‘Soap! The Inside Story…’: What to Expect

What with one thing and another, I’ve spent a lot of time on this blog discussing interactions I’ve had with the amazing people who made Soap, but I haven’t really discussed the book itself all that much. I’d like to rectify that now, if I may.

Early on, I knew that I didn’t want this to be just another “making of” book, though it will definitely have a great deal of behind-the-scenes info on how the series was made, based on several exclusive interviews. Yet the more research I do and the more people I speak with, the more I realize that to do Soap justice, its creation must be set in the context of the time in which it was made. That’s just what Soap! The Inside Story… will do. That’s really the only way to understand the risks cast and crew were taking each week, and why they were taking them in the first place.

While critics have always been quick to dismiss those risks as a mad grab at ratings, Soap was not created in a vacuum. Many of its story lines and character choices were direct responses to what was going on at the time in the U.S., and in U.S. television; to divorce the show from its influences is to dismiss a part of American history, and ultimately, is to be left none the wiser about the forces that shape us.

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5 comments on “‘Soap! The Inside Story…’: What to Expect

  1. Hi Aaron,

    This is a great idea for a book. I’ve been a “Soap” fan since it’s original run and have wondered where the book about it is. For exactly the reason you mentioned, it’s place in TV history and dealing with the issues. That was truly the golden age of the sitcom, the ’70’s. The Norman Lear stuff, the MTM stuff, MASH, Taxi, Barney Miller. Relevant scripts and great acting. They don’t make them like that anymore.
    If I can help with research materials or memories let me know.

    • That was pretty much the way the discussion about the book went with the publisher: “You know…nobody’s written anything about the making of this landmark series. What the heck?!”

      And thank you for your kind offer, Jeff. I’m always on the lookout for stories about how people discovered the show, including how old they were and what their memories of watching it are. So if you ever feel like sharing, let me know.

      • Sure. Just e-mail me privately. I’ve got a collection of stuff from over the years, depending on what you need.

    • A little bit, Neil. Much of what will appear in the book is down to who I’m able to track down. Owing to the passage of time, sources have been relatively difficult to find. That said, if anybody out there can point me in the right direction for those not included int the current interview list (see “Interviews to Date” in lefthand navigation of this blog’s front page), I would be much obliged.

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