Soap is one of my favorite series. It pushed the envelope very far for 1977. And it's creator, Susan Harris, would later go on to have great success with, "Benson," "The Golden Girls," and "Empty Nest," all of which ironically lasted 7 seasons. Soap brought America places that television had never brought us before. With the amazingly talented, Jessica (Katherine Helmond, also of Who's the Boss?), and her cheating husband Chester (Robert Mandan) along with her sister Mary (Cathryn Damon) and Mary's husband Burt (Richard Mulligan, also of Empty Nest). The series dealt with everything from sex to alien abductions, getting crazier and funnier each season.
This has to be the most hilarious show of all time. It was so far ahead of its time. It dealt with adultery, homosexuality, interracial relationships, there was not a subject this show was afraid to touch. As with most series, by the third season it had started to lose its way with the alien storyline. The final season was its worst with the awful el puerco character. But even at its worst it was still better than what passes for comedy today. I just wish we had been given a final episode and now that Cathryn Damon, Richard Mulligan and Arthur Peterson have passed on I doubt a reunion will happen. But there's always hope!
The cast and the writers were more creative here then on any other comedy show I have ever seen. One of the things I remember most about this show is that it was the fastest half hour on television. They did not even need laugh tracks to keep the laughs going. Doris Roberts had a small part on the show which most people do not remember. Do you remember? I can watch SOAP over and over again and always have a good laugh. How about that wondorful,kind,innocent,fun loving Jessica that had a rare quality of making everone love her. Her kindness reminded me so http://login.yahoo.com/config/login?.src=ytc&.done=http%3a//edit.profiles.yahoo.com/config/prof_wall%3f.idname=chicagomanlover%26.warned=1much of my Moms. She always respected everyone and made them feel welcome,even a wooden doll.My neice and her boyfriend come over to watch my DVDs of SOAP. They are 20 and never saw it and they have a good time watching this show like every generation will. That is because this show was the very best.
Soap was a series that truly changed, and revamped the sitcom format. It was a show unlike others that had come before it. It went places that no other show would even think of going. And I think the only reason it didn't last was unfortunately because it was a little ahead of its time.
What's amazing, 30 years later, is that this show was actually controversial when it first aired. It is definitely tame compared to today's standards. More importantly, it is still as funny today as it was so many years ago. A great ensemble cast, excellent writing, ridiculous but entertaining story lines, and true moments of poignancy have stood the test of time.
I wasn't sure which category to put this show; either a classic or ahead of its time. I'd love to get DVD's on this one. One of my absolute fave shows. I adore Soap. I was seventeen back in 1977.
It's one of the funniest whackiest shows there ever was on tv. For those of you who haven't had the pleasure of seeing it, you are missing out. There isn't a time I wasn't laughing so hard rolling on the floor. No comedy can match it.
The acting was superb. A lot of the veteran actors from that show have gone on to others such as the lovely Katherine Helmond, went on to Who's The Boss and Everybody Loves Raymond. Of course the great Billy Crystal as "Jody." So many of them, just hilarious, would like to know where they all are now. I will definitely get the DVD's. It's a keeper.
My grandfather recently gave me the first season of Soap and I have been hooked ever since! The cast is incredibly funny (my favorite is Benson!) and it is never unoriginal! Now I am on the 2nd season and so far I'm halfway through and its only been one day! This is the kind of humor we need today! Whats my favorite show? Not Desparate Housewives... its Soap! :-)
Ok, im sitting at home watching soap season 4 on dvd. The last episode comes on and i watch it but, at the end jessica might get killed, Burt(bat) might get killed, Danny and annie might get killed, chester might get killed by el, el might get killed by the comunists, mary and burt might get a divorce, mary might be an alcohlic, scott might be an alien, jodi might never be jodi again, jodi and some chick might get married if he ever comes back and jodi might not be gay??????
and this is the final season????? What happens to all of them?? I just think thats stupid! But other wise its a great show!
This show is amazing. Even though it was made more than 10 years before I was even born I love it. How many old shows are out there that young people can say that still look fresh? Not that many but this show will always be fresh and funny.
I love the Narrator's commentaries and the questions at the end. Well I better not start saying all the things I love about this show or this review will be the longest ever written. The show is just so good, so good that I was really surprised to hear that it had been cancelled. I can't seem to understand the why. The show was (and is) amazing, funny, timeless and so many other good things that I can't understand how someone could not like it.
God bless Susan Harris for creating SOAP! I was not born when it was first aired and went off the air. I was introduced to it when TV Land did a marathon for it's twenty-fifth anniversary. When I saw Jessica, Chester, and E. Ronald Mallu doing the hustle in Mallu's office before Jessica faced the jury, I laughed my butt off! Oh to be alive in that era when everything was controversial and to see one of television's famous first homosexual characters and know why all straight women cannot find a kind, sensible man. Oh! The irony of being born about four years too late!!! I love SOAP!!!!!!!
Principal character Jessica Tate didn't do it for me, it was the other characters that did. But saying that Chuck & Bob were awful and so were the gags that f****** doll came out with, jibes about gays, blacks & the sick only reinforce prejudices harboured by those who think its comedy.
Early guest stars were a hoot, especially Barney Gerber, Ingrid Svensson, Mrs.Flotsky and Elaine Lefkowitz. But the rauchy plots later made way for more slapstick fare with guests to match.
'Soap' for me was extra marital affairs, mobsters & fallen priests, not counter revolutionaries, aliens & sheriff called Bat.
Danny Dallas, dumb but oh so cute, Elaine was one lucky gal.
I remember cracking up over this show as a kid. Then a few years ago it was being run on late night tv and I was able to re-experience this show as an adult. I was now able to catch all the innuendos (and the not so innuendos) that I had missed as a child. The storylines were absolutely ridiculous, typical soap opera stories, but the writing made this one of the most perfect comedies of all time. And I have to complement the casting director for doing such a brilliant job. Each character was perfectly cast. Even more important, if you read the credits you will see a pattern that reveals many of the very successful comedy shows of the late eighties were headed up by writers, directors, producers and actors from this core. The show deserves recognition just for this alone. But watch it anyway!
This is a must-see for all as it is literally TV history in the making. Do watch from the first episode as things can get complicated as the story continues, and one finds such satisfaction in the thoroughness and character development displayed in this all-too-short series.
Fortunately I was in my mid-twenties when Soap hit the airwaves. I never missed an episode. This was as fascinating as The Sopranos. Just a heck of a lot more fun. The show broke new ground much as All in the Family, Maude, and Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman. We were treated for the first time to the realities of life around us as much as being highly entertained.
The show is as relevant today as when it was first shown. Acting was superb, casting could not have been better, and you just had to fall in love with your favorite characters. So sad that some of the players have since passed on, but they left a legacy of some of the finest work that television had turned out to date. I still enjoy re-watching this series as some things never get old. Viewing accomplished actors at their best is surely a worthwhile and noble cause.
I am not old enough to have watched this program first run. All of my experience of it comes from the DVD sets. I can't believe how funny this show was! I can't believe they were able to get all these great actors and actresses together at the same time. The best part of this show for me is the way they mix together comedy and drama. The characters are so strong and believable that they can go from slapstick to pure drama in seconds and still get a laugh mixed with tears. For once my favorite character on a program is female. No one can beat Jessica.
There are 2 shows on this web site that I have given a 10/10 to...Soap, my top comedy of all time being one. No sitcom, before or since, has ever made me laugh as consistantly and as hard as Soap. The writing was second to none and there was not one casting decision that I could object to, as everyone was excellent. Luckily I was old enough when it aired, that I was able to appreciate the adult humour. If anyone reading this has not seen this program, I would highly recommend buying the series on DVD. You won't be disappointed. The only negative that I can come up with, is that it should have lasted longer than it did.
I loved this show! Even after Benson left (which was disappointing--I loved the best friends relationship he had with Jessica--I just saw the first season on dvd and it was neat the way it showed him gaining warmth and respect for her by having him begin to ask her and ONLY her "Do you want me to get that?" whenever someone was at the door--before then he'd just say "I'm not getting that!") and even after the awful Corinne's having Rosemary's baby thing and Bert being nasty and the whole Dutch-Eunice-Corinne love/betrayal triangle, I never wanted to see it just disappear! Sure it was frustrating and disappointing but it could have turned around! I have ever missed it since I was around 8 or 9 years old and have watched the reruns every time they were brought back to a channel I was able to get!
