Depending on your perspective, Days of Our Lives’ latest storyline for beloved Dr. Marlena Evans (Deidre Hall) is either heaven-sent — or a product of hell itself! Echoing her nightmarish 1994–95 experience, the morally centered Salem psychiatrist has been possessed by the Devil — again! — and in the Wednesday, October 13 episode, she levitated above her bed as the Dark One sought to completely take over the good doctor’s soul in an amped-up re-creation of a famous scene from decades ago.”It’s wild. It’s completely terrifying this time,” Hall says.
“We felt the time was right to revisit [the possession] with some very new twists and turns,” says executive producer Ken Corday. “The special effects are even more special, and the scares are more intense.”
In the original tale, Marlena’s vulnerable soul was compromised after amorous villain Stefano DiMera (the late Joseph Mascolo) began hypnotizing her. This time, valiant Marlena chooses to let the Devil in to save elderly Doug Williams (Bill Hayes), whose odd behavior was originally labeled dementia. “Doug physically was not able to sustain that kind of possession,” Hall says. “We were losing him, and the Devil said [to Marlena], ‘Your call.’” So Doug got to live, but the possessed Marlena had him locked up in Bayview mental hospital in the October 4 episode to silence him.
Unsuspecting lovebirds Ciara Brady (Victoria Konefal) and Ben Weston (Robert Scott Wilson) are the Devil’s next targets. Reluctant to start a family because he fears passing on his darker traits, reformed serial killer Ben turns to Marlena — but any guidance he receives will be influenced by you-know-who’s agenda since a baby would be an asset for all his dastardly plans. Says Hall: “Poor Ben. He’s finally gotten his life together with the woman of his dreams, and here comes the Devil.” In the video interview above, Hall also talks about why this particular baby is so coveted.
The storyline extends at least through the holidays, with some Salem traditions upended. “You know how Marlena never gets invited to the Horton Christmas party? This year she goes,” says Hall, chuckling. “It’s so much fun to be bad!”
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