Soap (TV series)

Caproni

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THERE MIGHT BE SOME SPOILERS IF YOU DON'T WANT TO READ THIS

We finished Season 1 of SOAP a couple of days back. I knew that Jessica didn't kill Peter. She was too oblivious throughout the entire ordeal for it to ever be her. When they showed the faces of the five possible killers at the end of the finale of the season, I automatically marked off Jodie, Benson, and Burt. I narrowed my decision to Corrine and Chester, and I wasn't surprised in the slightest when Chester confessed immediately after Jessica had been sentenced. It was sweet that he chose not to allow her to "fry" for something he did. However, I'd still me very angry that he sat back and let me go through that nerve-wrecking ordeal because he didn't want to man-up to what he had done.

Season 1 of SOAP was very enjoyable. I mean... it's a soap and a sitcom... what's not to love?

I cannot wait to see what the rest of the show has for me.​
 

Daniel Gravely

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However, I'd still me very angry that he sat back and let me go through that nerve-wrecking ordeal because he didn't want to man-up to what he had done.
He had not confessed earlier because he did not remember doing it for a period of time. He did not "hold it back" out of cowardice, even if it would have been right up Chester's alley to do so.
Rather spoiler-y if you have not seen the next few episodes of S2

You may recall a scene in the kitchen on the night before the verdict, where Chester half-heartedly tried to kill himself because he was so distraught about Jessica. He was seated in a chair, holding a rope tied to a bucket that he planned to drop on his head (or something equally absurd), when someone (Benson, I think) talked him out of it, then cut the rope as they left the room. The bucket smacked him on the head (again, it was joke-y and absurd), and as the scene faded out, he got this wide-eyed, grimacing look on his face. At the time it aired, it simply looked like the reaction to getting hit on the head by something heavy, but in fact he later states that the whack on the head made him remember he'd killed Peter. The reaction was instead his horror at remembering what he'd done.
 
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Caproni

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You may recall a scene in the kitchen on the night before the verdict, where Chester half-heartedly tried to kill himself because he was so distraught about Jessica. He was seated in a chair, holding a rope tied to a bucket that he planned to drop on his head (or something equally absurd), when someone (Benson, I think) talked him out of it, then cut the rope as they left the room. The bucket smacked him on the head (again, it was joke-y and absurd), and as the scene faded out, he got this wide-eyed, grimacing look on his face. At the time it aired, it simply looked like the reaction to getting hit on the head by something heavy, but in fact he later states that the whack on the head made him remember he'd killed Peter. The reaction was instead his horror at remembering what he'd done.
I do remember this scene. It was Burt that cut the rope with a knife he had ran to his car to sharpen.
 

Daniel Gravely

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Going back to the "similarities with The Golden Girls" idea, it even goes into settings and dialogue. There were numerous scenes in the Tate kitchen where the ladies (Jessica/Mary, often adding in Eunice and Corinne) sit around the kitchen table overeating and talking about sex. One such kitchen scene saw Corinne introduce Jessica to the word "horny"---which Jessica thought sounded so funny when you said it. It's not as obvious, but the general decor of the Tate kitchen (especially those ticky-tacky copper pots and cake pans hung across the top of the kitchen cabinets and window) was a lot like the Girls' kitchen.

It was during one of those kitchen chats that Mary described to Jessica how a woman of their age should avoid hovering over (and thus looking down on) a lover in bed, because when they do, the wrinkles and excess skin on their faces falls forward and makes them look older. Mary advised Jessica to place a hand mirror on the table and look down into it to see what she meant---and Jessica was shocked at what she saw. Fast forward about seven years, and Golden Girl Dorothy was giving the same advice to Blanche and having her look into a mirror placed on the kitchen counter. Blanche reacted about the same way, though of course they were much freer to joke about it. Blanche, admiring how much better she looked when she held the mirror up and looked upward at it, said she should always meet her men lying down. Sophia cracked "I thought you did." So Susan Harris recycled that entire scene for GG, but one has to admit that only a very observant, female writer could have even conceived of it and saw the humor in it.
 

