Marginal Revolution blog points out an interesting tidbit:
In July the Spanish-language Univision was No.1 among all networks for 18 to 34 year olds, a critical demographic for advertisers. The station averaged 1.2 million nightly viewers from this age group; Fox was second.
This likely has a lot to do with the proliferation of cable networks and will likely not continue into the Fall Season, but it is an eye-opening social marker and worth some discussion.
Let’s take a look at what passes for programming at Univisión
- Monday: 8PM Apuesta por un amor [Wager of love](soap), 9PM La Madrastra [The Stepmother] (soap) 10PM Cristina (talk show)
- Tuesday: 8 & 9 see Monday, 10PM Casos de la vida real [True stories] (real-life dramas)
- Wednesday: 8 & 9 see Monday, 10PM Don Francisco presenta [Don Francisco presents] (celebrity interviews with Don Francisco)
- Thursday: 8 & 9 see Monday, 10PM Aquí y Ahora [Here and now] (news magazine)
- Friday: 8 & 9 same as Monday, 10PM Asi es . . . Gilberto Gless (celebrity bios) 10:30 Par de Ases [Pair of Aces] (comedy show)
Saturday evenings they have Sabado gigante, a weekly 4-hr variety show hosted in Miami by Don Francisco. Sunday evening they have 3 hours of comedy shows (3 1-hr long shows produced in Mexico).
I agree with WILLisms that it is a social marker. Univisión appeals to people who really are into their telenovelas — the rest of us rent DVDs or watch a different number of cable TV stations, if we watch at all.
For a quick-and-easy guide to telenovelas, don’t miss Jeff’s BEAUTIFUL ATROCITIES GUIDE TO LATIN SOAPS. Jeff left out the only soap I’ve watched in the last 10 years, Pedro el escamoso, a Cinderella story starring a guy with a mullet.
It was a hoot, if only it had lasted only 3 episodes.
Soaps, however, are very influential in Latin America: Soap opera lures Brazilians to United States
Brazilians are illegally entering the United States in record numbers in hopes of finding jobs and better lives — just like characters in a wildly popular Brazilian soap opera “America.”
. . . “It shows most people in great difficulties, but the fact one or two do well creates the image people can make it,” said Luis Bassegio, head of the Brazilian Catholic Church’s migrant relief service.
. . . The difference is that in the soap, as in real life, they get jobs as maids and construction workers that pay in a couple of days what they get during a month in Brazil
And that’s yet another social marker.