Chandler Massey played months of angst until moment of self-acceptance this week on NBC's Days of Our Lives
It's been nearly a year since reports first surfaced that the character of Will Horton, a member of one of the core famlies on the NBC soap opera Days of Our Lives, would be coming out as gay.
The storyline was delayed then slow to develop as the show got a new writing team. (This week, those writers were replaced themselves by two of the show's former writers).
All the while Emmy nominee Chandler Massey continued to bide his time in other storylines until four months ago when Will's sexuality began to be addressed.
His girlfriend broke up with him for not sleeping with her, he drunkedly made out with a guy for the first time and in a series of heart-to-hearts with his maternal grandmother, Marlena, and his gay friend, Sonny, Will was on an emotionally bumpy road grappling with the fact that he might be gay.
Finally, on Wednesday's (4 April) episode (see video below), Will at last seems at peace when he tells Marlena that he 'a gay man.'
Massey told Gay Star News this week that after portraying Will's suffering for so long, the scene where he accepts himself was unexpectedly uplifting for him as an actor.
'Will has been had so much angst and conflict for so long,' he said. 'Once we finally filmed those scenes where Will comes out and is okay with it, for some reason, I felt like a weight lifted off my shoulders as well.'
Many of Will's scenes and conversations about being gay have been with Marlena who is played by the show's longtime star Deidre Hall. The chemistry between Massey and Hall has been noted by many fans as the most fulfilling aspect of the coming out storyline so far.
'We do get along very well off set as well, we have the same relationship off screen,' Massey says. 'She really helps me. She’s a pro and I’m new to [the soap opera] genre, and that relationship carries over in our scenes. We also do work a lot on our stuff – I work with her off-screen on our scenes more than with any other actors.'
Throughout the next few months, Will continues to come out to various family members but he will also be heavily involved in a storyline that has him working for his shady former stepfather.
But there will be more romance – and more missing down the road, Massey says.
'The first [aggressive kiss] was appropriate for that point where Will was in coming to terms with things,' he says. 'Now that he’s out, it’s not so much of a release of all those emotions as a romantic moment.'