A familiar face and a new face topped this year's Dankies (The AMC Pages Awards). David Canary continued his dominance in the awards, whose winners are determined directly by the fans' votes.
Canary picked up a record setting fourth consecutive Outstanding Leading Actor award. Canary has won the award in four of the six years this award was presented. In 1995, Keith Hamilton Cobb (ex-Noah Keefer) edged our Canary for the award. The following year, John Callahan (Edmund Grey) bested Canary for the honor. Canary picked up only one other award this year, but it was the biggie - Outstanding Overall Performer. In this category, all nominees from the Outstanding Leading Actor, Outstanding Leading Actress, Outstanding Supporting Actor and Outstanding Supporting Actress are placed into one field. Voters are then asked to choose one performer who turned in the best overall performance in the past year. This was Canary's fourth consecutive win as Overall Performer. The award went to Susan Lucci (Erica Kane) in 1995 and 1996. Canary's closest threat, Josh Duhamel (Leo du Pres) finished some 20 percentage points behind.
But don't feel sorry for Josh.
Duhamel picked up an armful of awards. The actor, who joined AMC on November 22, 1999, just barely squeezed in under the deadline for a nomination in the Outstanding Newcomer field. Duhamel won that category as well as Outstanding Supporting Actor and Favorite Character (Leo du Pres). The "Supporting Actor" field has the distinction of being one of the toughest on the Dankies ballot. Only Mark Consuelos (Mateo Santos) has one the award more than once, having won last year and in 1998. This year, however, Consuelos finished a distant fourth in voting. Cameron Mathison (Ryan Lavery) and Michael E Knight (Tad Martin) were also up for the award.
Multi-nominee Rebecca Budig had earned a whopping five nominations this year. For three of those awards, Budig was pitted against her on-screen lover, Duhamel. Budig failed to win any wards, but she finished strongly in most of the fields.
Olivia Birkelund (Arlene Vaughan) may be gone from the show, but her work left an indelible mark on AMC viwers. Birkelund cruised to a sizeable win in the Outstanding Supporting Actress category, topping Budig, Jennifer Bassey (Marian Chandler) and Esta TerBlanche (Gillian Andrassy).
TerBlanche picked up her second consecutive Most Attractive Actress award. Mathison equaled the feat, picking up his second Most Attractive Actor nod.
Newcomer Eden Riegel (Bianca Montgomery), trumped in the "Newcomer" field buy Duhamel, soared to an easy win in the Outstanding Younger Performer category. With two-third of the total vote, Riegel earned her first Dankies win.
Tina Harding, played by actress Sara Hugh, took the honor for Least Favorite Character (The Taylor Roxbury-Cannon Award). The award is named for a character that earned the honor for least favorite character in three consecutive Dankies.
The seldom seen Lynn Thigpen (Grace Keefer) won for Outstanding Recurring Role or Special Guest. Thigpen edged out Colleen Dion (Leslie Coulson). Last year's winner, Meg Mundy (Eugenia Andrassy) was not nominated.
In the final acting category, Kelly Ripa earned her very first Outstanding Leading Actress win. Ripa edged two-time winner Susan Lucci (Erica Kane) by less than one-percent of the vote. Since everything is done electronically, there was no need for a recount. Last year's winner, Marcy Walker (Liza Colby) finished a close third.
PART TWO: STORYLINE WINNERS AND EDITOR'S CHOICE