I was so relieved to see that the EJ/Stefano scenes played out SOOOO much better than I feared. I've often cringed when JS has had to play the extremely emotional scenes because he can take it over the top - and while he skirted that initially with these scenes I felt like he pulled it back in and nailed it with the portrayal of EJ's flat out desperation. I thought the writing did a good job of showing that EJ had tried absolutely everything else to free Sami - setting up the deposit in the bank account, going to Trask to offer both Stefano and himself, preparing to take his family and run with the fake passports only to finally realize that Stefano had been a step ahead of him the entire time. He knew the trial was winding down - there was little time left to do anything to change the clear outcome of a guilty verdict. So in the end, he did the only thing left to him which was to grovel, beg and promise to meet every one of Stefano's conditions. The mixed look of disgust, shame and hatred as he was standing back up from the floor was great. Even later, as he was signing the paperwork and essentially waiting for Daddy to dismiss him so he could go to the trial I thought JS conveyed so much in just his body language. EJ is beaten and bowed...but there is no doubt his deep seated anger and humiliation is going to fuel his future decisions. Given EJ's history of anger fueled decisions things probably are going to be pretty rocky for him - but it sets up all sorts of great storyline potential.
JM was just outstanding. It was so nice to see the Stefano of old again...not even a shred of sympathy for EJ. That's how it needed to be. I've always enjoyed the back and forth of their relationship but given the things they've both dealt with in the past year or so - I loved seeing Stefano being so ruthless. Ruthless Stefano is likely to only further alienate EJ, just as he did with Tony all those years.
These scenes were absolutely Emmy bait for both JS and JM - but I feel like they both delivered the goods.
I thought AS was pretty great today, too. I appreciate that she's playing this as Sami trying to be stoic for everyone - even as they are sitting on the stand essentially piling the dirt over her coffin with shovels. Her relief at seeing EJ made sense to me - in a room full of judgments and hostility I can only imagine how much she needed his support.
I'm curious (and hopeful) to see if Justin continues to have story after the conclusion of the trial. It only makes sense to me that Stefano may have him in his sights for his part in helping EJ take control of the company. I'm hoping we'll continue to see EJ and Justin interacting - and perhaps EJ trying to help Justin stay ahead of Stefano. That may just be wishful thinking on my part, though.
Abby's outfit was horrendous. As pretty a girl as she is - how do they manage to find anything that looks that ridiculous on her? Cameron is a snooze and Chad is no longer of any value...so the entire storyline is a waste of airtime. :(