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Ignite DC #7

Nadia Firozvi

Why soap operas should live on.

In the last 3 years, four daytime soap operas have been cancelled. Guiding Light was the longest running serial in history, lasting just over 72 years, starting in radio and concluding on television. Then As the World Turns got the axe, and recently, All My Children and One Life to Live were axed as well.

To those who love and respect the genre, these cancellations are tough to swallow. Soaps give you more than glimpses into the lives of television characters - the viewer grows with them as they grow. Life, death, prison, freedom, pregnancy, miscarriage, giving birth, helping another give birth, sex for the first time, sex for the 800th time, marriage, divorce, illness, amnesia, time travel, witches, ... you name it, a soap has tackled it. The only thing missing - immediate gratification. Quick payoffs don't exist, soaps demand that the viewer invest and pay attention.

But when inundated with a constant stream of information, paying attention is becoming increasingly difficult and the demise of the genre is worrisome. Soaps were designed for stay at home moms, but now more moms have entered the work force. Daytime programming is often interrupted with show trials and provocative TMZ-esque news. Seriality, a feature of every soap is now adopted in nearly every major prime time drama - save the ever increasing number of Law and Order shows. Soaps are becoming to many, less necessary, and are simply not generating the revenue that they once did.

But soaps are necessary and they should live on! They remind us to remember the little things, teach us about constancy, teach us about the depths of fantasy, and they make us care, even when you don't have to.

Soaps should live on, and I want to present why!

About Nadia Firozvi:

lawyer, soap opera and snuggie lover.

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