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OLTL Emmy track record questions

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  • Daniel Montgomery
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    #422855

    Hi all,

    I’m writing an article about OLTL’s relatively poor track record at the Daytime Emmys, so I’m doing some research and want to make sure I’ve got my facts straight. Let me know if you notice any glaring errors:

    AMC:
    3 Drama Series wins

    5 Writing wins

    2 Directing wins

    27 Acting wins (8 in last 15 years)

    GH:

    10 Drama Series wins

    4 Writing wins

    7 Directing wins

    34 Acting wins (24 in last 15 years)

    OLTL:

    1 Drama Series win

    3 Writing wins

    4 Directing wins

    16 Acting wins (2 in last 15 years)

    YR:

    7 Drama Series wins

    5 Writing wins

    13 Directing wins

    27 Acting wins (19 in last 15 years)

    BB (since 1987):

    3 Drama Series wins

    1 Writing win

    1 Directing win

    12 Acting wins (All in last 15 years)

    DAYS:

    1 Drama Series win

    1 Writing win

    1 Directing win

    9 Acting wins (2 in last 15 years)

    Also, does anyone have links to TV Guide Canada’s Soap Opera Spirit Award results? I’ve found results for a couple of years, but it’s hard to find complete official lists.

    And does anybody have a link to Gary Tomlin’s criticisms of the Daytime Emmy process back when he was producing OLTL from 2001-2003? I believe that was part of the inspiration for starting the prenominations system.

    Honestly, it seems like all information about soaps disappears from the internet after about a year. It’s a dead zone for archived, reputable sources.

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    Boidiva02
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    #422857

    Hi all,

    And does anybody have a link to Gary Tomlin’s criticisms of the Daytime Emmy process back when he was producing OLTL from 2001-2003? I believe that was part of the inspiration for starting the prenominations system.

    Honestly, it seems like all information about soaps disappears from the internet after about a year. It’s a dead zone for archived, reputable sources.

    This is exactly where I ran into issues when I was writing for Goldderby. Relavant information was difficult if not impossible to find, Wikipedia only goes so far.

    My best advice about this issue is possibly to find archived copies of the soap mags at a local library perhaps you’ll find that information there.   

    One thing worth noting is that when OLTL finally did win Drama series, most of it’s primary cast was absent as they did not attend the ceremony after being shut out of nominations that year.    Not a single cast member was even nominated and the series itself after having one of it’s best years was only nominated in two major categories (Drama Series and Writing), it lost Writing to ATWT.

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    Boidiva02
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    #422858

    http://www.soapcentral.com/emmys/news/2002/0517-emmy_coverage6.php

    Here is an article the slightly refrences this, but provides little help.

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    Boidiva02
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    #422859

    It also wouldn’t hurt to mention the controversy surrounding the nomination of Uta Hagen in Supporting Actress in 1986, which many felt was due to her name alone and not on the merits of her very short stint on OLTL.   I believe she wasn’t on for more than a few days (if that).   It created controversy in that she was nominated over others who worked all year on soaps.  

    This is one of the many reasons a guest acting category has long been considered (but sadly always turned down).

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    darioc
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    #422860

    I will never understand how a GH wins so many awards yet OLTL wins so little…the last decade of OLTL was phenomenal and should have brought at least 3 more drama series wins

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    Daniel Montgomery
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    #422861

    That OLTL had so few acting wins — and so relatively few nominations — is really disheartening to me and always has been. To think that Kathy Brier, Catherine Hickland, Kassie DePaiva, Trevor St. John, Ilene Kristen, Erin Tropey, Bree Williamson, and Florencia Lozano all have fewer Emmys than Jacob Young is depressing.

    Kristen Alderson never got an Emmy nomination either, but now that she’s on GH, Emmy voters might actually realize she exists.

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    Daniel Montgomery
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    #422862

    http://www.soapcentral.com/emmys/news/2002/0517-emmy_coverage6.php

    Here is an article the slightly refrences this, but provides little help.

    Thanks, Boidiva! That article is just what I needed!

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    Boidiva02
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    #422863

    No problem!  

