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In my previous article (Come Clean - Teen Summer Storylines), I mentioned that soaps were created for women that stayed at home during the 1950's. Times have changed and women may work and record their daily soap opera's, but it seems that the same 'men sitting around the creative table' mentality still exists. It's rather surprising since more women are sitting at the production and writing tables today.
Sure, the storylines are more up to date and the network rules have relaxed quite a bit regarding what can be said, worn and done in our daily episodes. The skin and sex scenes of today were banned in days of yore. Given that the majority of the soap opera viewers are women, why don't we see more beefcake! Come on ladies, wouldn't you like to see more shirtless men with six pack abs, more men running around in their skivvies? Who didn't think Y&R hunks, Nicholas Newman looked cute being shirtless and in his black trunks and Ji Min was smoking hot shirtless and in his pajama bottoms? And on GH, hottie Jason with the blue eyes you could drown in, is chiseled and buffed to the bone! Women want more beefcake!
Why is it that most sex scenes show the woman disrobing, yet the man may still have on his suit and tie? In the bed we see the leg or breasts of the woman being shown, but show me Brad 'the cad' Carlton disrobing to his thighs. Now that is some must see TV! Let's see more scantily clad dressed men. Leave the half clothed women to the sports channel ads!
Soapland is filled with lots of beautiful, skinny women. However women want to see more women that look like them! We want to see females with some meat on their bones and some swerve in their curves. I applaud OLTL for creating the character Marcie Walsh and GL for bringing the character of Ashley Wolfe to the canvas. Remember Days of our Lives Nancy Wesley? All are 'not the typical soap star look' and yet, are a big hit amongst the fans. Georgie on GH and Sami on DOOL also have 'it' going on. Women appreciate seeing more women of all sizes and shapes, hair colors, voluptuous, full figured and carrying a little 'junk in the trunk'!
Women want to see more romance and the thrill of the chase with their couples. It seems if a man and a woman have a cup of coffee twice, then the next day they have instantly fallen in love. I don't mind the faster paces of soaps, but relationships are on warp speed! Now, within two weeks of their first date, couples are talking marriage. What happened to cat and mouse moves in the game of love? What happened to getting to know someone or taking it a little slow? We want to see some old fashion wining and dining and courtship. Soaps seem to depict women as the desperate Diane Kenton character in Looking for Mr. Goodbar. We really do want to see romance, wooing and sweet talking by a potential suitor.
In Sudsville, best female friends (BFF's) are a rarity. Most women do not have any female friends because of all the backstabbing, duplicity and switching of partners. But in real life, women really do have BFF's. It is such a refreshing change to see a scene between friends and the bonding, chit chat and laughter that goes along with it. I don't mean friendships that are born out of a plot device whereby one character needs an accomplice, but characters that have commonality or history that has brought them together. A few notable BFF's were: Opal and Myrtle on AMC, Blake, Cassie and Harley on GL, Margo and Jessica on ATWT and Star and Langston on OLTL. BFF's are a part of the female DNA and when it does occur on soaps, it enriches the characters.
What do women want? We want more beefcake, baby! We want more love in the afernoon and less rushed sex scenes! And give our characters some friends. Friendships are the fabric of life.
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