This Christmas week, I found myself watching old Christmas episodes of Days of Our Lives; the first one where Carly dressed up as Santa Claus while Bo, acting as "Santa's helper"; read the Christmas story to the sick children in the Paediatric Ward, the hospital staff and Dr. and Mrs. Horton (whose presence in DAYS is really, really missed). This episode aired in 1990, the same year Crystal Chappell's character Carly Manning made her debut in DAYS. At that time, Bo was still in mourning but already attracted to the beautiful young doctor, albeit reluctantly; especially after his son Shawn Douglas's fondness for her. Even though they weren't officially a couple then, the rapport was already there,
and I'm sure the viewers wondered just when Bo would gradually heal enough to claim Carly as his own.
But even though he could barely acknowledge his feelings for her and Carly promising to give him time and space after it was discovered she was the missing Katerina Von Leushner; Bo simply couldn't deny those feelings either; at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Day 1991, he and Carly exchanged a heartfelt kiss.
The following Christmas was far more cheerful for the Carbo fans as it was Bo and Carly's first one as a couple and it was so heartwarming seeing them so happy, their love free and open after their adventure and symbolic exchange of vows in Mexico; the way they kept laughing and smiling at each other, the loving kisses and exchanging Christmas presents (they soon discovered they had the same idea for a present- fishing rods!). Apart from that, Bo had also framed the ancient Mayan poem Carly had recited to him and Carly got a Christmas ornament ball with her name on it, like Bo, Shawn Douglas and the Horton family members had.
But what I really liked and moved me a lot , was Carly's selfless gesture; Shawn Douglas expected his mother's Christmas ornament ball be hung on the tree along with the others; even though she wasn't there. His great grandparents- Tom and Alice Horton- felt it was inappropriate as his father now had a new lady in his life but Carly insisted the ball be hung as she felt Hope should be remembered; she didn't expect them to forget her even though Bo had finally moved on with his life. And Carly moving in with Bo and Shawn Douglas simply made their happiness complete; their New Year's Day also memorable as they literally ran in the New Year and celebrated it their own special way. That was the only happy Christmas and New Year to date Bo and Carly ever had on the show, sorry to say.
Almost immediately came Bo's kidnapping storyline( thanks to Peter Reckell's departure) and we got a new Bo (Robert Kelker Kelly) and in came in Vivian Alamain (Louise Sorell) and the boy who turned out to be Carly's long lost son. Bo and Carly's long awaited wedding was abruptly interrupted and it never happened; Carly was buried alive, lost her memory and was manipulated by Lawrence into falling for him again, just like he did long before she met Bo and Bo and Carly's love story came to a painfully sad end.
Our spirits were lifted when Carly suddenly returned to Salem in 2009; starting the period of what was later known as Carbo 2.0. A lot had happened since her absence and Bo's marriage to Hope was on the rocks. Even though he reminded Carly a lot had changed and their love was a long time ago, nostalgic references to the past- particularly their symbolic wedding- and lingering looks exchanged between them, followed by a sudden kiss and then unexpected sex in Carly's hotel room said otherwise; the rapport was STILL there and then they found themselves together in rekindled love.
But what happened? Carly was written in as an unwanted interloper, shunned by her former family and friends as if she was never a significant part of their lives before(something I'll never forgive the writers for) and then she was heartbroken when the only man she ever loved chose his undeserving wife over her and she left Salem with a grown up Nicky(something I'll definitely never forgive Ken Corday for).
Even with Peter Reckell and Crystal Chappell's exit from DAYS OF OUR LIVES, Bo and Carly are still very much discussed among the fans and that's because there is STILL SO MUCH TO BE TOLD! It took a long agonising time before Bo and Carly hooked up in the first place, half of the year was gone before it finally happened. They never had a proper wedding, never had a child of their own, never had another chapter and it is SO unfair! There was simply no reason why these two were denied a happy ending when their love was so passionate and consuming- especially when you look back at the old episodes when they were young and so very happy, the intense connection between them and those special moments between them. I'm still angry Carly was made to be an interloper and an interlude for Bo, considering she was his mature love, the ONLY mature love he had out of the significant women in his life. There is still a lot to be told about them, otherwise they wouldn't still be discussed on Facebook and Twittter fanbases still wouldn't be active, more Carbo fan fiction stories written or more Carbo montages made and posted in Youtube. And how can the writers forget the love and closeness between Carly and her step-son; particularly during the period when he was deaf and when Bo was missing- I'm just glad Shawn Douglas wasn't there during Carbo 2.0; him of all people turning against Carly would've been too much to bear!
Is it possible for Bo and Carly's story to be revived in the future? Even though Bo was recast after Peter left, I can't see anyone else except Peter play Bo Brady and I definitely can't imagine any other actress except Crystal Chappell portray Carly Manning but what are the odds they would consent to return to DAYS? They are very much missed and a lot of the fans want them to have that real second chance after those 16 years apart. I nursed the hope Carly would come back to Salem again but then Peter left the show.
If Bo and Carly's story can be revived, the only way I can see that happening is for Bo and Carly to be recast; two recasts sounds better than CC with another recast or Peter with a recast. Anything to have CARBO 3.0!