A new edition of The Soaps (1973), a bubbly examination of television serials as a continuing feature of American life. From the first breathy episodes to the sophisticated formats of today, successful soap operas have shared a basic premise: men may be the titular heads of households but everyone knows who runs the show. Within this housewife-centered universe, the problems can be overwhelming; despite an increased attention to social concerns, certain situations tend to recur--skeletons in the closet, illegitimate children, ailments with mysterious etiologies--and the authors discuss these as well as the people who create them and act them out. The ""revisions"" are slight and predictable: those chapters on the past remain unchanged; Mary Hartman gets a chapter to herself (""Soap du Jour"") plus scattered references; statistics and the beginning quiz have been updated; and the conclusion has been reworded to take post-1973 programs into account. Tune in next year for the third installment?