Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Soaps and other slippery stuff 

While the Spielbergs and Scorceses and European directors (the rule of pseudo intellectuality states that in order to sound like a movie buff you have to name some European chaps) have relied on CGI and imagery and story telling to lure in the viewers, the people making soap operas just ask mundane questions to achieve the same. I have been fortunate enuff to watch a few of these golden soap moments in recent times (in my defense, merely by accident) and the actors use jarring music and bad acting coupled with that one "facing the camera question" to create a stiff ambiance of tension. So what exactly am I talking abt?

Lara: Vernie, I love you.
Vernie: Lara, I love you too.
Camera now zooms into Vernie's face and he looks directly into the camera and says - Or do I????

That's where the episode ends. The funny thing is Vernie doesn't hush his voice or appear subtle. This is a line said with equal gusto but meant solely for the audience. For the next one week the perpetually sniffing Mrs. R will keep nagging her not so better half, asking, "So do you think Vernie actually loves Lara? I feel so bad for her. That Vernie is a creep."

After a week of gripping tension, the series would continue and not even care to address the issue of Vernie's love. Once again, at the end of the episode, Lara and Vernie will coochie coo.

Lara: Vernie, I'm pregnant.
Vernie: What, with what?
Lara: With a child. My child. Your child. This is your child Vernie.
Camera now zooms into Lara's face and she looks directly into the camera and says - Or is it ???

Seriously, that's how tension is built in these shows and people like it. Can you imagine trying similar things in real life and not getting your hiny kicked in the process. Imagine you are standing in a long queue for a movie ticket and a tattoo sporting, bicep showing guy comes up to you with his girl friend and says, "Hey man! Is this the queue for Pretty In Pink?" You look up at the guy and say with a voice oozing emotion, "Yes it is" and then turn at his girl friend and say with even more gusto, "Or is it?" Lemme know what happens.

Trying to link a soap with real life will most often lead to extremely damaging situations. Like the one you pointed out.

But seriously, how goes the heterogenous computing, what with being a big soap opera fan and all ;)
@Vignesh - no no me no watch soaps - they were having a program on E! on outrageous moments in soaps - that was my inspiration :) (the kind of lies i have to make to defend my reputation)
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