I watch an unholy amount of television. It’s sort of my raison d’etre. And with the fall season starting next week, I’m going to be even more glued to my TV than usual. So why, then, have I become addicted to two shows that aren’t even on in the United States? Yup, I have joined the legion of fans keeping up with German sudsers Verbotene Liebe (Forbidden Love) and Alles Was Zahlt (All That Matters) via YouTube.
At first, my interest in both was purely professional. It’s always good to cover soaps overseas, especially if they’re globally popular. And both VL and AWZ have gained a lot of notice, due to their well-written gay storylines. Being able to e-mail interview with VL‘s Jo Weil (Oliver) and Thore Scholermann (Christian) and AWZ‘s Dennis Grabosch (Roman) and Igor Dolgatschew (Deniz) was a really cool opportunity. I also got to hang out with ex-VL head writer and current AWZ writer Tom Chroust last year. It was great to pick his brain about U.S. soaps vs. German ones. But my interest was mostly, as I said, professional and educational.
I would catch up on VL once in a while, but there was at least six months where I lost track of what was going on. (For instance, I had no idea Gregor and Rebecca broke up. Oops!) Now I’m checking every few days for new clips. By virtue of Christian/Olli being “in demand,” they’re the only storyline with subtitles, so I still really have no idea what’s happening on the rest of Verbotene Liebe besides Christian being a landscaper and Olli manning No Limits. (And that Gregor and Luise ran off together and Olivia is still the awesome bitch she’s always been. LOL.) But I love it, and the show just brings a smile to my face. It’s very feel-good.
For AWZ, the subtitled clips of the Roman and Deniz storyline actually include other characters and I am floored by how soapy the show is! I mean, on what planet would Roman be able to pass as a female ice skater? LOL. And Deniz is such a emotionally handicapped idiot! Is it healthy to scream at your laptop screen? ‘Cause I had a whole tirade along the lines of, “Oh my GOD, Deniz, would you just tell Roman you love him so he won’t leave town?” And then there’s their skating rival, Jennifer Steinkamp, who is a bitch on the level of VL’s Olivia (I’m a sucker for these kinds of characters). And she’s having a dirty-hot affair with Deniz’s father, Marian. (Anyone who knows my love for GH’s Coleman knows that good-looking middle-aged bartenders are totally up my alley.) His loved ones hate her and she’s pretty much slumming, so it’s basically a forbidden romance. I had to crack up this week, when Marian had a vivid fantasy of Jenny washing his car, set to the Jessica Simpson cover of “These Boots Were Made For Walkin'” and then they went at it on the kitchen table. They’re insanely hot together.
Good television is good television regardless of what language its in. And I think the mark of both shows’ quality is that I’m not just interested in the gay boys. I actively wish I could watch all of both series, because the entire canvas is so much fun. In fact, I don’t really understand people who can only watch a show for one story. I like being engaged by everything! And I think I’m slowly starting to pick up some German, too!
Mein Gott. I’m going to have even less of a life than usual this fall, aren’t I? LOL.
3 thoughts on “Forbidden love is all that matters”
I LOVE Verbotene Liebe (Forbidden Love) and I grew to love the soap opera itself through my love for the Christian and Olli Storyline. I also adore the other characters on the show. Olivia…bitch that she is..is my favorite, other than sweet Judith (C&O’s roommate). They make the show for me, after my boys…Christian and Olli. But the C&O storyline is what keeps me there every single day. Perfect love, perfect storyline, perfectly wonderful characters brought to life. Jo and Thore do a fabulous job portraying them. :)
I also like AWZ..and Deniz and Roman. I don’t know them as well as I do C&O, but I enjoy watching the clips occasionally. And I agree..seeing Roman dressed as a female ice skater to win a competition was a true soap in the making. :)
I believe anyone watching the American soaps who love Luke and Noah and Fish, would love these German boys as well.
See, I’m not a fan of “perfect love.” I like things messy, and C&O right now are too idealized for me. I need them to have some sort of conflict to face. Not necessarily with each other, but just in general. I love how sweet they are and how in love they are, but I like it when things are stirred up. Pain is more organic, more real, than being happy all the time.
Thore and Jo do a great job, and Thore has really grown as an actor. It shows.
And, again, I think it’s great to get into soaps *because* of a gay storyline, but my utmost hope is that people fall in love with the whole series. And it doesn’t matter whether it’s coming into VL for Chrolli or starting up with OLTL because of Kish; I want soaps as a *whole* to gain fans.
I got into VL because of Chrolli, but would love to watch the entire show. But as you pointed out, only C&O are “subtitled..so I can’t follow the other parts. I am watching some of the Gregor/Luisa storyline, which at first, I was bored with..but am now getting into. :)
As for FISH, I did only start watching it because of the storyline and someone told me it was good. I have not started following the rest of the soap yet, but I am sure that I will eventually get into it, as I do love soap operas. My favorite, Guiding Light is leaving..I hate that. :(