The series was a soap opera, dealing with the lives of ordinary people, living and working in or around an average lakótelep (Gazdagréti microdistrict, a socialist housing estate with several thousand flats in Budapest, built in the 1980s). Its characters were explored, over time, in equal depth: ranging from elderly pensioners, busy middle aged professionals, up-and-coming young people, and children growing into their teens.
Many consider Szomszédok to be the definitive Hungarian television series, being a period piece of sorts that covers the last few years of the communist era, the rendszerváltozás (democratic transition), and nearly a decade of the new market economy Hungary thereafter.
After some time off the air, Szomszédok is rerun on M1 (Hungary's terrestrial broadcast public television channel). The rerun was initially narrated by computer text inserts, mainly to guide those too young to remember the late communist era (e.g. how much bread cost that time or what significance a particular public figure in mention had at the time). The original cast and director of the series publicly protested against this practice and the information text bubbles were discontinued after a few episodes. Nowadays, it has only a fraction of its original viewership, as its role has been taken over by Barátok közt, a more vivid and up-to-date daily soap opera produced by the commercial RTL Klub television.