Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

The Fall of Soap Operas

Posted by kaufmansw on March 6, 2017

In this essay, it says that “…soap operas focus on character instead of production values, actor instead of set… value character over plot, reaction over action, and relationships amongst the characters over more episodic “situation” stories.”  It took me a minute to understand this but, to my best understanding, the author is claiming that soap operas are more based on the character rather than a setting or idea.  The world has really change leading to a decline in soap operas.  People have come to value plot more than they have characters.  One of the worst things that could have happened to soap operas was Netflix.  Netflix gave people an opportunity to watch a series of shows at their own pace whereas soap operas were once a week.  Another disadvantage to old soap operas was that if you missed them, you missed them.  You had to ask a friend because you couldn’t record them.

One weakness of soap operas that the audience caught on to was the pattern in which they written.  The theme usually revolves around having characters change, break up, die, move, get back together, come back to life, end up having a twin no one knew about, die, and cheat on each other, etc.  After a while it’s the same ole same so if you will and you can predict what’s going to happen from the beginning.  Recently on cable, Showtime experienced this problem and had to cut back on their shows.  After reading this article, it has become quite apparent as to why soap operas have fallen off.


One Response to “The Fall of Soap Operas”

  1. emilymorgan98 said

    I think you made a good point with the fact that soap operas have become a show that has a pattern. I agree because it seems like they are the same thing every time. They will kill someone off just to bring them back. Or maybe someone cheated and caused a scene and then the same thing happened again later on. I don’t know, they can become a bit too predictable.

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