What Makes a Good Soap Couple?

When I first turned from an offline soap opera fan to an online fan, a person I frequently commented back and forth with on YouTube asked me what couples I liked on Guiding Light. I started running through couples that I liked and when I finished what was most likely a partial list, I stared at it awhile and thought “Is something wrong with me?” All the couples I had listed had had huge horrible bad things happen to them. While that is part and parcel of being a soap couple most of these couples had extra bad stuff happen…..repeatedly. I thought, “If that’s what I’m looking for in a real life relationship no wonder I haven’t found it yet.” So I sat down and seriously thought about what it was I liked about these particular couples.

What I decided is what I like about soap couples isn’t the drama that they went through, it was their reactions to it. I like a soap couple that is better together than apart, that brings out the best in each other. I like the couple to treat each other, at least most of the time, as equals. I like a couple who watch out for each other and try to protect each other from harm, but are totally willing to walk into danger or make a great sacrifice to save the other one. I prefer a couple who is well written with clever lines and shown to be smart. I love it when they know little details about the other one and do small romantic things rather than huge romantic gestures (most of the time). I also like it when a couple doesn’t just remain a couple, but creates a family. Often that is by having kids, which they actually pay attention to and raise, not just dump with an off screen Nanny, but it doesn’t have to be. As many sitcoms show you can create a family from a diverse group of people around them. While chemistry is also important and a personal reaction that can be hard to define, looking over the couples I like and those I don’t, I think I’m truly consistent in looking for these characteristics.

What makes a good soap couple for you? What characteristics do your couples have in common?

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One Response to “What Makes a Good Soap Couple?”

  1. Gina D Says:

    glmanny, very eloquent and very well thought out and very, very true! And one reason why I was pissed when, instead of writing a story of how true love overcomes all for Dinah and Mallet because that is the kind of couple they always were—the show actually had Dinah sleep with Matt. She could have pretended that she did that and had Matt go along—but no! The show had them sleep together and it went over like a lead balloon with the fans. And still, through it all, Dinah and Mallet loved each other and at Christmas 2007 the boards, especially the message board I was on at the time, were thrilled that Dinah and Mallet finally got back together………only for the show to rip them apart again and stupidly put Mallet with Marina and Dinah with Shayne. As if! Two terrible couplings! And Malah (much like Manny) were so well loved that the majority always were ranting for a reunion. The show finally gave us parts A and B of their reunion. The first one in Germany and the second during the finale one year forward jump. However, the show should have never split them apart and had them with other people. They could have been apart, but fighting to get back to each other. Circumstances could have kept them apart, especially Dinah’s brain injury. That is one reason why I loathed Marina. She always went after men who loved their soulmates. Marina and Danny? Puke! Marina and Mallet? Puke! Anyway, your analysis is great and surely describes couples like Manny and Malah.

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