When Freddie Smith was cast on Days of Our Lives as Sonny Kiriakis, he became the soap’s “official” first gay character in the show’s history! But after coming on to the daytime scene with much fanfare, Sonny’s story was put on pause, while Will Horton’s (Chandler Massey) coming out story became front and center. While taking a back seat to all the drama, but maintaining some airtime as Will’s steadfast friend, the show was carefully crafting a budding love story that needed some things to happen first, to set up obstacles, and for the audience to care. And now, like every great love story, this one is fraught with miscommunication, just-wrong bedmates and a dose of gay-bashing!
On-Air On-Soaps Michael Fairman caught up with Freddie Smith for a very special interview for Frontiers LA to talk about the Sonny/Will romance, a preview of what’s ahead in Salem, playing gay, how the LGBT community has embraced the young actor and his stance with Congress on bullying. Yes, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington! Here are a few excerpts from the interview below, but make sure to read the entire piece at FrontiersLA.com!
The big question: Is Sonny truly and deeply in love with Will?
FREDDIE: Yeah, he has definitely developed a crush over the past year. They are best friends and a lot of romance stems from friendship, but there are times when one person feels something and the other person doesn’t. It’s basically trial and error. If someone has enough “balls” to say, “Hey, I have feelings for you, and I hope it doesn’t ruin the friendship if you don’t have feelings,” that is a pretty big step.
In a turn of events that obviously will be a catalyst for the story for quite some time to come, is this little story beat where Will just slept with ex-girlfriend Gabi! Has Sonny figured this out yet?
FREDDIE: No, he doesn’t know! I would think it would be a major issue for him. He is very forgiving, but I don’t know how Sonny is going to react when he finds out that Will was with Gabi.
What did you think when you read that in the script? Many gay viewers are upset about this. We just had a gay guy come out and then he goes and sleeps with his ex-girlfriend? Doesn’t that scenario seem unauthentic to you?
FREDDIE: I think it does. But for Sonny, he is comfortable with who he is and he has been out, where Will still has that part of him that is slightly struggling. He had the character of “T” come up to him who talked trash to him, he had Sonny come up to him and yell at him and he had his dad come up to him, who said he was disappointed in him. So I think he just went to be with his friend. I don’t think he had any intentions of sleeping with her. He was just so broken with everyone he cared about talking so badly to him. He was with a friend and it just sparked, and it just happened. I think he felt like, “I don’t want to disappoint people.” But in the end he disappointed himself. At the end of the day, people are just looking for love and to make a connection. Some people who are straight, they try the same-sex, and they could be bisexual. I think people put too many titles on it. Whoever you love, you love. So if you look at it that way, then it is authentic, because Will was just feeling a connection, and he just went with it.
Brant Daugherty (Pretty Little Liars) has done a guest arc as Brian, a potential love interest for Sonny. Do you think that Brian could be in the mix for Sonny’s affections?
FREDDIE: Basically Brian knew that Sonny’s heart was not in the right place and that Sonny cares about Will. He didn’t really want to overstep his bounds because he then knew he was not Sonny’s first choice. So Brian decided to be the bigger man. Sometimes you feel you need to say, “Hey, go ahead.” Actually, I don’t think Brian thinks it’s going to work out between Sonny and Will. So it’s like a maneuver he is playing right now, like, “Hey go for it. But you are going to come running back to me.” So whether Sonny goes to him, or Will, or someone else that is in the near future—we shall see!
The most graphic love scene between two men on daytime occurred on OLTL between the characters of Kyle (Brett Claywell) and Fish (Scott Evans) on a New Year’s Eve episode where they had the two guys “making love.” Would you like to see scenes where Sonny and Will are actually in bed together?
FREDDIE: Absolutely! I think it’s very important. If you are in a relationship, that is the romantic aspect of it. So I think it’s important to show every aspect of a relationship.
Sonny is such a goody-goody! Would you love him to get his hands dirty and do something bad?
FREDDIE: Sonny does have some fires going, and some mistakes he is going to be making, but he is going to develop. People are going to see more layers to Sonny. I can’t say much more than that!
So soapers, what do you think about Freddie’s comments on Will sleeping with Gabi, that he is on board for a love scene between Sonny and Will, and how their romance is playing out? Let us know!