died yesterday at the age of 91. (His daughter, Bettina Bradbury, btw, has written for Days of Our Lives, All My Children, and Santa Barbara).
When it came time to switch this blog from the officially sanctioned PGP Classic Soaps to a more personal title, I chose Soap Opera 451 (for both the blog and the book that grew out of it - see sidebar) for a very specific reason.
At the end of Fahrenheit 451, when civilization has more or less been destroyed, a group of outcasts gathers in the woods, hiding out from the police with a single purpose in mind: To memorize as many books as they can (classics and pot-boilers and everything in between) so that, when the madness of destroying books is over, they can rebuild.
"And when they ask us what we're doing, we can say, We're remembering."
That was how, in the Fall of 2010, I felt about soaps. The great ones, the awful ones (and let's admit it, there were some), and everything in between were being systematically destroyed (my son asks, "Tell me about those shows that people like to pretend never existed, Mommy.") And there was very little most of us could do - except for remembering.
This way, when the pendulum swings away from reality shows and talk shows and other "non-scripted" programming, we'll still be here to rebuild.
Soap Opera 451: A Time Capsule of Daytime Drama's Greatest Moments features interviews with the actors, writers, producers and directors who created the scenes fans still remember years after the fact. They explain how it should be done.
Thank you, Ray Bradbury, for demonstrating that it could be done.