There are lots of reasons why As the World Turns, and with it the entire soap opera genre, is dying. But the one that trumps them all is that these days, everything’s a soap opera. Once, soaps had the market cornered on salacious, serialized drama, particularly for women, particularly during the day. Now, they’re competing with dozens of cable channels, to say nothing of DVR-ed nighttime programming, much of it modeled after soap operas, writes James Poniewozik for Time.
And that’s before we get to gossip. The Jon & Kate fiasco. Tiger Woods. The likes of Perez Hilton and TMZ keep them coming in daily soap-style installments. Even political coverage has a distinctly sudsy quality to it. Heck, you can just use Twitter or Facebook to immerse yourself in your friends' trials and tribulations. The dramatic schadenfreude soaps peddled is “a commodity as cheap as air nowadays.”