April 18, 2014 at 7:10 am #426132
Peggy McCay’s Lead Actress Emmy nomination bugged me last year – she did excellent work, but she was so clearly a Supporting Actress. This year, I would be bothered by the following “wrong category” actors being nominated in the wrong category.
Lead Actress: Jess Walton – very little screen time, nice acting, particularly with Kay’s death, but sometimes Jill can be a bit shrill, shouting her lines at us. The other 11 actresses are all definitely leads, and I include Ari Zucker in that assessment – Nicole drove storyline very much so and delivered as a Lead Actress in 2013 (imo).
Lead Actor: Doug Davidson – last year’s Lead Actor winner had very little screen time and did not drive story at all. Scenes with Jamie and Christine were effective but SUPPORTING; and John McCook – very little screen time and does not drive story… Jason Thompson was borderline lead/support for me, didn’t have a whole lot of story most of the year.
Supporting Actress: Amelia Heinle (Victoria), Melissa Claire Egan (Chelsea) and Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe) all had LEAD roles on Y&R during 2013 – they were on constantly and drove story all year long. Kimberly McCullough was borderline lead/support – she wasn’t on the show most of the year, but clearly was the lead character in her story…
Supporting Actor: Scott Clifton as “the waffler” (Liam) dominates the show in a very detrimental manner for me, but it’s crazy to consider him a supporting player on his show! Steve Burton, as much as I dislike the actor/character, Dylan is clearly a lead on Y&R, driving story very much so. Borderline lead/support would be Darin Brooks, Eric Martsolf, Greg Vaughan (boy, did he drive story in 2013! But I suppose it was more Kristen’s story than Eric’s? I would have voted for him in either category – he was my favorite actor in 2013), Dominic Zamprogna (Dante had lots of lead story in 2013).
I find it jarring when someone is clearly nominated in the wrong category (remember when Alicia Minshew’s Kendall Hart was nominated in the SUPPORTING Actress category? Ridiculous!). I would be esp. unhappy if Jess Walton, John McCook or Doug Davidson took away a slot from others in this regard….April 18, 2014 at 8:27 am #426134
You called it at the end there. Alicia Minshew’s supporting actress nomination remains, to me, the best recent example of category misplacement. There was no valid argument for her to be in that category, as she was on the show nearly every day and a major player in the storylines at the time.
I always have my opinions on where a person should submit, but I’m generally willing to consider almost any argument if there’s some merit to it for placement in another category. I guess this is more with people submitting in lead, for the most part. If you’re on the show every day and in the middle of a love triangle or something, I feel the same as with Minshew, but it’s just rarely that egregious. That’s the case with Scott Clifton. He probably should be in lead, but, despite the fact that his character is eating the show, the get that he doesn’t feel important enough, as a character, to warrant placement in lead.
A few weeks ago, I was trying to come up with some kind of metric for making these determinations. Like, if you are the main character or one of two main characters in a storyline, you’re a lead. But what constitutes a storyline? Are some storylines automatically supporting storylines, and therefore the leads of those storylines are automatically supporting actors (barring them leading a different storyline)? I was applying this to Peggy McCay in 2012. Caroline had her own storyline with her developing Alzheimers, which didn’t really get heavy play overall for the year, but did get fairly significant screentime when it was at its peak (for a few weeks). Is that enough? It didn’t feel like she should be in the lead actress category, but I think there’s definitely a valid argument to be made. If you look at 2013 on DAYS, Eric and Nicole spent about half the year in their own slow burning background storyline, and then became supporting players in Kristen’s storyline. I’d say both of them were supporting for the year, because they never were leading a major storyline. But I could see the argument for Ari Zucker or Greg Vaughan being lead as well. I would say Eric Martsolf probably was a lead, but most of what his character did was reactionary, so Brady took a back seat to Kristen and even Marlena, who had a lot less screentime than he did but much more impact on the story. It’s all so murky.
When Eileen Davidson comes back, if she’s amazing and warrants awards consideration for the year, in which category should she be? She’ll be on the show for only half the year (at most), but she’s definitely be the center of everything. She shouldn’t be dropped down to supporting for that, but at the same time, we tend to think of actors who have an equal amount of impact for only part of the year as more supporting if they’ve actually been on the show the whole year. I don’t know. I think I’m talking in circles.April 18, 2014 at 2:16 pm #426135
Great points all around, EmmyLoser. I think we could probably debate this topic for many more years to come and still not arrive at a consensus, lol. It really is all so murky and as Freeman mentioned in the Goldies thread, category placement is so often in the eye of the beholder.
