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Marlena is thrilled when Brady shows up on her doorstep this week. John? Not so much! Eric Martsolf discusses his new soap gig and his character's reintroduction to Salem.

SOW: Once again, you're stepping in as a major recast. What are your thoughts on that?

EM: It seems to be my role in soaps. If you want to bring a character back, call Martsolf. Maybe Days knew I had experience doing it before with Ethan on Passions and recognized the similarities. The whole Chloe/Brady relationship is not that far off from Ethan and Theresa's. They were both very much soul mates; fated lovers. I'm very accustomed to portraying that.

SOW: What's the new Brady like?

EM: He's changed man. He's come back to Salem to make amends with everybody - Chloe, Nicole. A lot of people are taken back with the growth he's made. Not only does his face look a heck of a lot different, but he has a different mind set.

SOW: What can you share about Brady's reunion with his father and step-mother?

EM: He's never seen Marlena so excited in her life. She's ecstatic - "My son is home!" The antithesis is John's reaction, which is less than stellar. It's a bittersweet homecoming for Brady. His dad is having abnormal brain patterns and issues with his mentality. It wasn't exactly the father-son reunion that he had hoped for.

SOW: Does Brady fill him in on what he's been up to?

EM: Yes. Brady was in rehab for a while, and he's also been doing manual labor on a farm in Vienna. I guess if you get hooked on drugs, you go take care of cows and everything will be okay (laughs). Brady has been transformed, not only with a re-cast, but also as far as the character is concerned.

SOW: When John leaves, does Marlena tell Brady about his father's seizures and refusal to get help?

EM: Yes. There's no sugar-coating the issue. Marlena doesn't know how she's going to go at this alone. Brady says, "Then let me help you." Brady is pro-therapy. He sees that his father needs help.

SOW: Brady later tells John he's going to be in town for a while. Is John pleased?

EM: John couldn't give a flying rat's butt, which is so hurtful to Brady. He's been gone for years and gone through this incredible process to get back his life and beat this addiction. Here's his dad going, "Who are you? Stick around if you want to, Buddy. I couldn't care less."

SOW: Later, Brady runs into Chloe at the Pub. What happens?

EM: Well, he buys her lunch, which is always a good start. They have this truly grown up conversation. There's a lot of apologizing. There's a lot of understanding about what went wrong and what the future is going to hole. You see a real difference between the two kids that were in love to two adults that are dealing with love that was lost. They go through this very therapeutic conversation to try to heal what's been done. Essentially, Brady wants to apologize. When he married Chloe, he promised he's do everything in the world to make her happy. He feels he failed - primarily, because of the addiction.

SOW: Brady's next stop is the DiMera mansion to see Nicole. What's his agenda with her?

EM: He's upset with the way things ended with them. He doesn't feel it was an honorable departure. Their last conversation when Brady left town was a fall-out fight. It was a nasty way to part ways. He wants to tell Nicole he's sorry. He wants to start over - make amends with her, too. Nicole, having gone through some changes in her own life, is right on that page. It doesn't take them long to remember what they liked about each other.

SOW: So week one back in Salem is all about reconnecting?

EM: It's completely that. Each episode Brady is with a person, making his rounds, saying hello, catching up with that happened while he was gone. The story is setting him up for anything. I don't know what direction they're going to go with him, but there's a lot of potential.





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