The nominees for the Daytime Emmy’s were announced on May 14th and true soap fans must be shaking their heads in wonder. Or are speechless… Or dumbfounded… Or all of the above…

Somehow, beyond all the laws of nature, All My Children leads the way with 19 nominations. Let me repeat, ALL MY CHILDREN GOT 19 NOMINATIONS!!!! One year removed from one (one, singular, individual, solitary, ONE) nomination (David Canary as Adam Chandler – currently being forced out by TIIC), they managed to rake in 19 nominations!!!

WTF?!?! NINETEEN NOMINATIONS?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

Are you serious?!?! You cannot be serious!! That’s… that’s mind-boggling!! The show that was made fun of, turned into a punch-line, became an utter laughingstock to a huge cross-section of viewers, got 19 nominations?!?!? I’d like to know what compromising photos Charles Pratt has of the judging committee to sway the vote like this.

Now, granted there were acting noms that were much deserved. Thorsten Kaye (again), Debbie Morgan (YAY!), Melissa Claire Egan (first time), Alicia Minshew (finally!) all transcended the material they were given to earn their nominations. Angie’s return and her discovering Jesse alive after 20 years was fantastic work. And Alicia, finally recognized after many deserving years, snagged her first ever nomination. Melissa Egan’s CrazyAnnie was worth the price of admission (except, of course, the day she leapt off Ryan’s penthouse balcony and landed without a scratch several floors below, but… that was the writing, not the acting).

However, I seriously take exception to All My Children and The Bold and the Beautiful receiving nominations as Best Daytime Drama. AMC, if nothing else, deserves an award for Best Example of How to Destroy a Once Incredibly Popular Soap with Nothing More Than Amazingly Bad Writing. (I bet that wouldn’t fit on the trophy, but, you never know, it has a pretty big base). The Bold and the Beautiful is good soap, but no where near on par with The Young and the Restless or even One Life to Live’s level this year.

All My Children, once one of the strongest shows on daytime, has been reduced to mindless hackery. Charles Pratt has taken the show to the very depths of ghoulishness with his unbelievably high body count in a relatively short time-span:  Zach shooting Josh in the head in order to harvest his heart, Annie clubbing brother Richie like a baby seal to save her marriage (oops), Babe getting impaled during a tornado, Greenlee flying off a cliff on a motorcycle, Di Henry being shot and killed by CrazyAnnie during her plot to save her marriage (again, oops). (have I missed anyone? They came fast and furious at one point)  There was the waste of veteran/returning characters (and big names with big-time talent) to pimp new characters that utterly failed (*coughRebecca-Jesse’s-long-lost-wife-when-everyone-thought-he-was-dead-and-her-daughter-and-the-one-hooker-we-couldn’t-care-less-about-Randicough*), the force-feeding of the re-pairing of Ryan and Greenlee, which effectively ended Rebecca Budig’s return, which, oh, yeah, was botched by ABC/AMC. Toss in some cool effects, some plots with holes the size of the one in the ozone layer, plot-driven, soulless storytelling, and that was All My Children in 2008.

And yet, somehow, THEY GOT A WRITING NOMINATION!!!!!!! Charles Pratt got an Emmy nomination for the ridiculously HORRIBLE writing he cranked out in 2008. REALLY? REALLY?!?!?!

The man who actually blamed an Emmy Award winning actress for HIS inadequacies was nominated for Best Writing. This is the man who so completely decimated what should have been the most intriguing storyline on television, daytime or nighttime, was nominated for a writing award… Again, was it the headshot to Josh? Annie’s leap of faith and tire-ironing? Ryan and Greenlee rutting like pigs at every turn? I am utterly mystified how this drivel is worthy even of consideration, let alone an actual nomination.

If anything, Esensten and Brown deserve the nomination without Pratt’s name being tacked on to cheapen it. They did the work that resonated last year with Angie and Jesse’s return, among other things. They had started turning the show around when Brian Frons inexplicably fired them and brought on his buddy, Charles Pratt. And the impact was felt immediately in declining quality. Attaching Pratt’s name to this makes the category irrelevant and a farce.

Like toddlers with no sense of actual value, it’s obvious the judges are swayed by a shiny trinket from a gumball machine. The fancy effects of CGI outweigh the quality of the writing, pacing and continuity.

And don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE Alicia Minshew, and she is incredibly deserving of her nomination, but there was an indescribably better heart transplant story on daytime last year, involving Crystal Chappell’s fantastic Olivia Spencer on Guiding Light. Like Minshew’s Kendall, Olivia also received the heart of a loved one. Yet Olivia’s story ripped out viewers hearts with her despondency upon learning of Gus Aitoro’s death and the fact that his heart beat now in her chest. How she woke asking for Gus, how Reva broke the news of his death and the gift of his heart from his widow Natalia Rivera. How she gave up her will to live, crying out that she didn’t want to live if Gus was dead. On a daily basis, you watched Crystal Chappell with a lump in your throat, unable to swallow it down with every scene that played out. In this instance, Guiding Light outshone AMC and Crystal Chappell again acted circles around the best daytime has to offer.

