The Daytime Emmys are about to enter a brave new world.
“All My Children” and “One Life to Live,” cancelled by ABC before being revived by Prospect Park on the internet in 2013, will be the first web shows to compete in drama series categories. However, after being embroiled in false-starts, legal conflicts, and re-cancellation, how will these online off-shoots be received anew by Daytime Emmy voters?
They might do very well, according to David Michaels, senior executive director of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, who told Michael Logan of TV Guide Magazine, “Our entry deadline was last Friday, Jan. 17, and we’ve had a lot of great submissions from ‘AMC’ and ‘OLTL’ — in fact, we’ve set an extreme record for the number of entries this year … From the look of Prospect Park’s submissions, I think they’ll give the four network soaps a real run for their money when it comes to production values and the quality of the writing, directing and acting.”
But will voters be resistant to honor online television platforms? Not if they’re like their Primetime Emmy counterparts, who were quick last year to recognize “House of Cards,” one of Netflix’s early forays into original programming. It was nominated for Best Drama Series and won three trophies: Drama Directing for David Fincher, Drama Casting, and Single-Camera Cinematography.
Even if “AMC” and “OLTL” enjoy a similar windfall, however, it may be their last hurrah – again. Though the remaining daytime soaps on broadcast TV – ABC’s “General Hospital,” NBC’s “Days of Our Lives,” and CBS’s “The Bold and the Beautiful” and “The Young and the Restless” – have enjoyed a ratings surge in the last year, the online dramas have been mired in an ongoing legal dispute between Prospect Park and ABC, and were discontinued after one season online.
For “One Life to Live” there’s almost nowhere to go but up at the Daytime Emmys. In the 40-year history of the awards, it earned just seven Best Drama Series nominations and one win, and it has only won three acting prizes in the last 18 years. However, “One Life” did achieve an impressive feat last year, earning nominations for Best Drama and Best Drama Writing Team despite only airing nine episodes during the eligibility year 2012.
“All My Children” has had greater success over the years, winning Best Drama three times out of a whopping 32 nominations. In the same 18-year period it won nine acting prizes. It wasn’t eligible for any awards last year, having aired its last ABC episode in September 2011.
We’ll get our first indication of whether the two shows will be welcomed back to the Emmys roster when acting pre-nominations are announced on March 3. Nominations will be announced May 1.