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Life's a Beach for the soap stars so bad they're good; LAST NIGHT SUNSET BEACH (Channel 5).

THERE was a chill wind blowing down Sunset Beach, ruffling its stars' perfectly-groomed hair. But then, there always is.

It was an average day in the life of the cheap, melodramatic soap that is a cult daytime hit for Channel 5.

Priest Antonio Torres was making love to Gabi amid the rubble in the aftermath of an explosion. The pair ignored the possibility the earth might move, sending the whole lot tumbling on top of them.

Virginia's incredible turkey baster plot was about to be uncovered by Michael and Vanessa.

And Maria was determined to enjoy a second honeymoon with her husband Ben after regaining her memory. The only problem was that he had married Meg, who was waiting at home with bated breath, terrified of losing him.

There were characters talking to themselves, dream sequences and lots of pouting. The soap's secret is a cocktail of lechery, lingerie and laughable storylines. Sunset Beach is so bad, it is good - and its omnibus edition is an addictive alternative to Saturday afternoon shopping.

Watching it requires having an imagination as flexible as a knicker elastic, but 1.2 million viewers are willing to devote 50 minutes of their day to the world of Sunset Beach.

The show's characters spend more time talking to themselves than they do to each other and, even though none of them seem to work, they manage to look a million dollars.

Some of its best lines include: "This can't be happening" and "Keep your bod away from my husband".

Yesterday day's corker was from Antonio, who grappled with Gabi's lifeless body, saying: "Please God, don't take her. I'm the one that sinned."

There have been tidal waves, voodoo curses, a jewel theft, earthquakes, kidnappings and characters coming back from the dead.

Even its stars admit Sunset Beach's strengths are its failures - terrible scripts, incredibly-complicated plot twists and cheap production values.

The sad fact is Sunset Beach fans are ready to forgive its rough and ready look. As long as it dishes up plenty of sex along with its sunsets, they are happy.
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Copyright 1999 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Features
Author:Morgan, Kathleen
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Apr 9, 1999
Words:346
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