PASADENA (CBS) — For a show that went out of its way to be light, fun and upbeat, the 46th Annual Daytime had its share of emotional moments, touching speeches and enough tears to fill a half-hour of daytime TV.
“The Young and the Restless” won the award for best daytime drama. Before announcing the award, presenter and “SWAT” star Shemar Moore, an alum of “Y&R.” gave a lovely, heartfelt shout out to his former scene partner and on-screen brother, the late Kristoff St. John.
“Y&R” also won for outstanding writing and directing.
Alex Trebek, who has been publicly fighting pancreatic cancer, won for best game show host. He quipped that he was hoping the award wasn’t for sympathy.
He remembered that he lost last year — and he had just had surgery to remove blood clots from his brain “…and I lost” and he added, “You would think that that would have elicited a certain amount of sympathy!” Then, borrowing from Sally Field’s ‘You like me’ Oscar speech, Trebek accepted the fact his award was for merit, and he just happens to also be beloved by voters. The audience gave him a spirited standing ovation.
In accepting her award as outstanding younger actress, from Trebek, Haley Erin (Kiki on “General Hospital”) turned to him and said, “Anyone who knows me knows how much I love Alex Trebek. This means so much to me.” He seemed genuinely humbled by the moment, and it was another of the many emotional highlights of the program.
The awards, after years of being on prime time, again were streamed on the internet.
Actress Amy Poehler was the “surprise” presenter for Judge Judy when the latter won a lifetime achievement Emmy.
Actress Valerie Bertinelli’s “Valerie’s Home Cooking” won as best culinary program and she won as best culinary host. When she won as host, she was so surprised she uttered a four-letter word, alternately shocking and delighting many in the audience.
There was more emotion when “After Forever” (an Amazon Prime soap) won for outstanding digital daytime drama series. Executive producer Michael Slade said he wanted to do a show about gay men and loss after the loss of his partner of several decades. Kevin Spirtas also won outstanding lead actor in a digital drama for this show.
CBS’ venerable “CBS Sunday Morning” won for outstanding morning program.
In all, CBS this weekend won 21 daytime Emmys including nine for “Y&R.”
A storyline about Alzheimer’s helped ABC’s “General Hospital” capture awards for outstanding lead actor (Maurice Benard who plays Sonny), outstanding supporting actor (Max Gail as Mike) and supporting actress (Vernee Watson as Stella). Benard didn’t have a speech prepared but told the audience the storyline reminded him that we have to love our parents.
If there already weren’t enough tears flowing, talk show host Kathie Lee Gifford was feted with a short video tribute and she took the opportunity to thank the audience, former co-hosts Regis Philbin and Hoda Kotb and tell the fans that she wishes they could have have the blessed life she’s enjoyed — and then mentioned her 29-year marriage to the late Frank Gifford. Didn’t see many dry eyes at that moment.
More tears? Cabaret singer Roslyn Kind (half-sister of Barbra Streisand, no less) sang during the In Memoriam” segment. That segment ended and stayed on a lingering shot of Kristoff St. John telling the daytime audience how much he loved them in a promotional shoot done years ago. And just prior to St. John’s face, an image of Luke Perry, a reminder to the daytime audience perhaps that before he found success on prime time and “90210” he had had his start on daytime TV (“Loving” and “Another World.”)
The awards were co-hosted by Sheryl Underwood (of “The Talk”) and “Extra” host Mario Lopez.
And speaking of those heart-tugging moments, Lopez introduced his 5-year-old son Dominic to the audience, in turn, introducing his boy to some “Sesame Street” faves. The kid is too cute for words.
If you needed more cute-overload, hunky “Lucky Dog” host Brandon McMillan (holding an adorable pooch) presented with former NFL player and “Bachelor” Jesse Palmer — giving McMillan a chance to make a plea about the importance of pet adoption. What award did they present? Who can remember?
The awards were held at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium.