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Paul Raven

Proposed Soaps Over The Years

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It really is. I'm a night owl, I usually get home late, and I would love to follow a late night soap. I always thought it was such a treat when the soaps were preempted and would air in the middle of the night. I so enjoyed watching Slesar's Hitchcock episodes and The Doctors after midnight.

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16 hours ago, Khan said:

In this day and age, with streaming, I doubt ANY first-run syndicated programming would succeed.

 

Even in the 80s and 90s, syndicated soaps had trouble succeeding long term.  Now other types of programming that were syndicated... different story :)  Saturday afternoons after cartoons were when a majority of syndicated sitcoms/dramas played in Chicago during the 80s/early 90s.

 

I do think perhaps a streamed show/serial might work.. but only if released in bulk (say 20 episodes with the last of the 20 ending in a cliffhanger... and they're released once a month for people to enjoy).

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Robert J. Shaw was working with Roy Winsor Productions on "The Outsider" in 1965. It was about a Milwaukee brewing family who, despite having made it financially, were never truly accepted.

 

Around the same time he was also developing a series (it isn't clear based on the article whether or not it was a soap) based on the teenage drinking problem in a Connecticut town. I believe he was referring to Darien, an affluent community where Ira and Jane Avery (the writers of "The Secret Storm") lived. Several parents were arrested for serving alcohol to minors at parties rather than have them cross state lines and get drunk in New York where the legal drinking age was 18. 

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1 hour ago, Soaplovers said:

 

Even in the 80s and 90s, syndicated soaps had trouble succeeding long term.  Now other types of programming that were syndicated... different story :)  Saturday afternoons after cartoons were when a majority of syndicated sitcoms/dramas played in Chicago during the 80s/early 90s.

 

I do think perhaps a streamed show/serial might work.. but only if released in bulk (say 20 episodes with the last of the 20 ending in a cliffhanger... and they're released once a month for people to enjoy).

If I was going to do a soap, that's kinda how I'd do it. Almost novela style, in mini seasons that could be open ended, but also end without feeling like you're missing something.

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3 hours ago, Soaplovers said:

 

Even in the 80s and 90s, syndicated soaps had trouble succeeding long term.  Now other types of programming that were syndicated... different story :)  Saturday afternoons after cartoons were when a majority of syndicated sitcoms/dramas played in Chicago during the 80s/early 90s.

 

I do think perhaps a streamed show/serial might work.. but only if released in bulk (say 20 episodes with the last of the 20 ending in a cliffhanger... and they're released once a month for people to enjoy).

 

Better to do it in 10 episode blocks per month. Anything beyond 10, maybe 13, is asking too much in this day and age. 

 

Isn't it crazy how many syndicated shows there were back in the 90's? Also a Chicagoan here, and remember Baywatch at 5pm on Saturdays & Sundays, along with other shows on the weekend like Xena and all those shows, Deep Space Nine, and Malibu beachy shows like the one with Rick Springfield, and another with Mario Lopez. 

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I don't know about syndicated, but I've pondered the streaming soap issue before and ultimately I think it still comes down to the Prospect Park soaps on Hulu - mismanaged by the higher-ups financially, but ahead of their time by a year or maybe just six to eight months. Soap-esque shows like Degrassi, etc., or even serial-trending sitcoms like Fuller House or One Day at a Time, succeed with arcs now on Netflix and Hulu in blocks of programming.

 

With soaps, I would want to try to preserve at least some of the day-to-day format. It can never be what it is on network, but Netflix has experimented with releasing stuff weekly. I think that can be done with a soap - 3-5 eps a week or even day by day. I'd also try to refine what Prospect Park sort of attempted in a backwards way. They sort of fell into it because they ran out of money, but IIRC they made maybe 30-40 episodes of both AMC and OLTL. For better or worse, a pre-filmed block close to that is what I would attempt to release in segments to streaming - something people can watch over a month or two months with defined arcs and plots set against a larger ongoing canvas. Maybe their release is staggered week to week or every few weeks, something to preserve momentum and a sense of a daily world. Maybe that's impossible, but I'd try it. You get a bigger bang for your buck than the average streaming sitcom. And it can go on hiatus for months after - it's not going to run perpetually, 365 days a year anymore. That's not possible.

