A soap opera, sometimes referred to as a "soap," is a television or radio program that airs in episodic series. Early soap operas were broadcasted solely over the radio at a time when most housewives were available to listen, targetting them as the main audience. A crucial element in soap operas is the open-ended nature of the show; storylines usually continue for many episodes.
Plots and storylines
Storylines often focus on romance, forbidden love, and oftentimes affairs. They are usually intricate, convoluted, and occasionally confusing. Violent crimes such as murder and rape will often go unpunished for the purpose of a storyline. Another element of a good soap opera is the introduction of a previously unknown or long-lost relative, such as Rebecca Shaw showing up long after her twin sister's death or Griffin Munro showing up long after his father's death.