Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Chapter Two, Section One

Once again I have a day off from work. Time to catch up on my sleep, my video games, and my favorite soap Home and Away. It's an Australian soap opera completely different from American ones. Well, not completely. It has plenty of love triangles, car crashes, unplanned pregnancies, runaways, and break-ups. The characters and setting are what's different. Instead of revolving around a group of glamorous upper-class thirty-somethings, the characters are mostly under-thirties and definitely middle class. There are even young teenagers in the cast. American soap operas are easy to spot because of their dark interior lighting. Home and Away has one regular outdoor set: the beach, and all the indoor sets are decidedly sunny and bright. I guess I find it interesting because the characters aren't aloof and inaccessible as in American soap operas. These people are just like my own friends (thought perhaps a little more lovelorn and accident prone!).

Home and Away is the only soap I watch, however. In fact, I don't watch much TV at all. I regularly watch The Simpsons and My Hero (a britcom) on Friday nights, and I sometimes watch Murder She Wrote and Arthur (the cartoon) when I'm feeling lonely for American culture. I miss some of the American shows I used to watch but aren't syndicated here: Malcolm in the Middle, King of the Hill, That 70s Show.

On the whole I think British TV is more grown up than American TV. There are a lot more science and political programs of high caliber. I think British TV journalism is of excellent quality compared to American. There are some bad shows, or shows that are uninteresting to me, but most are exceptional quality.

Strangely, all soaps here are broadcast at night. However, I don't have an opinion on British soaps. I don't watch any.

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