    I think that GH was lucky in that it had mostly the same voices guiding it for most of the last 20 years, after the Riche/Labaine era you had JFP and Guza for most of those years, whereas OLTL has had a different head-writing team nearly every year since 1991.   I think it hurt the series tone and it was never able to gain a consistent tone or voice… Compare the gritty realism from the original Malone/Griffith era to the shallow vapid nothingness of the Dena Hiegly era..   It’s lucky that GH’s cast was able to benefit from knowing exactly what it was, OLTL’s cast was likely always trying to figure out what the show was.

    Granted, we all have issues with how GH has been run in these years, but it’s likely only helped the cast knowing exactly what is expected of them.    

    We all know OLTL was the ugly-stepchild of daytime, with little promotion, support or acknowledgement, and the fact that for a number of years it was the lone NYC soap couldn’t have helped it.

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    Daniel Montgomery
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    #422864

    Here’s my article:

    http://www.goldderby.com/television/news/3011/one-life-to-live-oltl-erika-slezak-daytime-emmys-tv-news-2468097.html 

    I’m not sure inconsistency has hurt OLTL. I mean, GH has had a consistent creative team, but over the last ten years, not a lot of people really liked that creative team. AMC had a lot of creative turnover as well, and its situation was far worse I think; AMC went of the air in 2011, but I think it really died several years earlier with Megan McTavish and the unabortion storyline, and the show never recovered creatively after that. (Unless maybe that last writing team gave it a good farewell, but I had stopped watching by then and only saw the so-so finale episode.)

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    EmmyLoser
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    #422865

    I enjoyed the article, Daniel! 

    I do have to say, though (you can probably guess what I’m going to say), it’s unfair the way DAYS, which has a worse Emmy record than OLTL, is brushed off, the implication being that it’s the show’s own fault it gets so little Emmy love because of its outlandish stories, while OLTL is held up as Emmy’s undeserving victim.  I get that the focus of the article is OLTL, and at least mentioning that DAYS has a worse showing is only fair, but the treatment of it is rather dismissive.  After all, it’s not like DAYS was hurting for Drama Series nods, and actually got back into the acting races after a few years with no nominees, during the later 90s, the time when the storylines were most outlandish. 

    I guess the point I’m trying to make, not as a criticism of the article itself but more as a discussion stemming from that, is that we seem to make no effort to explain why OLTL may have been ignored by Emmys as often as it was — which didn’t bother me at all in the article except that another show that did poorly is named and its record quickly explained with, “But that’s because this.”  I know it wouldn’t have been sensible to go into a whole thing about the Emmy process, or the fact that a show like GH clearly writes Emmy episodes for the show and actors while OLTL never went that route, or that OLTL has proven that it can be terrible at choosing Emmy submissions.

    But for us in here, I feel like I need to defend both GH and DAYS a bit.  DAYS did some ridiculous and crazy things, and some of them were truly terrible, like the execution of the Melaswen story and the rarely-mentioned story that had Austin and Greta spend months in virtual reality for absolutely no reason.  But OLTL had its share of ridiculous stories as well.  Rex and Gigi’s time traveling?  David Vickers (the dog) and Liam having a conversation about those paternity test results?  The liberties they took with mental illnesses concerning personality disorders or memory lapses?  This is all just based on stories I actually watched, but it seems to me OLTL has done more than its share of stories that would make the Emmys not take it too seriously either.  And comparing GH to OLTL, it’s clear that GH put in the effort to win more Emmys, and so they did.  No, that doesn’t mean they produced a better show, but they played into the system a lot more.  OLTL didn’t, and the results are what they are.  The venom a lot of people have for GH’s Emmy wins/nominations feel unfair to me.

    I didn’t realize I had do much to say on the topic, but I guess I get sensitive about Emmy snubbing discussions that involve OLTL and DAYS.  It’s like a ranting trigger for me.

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    Daniel Montgomery
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    #422866

    Hi EmmyLoser,

    Thanks for your thoughts. My focus of the article was OLTL. To address every single one of those concerns would have required an article at least double, maybe triple the length and that would have detracted from its focus

    I wanted to mention DAYS, because not to would have been to pick and choose my facts. But NBC has had its own struggles; people have often not taken it as seriously, whether fairly or not, and that has been a consistent problem over the years.

