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World Cup Tournament World Cup of Soap Operas - The Matches

Discussion in 'World Cup of Soaps' started by Angela Channing, Aug 20, 2019.

  1. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Winner EXP: 18 Years

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    Match Three

    Enders is my true blue tip top number one favourite of the Big 3 UK soaps. It's so full of misery and bleakness and people unable to outrun their pasts that I just love it. (It's also a lot funnier than people give it credit for. Ethel, Lofty, Dot, Frank Butcher, Jim Branning, Jean Slater, Michael Moon, Tamwar Masood, Ricky and Bianca, Aunt Sal and Aunt Babe, Danny Dyer on a good day? Hilarious!) I started watching the whole darned thing - that's 34 years worth of eps - from scratch a few years ago and now know an unhealthy amount about it. (For instance, I reckon I'm the only person in the world who remembers that Denise has another sister.)

    Sons and Daughters was a freakishly exciting discovery back in the 80s -- a daytime Australian soap, cheap as chips, but with some truly compelling characters, and thrillingly exciting twists and turns. My memories of the later years are dim but I vaguely remember some horribly unfunny comedy plots that rendered it all but unwatchable. (I'm fast reaching the conclusion that "horribly unfunny comedy" is the worst crime a soap can commit.)

    Logic says I should vote for Enders, but I'm currently immersed in a re-watch of S&D which has just reached the amazing string of episodes leading up to A***** and R**'s wedding, which has secrets pouring out of the woodwork, and blistering confrontations round every corner. It's so well-structured I can practically smell the post-it notes stuck to the white board in the writers' room. So, logic be damned. I may regret this in a few months' time (or whenever Sandra the comedy spinster with the thick glasses moves in with Fiona) but, for now, I'm pressing my button for Sons and Daughters.

    Match Four

    I have a chequered past with Emmerdale. I have dim memories of seeing it as a kid when I was off school and it was an afternoon soap called Emmerdale Farm in which Alan Turner was a proper posh villain and not the loveable old man he later became. I've since watched the really early episodes on DVD and they are truly fascinating -- hardly anything happens (there's a whole episode which revolves around giving Old Mrs Thing a lift to the train station), but it is genuinely hypnotic. I watched it regularly in the evenings in the 80s for a while when it was a nice normal country soap full of adultery and poachers, but when they started dropping planes out of the sky in the 90s I kind of lost interest.

    I got back into it quite a few years ago now when a very patient forum member started sending me links to current-ish episodes. I'm still about five years behind but I really enjoy it. It has probably the coolest bad guy in British soap in Cain Dingle, and the most fun bad girl in his ex-wife/cousin Charity. I reckon it's the most effortlessly funny of all the UK soaps, and it certainly doesn't feel like they're churning out six episodes a week.

    F'lingo Road is a fascinating companion piece to the more famous American primetime soaps of the '80s. It's full of really interestingly flawed characters. Nobody's all good (apart from maybe Skipper, but he's so boring no-one even remembers him.) The voodoo episodes with Michael Tyrone/Richard Channing are like nothing else ever. Fun as it was, though, two seasons can't really measure up to Emmerdale's forty-summat years. So Emmerdale it is for me.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2019
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  2. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator EXP: 11 Years Staff Member

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    Wow. If I hadn't voted for S&D before...



    With enticing snippets like this I'm looking forward very much to watching early Emmerdale Farm. One of these days.
     
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  3. Carrie Fairchild

    Carrie Fairchild Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Match 3: this was a tough one as I've loved EastEnders at various stages over the years. It has produced countless iconic characters including some of my favourite soap characters ever like Pat Butcher and the Watts women - Angie, Sharon and Chrissie. It's had some really amazing storylines and it's still trucking along after nearly 35 years. However, I haven't watched it for years now as it's had more low periods than highs compared to it's golden eras in the 80's and 90's. It's also a show that's stuck in the past. While it's great for a soap to reference it's heritage, since the 00's, EastEnders seems to have been in a cycle of trying to rehash old glories. There's no evolution as such. It's just the same characters in the same situations or rehashed versions of old characters in a bid to invoke nostalgia. It's still one of my favourite British soaps though.