One quick note about John McCook and Doug Davidson: both were so clearly supporting players last year, it’s not even funny. Coming off his lead acting win last June, I can maybe understand why Davidson would feel inclined to submit himself in lead again, but McCook’s entry in lead really baffles me. As Freeman already mentioned, both their respective characters did not drive story, with Paul more in a supporting role in his storyline with Nikki searching for her son and Eric in his few notable scenes with Taylor during their short-lived romance and Brooke during her attempt to rekindle their love after learning of her pregnancy. Again, I respect each actor immensely, but neither deserves to steal one of the highly competitive spots on the ballot away from much more worthy candidates, much less be considered in the lead acting category.April 18, 2014 at 2:51 pm #426136
I am more annoyed when someone is a clear LEAD putting themselves in supporting to try and get a nom than someone like Peggy McCay who I agree was more supporting putting themselves in a lead category. To me it is way more “greedy” to be a clear lead like Alicia Minshew a few years ago or Katherine Kelly Lang last year. Lang appeared in over two hundreds episodes of B&B that year and I don’t care if she was a supporting player in the storyline she submitted the same case can then be made for McCay who submitted the alzheimers story.April 18, 2014 at 10:15 pm #426137
What an interesting discussion, and great points mentioned all around. To add to it, I wonder if TPTB’s concept of their work differs from how it plays out to the audience, and if that could influence the category placement debate. Take KKL last year, for example. TPTB at B&B probably saw and pitched the two major stories as (1) Flannery’s goodbye and (2) Katie’s perpetual drama. From that perspective, neither was directly about Brooke so KKL would be Supporting (vs Flannery and Tom) regardless of her 200+ episode count. Similarly, this year, Zucker and Vaughan were arguably both Supporting because they were in Kristen’s storyline, as EmmyLoser pointed out above. As for Heinle/MCE/EH, TPTB at Y&R probably planned Deilia’s death more for Billy and Adam, which would exclude all those women from Lead. Katherine’s death, on the other hand, would be more about the impact on Nikki and Jill (unlike Stephanie’s death above since Flannery was alive to act it out), putting MTS and Walton in Lead rather than Supporting.
As an aside, I don’t think going Supporting when you should be Lead is “greedy” per se. To me that implies that Supporting is a lesser category, and that is certainly not the case (at least on Daytime). It’s a different game than Lead, but equally (and sometimes more) competitive. This is where the Guest categories would help a lot. It would filter out some of the potential competitors in Supporting, and help take away the perception that Supporting is for actors who don’t work as hard.April 19, 2014 at 4:04 am #426138
Well, I saw both Days and Y&R differently: Eric & Nicole had their own stories which was impacted by Kristen. They were away from Kristen, at the church, most of the year. Chloe, Chelsea and Victoria all had stories of their own throughout 2013, besides their interactions with Adam & Billy. All 5, I’m sure, had humongous episode counts (perhaps that could be used as criteria, with some formula for actors who leave or who come on the show late in the year. Next year, it will be interesting if Billy Miller and/or Michael Muhney submit their phenomenal January scenes, in which they were both leads, but with just one month of episodes….)
For me, true supporting players would be actors such as Suzanne Rogers, Peggy McCay, Alley Mills, Judi Evans, Mary Beth Evans, Meredith Scott Lynn, Leslie Charleson…trying to think of comparable male names and blanking out! Perhaps if there was a “featured actor” and “featured actress” category, for those who are borderline, and then a separate category for true supporting players. (An example of someone who was never nominated for an Emmy who ought to have been was the late great Constance Ford as Ada on Another World – she would occasionally get a story of her own, but usually she truly supported the other characters, particularly Rachel. She was definitely Emmy-worthy and added so much to her show). Just a thought…
Anyway, back to this year: I would be disappointed if certain actors get nominated, because it means that someone who is in their correct category won’t get nominated.April 21, 2014 at 8:04 am #426139
I think that’s a great point, gdfl, about the way TPTB view the performers and how that influences category selection. I bet that plays a big part of it.
And I totally see your point, Freeman, that all of those characters did at some point have their own stories that they were the leads of in 2013. But it’s so hard to me to then think that means that they should compete as leads for the Emmys. While it would be great to give the supporting actors who really play supporting characters that don’t have stories of their own more of a chance to shine, I can’t imagine how much more great work would be going unrecognized if anyone who did have a story in which they played a major role had to compete in lead rather than supporting. Getting an additional category for featured actors would be the most ideal solution. With the way Emmys are currently judged, it feels equally unfair to make the more borderline actors (who may have only had a few really big performances for the year) compete with clear leads who were the focus of big stories (and thus have many episodes from which to choose) AND to make the clear supporting players (who likely wouldn’t really get any showcase episode that feel competitive) compete with the borderline actors.
April 26, 2014 at 9:28 pm #426140
I don’t even understand why McCay didn’t put herself in supporting last year where she may have actually won. As for this year, can’t disagree with anything that was said. Many are thinking Walton has the best chance of getting a lead nod, which is fine by me, cuz I love me some Jess, no matter what the category is.April 30, 2014 at 5:07 am #426141
I took notice of the category fraud in the late-1980s/early-1990s when lead performances were submitted in the younger-acting ranks because of qualifying age. Well, really, I am cynical enough to perceive the creation of that categorical level, back in 1985, was a way to keep the young ones out of the domain of the lead ranks that had spoiled many of the vets. (Those were ones routinely nominated year after year regardless of any circumstances. There would be seven or eight lead nominees singled out one year and invited back the next. There was no real thought with the nominating process and who specifically was getting recognition. Yes, this was the shallow system of the Daytime Emmys!)
The way the soaps play, with their cast ensembles, estimate 50 percent of a series’ regulars as having truly carried a lead role in storytelling during an Emmy-eligibility season.