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Faulkner

Racism and racial representation on soaps

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9 minutes ago, mikelyons said:

 

I'm still waiting for soaps to give us a full integrated, functioning Asian family on soaps. We've had a stray character here, a product of a liaison from the Vietnam War there, but I want a dynamic family from Asia who are either working class & on the up or the richest family in town. 

 

I wish soaps were still viable. This moment could allow for so much diversity, but daytime is playing it safe to hold on to a dying audience. 
 

We briefly had the Voliens/Keemo on Y&R and the Chin family on AMC. Haley and Trask on DAYS were just a stunt. The problem is that these shows see themselves as essentially white and always have. They don’t want to give up too many spots to POCs, and they rarely allow the ones they do have to build a legacy.

 

 

Edited by Faulkner

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6 minutes ago, Faulkner said:

I wish soaps were still viable. This moment could allow for so much diversity, but daytime is playing it safe to hold on to a dying audience. 
 

We briefly had the Voliens/Keemo on Y&R and the Chin family on AMC. Haley and Trask on DAYS were just a stunt. The problem is that these shows see themselves as essentially white and always have. They don’t want to give up too many spots to POCs, and they rarely allow the ones they do have to build a legacy.

 

 

You are correct. Imagine if a family from Hong Kong bought Forrester Creations and turned it into a mass-market brand to sell cheap accessories, wallets, and jewelry. Or if that same family moved to LA, bought Spectra, and undercut the Forrester with fast fashion and more money to higher the top designers. 

The Keemo incident is a shame. He's the grandchild and child of legacy characters - at one point he was Nikki Newman Abbott's stepson - and he's been relegated to a Wiki blurb. Shameful.

I have a very hazy memory of the Chins on AMC. If it was just before or after Bianca's rape, that may be why.

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24 minutes ago, mikelyons said:

Also, can we please get black characters out of apartments and condos? Like, if you're a doctor or executive, you should instantly have a two-story house on a soap! Dru and Neil's apartment always drove me MAD.

 

Debbi Morgan and Darnell Williams shared this sentiment, i.e., Angie (Chief of Staff) and Jesse (Chief of Police) in their *cozy* loft. 2.0 righted this, IIRC.

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6 minutes ago, SFK said:

 

Debbi Morgan and Darnell Williams shared this sentiment, i.e., Angie (Chief of Staff) and Jesse (Chief of Police) in their *cozy* loft. 2.0 righted this, IIRC.

There was a weird time on AMC when everyone, except Adam, Palmer, Brooke, the Martins, and Phoebe lost their homes. A lot of people moved into that condo complex. Even Erica gave up Linden House (she would NEVER!) to move into that stupid loft/penthouse. Maybe Angie and Jesse were her neighbors. 🤷‍♂️

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21 minutes ago, mikelyons said:

Let's not forget that only OLTL has done any justice to Jewish characters.

 

How explicit was OLTL about the Siegels' faith? I'm thinking about how some years later on AW, Iris' mother Sylvie's Judaism was "heavily inferred" but never outright stated. I can imagine clunky "safe" dialogue using phrases like "interfaith marriage" and whatnot, but I'm curious how often the word Jewish was uttered and how Agnes Nixon established their religion to begin with. Did the Siegels go to temple, observe high holidays?

@Paul Raven @vetsoapfan

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Just now, SFK said:

 

How explicit was OLTL about the Siegels' faith? I'm thinking about how some years later on AW, Iris' mother Sylvie's Judaism was "heavily inferred" but never outright stated. I can imagine clunky "safe" dialogue using phrases like "interfaith marriage" and whatnot, but I'm curious how often the word Jewish was uttered and how Agnes Nixon established their religion to begin with. Did the Siegels go to temple, observe high holidays?

@Paul Raven @vetsoapfan

Norah certainly celebrated Jewish holidays on OLTL with Bo, Hank, and her children. I distinctly remember a Hanukkah episode from the late-90s/early-00s or so...Matthew was a little boy at that point.

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2 minutes ago, mikelyons said:

Norah certainly celebrated Jewish holidays on OLTL with Bo, Hank, and her children. I distinctly remember a Hanukkah episode from the late-90s/early-00s or so...Matthew was a little boy at that point.

 

Yes, I always loved any reference to Nora being Jewish. I even remember Rachel referring to herself as "a good little Jewish girl."

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Just now, BetterForgotten said:

For the life of me, I don't recall Norah celebrating the Jewish holidays on a consistent basis. It must have been down to who was the HW at the time and if they cared.

I think you're spot-on. If JFP were there, well, she would've run Matthew down on Llanview Blvd., but I digress. 

6 minutes ago, SFK said:

 

Yes, I always loved any reference to Nora being Jewish. I even remember Rachel referring to herself as "a good little Jewish girl."

And Rachel as a bi-racial Jewish woman? I mean, that must have been first on daytime!

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3 hours ago, Faulkner said:

Oh dear. I remember how pathetic both of them looked. (Not gonna deny D.J. Lockhart-Johnson was attractive but still...)

 


Oh here’s the clip of Margo salivating over him:

 


Saw you covered “Kong” in the Y&R thread...

 

Lololol, I am cackling. I thought this storyline was awful at the time, but now it's circled back around to so bad it's good. I mean, it's at least more interesting than anything else Margo did in the last 10 years or so. 

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Even at the time I remember thinking the Asian Quarter storyline on GH was not great, now especially because no lasting characters lasted much beyond it that were Asian.

 

I think all these soaps really stopped even trying to have good, storyline integrated  POC characters by 1996.  It was all pretty much short term, problematic, and downhill from there.

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8 minutes ago, titan1978 said:

Even at the time I remember thinking the Asian Quarter storyline on GH was not great, now especially because no lasting characters lasted much beyond it that were Asian.

For that matter, if the Aztec treasure storyline was being told in 2020, I'm assuming Felicia wouldn't be played by a blonde.

 

Rewinding back to page one, wasn't Lauryn Hill's character on ATWT another young illiterate?

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25 minutes ago, titan1978 said:

Even at the time I remember thinking the Asian Quarter storyline on GH was not great, now especially because no lasting characters lasted much beyond it that were Asian.

 

I think all these soaps really stopped even trying to have good, storyline integrated  POC characters by 1996.  It was all pretty much short term, problematic, and downhill from there.

 

I was going to mention the same, but I'm no expert. It seems to me that for a genre that was known for so many firsts in its early years, soaps stopped taking risks as far as representation, diversity and storytelling in the late 90s/2000s if not earlier. While primetime had started to show intimacy in gay characters and pushing the boundaries in the 90s, it took daytime until the 2000s to really push forward. I mean the first gay male kiss was in 2007 on a P&G soap nonetheless. By 2007 Will & Grace had ended it's original run, there were more gay characters on TV than before. If there was an audience that could handle a gay kiss it was the daytime audience IMO. They handled crazier stuff before without flinching. 

 

Diversity in soaps has been an issue for sure, especially lately. I think one problem with diverse characters in daytime and how they are represented comes down to a lack of diverse writers and storytellers in daytime. The same writers are recycled to repurpose and regurgitate and unfortunately you need diverse writers to tell stories that are authentic. 

 

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