Joseph Mascolo, the brilliant and charismatic actor who played Stefano DiMera on Days Of Our Lives is dead. After trying to work despite having health issues, he eventually left the NBC soap opera earlier this year. It was a sad moment for DOOL fans, but everyone wished Joseph well. Unfortunately, Mascolo died on December 8. He was 87-years-old and will always be remembered for playing the villain in the fictional town of Salem.
There are soap opera villains and then there was Stefano DiMera. The character was in a class of his own, and it was amazing the lengths he would go to in order to get his way. Joseph Mascolo began portraying the character in 1982. He would pop in Salem off and on for the next 34 years.
The last time Stefano was alive on Days Of Our Lives was right before Hope Brady (Kristian Alfonso) shot him. She went to the DiMera mansion to get Stefano to confess to kidnapping and torturing her late husband, Bo Brady (Peter Reckell). He poked fun at Bo, Hope, and ridiculed the memory of the deceased husband and father.
Hope was not in her right mind. She was grieving, dealing with an out-of-control daughter, and trying to cope with Aiden Jennings (Daniel Cosgrove) trying to kill her on their wedding night. There was also the storyline of her stepson, Chase Jennings (Jonathan McClendon) who sexually assaulted Ciara Brady (Vivian Jovanni). It was a lot for anyone to handle and in one impulsive moment, Hope shot Stefano, then Rafe Hernandez (Galen Gering) helped her cover up the crime.
For the past few weeks, Stefano’s murder was brought back as a storyline on Days Of Our Lives. She is currently serving a 25-year prison sentence for the crime. Just yesterday, Chad (Billy Flynn) and Andre DiMera (Thaao Penghlis) spoke about Stefano’s behavior before his death. In light of the theory that Stefano wanted Hope to kill him, the brothers have different opinions on what should happen to Hope.
Before the character death, there were many incredible, brilliant, and bizarre moments for the patriarch. Some of Joseph Mascolo’s most memorable storylines on DOOL include having Steve (Stephen Nichols) kidnap John Black (Drake Hogestyn) to steal his kidney. Also, he was well-known for brainwashing people and using body doubles or clones to replace certain Salem residents. When EJ DiMera (James Scott) died, he had Kristen DiMera (Eileen Davidson) inject him with something. So far, that storyline was seemingly abandoned, but does open up the door for EJ’s return to Days Of Our Lives.
Mascolo’s character also attempted to have a man cut off Rafe’s penis, and the man known as The Phoenix was brought back to life more times than any fan can count. Even after Joseph’s character died for good in 2016, Stefano made a few appearances to Chad in dreams, visions, and hallucinations.
According to TV Line, Joseph died after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. A statement was released by executive producer Ken Corday regarding Mascolo’s passing.
“It is with great sorrow that I’m sharing the news of the passing of our dear friend and beloved member of the Days Of Our Lives family, Joseph Mascolo. The smile on Joe’s face is something we’d all come to find comfort in, and he will be sorely missed. His larger-than-life presence, kind heart, and unwavering positivity has impacted us all for decades, and will live on in the memories of his many fans. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family during this difficult time.”
Condolences go out to Joseph Mascolo’s loved ones. What are your favorite memories of Stefano DiMera on Days Of Our Lives?
[Featured Image by Mitchell Haaseth/NBC]