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Make soaps amusing and less grim, plead fans

SOAP fans say they want to see more humour, rather than grim storylines, in TV shows.

The majority of viewers believe there should be more funny moments in the plots of the series, according to a survey for Inside Soap magazine.

More than a third -- 36pc -- said they wanted to see fewer stories about affairs in TV soaps, and 30pc said they would prefer to see less emphasis on "murder and mayhem" in the shows -- although a quarter said they actually wanted to see more.

Around 42pc said the shows rarely or never reflected their own lives, and just 18pc said a portrayal of a real-life issue in a soap had actually helped them.

Readers said Coronation Street was the soap which most accurately reflected reality, chosen by 40pc of the sample of 1,000 people. EastEnders was second, chosen by 30pc, while Emmerdale came third on 19pc.

Emmerdale was chosen as the location where viewers would most like to live, with Walford's Albert Square runner-up.

The poll was commissioned to mark the 20th anniversary of the magazine.

Editor Steven Murphy said: "It's interesting to see how Britons continue to love soaps and their family values, as well as the escapism it provides them with."