    What is surprising about OLTL in particular is that it does so much worse than its fellow ABC shows, and that doesn’t really make sense. Sometimes OLTL submits crap, true. So do the other shows, but it doesn’t seem to hurt them as much. Y&R seems to get in for mediocre submissions all the time. OLTL seems to require a slam-dunk submission in order to even be considered, and even then it still often doesn’t win.

    I never criticized GH in the article — that could be its own article . My intention was not to say GH deserved less but, as Gary Tomlin said, OLTL deserved more. That was my single greatest frustration in my years of soap watching. DAYS is not as much my area of exertise, and since OLTL was just cancelled, that was the more pressing subject for this year’s Emmy race.

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    Boidiva02
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    #422867

    Great article, Daniel. I really liked it.  

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    EmmyLoser
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    #422868

    Hi Daniel,

    I didn’t mean for everything I said to come across as criticizing the article.  I really did enjoy it, and I thought you did a great job with it.  I started writing my post above, and about halfway through, I realized that what I was talking about would be its own collection of separate articles.  It would be crazy for me to say you should have mentioned all of that in your piece.

    I just realized how frustrated I get sometimes in the forums, getting the sense that a lot of posters feel DAYS has no one to blame but itself for its poor Emmy showing while OLTL’s problems in that arena are gross injustices the likes of which should have spawned great reform and revolution.  The article seemed like a good point from which to start a larger discussion.

    But you’re absolutely right: It is really curious that OLTL did so much worse than its sister shows, especially All My Children.  It would be interesting, again, not really in the form of an article but more as a forum discussion for those of us who like to talk about these things ad nauseum, to try to dig into why that might be the case.  What I was saying about GH vs. OLTL was in the spirit of that discussion.  When I said I was defending GH, I didn’t mean agains the article, just against some of the harsh criticisms leveled at it in the forums. 

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    Daniel Montgomery
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    #422869

    Thanks for clarifying.

    I do think DAYS turned a corner creatively in recent years, after it escaped the excess camp of James Reilly and started telling more grounded (by soap standards) stories, but I think the show hasn’t had a cast as prestigious as the other shows. They top stars on DAYS — like Alison Sweeney, Kristian Alfonso, Peter Reckell, etc. — I don’t think are held in as high regard as, say, Erika Slezak on OLTL, David Canary on AMC, Anthony Geary on GH, Eric Braeden on Y&R, etc. Though DAYS’s actors have certainly given excellent, Emmy-worthy performances — and the perception about the show in general seems to have shifted — they don’t trigger the same knee-jerk reverence that the other networks’ stars do. Perhaps that is one of the reasons DAYS hasn’t been historically as successful in acting categories.

    Historically speaking, though, DAYS has actually done much better than OLTL in the Best Drama Series category. It’s only won once, but it has more nominations in the top category than OLTL. And ironically, DAYS got more acting nominations this year (5) than OLTL has gotten in one year in at least 10-15 years. In the last decade, OLTL topped out at 4 nominations in one year, and to do that, they needed a Best Actress category expanded to 8 women, LOL.

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    EmmyLoser
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    #422870

    Yes, you’re right.  It’s interesting how OLTL seemed to never have much Emmy traction at all, where DAYS has ebbed and flowed to a degree.  DAYS did well in terms of drama series nominations from the mid-70s to the mid-80s, scoring their only win so far during that period.  Then they went into a dry spell in the category that only ended around the time of the devil possession storyline and Reilly’s style of storytelling became kind of the in thing.  Then he left to create Passions, and the show sank back to getting a handful of nominations at most, until Ed Scott came along.  The creative changes that started during his tenure along with the prestige of his name I think got DAYS back into Emmy favor.  So then why did OLTL never take with Emmy voters?  Do you think that maybe in the earliest days of the Emmys the OLTL stories rubbed some people the wrong way because of the social messages involved, and maybe the pattern just became self-sustaining?

    Good point also about the way people regard DAYS’ stars like Sweeney, Alfonso, and Reckell versus the big guns on some of the other shows.  Even Deidre Hall, who I think is generally held in pretty high regard, seems to fall more in line with a Susan Lucci (thought of perhaps more as a great daytime star rather than a great daytime actor) than with people like Slezak, Geary, Canary, Braeden, and Kim Zimmer.

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