* AlternativeCharacterInterpretation- Marlena and her daughter Belle as selfish jerks who play their romantic suitors against each other so she can have TWO men loving her at the same time is a popular fan interpretation of the character.
** Jennifer Horton, once the NiceCharacterMeanActor reveal happened in the mid-90s when Melissa Reeves was revealed to be having an adulterous affair with a co-star. Jennifer went from the plucky girl next door who's pure heart was such that she was able to redeem a rapist who argued IN COURT that a man can rape his wife and it not being rape, to a self-absorb hypocrite who mocked her husband's post-traumatic stress disorder from having his life destroyed by the DiMeras and who was bed hopping with strangers whenever she thought he was dead.
** Sami Brady: Cold blooded sociopath or fucked up teenager who went though the trauma of losing her mother as a child, being raised by a father who turns out to be an imposture (after being told originally he had plastic surgery) and then being reunited with your real dad only to watch your mom cuck your dad with Fake-dad and try and pass off their bastard as your real dad's and then get raped by the older college age guy who you think is your friend and have him call you a liar when he gets arrested, plus out that he only was your friend because he wanted to rape your half-sister!
* Kate Roberts: only sane woman in a town of fucked up families who wants protect her son from the lunacy of the city and Sami Brady (who the whole town knows is crazy and evil), or a cold and ruthless matriarch who seeks absolute and total control over her son Lucas to make up for how she abandoned and forsaked her other children.
* BrokenBase - This happens with any soap opera over couples, characters, etc., but the original tenure of head writer James E. Reilly is still very controversial. Some fans will argue he breathed new life into a show still reeling from the late '80s/early '90s writers' strike and point out that quite a few of his characters (like Sami Brady, Kristen Blake, Lucas Horton, and the Reed-Roberts family) are still very popular to this day. Others will say his use of supernatural and other unrealistic (even by soap standards) elements derailed the show and alienated longtime fans, and that he was just generally a bad writer who relied on shock value, ignored continuity, dragged out storylines, made an incoherent mess out of backstories like John Black's origins and Tony DiMera's parentage, and [[BlackandWhiteMorality reduced characters and their motivations to two dimensions, at most.]] Years and several writing regimes later, there are those who will still assert that the show ''never'' recovered from his first tenure. But even fans who liked his original run will usually agree his second run from 2003 to 2006 was in the end a disaster (even if they did at least like Chelsea Brady and/or the fantastically bizarre and gloriously nonsensical [[GuiltyPleasures Salem Stalker storyline]]).
* CreatorsPet - Belle, Shawn Douglas, Daniel and Melanie Jonas
* DracoInLeatherPants - Jack Deveraux, Steve Johnson, E.J. DiMera
* DieForOurShip - Days couples tend to have very passionate fanbases. The Broe vs. Phloe, Shimi vs. Shelle, Lumi vs. Ejami battles come to mind. And God help you if you think Jennifer Horton should be with anyone other than Jack Deveraux.
* EnsembleDarkhorse - Jack Deveraux was originally envisioned as a typical rich jerk to be a RomanticFalseLead for Steve and Kayla as many other couples have had before and after and the character was so destined-for-nothing that they went through three actors in less than a year. Eventually, however, the character found the right actor who provided him with so much depth and humor, that while the couple he was interfering with was gone within the next couple years, Jack Deveraux wound up spending more time on the show than either of them combined.
** The same can be said of Lucas and Sami. Originally the meddling little siblings of big couple Austin and Carrie (respectively) they wound up lasting longer and becoming much bigger than both of them. Sami's currently the main heroine.
* HesJustHiding: Despite WordOfGod that any characters killed off from now on will ''stay'' dead, most fans are using to believe this about Stefano, given the myriad of times he's returned from the dead.
** Unfortunately in this case [[RealLifeWritesThePlot Stefano was killed this time because Joe Mascolo, Stefano's iconic actor, suffered a debilitating stroke.]] Still, it's nice to think he really just retired to a nice Mediterranean island somewhere...
* InternetBackdraft - Mention EJ/Sami, December 29, and/or The Event on any Days message board.
** Jack's death is one particularly nasty sore spot for older fans, as they brought the actor back simply so they could humiliate and kill him off once and for all, all in the name of finally freeing Jennifer Horton up to fuck other men without social stigma.
*** Hope and John fucking on a submarine, resulting in Hope becoming pregnant with John's love child. It created such a nuclear backlash online, and within fandom, that not only did the writers have to bend over backwards once the baby was born, to retcon the child being Bo's (resulting in the meme that was "Mimesex"), but they ultimately killed the child off first chance they could years later.
* PortmanteauCoupleName - Shelle, Ejami, and Bope just to name a few.
* RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap: Chelsea used to be an extremely hated character. She was an arrogant [[JerkAss jerkass]], rude to everyone around her (even her best friend Abby), responsible for killing her little brother, and tried to break up Bo and Hope's marriage. When she started dating HollywoodNerd Nick, she became a much better person. She went from being the most hated character to one of the more popular characters.
** Arguably to a lesser extent the same happened with Melanie Layton (now Jonas). She started out an unlikable and shallow con-artist (although deliberately so), but was given a sympathetic backstory and became so popular she was even given a connection to the Horton family.
* TheScrappy - Belle. While Carrie and Sami and Jennifer Horton all worked well in their role as the young blonde female heroine of the show, Belle was widely reviled by fans.
** Taylor, particularly for coming off as such a RelationshipSue for EJ. After two extremely likeable actress failed to sway fans into liking her, she was mercifully PutOnABus
** Willow Stark (so much that she was KilledOffForReal due to the large volume of hate-mail the network received about her character).
* StraightGay: Sonny Kiriakas comes to town to be with his parents, popular 80s couple Justin and Adrienne, and quickly reveals himself to be gay. While his parents and cousin Abigail knew prior to his arrival, most people, including his eventual love interest Will Horton, are surprised because the athletic, adventurous Sonny doesn't seem gay.
* SuperCouple - Bo and Hope, John and Marlena, Jack and Jennifer, Steve and Kayla and more.