Edited by Vee

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4 hours ago, Gray Bunny said:

 

Better to do it in 10 episode blocks per month. Anything beyond 10, maybe 13, is asking too much in this day and age. 

 

Isn't it crazy how many syndicated shows there were back in the 90's? Also a Chicagoan here, and remember Baywatch at 5pm on Saturdays & Sundays, along with other shows on the weekend like Xena and all those shows, Deep Space Nine, and Malibu beachy shows like the one with Rick Springfield, and another with Mario Lopez. 

I do remember that and as I recall, these shows gathered ratings. I think it could work now. Hell, it's better than the 6 hours of court shows, followed by Maury and Wilkos! I know I would certainly love a new episode of a soap every day over that crap!

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Did PP air one ep each day then all five on the weekend? I don't recall. But I'd be down for something like that and it would be interesting to monitor viewing habits and see if the daily releases are "worth" it. When I was streaming B&B for a while there, I'd often watch two or three at a time. My personal issue with that was impatience with ads and poor pause/ff/rw functions; and the feeling that it was chore watching instead of daily enjoyment.

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14 hours ago, dc11786 said:

Robert J. Shaw was working with Roy Winsor Productions on "The Outsider" in 1965. It was about a Milwaukee brewing family who, despite having made it financially, were never truly accepted.

 

Around the same time he was also developing a series (it isn't clear based on the article whether or not it was a soap) based on the teenage drinking problem in a Connecticut town. I believe he was referring to Darien, an affluent community where Ira and Jane Avery (the writers of "The Secret Storm") lived. Several parents were arrested for serving alcohol to minors at parties rather than have them cross state lines and get drunk in New York where the legal drinking age was 18. 

Variety reported in Sept 65 that with The Doctors still failing to make the daytime to 20 despite changes in the format,NBC was interested in the Roy Winsor soap 'Masterton's Valley' written by Robert J Shaw.

 

Could this have been another title for 'The Outsider' or the title for the second proposal you mentioned?

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9 hours ago, SFK said:

Did PP air one ep each day then all five on the weekend? I don't recall. But I'd be down for something like that and it would be interesting to monitor viewing habits and see if the daily releases are "worth" it. When I was streaming B&B for a while there, I'd often watch two or three at a time. My personal issue with that was impatience with ads and poor pause/ff/rw functions; and the feeling that it was chore watching instead of daily enjoyment.

PP began airing 4 epsodes a week of both AMC & OLTL. On Fridays they airedc <ore AMC & More oLTL which was BTS stuff

 

after a month they went from 4 to two episodes of each soap a week and combinded More AMC & More OLTL into MORE

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Before you knew it, though, it would have been pared down so much that you would've wound up with just More AMC/OLTL, a BTS show about two OTHER shows that weren't even in production anymore.

Edited by Khan

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7 hours ago, Paul Raven said:

Variety reported in Sept 65 that with The Doctors still failing to make the daytime to 20 despite changes in the format,NBC was interested in the Roy Winsor soap 'Masterton's Valley' written by Robert J Shaw.

 

Could this have been another title for 'The Outsider' or the title for the second proposal you mentioned?

 

Anything is possible. I got the information on "The Outsider" from two articles from May, 1965. One was a press release type talking about Shaw being on leave from "Peyton Place" to develop "The Outsider," a daily series, for CBS. The other was an interview with Shaw where he discussed "The Outsider" and the other potential series. 

 

I found some more information about "Masterson's Valley." The articles I found state the show was set to start in October 1965 and was to revolve around a female veterinarian in New England or upstate New York (depending on the article). This sounds more rural than the untitled Shaw project. That project may never have made it past the idea phase. 

 

From the Shaw interview:

 

And he has some new ones in the works, "The Outsider," for CBS-TV, about a  Milwaukee brewing family. No matter how successful, they are still outsiders. and as one character observes: "A cat can have kittens in an oven, but that doesn't make them biscuits." He has another one in the works which was inspired by teen-age drinking problems in that town in Connecticut.

 

Of course, Shaw eventually would work for Roy Winsor as the head writer for "Love of Life" around 1967 - 1968. At the time he was writing "Love of Life," he was also creating a soap set in Hawaii. Do we have any information on that one?

 

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