HOLLYWOOD—I’m not sure what happened in the past three weeks, but “Days of Our Lives” has seriously stepped up its narrative in a way that is beyond captivating. First, audiences are seeing the reunions of John and Marlena and Steve and Kayla. So those Salemites, who haven’t had much screen time, are finally front and center again.

Another big surprise is the return of Peter Reckell as Bo Brady. He was last seen off on a mission, but it appears that mission was a ruse. The cop and husband of Hope aka ‘Fancy Face’ has been fighting for the past two years to get back to his loved ones. Hope has finally put the pieces together on her doomed marriage and is seemingly happy with Aiden, but the guy is keeping a load of secrets. We learned his son was responsible for the death of his first wife, and now he has a secret partner that has him doing his biddings. Any guesses as to who this person or persons could be?

With all this chaos erupting, the big story for the next few months is the emergence of another serial killer in Salem. I’ve done a bit of history, and Salem isn’t the safest place to live. Serial killers have hit the town on more than one occasion, taking out a few Salemites along the way. Unlike the deliciously good, but twist gone wrong tale of the Salem Stalker, when a character dies this time around there will be no return from the dead.

The Salem Strangler appears to be the name of our new villain cloaked in all black. The factoid that they utilize a tie to dispatch of their victims gives precedence to the name. First it was Serena Mason, and this week the killer struck again taking out youngster Paige Donovan. Yes, it’s a shocking death in the fact that it was a teen who was murdered and it appears the killer’s motivations are up in the air. This will beyond rock Eve’s world and will force her to question her vendetta against Jennifer and JJ. She’s lost her only child, which will leave her world shattered.

Right now, it’s quite difficult to pinpoint who the culprit may be. I will say after the third victim is revealed or the next person is attacked, the audience will be able to begin to decipher a few clues to piece the puzzle together. If it becomes apparent the killer is targeting all females that will set the stage for an interesting whodunit. If the next victim turns out to be a male, than let the conspiracy theories begin to rise. Why? This means the killer’s motives might become clear.

Chad DiMera is already high on the authorities suspect list, and if you look at potential culprits, Clyde, Aiden and Ben (I know he seems unlikely to most people) they are at the top of the list. Aiden for pure suspicion alone, but Clyde recently took out Kyle and would love nothing more than to set-up Chad to eliminate him from Abigail’s life. Now Ben, he’s a tricky one. He has a temper, and taking out Serena is the perfect way to set the stage for things. Now Paige’s death is where the connection goes back to Clyde, because he threatened JJ harm if he finds out he’s working with the cops. The problem with any murder mystery is that it’s never the person who appears to be the obvious target. For those wondering other potential targets or victim’s look at that 50th anniversary trailer for “Days of Our Lives.”

It’s clearly apparent that Marlena is attacked by the killer and that Hope also finds herself in danger, but she manages to stab the culprit in the chest/shoulder with a pair of scissors. I can see why Marlena would be a target because she’s hoping to help clear the name of a possible suspect; Hope could be the key. Why? She’s attacked during the night and in her home, so her attack might be personal. Start thinking about who might want her keeping her mouth shut or who has a personal vendetta against her.

A few other surprises for the week involved the revelation that Aiden has been secretly working with Stefano DiMera! Yep, that means he’s pulled the strings to keep Bo away from Hope, but the big question everyone wants to know is why?

It appears Stefano has a whopper of a secret on Aiden’s past that Salem’s newest lawyer wants no one to discover. Abigail went to bat for Chad, while Ben fumed with rage when he discovered his fiancé is still sneaking behind his back to visit her ex. Oh, we can’t forget audiences finally came face-to-face with Bo Brady this week! “Days of Our Lives” is becoming the soap that is a must-see!