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Bill & Susan Seaforth Hayes Bookstore Appearance in my Hometown

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  • Balthazar
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    #423274

    Hello, I was excited to get to meet & greet Bill Hayes & Susan Seaforth Hayes at a book signing earlier this week.  I was pleased to tell them about knowing the mother of a two-time Daytime Emmy winner.  This naturally brought up the subject of these awards.  Several years ago, Susan had visited the same bookstore & commented that WRITING was essential in the reels submitted in the acting races.  WRITING was key.   (She added that NBC was at that time in a fantasy mode & that wasn’t conducive to winning Daytime Emmys in acting races.)

    This week, Susan commented that Bill Hayes had judged the Daytime Emmy Outstanding Actor race recently. 

    IN MY EXCITEMENT, I interrupted Susan with an addendum (personal anecdote) as she began to elucidate on Bill’s experience judging this category.  I bee-leave from her tone of voice she was going to say that her husband was disappointed in the quality of the reels submitted.  Yet because I interjected, I’m not sure.  She might’ve gone on to say how pleased Bill was with the submissions. 

    MY QUESTION, FORUM READERS:  Thinking about the Outstanding Actor winners & the category’s nominee lineups recently, do you think her comments about Bill Hayes’ judging experience was meant to be negative (disappointed in the reels submitted) or positive (nominees deserving & award-worthy)?  (It was also discussed that NBC has been receiving more noms lately because of the diminishing pool of contenders.)

    Thoughts? Reflections? Gut reactions?

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    eastwest
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    #423276

    I think there has been an obvious shift in the reels from now to the past. I think one of the reasons that LeBLanc and Geary switch on and off in the last decade b/c their episodes were the best written of the bunch. Another example is the lead actress race from two yrs. ago. I have had two yrs. to think about Laura Wright beating out Colleen Zenk. If we go on writing, it had to be Wright’s. Dealing with a child going to prison for murder, gives an actor somethign rooted in reality to play. While Colleen had the superior performance, the writing she had was kind of bad. The hookey wedding and laughable siance of James Stenbeck were detractors.

    Very intersting topic indeed and how cool that you got to meet the couple behind on of the first supercouples in Daytime! 

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    Pavel Romanov
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    #423277

    Scenes nowadays are so choppy. I remember a time when scenes had a rythm and beat to them where they would last well past 3 or 4 minutes like they do currently. A lot of this has to do with the networks who have long thought soap viewers were stupid so they mandated that all scenes be short and too the point.

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    EmmyLoser
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    #423278

    Thanks for sharing this story, and really interesting questions.  It must have been so cool to meet Bill and Susan!

    I do agree that the writing is incredibly important in the reels.  Even in the forums, I see plently of instances where people comment that the acting of one contender was a hare better, but the writing for the other was much better and so the better actor wouldn’t be their personal choice or prediction to win.  I’ve also said that, especially in the 90s, the style of DAYS was not at all conducive to winning Emmys or even getting nominated.  Even though it was thrilling for the audience, many of the characters spent a lot of their time doing the same things.  You could usually forget about getting much range within a single episode, as many actors spent the episodes where they had the strongest moments on the verge of learning or revealing something that, in the end, they never learned or revealed. 

    GloFish makes a great point, that many scenes nowadays are so choppy.  By and large, they’ve lost the rhythm they used to have.  In addition to writing, when you’re discussing leads, I also just feel like some roles/characters/situations feel inherently supporting, no matter how much screentime they take up, while others just feel like leads.  A lead character might get kidnapped by the town’s megavillain.  But if you’re kidnapped by a psychotic clown, you probably seem more supporting.  Lead characters often deal with losing spouses and children (for whatever reason, death, divorce, incarceration), while supporting characters tend to be the desperate unhinged fighting to keep hold of those very people.  There are exceptions, and I know some don’t agree, but that’s how I see it.

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    Balthazar
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    #423279

    Thanks for these responses.  Loved reading these.  Now that I think about it, I think Susan meant to say that Bill was disappointed in the reels for Outstanding Actor because he judged all the pre-nominees.  Bill told me that he just voted on the pre-nominees for the five nominations & that a separate panel voted on the Outstanding Actor reels. 

    Nonetheless, it’s interesting to note that he was disappointed in the reels the PRE-Nominees for Outstanding Actor submitted. 

    It might be a different ballgame, however, for the panelists voting on the five actual nominees.  For example, I distinctly remember Susan Lucci being interviewed on the red carpet at the Daytime Emmys a few years ago.  Susan noted that she voted on the five Outstanding Actor nominees, assigning each a numerical score on a 100 point scale.  And she told the reporter that her scores were very high for each of the nominees, a testiment to the high quality of acting.

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    EmmyLoser
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    #423280

    Yes, I remember that interview!  I also remember thinking that maybe La Lucci was just being nice, because I wasn’t too thrilled with the crop of nominees that year.  I believe that’s the year that Thaao Penghlis was nominated, and one of his submitted episodes had him dressed as a maniacal clown.

    Great point about nominees versus pre-noms. I could totally see that being the case.

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    Balthazar
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    #423281

    Yes, after Susan Hayes’ comments last week I, too, wondered whether Susan Lucci was being sincere during that red carpet interview.  My take, however, is that she was being truthful & really did assign high scores because once it gets to that level (final five nominees) the reels probably are laudable.

    More follow-up…after I reminded Susan that she remarked at her previous appearance that NBC was in fantasy mode storyline which just couldn’t grab Daytime Emmy nominations, I continued to note that NBC doesn’t seem to be in the same predicament anymore — NBC has scored some acting nominations recently.  Susan noted that this was because there was less competition around.

    She then recounted Bill’s disappointment in the reels. I told Susan while getting her autograph that one of the panelists judging my friend’s daughter’s reels gave her unbelievably favorable feedback.  To which Susan replied something to the effect, “Well it’s a whole different ballgame these days,” which I interpreted as meaning the low-quality in the reels she mentioned during the Q & A.

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    Balthazar
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    #423282

     (I don’t want the above comment to end with a negative vibe.) So….

    As an addendum, without naming names, I know the two times the Daytime Emmy winner (whose mother I know) has judged the finalists reels, the winner was a slam-dunk.  From that perspective there is, indeed, quality in the reels.

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    EmmyLoser
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    #423283

    Yes, I believe there’s still much quality in the reels and in what we see over the year.  I think the problems with prenominees can overshadow that talent a little, where people are getting prenominations without truly having given the best performances over those who have, people being prenominated on name recognition but having very little worthwhile material to submit, or the dread and sad cases of poor episode selection. 

    Again, Balthazar, thanks for sharing.  It’s nice to have a little peek at what the judges may be thinking.

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