Our Latest Soap Opera Digest Column
In our most recent Soap Opera Digest column, we were all about the Daytime Emmys. After the jump, our thoughts about the nominations, our outrage over several snubs, our fervent hope that two certain shows don't walk away with the title of Outstanding Daytime Drama and a plan to make Kirsten Storms a faux Emmy to call her own.
By Mallory Harlen
The Daytime Emmy ceremony is fast approaching and I can’t help but feel disappointed (yes, still. I hold a mean grudge) that Thorsten Kaye (Zach, ALL MY CHILDREN), Kirsten Storms (Maxie, GENERAL HOSPITAL) and Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki, YOUNG AND RESTLESS) won’t walk away with awards that night. I know that the Academy routinely makes boneheaded decisions, but to not even nominate these three performers for their stellar performances last year just seems aggressively wrong.
Thorsten Kaye was saddled with some of the worst material of the year: The Satin Slayer? Zach and Greenlee Trapped Underground? In the hands of lesser actors, they would have been complete trainwrecks, but he rose above the horrible writing and made them nearly palatable. I can only assume that the academy thought the stories were just too terrible and that nominating him would be like tacitly approval of them. Melody Thomas Scott, too, was Y&R’s gem and single-handedly carried the show during the boring race for the Senate seat and the fallout from Victoria’s coma. Getting me invested in the latter storyline, even though I (a)knew that Victoria wasn’t going to die and (b)haven’t cared about Victoria in years, is surely deserving of some sort of accolade.
Kirsten Storms was, frankly, robbed. Maxie is probably the most entertaining character in all of daytime and Storms is outstanding in lighthearted scenes and heartbreaking in tragic ones. I find it odd that she was snubbed in favor of Vail Bloom (Heather, Y&R) and Tammin Sursok (Colleen, Y&R). It’s like the academy threw a bunch of random letters together and, coincidentally, they just happened to form the names of women eligible for nominations in the Younger Actress category. I can’t recall any scenes that either of them had this year, let alone anything award worthy. Seriously, has Colleen done anything in the past year besides chat with Lily at Crimson Lights? I guess being Lily’s sounding board is the best way to get an Emmy nod, since Bryton McClure (Devon) managed to score a nomination despite not having had a storyline since 2005.
I suppose I shouldn’t expect reason from a group of voters who nominated GH and Y&R as Outstanding Daytime Drama. Y&R was the television equivalent of a sleeping pill for me in 2007. Phyllis’s imprisonment, the Senate race and the ethics committee storyline seemed endless and the rare stories that weren’t painfully boring were dropped immediately. Remember the hints that the Newman plane crash that “killed” Nick was caused by sabotage? Or Ji-Min’s murder? Those could have been great stories, but were seemingly scrapped in favor of press conferences and weeks of people talking to the comatose Victoria. GH wasn’t quite as boring, but it was worse. The Metro Court story was the highlight of the year, but that’s not really saying much; the year also gave us the Text Message Killer, Jax’s assault being written as him cheating on Carly, Emily’s bizarrely happy ghost and the pregnancy of daytime’s first pregnant HIV-positive character being played for laughs. I can only hope that voters come to their senses and reward a show that can actually be called “good” with a straight face.
My Take, Too
By Becca Thomas
There are few things in entertainment I find as mystifying as the Daytime Emmys in recent years. Does “younger” actor just mean younger than at least one other actor on daytime? Shouldn’t a “lead” actor actually have, I don’t know, led at least one storyline? And what is with the seemingly random winner-selection process of the Daytime Emmys?
Since I find the awards themselves so confusing, I tend to focus on the red carpet arrivals. I’m just hoping this year they found someone even half as enthusiastic and delightful as Chandra Wilson to host that part of the evening. Her love of soaps and fanaticism over certain characters and performers was infectious.
But I suppose I should be somewhat invested in the awards of the evening, right? For the first time in ages, DAYS OF OUR LIVES has four acting nominees, so I will have people to cheer for in a number of categories. I’m thrilled for DAYS’ success on that front this year, and hope it bodes well for the show’s future. Of late it has been filled with great soapiness (except for the icky Daniel-Chelsea “romance”), so maybe next year it will even sneak back into some of the big categories.
GH seems to be the bizarro version of DAYS at this year’s Emmys. It’s nominated for several big awards (best writing, directing, show), but just a single acting one. GH’s nominations to me are the perfect example of how perplexing these awards are, since I think GH’s main strength is its great cast, while its weakness is uneven and sometimes awful writing and overall direction. Several deserving members of the cast were overlooked. In particular, Mallory and I were so appalled by Kirsten Storms’ lack of a nod that we may just cobble together a faux Emmy out of tinfoil and send it to her so that she has at least one shiny statue to show for those amazing scenes when Maxie was grieving for Georgie.
I’ve resigned myself to GH winning one of the big awards. I’m assuming they submitted shows from the Metro Court hostage crisis storyline, and I suppose if you just take a couple of those episodes alone – ignoring that the story was a near-carbon copy of at least two prior GH sweeps stunts and setting aside the fact that it led to the horrible indignity of Ghost Alan as well as the ridiculous re-write that British James Craig was actually Australian Jerry Jax –- they were decent. But I do worry about the message a GH win for best show or writing would send: “Turn mobsters into your heroes and moral centers? Call sex-at-gunpoint cheating? Marginalize or vilify all your strong women characters? Shoot a 12-year-old in the head? Please let us tell you how awesome you are!” I know I'm already confused about the Daytime Emmys, but that seems like it could lead to widespread confusion.