By: The Washington
The definition of the word poetry is… A literary work in which special intensity is given to the expression of feelings and ideas by the use of distinctive style and rhythm. That’s exactly what Joseph Mascolo conveyed to audiences, from the poetry book of Stefano DiMera, everytime he recited lines. For over two decades I watched his poetry in motion and was completely engulfed by it. The most fascinating component was watching Stefano gradually surrender himself completely, to the vise Marlena unintentionally placed on his heart and mind. This was a man who was hell bent on his vendetta against the Brady’s and utilizing his pawn, but would have left it all behind, if Marlena could’ve agreed to stay with him forever.
It seems the more the character’s obsession grew, the more distinctive Joseph became in his portrayal. The way he made Stefano stare and examine Marlena’s movement while playing chess with her in 94′, Joe showed us how intrigued he was with understanding her mind. A part of him could allow John Black to be executed, while another part could fight with the devil himself to free Marlena from the hold of possession. Because, despite it being for selfish reasons, he legitimately cared for her. It was almost like the fascination that Hannibal had for Starling in “Silence Of The Lambs”. The man was clearly insane, but conscious enough to never physically hurt her and maintain such an unexplainable admiration. But, that admiration is the only thing shared between both villains.
Stefano was a very unique and complex character. He wasn’t some sick, cold, callous killer. Joseph showed me a person who was like a misguided young man, wanting a precious toy he couldn’t have. And, when he couldn’t have his way, he felt as if he himself had been wronged and didn’t understand how to take responsibility. A great scene that captures this aspect of Stefano, is when he’s thinking out loud and telling himself that eventually Marlena would belong to him. Watching his expression as he said the words aloud, that he would make her see she belongs with him, truly believe it could be done, and unable recognize the wrong in it, was an amazing delivery.
Equally amazing, was the aftermath of Marlena’s possession, which resulted in Stefano losing his memory. Viewers were finally able to see and feel what it was like for Stefano, wanting to right his wrongs and needing to be granted repentance. Watching the face of this once selfish villain, hurt for someone else and beg God for forgiveness, was a phenomenal character transformation. At that very moment was the start of my desire to want Stefano and Marlena to keep the sweet bond they established. It amazed me that even with a defected mind Stefano was still affected by her goodness and passion, beautifully constructed as he watched her pray. Another huge piece of him I enjoyed was the way he cared for his children, the attraction & bickering between him and Celeste and the tenderness in his response to his daughter Lexi… While always cherishing the work he left behind, I heavily hoped for the unspoken poetry that I wish he was able to complete and recite… The part of himself he shared with his viewers will always be cherished and greatly missed.
There was so much exchanged between them here and so much left unsaid. Their eyes held disappointment, because in the past they would have never physically hurt eachother the way they did. I felt they both wanted eachother’s repentance and that eventually, Marlena would have somehow awakened his imperishable admiration for her again.
Lexi loved her father deeply and believed in his ability to be a better person. I believed eventually he would have made her proud and somewhere around there mend their broken family. My hope was for him to remember the way Celeste cared for him, how she wanted for him to feel for her, a fraction of what he felt for Marlena.
Still affected by her goodness & passion
Their friendship that felt so good to watch
The misguided young man