Soap was created a group of writers that knew what the public wanted and how move television forward. Even though some of there storylines were a little ridiculous some of them were belivable. Soap will 1 day be recognized for the barriers it broke.
Soap was the first of it's kind because it brought forth a new breed of comedy. It proved that a comedy didn't have to stick with problem-solution in only 30 minutes. This show had a storyline which made it like a soap opera, but it was funny and that is what it a classic. This show was able to focus on more than one character at a time and you had a chance to know the characters better. Soap was cancelled because all networks are like a teenager they focus on 1 or 2 things at a time and when they are done with it they give up useing it and push it aside. I have the first 2 seasons on DVD and cannot wait to get the 3rd and 4th.
This show also launched alot of people's careers, most of the people on the show were in other shows later on. While some stories were a little stupid, most were so crazy that you just couldn't believe it. It had great writing with the story and the comedy. I enjoyed watching this show even though I only saw it in re-runs, since I was like 2 when it originally aired. They should show it in syndication again, not on comedy central who would over play it and then take it off the air, but somewere. I don't know if they have a DVD but if they don't they should for each season.
I couldn't believe it when I first watched this show when it was in prime time: somebody finally got a respectable satire of the TV warhorse, the soap opera, on in prime time.
Susan Harris was a genius. She wrote the bulk of the episodes and really had a command of her material. The outrageous plot lines gave us critics of soap operas something to cheer about: somebody finally understood what we had been saying all along and by God the creator and chief writer was a woman too boot.
Beyond the writing was the cast who week after week brought these zany characters to life. My favorites were Richard Mulligan (Bert Campbell), who was a master of physical comedy and one of the very few I would dare to compare with Art Carney, Robert Guillaume (Benson DuBois), who made the catch praise "Do you want me to answer that?" sing out in offices everywhere and last, but certainly not least, Katherine Helmond (Jessica Tate) who was brilliant as the ditsy matriarch of the Tate clan. This was one show I truly enjoyed watching after a grinding day at work. If you have never seen this show, by all means catch it if it pops up on the tube or seek out the DVDs and give them a look. If you like screwball comedy, you won't be disappointed.
Truthfully, i was too young to remember this show when it originally aired back in the late 70's. I do remember a lot of controversy about it, and that some stations chose to air it late rather than during primetime, because they thought it too racy.
A few years ago, I managed to catch this show on Comedy Central, and I have to admit that it is quite possibly the finest sitcom ever created. The characters were not the bland, shallow, unimaginitive figures you see on tv today. There was Jodie, the homosexual that was always unsure of his own sexuality; Chuck, the shy ventriloquist that always carried around his dummy Bob, whom Chuck thought was real, and there was NOTHING he wouldn't say; Burt, the delusional construction worker who had frequent encounters with the paranormal; Danny, the dimwit son of Burt that was mixed up in the mafia and later became a deputy sheriff; Chester, the wall street financier who slept with every woman in town except his own wife; and on and on. The cast (which includes billy crystal) was perfect...everyone played their roles so believably that you truly feel like you are watching a real dysfunctional family.
The writing and jokes were also timeless...This show was designed to take a direct pot shot at the absurdity of modern soap operas, and it hit it's mark perfectly. Most of the plotlines were like something out of a supermarket tabloid which always added to the hilarity of the show. Burt being abducted by aliens, burt thinking he can make himself invisible by snapping his fingers, jessica being captured by central american freedom fighters, jodie's baby being possessed by satan, etc...
Even 20+ years later, this show will not disappoint. While it may be tame by today's standards, it was clearly a pioneer that paved the way for a lot of today's programming.
Soap was a show that was so ahead of it's time that it might still be to forward thinking for television today. A parody of soap operas combinded with good old fashion family dysfunction, Soap was smart, funny, sexy, and outrageuos.