    Which brings us to Sons and Daughters. Another show that I loved and another one that churned out some amazing characters - the iconic Pat the Rat being possibly the greatest character ever to grace Australian soap operas. S&D benefits from a shorter run of course, where it didn't have as much time to go off the boil compared to EastEnders. Not that it didn't have it's lulls in later years. However, compared to EastEnders, there's a feeling of much more vibrance and excitement with S&D in terms of performances, writing and plot twists. Characters evolved and situations changed. People gained fortunes and lost fortunes and forged alliances and got into all sorts of high drama. Which in my book, is a lot more gripping than EastEnders endless merry go round of affairs and bids to take control of a grimy pub. So for this match, Sons and Daughters gets my vote.

    Match 4: Flamingo Road is great and was a colourful addition to the 80's primetime soap landscape. However, I've more of an attachment to Emmerdale (despite not being a regular viewer). It's never been afraid to take chances and was doing slightly left field storylines like plane crashes and returns from the dead long before any of the other British soaps dived down that rabbit hole. And in her original incarnation, Kim Tate was a perfect soap antagonist. So it's Emmerdale for this match.
     
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  4. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    Match 3 - Sons and Daughters
    I broadly agree with the analysis of @Mel O'Drama and @Carrie Fairchild on this one. I've only ever watched EastEnders intermittently but in its heyday, which was the first few years in was on air, it was a bit of a phenomenon, attracting lots of newspaper headlines, gaining large audiences and producing great characters and storylines. It was also one of the few programmes of the time that made an attempt to reflect the diversity that existed in society in that amongst its regular cast was a gay character, a black family, an Asian family and a Turkish family. Apart from the occasional episode, I've not watched it in years but I recognise that it continues to draw relatively good rating and it's longevity indicates that it still much loved. So although I could easily make a strong case to support EastEnders, Sons and Daughters wins for me. Outside of the big US prime time soap operas, there wasn't another soap that could consistently produce gripping storylines and end each episode on a compelling cliffhanger in the way that Sons and Daughters did. It had a collection of great characters, including unusually for a soap, 2 ex-prostitutes who were portrayed sympathetically. Sons and Daughters at its best beats EastEnders at its best, hands down, so wins this match for me.

    Match 4 - Flamingo Road
    This is an even tougher match for me. I watched all of Flamingo Road and until a few years ago I had never seen a single episode of Emmerdale and I also don't watch it any more. However, I can't deny Emmerdale is a quality soap that regularly tries to do things differently, including having an episode with an all-female cast for International Woman's Day, an episode comprising entirely of a flashback to reveal the backstory of an established character and in what I consider to be the best episode ever in a UK soap, Emmerdale produced a show told entirely from the point of view of Ashley's dementia. I can't recall a single episode of any drama that I learned so much about what it must be like to live with a particular medical condition. However, for all of that Emmerdale brilliance, Flamingo Road still wins for me by just being more fun, more entertaining and more escapist. If I had to choose to watch a DVD of either show if I was feeling depressed and alone, I would chose Flamingo Road.
     
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  5. Englishboy

    Englishboy Soap Chat Well-Known Member EXP: 14 Years

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    3) Eastenders - whilst I like the use of the sepia freeze frames at the end of each episode and its famous signature tune, Sons and Daughters remains for me one of only a few Australian soaps (the others being A Country Practice and The Sullivans) which I could never get in to.

    Put simply, I just do not "get" the show.

    Whereas I've appreciated and enjoyed Eastenders at various points in its life cycle so, it's Eastenders for me.

    4) Emmerdale - Again, like many others I have never seen Flamingo road so, have to give my vote to the farming soap opera which is notable for having had a couple of memorable tv villains in it; these being the wheel chair bound Chris Tate and his wicked stepmother, Kim.

    Chris Tate's exit where he poisons himself having attempted to frame his wife, Charity Dingle, for his murder was a great go-out for the character and a memorable storyline, so too Kim's affair with Dave Glover (amongst others) so, it's Emmerdale for me.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2019
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  6. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator EXP: 15 Years Staff Member

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    1. Sons and Daughters
    It would be nice to keep an Aussie show in the competition a bit longer.

    2. Emmerdale
    I love the theme song. My parents used to watch this when I was a child. Then my grandma watched it before she passed away. Sometimes I watched a few minutes every here and there with her. For a daytime soap it seems ok.
     
