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TV Squad Soap Report: Only on a soap...

by Allison Waldman, posted Jul 10th 2008 2:23PM
TVS logo homeSoap operas are a funny form of television fiction. They have rules all its own, they can tell all kinds of stories and do them in the most unusual ways. Here's a few things I've noticed lately, things that seem to only be possible, on a soap.

Only on a soap...can a medical clinic be conceived, built and stocked in less than a month.
It's true. It happened in Port Charles. On General Hospital, soon after Emily died -- and Nikolas stopped seeing visions of her thanks to a brain tumor -- he decided to dedicate a health clinic in her memory. Since Nikolas is a royalty, some kind of prince, cost was no object. He never met with an architect or designer, never spoke to contractors, never searched for a location and dealt with permits. He did have a fight with the mayor for a couple of shows about opening the clinic after it was already completed. If only all construction projects could be done so easily. Jeff Lewis on Bravo's Flipping Out doesn't even work that fast!


Only on a soap...can prisoners have hair and makeup stylists when needed.
Really, I should look as good as Erica Kane after being behind bars for three months, let alone three days. The orange jumpsuit was hard on Erica, fashion diva extraordinare, but a woman needs a little touch-up to keep in fine fettle. So every time All My Children cuts to Erica in prison, she looks remarkably better than Martha Stewart did under similar circumstances. The eye makeup is especially nice; you know, eye liner, mascara and just the right shades to accentuate her grim determination to serve her time. One thing I'm really glad about is that Erica hasn't resorted to tattoos. Tats don't say Erica Kane in my book, not even a fashionable butterfly or romantic heart.

Only on a soap can someone like John Black not have identity problems.
Who is John Black really? The man has been in Salem for two decades, on and off, ever since he appeared and took his name from a sign he saw outside of a building. Then, we thought we had discovered that the man known as John Black was Roman Brady. No, we we mislead. He was Forrest Alamain. No, he was actually a Dimera. His mother was Colleen Brady. Is that about it? Who knows! The one question I have is this -- does this man have a Social Security number? Does he pay taxes -- if so, as who? What about voting, can he vote? You think he has credit cards? If you were selling a property, would you make a deal with a guy who can't get a credit score with his history of names? These are the Days of Our Lives conflicts that we never see, John at city hall fighting for his latest name change.

Only on a soap can a wedding be talked about one week and completely set up and executed the next.
And I'm not talking about the little ones with a justice of the peace and a few family members. I'm talking about invitations, catering, photographers, videographers, churches, guests and the whole nine yards. The Bold and the Beautiful have it down to a science. They can throw a wedding together in about one week. The Forresters must have wedding planners on speed dial, caterers on retainer. Donna and Eric's wedding was a sumptuous affair, and I'm guessing that by the time Nick ties the knot this week, it'll look like there were months and months of detailed planning involved. Just once, wouldn't it be fun to see a soap wedding in real time, with the woman becoming a bridezilla along the way?

Only on a soap can a fashion magazine think it can be published in Wisconsin.
Restless Style on The Young and the Restless is an idea that could only sprout from a soap writer's imagination. Who else would conceive of a start up fashion magazine and not put it in New York, the heart of the American fashion industry? Genoa City is not a metropolis, despite the glamorous allure of Wisconsin cheddar and Green Bay Packers tailgate parties. You don't think Project Runway when you say "Genoa City," so Restless Style is a reach even in this era of digital media and remote officesh. Models, photographers and fashionistas would not trek to a place where there isn't an international airport. It's a lovely fantasy, but that's all it is. Restless Style. Cute.

Only on a soap can a do-it-yourself renovation on a house remain unfinished -- on purpose -- for over a year.
This is the case with Harley and Gus's home on Guiding Light, only now that Harley is on the run in Greece and Gus is dead and their home is being rented to the Spauldings, will anyone get around to painting the exposed drywall and finish the place? It was a funny bit at the start, how Gus and Harley were living in and finishing their home at the same time. Then it went on and on and on and the distracting sight of a house in a constant state of ongoing construction was just ridiculous. It's even more outlandish now because of GL's new, on-the-fly filming. Instead of moving the Spauldings into the rented house, they should have had Harley sell it before the bank foreclosed on the property, which was likely with her financial woes.

Only on a soap can someone in this day and age move a dead body and think they can get away with it.
Really, Paul, don't you think Oakdale's forensics lab will figure out that Sophie was in your house when they investigate her disappearance? As the World Turns may not be a CSI hub, like New York, Las Vegas and Miami. There's no CSI: Oakdale, but with the common knowledge of trace fibers and DNA evidence they're going to figure out that you had a direct connection to Sophie. These days, no soap character can get away with murder like the old days. Soap writers have to be as smart as viewers who watch all these crime procedurals and assume every crime can be solved in a lab.

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cherie

Only on a soap can someone that lives in Upstate NY road trip to Mexico for the weekend as has been done twice on General Hospital. My favorite being when Lucky and Sam went there to find Luke a couple weeks ago. When they got back Sam said she was tired from the traveling. Lucky responded "Come on, we didn't even change time zones."

Pretty odd to not change time zones when going to Mexico from a place that is close enough to Canada to have your private helicopter take you there, close enough to NYC to have your private jet get you there for a dinner benefit and fly back that night (though you could have taken your private helicopter for this also it appears), and still be able to have hurricanes.

Where there hell is Port Charles anyway?

July 11 2008 at 10:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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