The problem that this show encountered was small minded local broadcasters. In some markets the show was delayed to late night, in others it was dropped completly. ABC stood behind the show a lot longer than any network would today, but it was ultimitly canceled abruptly. Jody was left an old Jewish man, Jessica was still being held hostage, ect. ect..
It is now available on DVD so if you missed it the first time or were to young see it now.
You should be able to delete a review you post on this site. I tried to delete this review but cannot find a way to do so. So I'm going to just randomly type for the minimum required 100 words to overwrite what I'd written - which is kind of lame, really, but I no longer want my review on here and don't see any other option. Am I missing some secret button somewhere to click to delete reviews? If so, and someone could pass that along to me, I'd really appreciate it. DELETE ME, PLEASE. Thank you in advance.
Being a soap opera fan, when Soap came out, I had to give it a look - & boy am I glad I did! It was so off-the-wall funny, I was hooked from the very first episode! I don't think TV has seen the likes of Soap since, but while it was on, it was incredible! Aliens, possessed babies, a butler with an attitude, television's first gay character, murder - Soap had it all, & then some! This show broke the mold for comedy, no doubt about that - bring it back into syndication, please! The world needs SOAP!
Brilliant, far ahead of it's time and most importantly--it's funny. Tremendously funny. Cerebral humor, slap stick humor, great dialogue, hilarious body language & facial expressions, running gags---this cast and writing crew could do, and did, it all.
What a cast! All of them could pull off comedy and drama better than any cast of any show ever.(Sorry cast of MASH, but the cast of SOAP does indeed edge you out in that category.) Waaaay ahead of it's time. Just thinking about Chuck & Bob, Bert & Danny, Jessica,Benson,The Major...brilliant. My only regret is that they didn't make a movie to give it closure while the cast were still all living. If you enjoyed SOAP, I highly recommend the show 'Arrested Development'. It's much like SOAP, just a faster pace (as everything else seems to be these days)and has more subtle humor to go along with the outlandish and outrageous humor, but it's gloriously over the top brilliant just the same. I could watch SOAP all day and night and still laugh until I cry watching such talented people do what they do best--entertain. As great as the 'main' cast was, all the supporting players that had brief or occasional recurring roles on the show are all STRONG, TALENTED ACTORS. One of the funnist tv shows in history, no doubt about it. My life has been enriched because of SOAP and all of it's ridiculous, bombastic glory. Who could have ever guessed that a simple story about two sisters...It was simply...SOAP!
Soap is by far the funniest "soap opera" that I have ever seen. Probably because it is a spoof on the soap opera genre. It uses the a-typical characters that you would find in your everyday soap and uses the crazy confusing situations that often occur throughout the plot of these soap operas and makes them unbelievably funny! The characters are absolute gold and the acting is fantastic. Most of the actors were actually theatre actors for most of their career interestingly enough. While most of this series is comedy there are also very emotional situations and situations that come up that are just so like our everyday existance that you feel yourself bonding with the characters. For one extremely funny moment, first episode in season 1 with Benson and the Major. Guareenteed to make you laugh your head off :)
Once upon a time a strange rectangular object took over planet Earth and multiplied itself millions of times over.It took up dominion in most houses in the world and emitted strange beams of light that hypnotised the poor Earthling into sitting zombie -like for hours and hours on end. This should have made for mass panic and caused the governments of the world to mobilise great armies of resistance, but it seems all the worlds leaders were in the trance as well, and couldn't wait to have their images and their speeches projected by the strange evil hypno-boxes in most houses of the planet. Soon, there would come out of the feral mountains a group of unwashed lazy scuzz-buckets who could not afford the evil hypno-boxes in their homes. The ferals took great pleasure in never watching the mind numbing trash from the hypno-boxes and even had their own opinions, which is a very naughty thing to do, I'm sure you're aware. So If you see these ferals who do not watch the compulsary six hours of television every day , report them to your nearset mind correction unit hidden in the remote control of your blessed television. You will be allowed extra time in the bliss of forgetting and zombie heaven of ultimate non-existance, praise be the almighty drool of the snazz-bot fliminity jiggy!!! Let us all bow down in worship to the royal fog !
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