Every year, soap operas each broadcast more than 250 episodes of content. Counting all four soaps, that's over 1,000 episodes -- and a whopping 875 hours of television programming. If you watch every soap every day of the year, you might think you have a good handle on what was the best of the year. However, when Emmy season rolls around, a winner is selected based on only a handful of episodes.
Is that fair? It depends on who you ask. Some critics have suggested that the media, the people who watch every episode as part of their jobs, should be involved in selecting the nominees or the winners. Others say it is impossible to get a panel of judges who are familiar with a year's worth of material and that the current voting system is the best possible scenario. So what can be done to make the process fair? Numerous changes to the process have been implemented in the more than two decades that soapcentral.com has been online. For example, this year, acting nominees were able to select material from up to four episodes for their respective reels. Previous years have seen the episode cap at just two episodes.
In the next nine sections, we've provided you with the reels that this year's Emmy nominees submitted. They are the same reels that Emmy voters watched when deciding who to vote for. We've also provided synopses for each episode and provided links to our comprehensive recaps so you can get a better feel for what action took place. To get all the additional details, just click on the appropriate links.
PLEASE NOTE: The reel information for Writing and Directing teams have not been released. However, soaps will typically submit an episode from their Outstanding Drama Series reels.
Episode Synopses: The episodes submitted are from The Bold and the Beautiful's location shoot in Monte Carlo. Eric breaks things off with Quinn, but she hops a flight to surprise him in Monaco. Eric regrets breaking things off, and they agree that Quinn will remain in the city in secret. Liam meets with actor and environmentalist Ed Begley Jr. and his wife. From afar, Steffy spots a woman with a large hat and sunglasses, kissing her grandfather -- who she later learns is Quinn.
Episode 1 Synopsis: Rafe and Steve are determined to rescue John. Marlena unexpectedly joins them. Paul continues to be brainwashed. When it looks like Yo Ling is about to be captured, he bites down on his ring and ingests a lethal poison.
Episode 2 Synopsis: On a dark and stormy night, Abigail believes she sees Ben staring in the window at her. J.J. and Chad assure her that Ben is nowhere near the house. J.J. comforts Abigail with a story from their childhood...then reassures her that they will catch Ben. Just as Abigail starts to relax, one of the guards reports something on the perimeter, and J.J. rushes out. Alone, Abigail sees a dark figure darting into the tunnels and sends Chad after him. She then returns to the living room, finds Thomas gone from his carrier...and turns and sees Ben holding her son.
Episode 1 Synopsis: As Alexis and Julian say, "I do," a gunman enters the church and holds everyone hostage. Lulu is thrown overboard from the Haunted Star. Morgan attempts to take matters into his own hands by targeting a group of armed goons. Things go wrong, and Kiki is shot and seriously wounded.
Episode 2 Synopsis: A handcuffed Morgan screams that Kiki needs him while Carly attempts CPR to revive Kiki. Nathan is shot during the standoff at the church. Sonny makes a grand entrance and ends up saving the day.
Episode 1 Synopsis: Victor helps break Adam out of a prison transport van and helps him hide in a remote cabin. The plan is for Adam to flee the country with wife Chelsea and son Connor. But before they can leave, Connor needs medical treatment. Adam's brother, Nick, comes to Chelsea's aid; Nick, Chelsea, and Connor arrive back at the cabin just as it explodes! While the police search for Chelsea, she prays Adam survived the explosion and is waiting for her at the airfield from which they'd planned to escape. What she doesn't know: her best friend, Chloe, is the one person who is sure of Adam's fate. *This episode was preceded by a video package highlighting actors' favorite moments as part of a weeklong 11,000th episode celebration.
Episode 2 Synopsis: It's New Year's Eve in Genoa City, and changes in relationship status are the order of the night. Nick and Chelsea, mourning the loss of their spouses, test the romantic waters. Twice-divorced Billy and Victoria take a tentative step toward reconciliation. Phyllis signals her readiness to move on after wounding Jack with a devastating affair. Ravi summons the courage to kiss his boss at midnight. And Mariah's exposure of Hilary's dirty tricks sends Devon on a high-speed course toward destruction -- of his marriage and, quite possibly, his life.