‘Soap’ Book: Status Update

Egads! After more time than I’d care to admit, I’ve finally finished the entry for the final episode for “Soap: The Inside Story…”

Uh, great Berman, I hear you say, but what does that mean for us loyal Soap suds who’ve waited and waited (and waited) for this book for donkeys years? (I’m looking at YOU Brian Mattocks 😉

Well, there is still a fair bit left to write: I’m rewriting the beginning which is, in all honesty, the trickiest part of the book because it seeks to place Soap in the context both of pop culture history and, more importantly, the history of the United States itself.

That said, the bulk of the book has been written, so let’s have a hearty “Huzzah!” for that. More about all this later this week.

As always, many thanks for your interest.

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13 comments on “‘Soap’ Book: Status Update

  1. Great, Aaron. 🙂 Do you now how the book will be structured? For the episode guide, are you writing synopses or also offering critiques of the episodes? Will the guide will appear at the back of the book, before the index?

    Also- what can we expect in the way of photos? I know you had those goodies that were sent to you. Anything else or is that a surprise? 😉

  2. The structure will be similar to the approach I took with The Gilmore Girls Companion, though the first couple of chapters will be a bit longer as they set up the circumstances that brought Soap into being. I’ll be posting a sample episode entry soon to give everybody an idea of what those look like.

    The book will take the series an episode at a time, offering the standard info (cast, writers, director, airdate), as well as a detailed synopsis, scene highlights, behind-the-scenes info about that particular episode, fun facts, and cast and crew memories, either about that episode specifically, or about a subject in that episode. (For example, in Episode 3.2, we have John Byner, Jay Sandrich and Marsha Posner discussing the “Step Brothers” bit.)

    Photos are something we’re still trying to figure out. In any project like this you have to go through each image and determine how well it will reproduce in print, whether there are any rights issues involved, and for a series that’s nearly 35 years old — what photos have survived at all. Many people I’ve spoken with from the show have been very generous with the photos they have, so I’m hoping you’ll see at least a few you’ve never seen before.

  3. Ah, thanks for the explanation. Will be nice to hear cast and crew memories for particular episodes, and not just random musings about their general experience with the show- though that’s also nice to read, too, of course. 🙂

  4. Indeed- the more I rewatch the show, the more I wish there was some sort of relaunch version. I know they thought about doing a reunion movie in the 80s, but by then they thought it would be tough getting everyone back together again. And of course, some prominent players since have passed on.

    Still, part of me wishes there would be a revamp of some sort- i.e. focusing on the Campbell and Tate children. Helmond and Mandan are still with us. Other players may not want to revisit it, so that would be an issue. Of course, it wouldn’t be the same without Susan Harris’ involvement and all of that- I wonder if she’s ever thought about such a thing (outside of the reunion movie).

    • I asked Paul Junger Witt about the possibility of rebooting the series; Susan Harris was of the opinion that she was lucky to have survived the experience the first time around.

      Paul wasn’t even sure who owned the rights to “Soap” if they wanted to do a relaunch. He said, “I don’t think WE would want to do it. I suppose we would have to trust the people who were attempting it. That’s not to say that there aren’t 2 or 3 or 4 or 6 people out there who couldn’t knock it out of the park…. I would hope they would be young the way we were, and anxious to articulate themselves, and so it would be different in a really wonderful way. We’re really talking about a whole generation now.”

  5. Yeah, I’m not expecting it or anything- but it would be great if someone trustworthy and capable could do it, and get enough of the surviving cast on board. It could be a fun project. Susan and company attempted to do “Soap”-like series (“Hail to the Chief,” “Good and Evil”), but they didn’t have the magic.

    In the meantime, we have the DVDs to enjoy the crazy brilliance, as always. 🙂

    • It’s pretty hard to achieve something so good once in a career; trying to recapture lightning in a bottle is even harder. Long may Soap reign 🙂

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