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Agnes Nixon and Soap Opera “Chemistry Tests”

Agnes Nixon and Soap Opera “Chemistry Tests”

(p.44) Agnes Nixon and Soap Opera “Chemistry Tests”
The Survival of Soap Opera
Carol Traynor Williams
University Press of Mississippi

This chapter provides insights from Agnes Nixon, the creator of ABC’s All My Children and One Life to Live. It describes how the country’s declining economy between 2008 and 2009 was reflected in the decline of soaps, with the cancellation of CBS’s Guiding Light; the firing of veteran stars such as Deirdre Hall; and soap writers’ testing for “chemistry” by pairing up different actors. The chapter also considers Nixon’s specialty—the social issue story—which includes lesbian lovers, women’s alcoholism, and the Vietnam War.

Keywords:   soap operas, daytime television, All My Children, One Life, social issues

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