No one at The Envelope has more passion for the daytime soap dramas or a better grasp of their Emmy chances than our forums moderator Matthew "Boidiva2" Cormier. Here's who he thinks will reap bids when nominations are unveiled Wednesday morning at 11 a.m. ET on ABC's talk show "The View."
BEST DRAMA SERIES
"As the World Turns," "One Life to Live," "General Hospital," "The Bold and the Beautiful"
I believe that CBS and ABC will once again each get two nominees. "B&B" had a strong year of material with strong story lines that placed leading lady Susan Flannery front and center and could earn the show a top bid for best series: one in which Stephanie (Flannery) admits her role in the rape of arch-rival Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) and another in which Stephanie confronts her childhood abuse.
In the past CBS' best chance at winning was "The Young and the Restless," but this year that show was nearly ruined by show runner Lynn Marie Latham and was harshly criticized by both fans and critics for being off-focus and losing sight of its history and characters.
"General Hospital" is an old standby in this race with the record for most wins and it's basically repeated its past strategy of producing several special effects-laden episodes that are meant solely for getting Emmy votes. This year they produced a heavily promoted hostage crisis storyline that featured lots of special effects and tons of gory violence. This strategy has worked in the past when they won for a hotel fire episode.
"As The World Turns" could easily be replaced by "The Guiding Light" which tied "Y&R" for the win last year, but all the hype surrounding the show and its mishandling of the Luke/Noah story could get them some votes.
Lastly, "One Life to Live" had what can only be described as a transformative year. New head writer Ron Carvalati came in and, in a few short months, fixed a show that had long been on a downward spiral. He re-introduced long neglected characters like Lindsay Rappaport (Catherine Hickland), Nora Hannen (Emmy winner Hillary B. Smith) and most importantly Victoria "Viki" Lord (Erika Slezak). He also re-focused the show on issues affecting family and love lives. The main story that could land "OLTL" a most deserving win involves a months-long custody battle over baby Tommy, who was adopted legally by Marcie and Michael McBain, a schoolteacher and doctor, and was revealed to be the once presumed dead son of Todd Manning, rapist and lifelong felon. The story went that Marcie, fearful of losing custody, kidnaps Tommy and goes on the run where she hides out in Paris, Texas, posing as Sally Anne, a waitress at a French-inspired cafe. This story also gave Erika Slezak the best material of her career, as Viki feeling left out and empty inside runs off and ends up in Paris, Texas, where she finds herself all over again by working as a waitress and falling in love with Charlie Banks, an alcoholic drifter. This story paired with a tape from the funeral of Asa Buchanan (Daytime legend Phil Carey, who bravely told "OLTL" to take a hike with a half-hearted contract offer with substantially less pay) in which Lainview's citizens gather to mourn the ruthless businessman and cowboy. Performances from Robert S. Woods (Bo Buchanan) and Jerry Van Dorn (Clint Buchanan) should tug at the hearts. I think the two front-runners are "One Life To Live" and "The Bold and the Beautiful. However, "General Hospital" always poses a threat.
Martha Byrne (Lily Snyder, "As the World Turns," CBS), Erika Slezak (Victoria "Viki" Lord, "One Life To Live," ABC), Bobbie Eakes (Krystal Carey Chandler Martin, "All My Children," ABC), Jeanne Cooper (Katherine "Kay" Chancoler, "The Young and the Restless," CBS), Susan Flannery (Stephanie Forrester, "The Bold and the Beautiful," CBS)
Lead actress is always a tough call, usually a few surprising names are called out (like in 2006 when a shocking two-way tie resulted in six nominees, including head scratchers Juliet Mills and Kassie De Pavia). But this year I suspect we'll see five veteran actresses called out.
Erika Slezak holds the record for most wins by a performer with six wins and this year she had a season that most actresses only dream of. Her character Viki found herself by deserting her family and friends for life as a waitress at a Paris, Texas, diner where she fell in love with Charlie Banks and was held hostage by Marcie Walsh McBain. Slezak is a very well-respected actress and anytime she's nominated she faces a chance of winning (in fact of her 8 nominations she's lost only twice).
