T.V.

Soaps Cleansing Us Of Intelligent Thoughts

Soap Operas

Soap Operas

The soap opera originally emerged from radio soap operas in the 30’s and 40’s in the States and currently stands as the most popular form of television programming in the world. The term soap originates from the detergent manufacturers that use to sponsor the earliest forms of the shows and the term opera is used to highlight the dramatic appeal of the genre.

Originally targeted at stay at home lower-class housewives, they were designed to be mindless distractions from a harsher reality. As the stay at wife has slowly began to vanish the soaps have still remained popular for over 50 years. They can be regarded as some what of a guilty pleasure today.

Soaps are slow moving, poorly written and generally have an atrocious standard of acting. So how has this formula remained so successful over time? It comes down to a number of things. They are generally centred on relationships and families which are relatable topics to everyone. The production costs are low, so they are easy to produce in bulk amounts for a cheap budget. Their time slots are early so they become almost a daily routine. With this routine comes a loyal fan base. In a sense the characters almost become like family members or friends. They are there everyday for you after a hard day at work. And of course there is always the cliffhanger that leaves the viewer in suspense for the following night.

Here is a hilarious clip of the English due Fry & Laurie impersonating an Australian soap: Fry & Laurie

 

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The Death OF The DVD

Blockbuster Closed

Blockbuster stores are closing permanently

I walk to work each day and pass a video store. Or maybe a DVD store is more appropriate. Or maybe a blu-ray store is actually. Well it doesn’t matter what format they are selling, the important thing is that they are selling physical copies of movies and T.V. shows. Each time i walk past i look at the people leaving the store and wonder why they are still practising this ancient tradition of hiring movies. Well actually my first thought is i can’t believe they are paying for movies but that’s a whole other debate.

So why are these video stores failing to survive? It’s pretty simple really, they’re an inconvenience. Why would we venture into the outside world, search through aisles of movies and pay ridiculous prices when we can just jump on Netflix and be watching a show within seconds. Why would people pay money to multi million dollar franchises when they could just download a movie for free?

The final nail in the coffin came with the announcement late last year that all of the American Blockbuster stores were closing down. It is only a matter of time until the smaller stores are no longer. Although i am one of those people downloading shows, I am still genuinely sad that the video store is leaving us. Like picking up a newspaper, like buying a CD, it seems as though my childhood is dissapearing around me.

Here is an interesting related article published in The Wire:  Blockbuster’s Death