Caproni

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We're about halfway through Season 2, and I thought I'd pop back on here to discuss SOAP and give some more of my thoughts.

One thing I really like is how they've mellowed Elaine. I thought it was funny that everyone (and I mean everyone, even her father) found her to be a totally rotten human being. I mean, even I was doubtful when she was having a heart-to-heart with Danny in their bedroom. I honestly thought it was just going to be a ploy of hers to get him off her back for a little while. It was good to see that she was being genuine. It's a good thing that they mellowed her, if primarily for Mary. That poor woman has gone through it all already, and she needed a break dished to her somewhere. I thought it was very sweet when Mary and Elaine were shown doing face masks together. It was a nice, sweet bonding moment for the two ladies. And I enjoyed it.

Dennis, Jodie's football playing boyfriend, is a total jerk. He dumped Jodie to marry a woman because he was afraid that being gay would ruin his chances of making it big as a professional player. And then when Jodie decides to marry Carol and legitimize their unborn baby. Jodie's actions are honorable, and Dennis is being completely unreasonable. He did the same thing to Jodie, but yet Jodie's the jerk for doing it to him.

I knew Sally, the secretary working for Burt and Danny, had something up her sleeve. Now, I still don't know what's going on with her, but it didn't surprise me to see her call someone on the fall and basically say she'd have Burt buckled and ruined in just a couple of weeks. I can smell a snake.

Chuck and Bob often get on my nerves. They are totally annoying, and I often say, "Why can't someone through that block of wood in the wood chipper???"

I like how Chester and Jessica are getting close, even with Chester going in and out on knowing his identity. I it hilarious when Benson convinces Chester that he is Marlene Dietrich, and Chester walks around seductively singing Dietrich's iconic number "Falling in Love Again".

I'm glad Eunice has found someone besides the bed-hopping congressman wannabe. Even though her latest squeeze, Dutch, is a convicted murderer, he does seem to actually care about her. And I also like how Corinne and Tim finally tie the knot and are expecting a baby.

Good, good stuff.​
 

Daniel Gravely

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I see parallels between the presence of Chuck and Bob in the Campbell house and The Major in the Tate house. Both serve mostly to "punch up" scenes in the two homes, not having real existences of their own the way the main characters do. Both live in their own little worlds (Chuck believing Bob to be a real person, and the Major of course still in WW2) but the lives of their family members are so hectic/dramatic that no one has time to really sit down and discuss the problem. Mary and Jodie will occasionally get serious for a minute and ask if they ought to get Chuck some help, but it's soon forgotten as there is another gag with Bob mouthing off at the family members and irritating them to a point that they also forget they're talking to a dummy. I recall someone (maybe Eunice) asking Jessica if they ought to see about putting "Grampa" away, since he had graduated to oddly hilarious stunts like blowing up the Kirbys' garage and taking the entire wait staff of the Benihana hostage. Again, nothing came of it because he (like C/B) was reliably hilarious and gave the show even more layers of laughs. In modern times, there would be faux outrage over allowing The Major and Chuck to function in society without getting them the professional help they needed, but if they got 'cured' what function would they serve on the series? Then again, maybe there was a plan to someday explore just what caused Chuck to have such a psychotic break that he would latch onto a dummy and use it to say all the mean things to everyone that he couldn't as himself. They did such a fabulous job showing us what made Elaine so horrible....why not write something equally heartbreaking for Chuck? I guess that would depend on whether the actor who played Chuck was up to that challenge.

The scene where Jodie steals Bob and stuffs him into the refrigerator for Burt to find is absolute comedy gold.
 

Caproni

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The scene where Jodie steals Bob and stuffs him into the refrigerator for Burt to find is absolute comedy gold.
That is definitely one of my favorite scenes from the show so far. The look on Chuck's face was hilarious. He was very worried about Bob, and Burt's reaction to seeing Bob in the refrigerator was priceless.

Hilarious!

....And speaking of the scene in question!

 
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