Martha Byrne is a name that I suspect will be called, if not out of talent than out of the fact that this long-time veteran was recently axed from her show when contract negotiations went awry. The veteran actress had done everything she could to amicably re-sign but was axed over money and replaced with a new actress.
If there is any justice we'll see Bobbie Eakes of "All My Children" get her second career nomination. This season Krystal's husband, Adam Chandler, found out the baby she was carrying wasn't his, but really belong to Tad Martin, after an affair they had. Krystal gave birth, had the baby kidnapped, was held hostage and remarried. Eakes did a tremendous job of conveying every possible emotion and of out-shining even a heavyweight like David Canary.
Susan Flannery is considered by most to be the best actress in daytime and she certainly held her weight in 2007 with story lines involving her childhood abuse, her role in the rape of her arch-rival and so on. Jeanne Cooper is another veteran with a good track record in nominations. (8 nominations since 1989) and zero wins, so I think this may be the year that she wins.
David Canary (Adam Chandler/Stuart Chandler, "All My Children," ABC), Ricky Paull Goldin (Gus Atoiro, "The Guiding Light," CBS), Robert S. Woods (Bo Buchanan, "One Life to Live," ABC), Jerry Ver Dorn (Clint Buchanan, "One Life To Live," ABC), Scott Bryce (Craig Montgomery, "As The World Turns," CBS)
The two names to remember this year are David Canary and Robert S. Woods. Canary, a 15-time nominee (and five-time winner), will likely show up this year after a front and center year involving Adam learning his wife had an affair and was carrying another man's child. Robert S. Woods had a spectacular episode in which Bo's father, Asa, dies and the whirlwind of emotions that follows at the funeral. Ver Dorn was just months into his role on the show when this same episode aired and he proved himself as a valuable member of the show's cast. Ver Dorn and Woods acted off each other like old pros and both gave stunning performances, but Woods gets the edge for his history with the show, which helped elevate the scenes as Bo discussed his and Asa's relationship.
Scott Bryce could be nominated after resuming a role he played in the 1980s as a romantic hero and turning it into a complex villain. He was fired shortly into his return to the show. Ricky Paull Goldin recently shocked daytime by announcing he was leaving "Guiding Light" to go to "All My Children" and while this could cause some people to not vote for him, I think many voters will jump at their last chance to reward him for this role.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Heather Tom (Katie Logan, "The Bold and the Beautiful," CBS)
Carolyn Hennesy (Diane Miller, "General Hospital," ABC)
Gina Tognoni (Dinah Mahrler, "Guiding Light," CBS)
Kathy Brier (Marcie Walsh McBain, "One Life to Live," ABC)
Catherine Hickland (Lindsay Rappaort, "One Life to Live," ABC)
This category will be the toughest race of the season, with many worthwhile candidates making the cut and many more worthwhile candidates being passed over for less worthy people. In some cases, such as "AMC's" Alicia Minshew or "GH's" Rebecca Herbst, people were placed here despite clearly being lead actresses.
Catherine Hickland could receive her first career nomination (and her career spans four decades, as her first role was on "Texas" in 1980) for a story in which her character Lindsay admits the truth that she was the one who killed Dr. Spencer Truman, ending a months-long murder mystery. Lindsay being the murderer came as a shock to viewers as Lindsay had long, long been on the back-burner, but the motive she had was perfect. Lindsay killed Spencer to keep him from spilling the secret that her friend Marcie's adopted son was the biological son of Todd Manning. Hickland was pitch perfect as convicted murderer Lindsay spoke at the women of the year awards (where she was being honored) of how hard she had worked to change her life and broke down admitting she was the killer and that she didn't deserve the award.
Carolyn Hennesy a newcomer to "GH" and daytime proved once again that comedy was a force to be reckoned with as Diane Miller was brought in as Sonny Corinthos's lawyer and quickly developed a feud and friendship with fellow lawyer Alexis Davis. Her quirky, fiery nature lead to some hilarious encounters. Gina Tognoni is likely to be nominated again, as she is a very talented actress with loads of reels to pick from.
