Stephen Nichols Celebrates 33 Years As Patch On ‘Days Of Our Lives’ But Future In Question

Stephen Nichols arrives at TCA Tour
Rich Fury / Invision / AP

On June 13, 1985, Stephen Nichols joined the cast of Days of our Lives, creating the iconic role of Steve “Patch” Johnson, changing Salem for the better as he eventually was reteamed with his best pal, Bo Brady, played by Peter Reckell. Their bromance was one of the first in Salem, the fictional town where Days takes place, until they fought over a girl and Bo took out Steve’s eye. This set the tone for the character and his future interactions and put him on the path to superstardom.

Granted, Nichols did take a hiatus from the show for many years. During that time, he created a new role, Stefan, on General Hospital and replaced an actor in the role of Tucker on The Young and the Restless. But it’s his star-turn on Days that made the biggest impression for daytime fans. While he was liked as Patch, it wasn’t until he met his sweetness, Kayla, played by Mary Beth Evans, that he was immortalized with super couple status, something that Days was great at in the 1980s, with couples like Bo and Hope as well as Roman and Marlena (and then John and Marlena).

Yet, despite his huge fan following, the actor’s future on the show remains in question.

“According to reports, Nichols turned down Days‘ offer of a one-episode a week guarantee and opted to leave instead. A one-episode a week guarantee does not mean the actor would only tape one episode a week–it just means that would be his minimum number,” reported Soap Hub.

The character has been seen infrequently ever since he was poisoned and went blind in his other eye. Right now, his wife Kayla is trying to find a way to get him his eyesight back, but the way she’s going about it would certainly not be appreciated by Steve. This could lead to a big fight when it is revealed, possibly giving the character a reason to leave town.

This would be a huge loss for the show, especially since there are reports that his onscreen brother, Jack, or rather the actor who portrayed him, Matthew Ashford, is returning to the show, also reported by Soap Hub. Family is everything on a soap opera and having more in town would seem like great storyline potential. Not only that, the character of Steve has a son in town, Tripp, played by Lucas Adams. He certainly needs his father around to help guide him through his romantic mishaps. Salem, in general, needs this hero around and after 33 years, it would be a shame for it to end this way.