Days of Our Lives: The Daytime world says goodbye to Victor Kiriakis

BURBANK, CA - APRIL 26: Actor John Aniston arrives for The 42nd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards held at Warner Bros. Studios on April 26, 2015 in Burbank, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images)
BURBANK, CA - APRIL 26: Actor John Aniston arrives for The 42nd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards held at Warner Bros. Studios on April 26, 2015 in Burbank, California. (Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images) /

John Aniston has been one of the most recognizable faces of daytime television since the 80s. He passed away sadly last November before he reached the age of 90 but forever will leave a lasting impact on Days of Our Lives and daytime television never to be forgotten again.

Aniston hails from the island of Crete and went on to Penn State attaining his bachelor’s in theater arts. From there Aniston joined the United States Navy to become an intelligence officer. He served on active duty in Panama and later served in the Reserves, ultimately becoming a lieutenant commander before his military days were done.

John Aniston began acting in 1962 but he didn’t begin his acting debut on Days of Our Lives until 1970. Many people do not know that Aniston started in another role by the name of Eric Richards. After joining the cast of Love of Life, and Search for Tomorrow Aniston returned at Days of Our Lives a second and last time to play the role of Victor Kiriakis. And that’s the role he stayed in for all of the days of his life.

How many awards has John Aniston won?

John Aniston has achieved several accolades for the villain he played throughout his tenure on the soap. With Victor, you either loved him or hated him. He was a man who never had any shame or regrets for his actions even those against people who mattered the most to him. But you know that Victor always meant well. He fiercely protected his family and worked hard to maintain success for his family’s future.

Throughout his career, Aniston has won two Soap Opera Digest Awards for Outstanding Lead Actor and Outstanding Villain. To which he has always been both. In 2017 he was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series and, in 2022, he was awarded the Daytime Emmy for Lifetime Achievement Award which was accepted by his daughter, actress Jennifer Aniston.

The Lifetime Achievement Award was a well-deserved honor as he had been the backbone of Days of Our Lives for many years. If you wanted a villain but you didn’t want him to go quite as far off the handle as Stefano, Victor was your guy. Yes, he was ruthless but he also had a family who surrounded him that he was able to keep alive for the most part, unlike Stefano.

Has Victor Kiriakis been written off yet?

Though John Aniston passed in 2022 of natural causes his daytime exit is just being played out at Days of Our Lives. On Monday, August 14 it was revealed that Victor’s plane was been missing. Aniston was last on-screen on December 26, 2022. It was learned recently that Victor’s nephew and confidant Justin (Wally Kurth) received the news that Victor’s plane had vanished.

On Wednesday, August 16 Justin Kiriakis finally reveals to Victor’s wife Maggie the news he’d been holding in for a while until he found further evidence to confirm Victor’s whereabouts. He tells Maggie that Victor’s plane has gone down somewhere in the Mediterranean. It’s met with tears and automatic grieving at the possibility.

A plane going down, with no known survivors doesn’t look good for the head of the Kiriakis family. Maggie and Victor have always been such an unlikely pairing but you can see the love Maggie has for him pouring out from her tears. However, the two are still holding onto hope that Victor will return with all the answers.

John Black and Justin had been in contact with Shane who used his ISA connections to find Victor. John soon comes over to the Kiriakis mansion to share the regrettable news with Maggie and the family. He is sorry to be the barrier of bad news but reports that the Coast Guard had recovered Victor’s lifeless body from the wreckage. At the end of the episode, the camera zooms in on a picture of Victor and flashes the words “In loving memory of John Aniston.”

Below is a small video of some of Victor’s greatest moments on Days of Our Lives:

In Friday’s episode of Days of Our Lives, the goodbyes began for Victor Kiriakis. Maggie begins her remembrance by looking back on their wedding day. A pairing so mismatched yet it somehow worked. Bringing out the best in each other in a world where both sides of their families doomed the wedding from the start. But they made each other happy and that’s all we hope to find in a marriage.

When Maggie lost Mickey she didn’t want to go on living. She was existing but she was a broken shell of who she used to be. Victor came in and saved her, making her feel alive again. After losing Mickey and Victor losing Caroline they both got a second and last chance at love and they didn’t waste it. Eventually, Victor broke down Maggie’s walls. In time Maggie became the glue that held the Kiriakis family together.

The strength of the Kiriakis family is in large part to Victor. Now it will carry one between Brady, Bo, Shawn, Philip, Xander, Justin, and all of their children and children’s children. He left behind many ex-wives but none of them held a candle to Maggie. Not one of them changed him for the better the way she did. In the last years, we got to see a more mellow side. Now Victor will reunite his daughter Isabelle who was taken off this planet far too soon.

Justin also shared some beautiful memories and Wally Kurth’s acting was suburb this week. His best memory is shared in a flashback of asking Victor to be his best man. He has always seen Victor as one of his closest friends but above all else a father figure. This death will hit him just as hard as it’s hit Maggie.

Another milestone to note is this marked the incredible Suzanne Roger’s 50th year with the show. She has been one of soap opera’s outstanding veterans and matriarchs. Victor and Maggie shared a loving relationship but Maggie was part of a soap opera power couple long before. In Suzanne’s 50th episode celebration, there are several flashbacks of Maggie and Mickey. One of the sweetest and most loving couples that ever lived on daytime television. We also see her long battle with alcoholism to the moment Victor became her rock and helped her walk again. Maggie has lived one spectacular life and I hope she’s around for many more decades.

As ruthless and conniving as Victor could be a lot of people loved him despite his powerful ego. He was always the man his family wanted to please in business and life. Victor never sugarcoated any of their misdeeds. He always tested them and pushed them to be the best versions of themselves. That driving force will always be missed. We will have to see who will go on to fill those big shoes or if they ever can be. Victor Kiriakis will go down in history as one of the best villains of all television dramas of our time.

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