Deep Soap: ‘Days of Our Lives’ Fires Its Headwriters, Replaces Them With Their Predecessors

by | April 4, 2012 at 7:37 PM | Deep Soap

Chandler Massey, Taylor Spreitler, Casey Deidrick, and Gabriela Rodriguez on Days of Our Lives. (NBC


Less than a year after they were hired to reboot”Days of Our Lives,” headwriters Marlene McPherson  and Darrell Ray Thomas Junior have been fired. Soap Opera Network reports that they are being replaced by former DOOL writer Chris Whitesell and former DOOL executive producer Gary Tomlin — both of whom were fired as part of the show’s revamp.

McPherson and Thomas Junior’s tenure has been met with mixed reviews. The storyline involving the college aged Will (Chandler Massey) coming out of the closet had been lauded by fans and critics as one of television’s all time greatest gay storylines, and was even honored at the Outfest gay film festival. But other plots, especially one involving Hope (Kristian Alfonso) and John (Drake Hogestyn) traveling to the fictional country of Alamania and being hypnotized into assuming other identities, have proven far less popular.

Despite the returns of many of the show’s biggest stars, including Deidre Hall and Lisa Rinna, the show’s ratings have declined, which may have been the reason the show decided to make another regime change. DOOL is known for its constant revolving door of headwriters and executive producers. Former executive producer  Noel Maxam was fired last October, approximately six months after he was given the job. Maxam replaced Tomlin, who is now returning as the show’s co-headwriter.

McPherson voiced her opinion about her ouster on Twitter, citing network interference as a reason for the show’s creative problems. “Thank you DOOL fans,” she tweeted. ” U r the best and we love you! NBC never let us tell our stories. They kept stopping us and changing our direction. Sad.”