Heather Tom was actually light on story in 2007, but is such a dynamite actress that nearly any reel she submits will get noticed.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Grayson McCouch (Dusty Donovan, "As the World Turns," CBS)
Ted Shackelford (Jeffery Bardwell, "The Young and the Restless," CBS)
Rick Hearst (Rick Lansing, "General Hospital," ABC)
William De Vry (Storm Logan, "The Bold and the Beautiful," CBS)
Bradford J. Anderson (Damien Spinelli, "General Hospital," ABC)
The sad thing about supporting actor this year is that many of the most deserving candidates won't be nominated because this category is simply too crowded with talent. Grayson McCouch is likely to be nominated for a high profile exit from the show in which his character is sadly killed off. Ted Shackelford, a veteran of nighttime soaps ("Knot's Landing"), joined Y&R in 2007 and ended up playing two roles: his first character William Bardwell died of a heart attack and he returned to the show as William's twin brother Jeffery. Bradford Anderson, a younger member of the category created a truly original character in shy, comic book, computer-loving geek Damien Spinelli who speaks as if he's playing world of war craft all the time, dubbing his mobster friends "stone cold" and "the fair lulu" and provided great comic relief amongst the violence of "GH."
Rick Hearst won last year and is always a threat because he's such a natural actor that even with minimal story he is a contender. Then we have William De Vry, so natural at playing villains that you sometimes forget he is an actor, in 2007 Storm a lawyer defended his father for shooting Stephanie Forrester, but eventually confessed that it was HIM who had done it and wanted to pin it on his father, who had abandoned the family years ago.
BEST YOUNGER ACTRESS
Kirsten Storms (Maxie Jones, "General Hospital," ABC), Jennifer Landon (Gwen Munson, "As the World Turns," CBS), Brittany Underwood (Langston Wilde, "One Life to Live," ABC), Alexandra Chando (Maddie Coleman, "As the World Turns," CBS), Leven Ramblin (Lily Montgomery and Ava Montgomery, "All My Children," ABC)
To me, the hands-down winner of this award would be Kirsten Storms, a once-green actress who has turned the role of Maxie Jones into a fan favorite. She has turned a once-bland character into a multi-dimensional role who reels after a failed romance and has abandonment issues thanks to her absentee parents and who feels no guilt over sleeping with a married man (Lucky Spencer) and supplying him with drugs, or with having it out with his wife, Elizabeth. Storms has come into her own and deserves this award.
Brittany Underwood is a newcomer to daytime, but as orphan Langston Wilde who befriends Starr Manning and is taken in by Dr. Dorian Lord she made a huge impact in the short time she has been here.
Dual roles always go over well with judges which is one reason why Leven Ramblin may have a shot of winning, for playing autistic Lilly Montgomery and her look alike cousin, wild child cosmetics executive/model Ava Montgomery. But I believe that Jennifer Landon will get her third consecutive Daytime Emmy for her role as Gwen Munson. Alexandra Chando is a non-factor in the race.
BEST YOUNGER ACTOR
Van Hansis (Luke Snyder, "As the World Turns," CBS)
Josh Duhon (Logan Hayes, "General Hospital," ABC)
Jesse Lee Sofer (Will Munson, "As the World Turns," CBS)
Tom Phelphrey (Jonathan Randall, "Guiding Light," CBS)
John Driscoll (Henry "Coop" Cooper, "Guiding Light," CBS)
This category will almost definitely be comprised of four CBS actors and one ABC actor. Van Hansis seems like a lock for a nomination for his continued portrayal of gay teen Luke Snyder on "As the World Turns."
2006 winner Tom Phelphrey is always a force to be reckoned with for his fierce portrayal of Jonathan Randall, the son of Reva Shayne Lewis who at one time was dating his first cousin, Tammy Winslow. Josh Duhon seemingly has everything a younger actor needs: charisma, good looks and a front-burner romantic story line, in which he plays the bad boy to Julie Berman's good girl Lulu, but I have a feeling his reels will pale in comparison to the dramatically charged stuff that the other nominees have. I give this category to Phelphrey or Van Hansis.