson recently expressed in astonishment. And boy, was his presence missed in 2021!

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

7. Theo and Ciara (DOOL)

Amnesia cases are standard soap opera fodder. But when Theo Carver convinced Ciara Brady to walk away from Ben and marry him, the trope took on a creepy vibe. It was sad enough seeing Theo, a long-standing character, become reduced to a single desire, but what made this storyline even weirder was that nobody in his orbit saw any problem with this. Shouldn’t someone have stepped in (besides Ben, of course) to warn Theo that it isn’t exactly cool to groom an amnesiac — from her hospital bed, no less — into running away with you?

© XJJohnson/jpistudios.com

6. Stitch’s Return (Y&R)

As tempting as it is to add the limping Abby and Chance storyline to this year’s blunders list, they’ve just recast Chance, so instead let’s focus on the ridiculous side-story of Ben “Stitch” Rayburn. Although we won’t dive back into the incoherencies of Stitch’s plot, the way Y&R threw this returning character (played by Sean Carrigan) under the bus made no sense at all. Beyond failing to properly explain Stitch’s motivations, the storyline undermined a lot of surrounding characters. It took ages before anyone realized that Mariah’s absence was suspicious, and Devon was basically teaching Rey how to be a detective when he singled out Stitch as the prime suspect. Plus, how did an out-of-work doctor have incredibly sophisticated software that prevented police from tracing Mariah’s phone? Painful!

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

5. Eric Forrester (B&B)

For the past few months, soap opera outlets have continually predicted that Eric Forrester will begin having mental troubles. While those predictions have yet to come true, they point to a disconnect viewers (and apparently, soaps writers) are having with the character. Basically, no one can figure out what Eric Forrester is thinking! From forgiving Quinn for cheating and then boldly entering into a polyamorous relationship with her and Carter, to firing Donna for getting him aroused at work (a workplace HR issue, if I’ve ever heard one), Eric was impossible to understand for much of 2021. In spite of all of this, actor John McCook did a masterful job of selling every epiphany and indecision that rummaged around in Eric’s head.

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

4. Peter August Is Immortal (GH)

GH fans rolled their eyes this summer when it was confirmed that Peter August survived a devastating blow to the head, somehow fooled two medical professionals into believing he had no pulse, and then escaped the freezer he was left in. Since then, he has evaded capture and grimaced like a Saturday morning cartoon, and fans have just about given up hope that August will ever perish. The tragic part? Had August’s dad, Cesar Faison, been around to pull off any of these antics, viewers probably would’ve loved it.

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

3. The Devil (DOOL)

Remember a few months back, when any discussion about Marlena Evans being possessed by the devil could easily be dismissed as a regrettable relic of 90s pop culture? Those were the days! Alas, the Devil is back in Salem and what began as a retread of eerie levitation stunts and glowing eyes has escalated into zombie attacks and evil doppelgangers. Will the NBC soap ever contain itself to believable dramatic stakes again, or is DOOL eager to pick up where Passions left off? The majority of viewers can’t wait until this tragic storyline comes to an end.

© XJJohnson/jpistudios.com

2. Vinny Walker’s Murder Mystery (B&B)

What’s the first rule of any murder mystery? Surely, a murder should take place! As the mystery swerved from Bill and Liam’s hit-and-run to the notion that someone had left Vinny critically injured before he collided with Bill’s sports car, viewers were pointing to lots of suspects (even Taylor Hayes). In the end, however, it was explained that Vinny leapt out in front of the car and sacrificed his own life in an attempt to reunite Thomas with Hope. Viewers were perplexed and disturbed by the unlikely twist.

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

1. No “Skyle” Wedding (Y&R)

Summer Newman and Kyle Abbott are two of the most beloved stars on daytime television, so let’s hope that Y&R did everything imaginable to keep them from leaving the CBS soap. However, if actors Hunter King and Michael Mealor were more than happy to return for Vicky and Ashland’s nuptials, surely Y&R could’ve made arrangements with the pair to give fans a glimpse of their own Italian wedding. Yet viewers were robbed of seeing the soap’s it-couple tie the knot, and instead given banal descriptions of the ceremony from characters who “attended”. On top of failing to keep its future stars, Y&R’s inability to show the “Skyle” nuptials is more than a blunder… and more like a cluster-blunder!

© Howard Wise/jpistudios.com

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