Discovering Music Through Soap Opera, Volume 3: Lil’ Wayne, “Shooter”
If ever a song matched the modus operandi of General Hospital, it would be a song called “Shooter.” But this song is not awesome just because it’s relevant, it’s awesome because it is Lil’ Wayne. It’s awesome because it’s Lil’ Wayne on a soap opera. Aside from Snoop Dogg dropping in on One Life to Live here and there, my desire to see two faves interact and intersect—hip-hop and soap opera—is rarely satiated. This montage might be a bit too cool for GH, but I credit this scene for finally convincing me to give Lil’ Wayne a listen beyond “Lollipop.” And for that, the song—and this montage—hold a special soapy place in my heart.
A whole scholarly tome exploring the character of soap operas and the cultural context that shaped them over the years? I can’t wait to put on my wool sweater and argyle socks and curl up with this book! I’ve been waiting to satiate my need for serious daytime drama criticism since I had to start reconciling my soap loyalty and my collegiate, scholarly interests.
This blog post, written by a soap scholar and fan, gives a worthy background on the context of the soap opera genre and why it is worthy of analysis and thought. There are many excerpts from this blog I want to quote, but this tidbit will have to do:
I’ve met passionate members of the soap opera industry, dedicated to preserving and revitalizing their craft not just because they want to hang onto their livelihood but because they see the genre as providing a type of storytelling that cannot be matched or replaced elsewhere. I’ve met many entertainment critics who don’t accept that soap operas are somehow without artistic merit and instead take soaps seriously as art. Rather than dismiss the genre as a whole, they look within the form and constraints of the genre and point out what constitutes “good” soap opera storytelling, highlighting when shows are using the form to (or at least toward) its potential. And I’ve met many, many intelligent and articulate soap opera fans who use these daily texts as part of a creative practice of meaning-making, debate, and a collective remembering and re-telling through interpersonal relationships, through networks of family or friends or through online fan communities.
Here’s to some creative practice of meaning-making and collective remembering. The daytime drama genre is worthy of this exploration.
As noted previously, GH went through a trip-hop phase in 2002/2003 and, likewise, so did I. I saw this scene, the conclusion of Luis Alcazar’s trial during Brenda’s 2002 return to General Hospital, and never looked back. Soaps - and GH in particular - would do well to incorporate some more songs like Massive Attack’s “Dissolved Girl” into its dramatic scenes. Have you ever seen a soap montage more awesome?
No, really, I love soap montages. If you have an awesome one - link me up!