Daytime Emmys: Which Soaps Will Be Nominated?
Susan Flannery | Photo Credits: Cliff Lipson/CBS/Landov.
The 40th annual Daytime Emmy Award nominations will be announced Wednesday during the 8 a.m. hour of ABC's Good Morning America. Will General Hospital add to all its 50th anniversary glory by landing a spot in the Outstanding Daytime Drama category? Can The Bold and the Beautiful turn a bad break — the departure of queen bee Susan Flannery — into good news? Does Days of Our Lives have a lock on the top prize thanks to its acclaimed, groundbreaking gay storyline? You can't handicap the best soap category without knowing which two episodes each show submitted to the blue-ribbon panels — and TV Guide Magazine has the scoop!
The Bold and the Beautiful: After months and months of that hopelessly inane Liam-Hope-Steffy drivel, exec producer-head writer Brad Bell finally put the "bold" back in his show by killing off its longtime matriarch Stephanie Forrester with lung cancer — a move that was painful yet weirdly exhilarating and ballsy beyond belief. Bell wisely submitted the two episodes (shows 6448 and 6449, airdates: Nov. 12-13, 2012) where Stephanie's family and friends gather for an Irish-themed party to celebrate her life, little knowing they'll also be saying goodbye. Watching Celtic Woman perform "Danny Boy" at the bash was enough to put us on the floor, but the kicker left us immobile. Out of nowhere, Stephanie announces that she's going off to die at an undisclosed location and that no one — not even her children — will ever see her again. It was shocking, cruel, heartbreaking and so very Stephanie, who was a control freak to the very end. You've never seen anything like it in soaps, and you never will again.
Chance of a nomination: Excellent.
Days of Our Lives: This time last year I'd have bet the bank that Days had the 2013 Outstanding Daytime Drama Emmy in the bag thanks to the story of Will's coming out, a smartly written, gorgeously acted, constantly surprising arc that deserved more than just GLAAD tidings. The crazy, kinky master-slave interplay between Will and EJ alone was worth some Emmy gold. But, oddly, Days didn't submit any of that, and went instead with the fallout from last summer's underground gas explosions (show 11895, airdate: Aug. 13, 2012) which was marvelous in its special effects and white-knuckle thrills but, in the end, rather soulless like most stunt episodes are. The second, more enticing submission is the ep where Daniel busted Nicole for blaming her miscarriage on Jennifer (show 11957, airdate: Nov. 8, 2012), a feverish hour with the fantastic Arianne Zucker, as nutjob Nicole, knocking it out of the park and right into the next zip code. It's super soapy, in the best way possible, and very compelling.
Chance of a nomination: Good, not great. And that's too bad since this could have been a slam dunk.
General Hospital: A mixed bag, but not so mixed it'll stop the show from being nominated. Set during a dark and stormy night, the first episode (show 12571, airdate: June 1, 2012), directed by exec producer Frank Valentini, is absolutely stunning with both Sam and Tea giving birth and looney tunes Heather chauffeuring dead mobster Anthony around town, Weekend at Bernie's-style. The action is high-octane, the laughs plentiful and robust, the dialogue scathingly brill. It makes you proud to be a soap watcher. But episode two (show 12641, airdate: Sept. 11, 2012) is another story. GH submitted that nonsense where almost everyone in Port Chuck is dying from a germ-warfare pathogen in the water supply while John McBain is down on the docks trying to diffuse a suitcase bomb. Parts of it are truly poignant (this is the late John Ingle's last appearance as Edward) but most of it is laughably bad, which comes from trying to shoot too much too quickly — a common curse of soaps nowadays. At least we get to see a lot of Nancy Grahn's boobs (what else is new?) so it's not a total loss.