I think that it is a fair assumption to say that television often suspends reality. Whether you're watching an hour-long mystery, a family-oriented sitcom, a medical drama, or ironically enough a reality series, there are just some things that are shown on a television program that simply do not make sense whatsoever.
Even though most shows do employ a team of experts that are directly linked to occupations that are shown in the series (example, on CSI, they have a team of medical and forensic experts to supervise in script writing to make sure that the dialogue is as realistic as possible), these shows certainly aren't perfect, and sometimes a plot line or a possible outcome just seems impossible to believe.
Such is the case with the daytime soap opera. How many times have you sat down and watched one of these shows and actually had a hard time keeping a straight face? Soap operas are basically just showing all of us that even the rich, famous, and beautiful people of the world have problems and struggles that would make a guest on the Maury Povich show seem like Mother Teresa in comparison.
Wait. I suppose that's the reason why people watch them in the first place, isn't it?
I don't doubt that soap operas can be entertaining and scandalous. I also won't argue that soap operas aren't addictive. They certainly can be. I know. I have an addiction to the BBC soap opera EastEnders that was fueled by watching PBS on a boring Sunday afternoon.
And no matter where you go in the world, it seems that each nation has their own version of what makes a good soap opera. In the UK, they have what they call the "Big 4", which are made up on Coronation Street, EastEnders, Emmerdale, and Hollyoaks. New Zealand has Shortland Street. In Australia, you can watch Home and Away or Neighbours. And in the United States - which at one time boasted eleven soaps or more - you have four to choose from; The Bold and the Beautiful, Days of Our Lives, General Hospital, and The Young and the Restless.
Now, how many times have you watched one of these shows and thought to yourself - that can NEVER happen in real life? Well, nine times out of ten, that's exactly what happens. They say that daytime soap operas are escapist fare for that reason alone! They allow you to believe almost anything in the world could happen.
So, I decided to think about this for a bit. What would real life be like if life were like a soap opera? I've come up with a few ideas. Would you like to see them? Here they are!
1. You can be 40 years old and already have at least nine marriages under your belt.
2. You can literally go broke planning a memorial service for somebody...especially if they die more than twice, thrice, or four times.
3. You wonder how restaurants, coffeehouses, and diners stay in business as nobody eats any of the food they order.
4. You simply don't question the logic of having alcohol merely two feet away from a recovering alcoholic.
5. You can marry a man, his two sons, his brother, his cousin twice removed, and his nephew and nobody will bat an eye - unless it threatens your business.
6. You can expect to be shot at least once in your lifetime and live to tell the tale.
7. Never do a paternity test inside of a hospital. 99% of the time, they get tampered with.
8. You might want to look over your shoulder. Never know when an evil twin or triplet will show up.
9. You might have difficulty finding hair spray, hair gel, or mousse. I can't understand why that might be.
10. The busiest man in town is the divorce attorney.
11. The only reason why people have a bathroom is so they can get frisky in the shower.
12. The average shift at any office building in town is seven and a half minutes.
13. If you have an affair, it will likely be exposed in a creative manner. Wrapping a DVD up of the affair and putting it underneath a Christmas tree, for example.
14. Police officers in town are terrible. They usually need two or three years before they can solve a crime.
15. If you have a family member, don't get too accustomed to their faces. They could change up to four times within an eighteen month period.
16. You send your 6-year-old son upstairs to play one day. A week later, he comes downstairs aged 22 and married.
17. You never need worry about natural disasters like tornadoes, earthquakes, or floods. Only two people will die in them, and usually they are either the main antagonist or someone who nobody really interacted with.
18. Don't let the medical experts fool you. In soap opera world, paralysis is not permanent.
19. Holidays on soap operas seem to last forever. Christmas can last up to a week and a half in some places.