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The Age

Sunset Beach

Author: Darrin Farrant
Date: 02/04/1997
Words: 251
          Publication: The Age
Page: 3
MONDAY - Sunset Beach, Ten, noon

IT MIGHT sound hard to believe but, until now, the man responsible for such TV fare as Charlie's Angels, Melrose Place and Dynasty, Aaron Spelling, has left one lowbrow section of the menu untouched: daytime soap opera.

Spelling's first foray into the genre is Sunset Beach, a sluggish concoction of sand, slow storylines and (of course, you knew it) sex.

The town of Sunset Beach lies somewhere near Los Angeles and is, naturally, populated largely by either bare-chested lifeguards or people whose sole role in life seems to be visiting cafes.

Into this suburban maelstrom walks Meg Cummings, a naive girl from Kansas who has just left her cheating groom-to-be at the altar. She has flown to Sunset Beach to hook up with a man she has corresponded with on the Internet - known only to her by the cyber-codename of S. B. We know who he is but poor Meg doesn't and her search for the mysterious S. B. is certain to unfold over many episodes.

Daytime soap has always flowed at a far slower pace to its night-time cousin but Sunset Beach's opening few episodes are particularly plodding. The program also lacks interesting characters over the age of 30, which won't win it too many older fans.

It's too early to say for sure whether Sunset Beach will last but the signs are it will be another Models Inc.

The series has a two-hour debut on Monday; then one hour weekdays.

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