(Let me add that I seriously doubt Alicia Minshew’s Emmy submission material was the heart transplant storyline, since she was lying in a bed during that time, pretending to be in a coma. She was, however, an incredibly realistic coma patient)

There is one, possibly two, names on the list for Best Supporting Actress that should have been switched out with Crystal’s. She is undoubtedly one of the best actresses working in daytime television and her name absent from this list is really a travesty. She’ll get hers in 2009 for the work she’s done in recent months. If not, then there’s something seriously rotten in Denmark.

I’ll give AMC the technical award nominations, though. Well deserved, I’m sure.

Here’s hoping OLTL sweeps every category they’re nominated in with AMC…

Deserving Nominees include Susan Haskell, who transcended the repugnant rape-mance storyline on OLTL. She always does top-notch work. Daniel C0sgrove, as GL’s Bill Lewis, also delivers quality work on a daily basis and Jeanne Cooper, the Grande Dame of Daytime, still impresses and had a fantastically  meaty storyline last year.

I would replace Anthony Geary with Darnell Williams. Darnell’s turn as newly-back-from-the-dead Jesse Hubbard was tortured as he still fought to keep his family safe. Plus the respect to the history of the character by the writers made his portrayal even better.

Gina Tognoni, Kim Zimmer, Crystall Chappell, all names that could, and probably should, be on this list. I like Bree Williamson, I just don’t think her turn as crazy Tessica is Emmy-worthy, even with the work she did during Nash’s death.

I think Tamara Braun’s Ava from DOOL was a loony-tune… which means of the 5 nominees in the Best Supporting Actress Category, 3 characters were mentally unbalanced last year… Lack of originality much, Academy voters?

Congratulations, however, are in order for the brilliant minds behind Imaginary Bitches, which snagged a nomination in the New Approaches in Daytime Entertainment category opposite fellow You Tube series I Met The Walrus. TAC. TV, The New York Times Magazine Screen Tests and All My Children are also nominated. (Um, AMC? WTF?!?!) Of course, if they walk off with the trophy, it will be all Eden Riegel’s fault. (And watching Eden win an Emmy over AMC would be sweet vindication)

The Daytime Emmy’s will air on August 30, 2009 on the CW.

Best of luck to the many deserving nominees… Charles Pratt, on the other hand, can suck it.

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Recently on All My Children, the writers have been featuring the older, established characters. The venerable veterans who made the show so incredibly popular back in the 90’s, and even waaaay back into the 80’s. Adam, Erica, Jack, Tad, Dixie (albeit dead), Angie, Jesse, Opal, Julia (albeit killed)…

These are the characters we have a bond with, a connection. Long-time viewers grew up with Tad, Dixie, Angie and Jesse. We watched Palmer and Opal fall in love, Adam steamroll his way through the business world, Erica and Jack spend 17 years in an on-again, off-again relationship (mostly off, but when it was on… it was ON).

So, um… WTF?

Why are you teasing us like this?

Don’t you know there are young, nubile characters going to waste on AMC? Didn’t you SORAS Colby (from 5 to early 20’s) just so you could give us more youth angst? (and dumped an ever-evolving Ambyr Childers in order to cast a poor man’s Ambyr Childers lookalike in the role) You’ve brought back Frankie Hubbard (twice now in recent years), cast a young woman to play a street-smart hooker to get involved with the military vet to mine some angst out of that pairing. There’s the Ryan/Annie debacle that’s looming on the horizon, Kenlee/Zachlee/Aidlee/Zendall drama to explore…

So WTF are you doing? Why are you giving us these wonderful stories with veteran stars, all of whom are doing spectacular work? David Canary and Cady McClain during Adam’s haunting… Susan Lucci playing Erica in the Big House (which has been a ton of fun when you let Erica and her fellow inmates interact)… Michael Knight and Cady McClain, living out the life every Tad and Dixie fan wanted to witness (albeit over years, not a single episode), Darnell Williams and Debbie Morgan bringing Jesse and Angie back to Pine Valley after way too long away. Ray McDonnell as Dr. Joe Martin, the Chief of Staff at Pine Valley Hospital as son Tad fights for his life in one room while Joe must deliver devastating news to a friend in another. And Sydney Penny as a dying Julia Santos, knowing there was no way she would survive, wanting to make sure Kathy was taken care of, giving Krystal instructions on what to do, even as her very life slipped away.

That was All My Children as I remember it from my youth and over the decades. Intriguing, emotional, well-script, brilliantly acted… We cared about these characters. We anxiously awaited each new episode to see how they would react, how they would cope, what they would say…

What are you doing getting my hopes up again? That I might think this could become a daily experience once more? That you’d have us believing it will always be this way and we’ll never get mired back in the same old tired storylines that have been hashed and re-hashed over the last year or so…

Seriously… WTF?