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On the Outs: DOOL

Days of Our Lives is beginning to look a lot like a reality show, with a barrage of actors leaving seemingly every week. Late last year Lindsay Hartley, who played Rafe and Gabi's sister Arianna exited the show. Now fresh on the heels of Mark Hapka's (Nathan) apparent firing comes the announcement on that Shelley Hennig (Stephanie) and Jay Kenneth Johnson (Philip) will soon be exiting the show as well. Apparently both Shelley and Jay have opted not to stay with the show - no word yet as to whether their characters will be recast. Without recasts it seems impossible to explain the exits given their current storylines. Nathan will likely go to Baltimore, but I'm not sure how they are going to explain Philip and Stephanie's absence without recasting. I suppose since Stephanie is now single she could simply leave town in pursuit of a fresh start; but with Philip being the father of Melanie's baby it seems like a recast may be necessary.

All of these recent exits have come as a shock to fans and will undoubtedly have a huge impact on the show's relatively small cast. It came as a surprise to me that Hapka was fired and that Hennig and Johnson have decided to leave at this point. However, I remember thinking when I was looking through the Days of Our Lives 45 Years: A Celebration in Photos book that it seemed odd that they would include so many pictures of the show's younger set considering that their overall historical contribution was still unknown. I knew it was possible, given their age, that any one of these actors might choose to leave the show, never realizing how right I was or that my ominous prediction would happen so soon. Even though I'm usually happy to be right, I wish this had been one of those times I was wrong.

So how do you think DOOL should address all these recent exits? Should the characters of Nathan, Philip, and Stephanie be recast or should their absences be explained in another way? Personally I think that with Shelley and Jay both leaving the show there should have been a Nathan/Melanie reunion with or without a recasting of the Nathan role. In addition, if it had never been written in that Melanie became pregnant with Philip's baby, a reunion between Stephanie and Philip might have been possible then they could have exited the show together.

Click here to visit and read more about the latest DOOL exits.

To order a copy of Days of Our Lives 45 Years: A Celebration in Photos by Greg Meng and Eddie Campbell click on the link below. My grandparents, who are long-time fans of the show, bought me a copy for Christmas and I love it!

[You should know I will receive a referral credit if you purchase this book by using the link below.]


  1. I think all of these actors will be missed, but Mark Hapka by far the most.

  2. Hi Anderson!

    Agreed! Whether you like these characters or not there is no denying that their absence will leave a huge hole in the show.


  3. Now if only they'd get rid of James Scott but I'm not holding my breath. It is stupid that they've made Melanie pregnant so Phillip leaving is going to make him a deadbeat dad. I'd say he would be more likely recast after all it was done before when Jay left but yeah if Melanie wasn't pregnant they could have had Stephanie and Phillip leave together.

  4. Hi Bard Girl!

    Thanks for commenting! I hope you come back often!

    Personally I like James Scott, but I am sick of all the back and forth Ejami games. He hurts her, she hurts him, the children get caught in the middle, then the whole thing starts all over again. The show really needs to break out of that storyline pattern.

    I agree, I do think that Philip will be the most likely character to be recast. It would be a lot easier to simply let Nathan and Stephanie leave town than it would Philip at this point.


  5. I can see Stephanie leaving town to get a fresh start, but Phillip's exit will be harder to explain. He is Parker's father and Melanie is pregnant. I doubt Phillip would just leave town. I guess he could be killed. Either way, all of these departures will leave a big gap in the show.

  6. Hi ta1231!

    I agree, Philip's exit will be tricky if they don't recast.



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