They’ve been around a long time. And I’ve been right there with them. I fondly remember watching The Edge of Night with my mother. It was early days of television. Very early. The television set wasn’t deemed pretty enough to be in the living-room so it lived in a corner of the dining room. We’d pull up two straight chairs from the table and watch the 15-minute segment of The Edge of Night. Every single day.
These days, instead of soaps, we, the Mister and I, watch British mysteries which proudly present themselves as exactly that….mysteries. But they’re really soap operas in disguise. Sure, there’s always a murder or two but the deceit, the lies, the affairs, the duplicitous behavior? That’s soap opera redux.
Of course, The Mister never watched soap operas. Consequently, he didn’t receive soap-opera training. He has a hard time remembering what happened from week to week in our mystery shows. Who did what to whom and why. He lways has questions when we (attempt to) pick up the story where we left off. Many questions. And he wants clarity right that very second. Tell me again who that person is, he’ll say. What does he/she do? Is he/she married? Are there children? Is he/she the murderer? Should I be worried? And, on and on.
By the time I’ve explained the family tree (again), I’ve lost track of the story line. But I don’t care anymore. What will be will be. Ms. Christie and her beloved Hercule Poirot will solve the mystery and the British will carry on carrying-on as they’ve always done. Just like all my old soap opera friends.