melodrama

noun
melo·​dra·​ma | \ ˈme-lə-ˌdrä-mə How to pronounce melodrama (audio) , -ˌdra-\

Definition of melodrama

1a : a work (such as a movie or play) characterized by extravagant theatricality and by the predominance of plot and physical action over characterization an actor with a flair for melodrama
b : the genre (see genre sense 1) of dramatic literature constituted by such works
2 : something resembling a melodrama especially in having a sensational or theatrical quality The trial turned into a melodrama.

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Other Words from melodrama

melodramatist \ ˌme-​lə-​ˈdra-​mə-​tist How to pronounce melodramatist (audio) , -​ˈdrä-​ \ noun

Examples of melodrama in a Sentence

Critics dismissed his work as melodrama. an actor with a talent for melodrama She is starring in another melodrama. The trial turned into a melodrama. a life full of melodrama
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Emmy-winning series has thrived by striking a rare tone between nuance and melodrama and has delivered some of the most exciting and deeply rich female characters on television in recent history. Kathleen Newman-bremang, refinery29.com, "How Big Little Lies Did Bonnie A Major Disservice By Ignoring Her Race," 23 July 2019 Hopper and Joyce’s romantic tension and conflicts rival their kids’ for melodrama and humor. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "Review: ‘Stranger Things’ reinvents itself for a stellar Season 3," 30 June 2019 Pluto Moment thrives on this mix of earthly melodrama and ethereal imagery. Clarence Tsui, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Pluto Moment' ('Ming Wang Xing Shi Ke'): Film Review | Cannes 2018," 23 May 2018 Sidestepping the temptations of broad farce or melodrama, Wang stakes out a zone of low-key observational realism, dispensing her sympathies and teasing out emotional subtleties with a graceful, assured hand. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Delightful ‘The Farewell,’ starring Awkwafina, shows us a family divided," 18 July 2019 There's further melodrama in the form of a revelation late in the play about what led to the identification of one of the newspaper subjects, who was subsequently killed. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Rolling Stone': Theater Review," 16 July 2019 In season three, Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), Mike (Finn Wolfhard), Will, Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), Max (Sadie Sink), and Eleven are growing up and pairing off, with all the usual melodrama that goes along with such scenarios. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Flay your mind: Stranger Things S3 just might be the show’s best season yet," 15 July 2019 The Arab writers who churn out these melodramas are eager to create more nuanced entertainment, the kinds of shows that can spark public debate and serve as catalysts for social change. Rachel Gandin Mark, The Hollywood Reporter, "Can Netflix Transform the Television Landscape in the Middle East?," 27 June 2018 Like the show, which paid homage to silent film melodramas and presented variations of the same basic plot in every episode, the not-too-sharp Canadian Mountie tries to save damsel-in-distress Nell from the evil Snidley Whiplash. Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "America's top log flume rides: Five of our favorites, from Splash Mountain to Ripsaw Falls," 17 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'melodrama.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of melodrama

1802, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for melodrama

modification of French mélodrame, from Greek melos song + French drame drama, from Late Latin drama

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Statistics for melodrama

Last Updated

8 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for melodrama

The first known use of melodrama was in 1802

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More Definitions for melodrama

melodrama

noun

English Language Learners Definition of melodrama

: drama in which many exciting events happen and the characters have very strong or exaggerated emotions
: a situation or series of events in which people have very strong or exaggerated emotions

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More from Merriam-Webster on melodrama

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with melodrama

Spanish Central: Translation of melodrama

Nglish: Translation of melodrama for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of melodrama for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about melodrama

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