Soap Opera Betting Offers & Free Bets
Shows such as Coronation Street, Emmerdale and Eastenders don't get the massive audiences that they did in previous decades but they are still continually at the top of the ratings. It may seem strange for a programme that is fiction and written in advance to offer punters betting opportunities but that is the case.
It was Kristen All the Time
It was back in the 1980s that betting on soap operas grabbed people's attention. 'Dallas' was a hugely popular series around the world and to boost ratings even more, the evil JR, played by the late Larry Hagman, was shot at the end of the second series. The whole word wondered just who had done the evil deed, a hard task considering almost everyone else in the series had a reason to hate him.
Bookmakers offered odds on just who did shoot JR, while Hagman spent time refusing to shoot any more scenes unless he got a pay rise. Takings for bookies went through the roof before it was finally revealed that Kristin, who was played by the daughter of Bing Crosby, had been the one to shoot the evil businessman. The reveal of who had shot JR was seen by over 80 million viewers in the USA.
As the years have gone by, more bookies have been willing to offer odds on what happens in soap operas. Usually it is associated with murders or attacks and who was responsible. Let's take a look at some of the soap operas in which betting odds have been associated.
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This soap has been on ITV since the early 1960s and has provided its viewers with seemingly endless storylines. It's set in Weatherfield which is a fictional part of Manchester. The series was created by Tony Warren and told the story of Coronation Street via its many residents such as Ena Sharples, Elsie Tanner, Ken Barlow, Annie Walker and Bet Lynch.
Over the years there have been several opportunities to place bets on the show. Would Deirdrie Barlow choose Ken or Mike Baldwin and who would be killed off when a train crashed onto the street during the show's 50th anniversary celebrations. The last big betting opportunity arose when Ken Barlow, who has been in the series right from the start, was pushed down some stairs. Odds were offered on just who did that. There have also been books opened in the past for 'Who Killed Tina McIntyre?' Sadly, there are no odds on how many times Gail will get married and/or divorced and whether she will ever find happiness.
This BBC soap was launched in 1985 and the often gloomy series even started with the discovery of a dead body. Set in Walford in the East End of London, the series often features a bunch of villains so the next death is never that far away.
There have been some notable betting opportunities since the show started in the 1980s. It's been the usual stream of 'who shot?' or 'who killed?' markets. The most popular one was 'Who Killed Lucy Beale?' even though the storyline didn't half drag on. In the end it was an outsider Bobby Beale, the young brother of the deceased who was revealed as the killer, which must have delighted the bookies.
The Yorkshire based soap opera began life as 'Emmerdale Farm' in 1972. Life was a lot quieter back in those days when disasters were the beer being off in the Woolpack and a cow getting ill. In the years since it's changed dramatically and life expectancy in this show isn't that long.
They have often presented the chance for some cash to be made by betting on storylines. They often have a big week each year with spectacular stunts and rather than betting on who did it, it's often a case of who it's going to be done to. Just who will be killed off in the scheduled explosion or car crash are popular opportunities in Emmerdale, which in the early days was more concerned with how many sheep might get killed by a runaway van. Last year did see viewers having the chance to bet on a whodunnit after Emma Barton was murdered.
What can I bet on in Soap Operas?
If there is a big plot cliffhanger in a soap, expect to see some odds available on it. For example; the recent Emma Barton storyline. With more murders or explosions likely in shows such as Coronation Street, Eastenders and Emmerdale, there are likely to be more markets available in the future so watch this space.
Soap Award - Award Ceremonies
Every year there are a number of award ceremonies that give punters the chance to bet on who they think will win awards. These include the BAFTA Television awards and the National Televison Awards.