Betrayal, bust-ups and personal tragedy might be the bread and butter of soap operas.
But the genre is being plunged into a catastrophe of its own – as viewers are being put off by, er, all the melodrama.
This is the warning of one arts critic, who claims Soapland faces a ‘potentially fatal crisis‘ by barraging fans with implausible and harrowing storylines.
BBC arts critic Mark Lawson said shows including Coronation Street (above) ‚risk becoming impossible to either write or act‘. The BBC Radio 4 presenter admitted being a soap fan in the past