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  7. Justine

    Justine Soap Chat Well-Known Member EXP: 3 Years

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    Match 3: EastEnders- it's the ultimate British soap for me. I watched it religiously until a few years back. The first few years with the Watts family were classic drama (NEVER FORGET THE CHRISTMAS OF '86) and the years after with the Mitchell's were equally filled with entertainment.

    Match 4: Emmerdale- I watched this one for years, too. The Wylde family were especially fun to watch.



     
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  8. Jock Og

    Jock Og Soap Chat Well-Known Member EXP: 19 Years

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    Game 3: Sons and Daughters - EastEnders can be very entertaining and then so depressing. Even the theme tune however it is slightly tweaked IMHO rhymes with 'everybody is going to die; da, da, da ........' All that said EE is my second favourite of the English soaps. Sons and Daughters was a massive eighties favourite worldwide, with Pat; Beryl, Fiona, Gordon, Charlie and Wayne. A good old Aussie programme.

    Game 4: EMMERDALE - From the very first episode as Emmerdale Farm to now I have been an avid viewer, albeit not concurrently. More old faces need to return. Kim isn't enough. Matt and Dolly should reappear. I have only watched a couple of Flamingo Road episodes, regarding them to be up there with the more famous classics of the 80s decade.
     
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  9. Seaviewer

    Seaviewer Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 18 Years

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    Is this round still open? I seem to have missed seeing the thread.

    Match 1: Knots Landing (of course)
    Match 2: The Crown. I haven't seen either but this sounds like something I'd like.
     
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  10. Seaviewer

    Seaviewer Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 18 Years

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    Match 3: Sons and Daughters. Going for the home team.
    Match 4: Flamingo Road. Short-lived but memorable at least for introducing Morgan Fairchild.
     
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  11. Zable

    Zable Soap Chat TV Fanatic EXP: 3 Years

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    @Seaviewer Sorry, over. Results were out Tuesday.
    You might make Round 2 before it ends; I haven't checked.
     
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  12. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    Sorry @Seaviewer but the first week's matches are over and and Howards' Way went through to the next round.

    This week's two matches will conclude at midday on Tuesday and the winners declared shortly afterwards.
     
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  13. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    [​IMG]

    Emmerdale's Lachlan is correct to point out that the poll closes at midday on Tuesday. Vote for your winner between EastEnders and Sons and Daughters and between Emmerdale and Flamingo Road before it's too late.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  14. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    The poll has now closed and the votes have been counted and verified. The results of the first 2 matches in the World Cup of Soap Operas is as follows:

    Match 3
    Sons and Daughters - 12
    EastEnders - 5

    Match 4
    Flamingo Road - 7
    Emmerdale - 10

    I declare the winners of matches 3 and 4 to be Sons and Daughters and Emmerdale.

    [​IMG]

    Thanks to everyone who voted in this round. Details of the next 2 matches will be posted tomorrow.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
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  15. Englishboy

    Englishboy Soap Chat Well-Known Member EXP: 14 Years

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    Stunned to see the Australian minnow, Sons and Daughters, crushing the bbc ratings juggernaut that is Eastenders.

    Who would have thought it. :eek:
     
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  16. Victoriafan3

    Victoriafan3 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    I’m so chuffed! Congrats S&D. My second fav show of all time goes through to round two! Amazing! :)
     
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  17. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    [​IMG]

    So we reach for the remote control and switch off EastEnders and Flamingo Road.

    Week 3 will see 2 USA soaps competing: one against a UK soap and the other against a Rest of the World soap opera. Full details tomorrow.
     
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  18. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    Given EastEnders huge popularity and the fact that Sons and Daughters is over 30 years old, it was an unexpected result but well deserved. Sons and Daughters was excellent.
     
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  19. Seaviewer

    Seaviewer Soap Chat Enthusiast EXP: 18 Years

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    I'm surprised to see Flamingo Road go down so early but then I don't know anything about Emmerdale. Obviously it has a following.
     
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  20. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing World Cup of Soaps Moderator EXP: 21 Years

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    I've always had a fondness for Flamingo Road, I was sorry that it didn't progress further in the contest.
     
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