Soap Operas: Really? Please Explain.

Back in the day, like twenty years ago, I understood soap opera addiction. My mom had her “soaps” and my grandmother had hers, and they both followed them religiously. Watching soap operas was just something women did. I recall staying home from school with the flu and watching soap operas for days on end. A typical sick day began with The Young and The Restless – the Victor and Nikki days. Then the Bold and The Beautiful was on for about a half hour – Ridge and his huge ears. Then it was As The World Turns and then Guiding Light.

Even as a kid, some things never made sense. Why were rich people were wearing formal attire 24/7? Because that was the only way viewers would know they were rich? Nobody ever spent more than 5 minutes at work. Children went from being cute little toddlers to bipolar teens within 3 weeks.

I haven’t watched soap operas in about ten years. Well, until last week.

I was somewhere waiting for something last week, and the soaps were on television. I watched for about 10 minutes and could not even believe the absurdity. Within the first few minutes I heard a tearful plea, “if you leave me, I’ll hook up with Johnny.” I heard a handsome doctor use the words, “brain scan.” And my favorite was some nerdy girl ranting about her “proclamation” to “The Jackal.” I was completely dumbfounded! Millions of viewers still watch this?!?

The scripts and the acting are beyond horrible. The actors all look exactly the same. There are a million storylines going on at once. The dying heartthrob who has been cheating on his wife with her secret twin stole a baby from a crazy lady who is actually his mother’s father’s cousin, but in alien form.

Everyone knows soap operas, while ridiculously cheesy, have some of the most loyal fans around. Soap Opera Digest and Soap Central are certainly not hurting for viewers. Are you a fan? If so, drop me a comment and let me know why. Is it because you’ve been watching forever and you can’t let go or is it because you just really enjoy them? Do tell!

I indulge in bad TV too, so I’m certainly not passing judgment. With so much great bad TV to choose from, I’m just wondering why soaps are still so hot.

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