Okay, there’s a commercial flight that’s heading back to Dallas in an hour. I’m already booked on it. It was a displeasure meeting you, Mr. Snyder.

— Reid (to Luke)

ATWT Snubbed by GLAAD Media Awards

The GLAAD Media Awards have been held every year since 1990 and recognize and honor media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives.

GLAAD, who have take a LOT of flak over the years for their daytime selections, have decided to drop the Daily Drama category entirely from its 2011 GLAAD Media Awards rather than give the award to ATWT who clearly depicted the only material gay storyline on daytime in 2010.

Although they have previously bestowed the award unopposed (to All My Children in 2004) and with only two entrants (multiple times), this year instead, they’ve thrown in the towel.

Guess they got tired of defending their decision to honor the best among a limited choice of half-pregnant efforts. They’ve been burned badly three years in a row – first with backlash for choosing ATWT despite the blatant Nuke kissing/consummation ban, and then embarrassingly for giving the award to OLTL just as Kish was getting the kibbosh (could ABC have timed their announcement any more poorly?!?).

Historically, GLAAD have erred on the side of giving credit for the good things shows have done, acknowledging that change doesn’t come instantaneously. They’ve recognized that it was historically unrealistic to expect realistic depictions of gay relationships right out of the starting gate, and have recognized (baby) steps made by the daytime shows in the right direction.

I was anecdotally familiar with ATWT’s history with the GLAAD Awards, but upon doing some Googling just now, I found what appears to be a more interesting story than I thought – interesting enough to warrant its own separate post.

2011 GLAAD Awards (22nd)

Nominees: None

Nominations were announced on Thursday, 20th January, 2011, and Outstanding Daily Drama was a conspicuous absentee from the roster.

With Kish’s demise (their romantic storyline played out virtually in its entirety between their first kiss in August 2009 and early 2010), there has been a near-complete absence of LGBT characters on the daily (ahem, daytime) canvas last year. Aside from Luke, Reid, and Noah, we had Y&R, whose gay characters included Philip (mostly/entirely off-screen), Adam (an arguably bisexual predator who seemed to change spots only to serve his own manipulative, vengeful whims), and Rafe (Adam’s victim).

Despite the unquestionable squelching of any visible signs of romance on ATWT and the two-steps-backwards, negative-cliche-filled ending, ATWT were really unchallenged in their ongoing depiction of fleshed-out gay characters who had lives as well as love lives, and were interesting, and indeed, adored by a very passionate and vocal fan base (I mean really, do Philip and Rafe actually have any fans? Adam does, but that’s a different scary thought…)

Given all the Daytime Emmy buzz, and concerns that the defunct ATWT will not be supporting actors wishing to submit reels (Van and Eric among the most deserving!), non-submission should NOT have been an influential factor here. Says GLAAD on their Call for Submissions  regarding mainstream media:

GLAAD monitors mainstream media on a year-round basis as part of our work to fight defamation and promote fair, accurate, and inclusive LGBT images in the media.  This monitoring provides a pool of potential nominees for the volunteer juries to review.  The volunteer juries may choose to nominate LGBT images from these media outlets – even if the image is not submitted.

After seeing the nominations, I emailed GLAAD Director of Public Relations, Rich Ferraro to a) confirm it wasn’t and oversight, and b) to see if they considered giving the award to ATWT for “lifetime achievement” and he responded:

We are disappointed that there are no nominees for the category this year.

GLAAD reviewed gay and lesbian representations on Daily Drama series over the entire year and the quantity and quality of those appearances did not meet the standard set by daily drama nominees in previous years.

So, I take a couple of things away from this. First, whether or not ATWT submitted, Ferraro’s “reviewed representations” comment makes me believe that ATWT were specifically considered. I think it’s interesting that they cite the “quantity and quality of those appearances," though. Some day I’ll have to do a Nuke episode chart to compare Nuke airtime vs Nuke/LuRe airtime to see if there’s any validity to the “quantity” argument.

But I have to quibble with the “quality” clause. First of all, ATWT, who won twice previously with primarily Nuke on the canvas, added a dynamic, new, well-crafted, well-acted character in Reid Oliver. And while Luke and Reid’s romance was subverted for them to be props at the end in the Chris/Katie fiasco, I’d argue that it was no worse a “gay” storyline than Ameera (which had Noah marry Ameera), or the Z Twins (which featured Luke and Noah, but were not focused on their relationship), Reg, or the extended periods where Luke was supporting his family (Faith and Lily’s addiction, Holden’s alleged death).

2010 GLAAD Awards (21st) | Kish make love, get nominated, get dumped, and win

Nominees: OLTL (Kish), AMC (Bianca and Reese), ATWT (Nuke), GL (Otalia)

I can see how GLAAD might be disenchanted with Daily Drama (dominated by daytime dramas, aka ‘soaps’, since the 2004 Awards). In 2010 (for episode airing in 2009), ATWT had its consecutive win streak stopped at two by OLTL’s Kish storyline. When nominations were announced in January 2010, Kish had just broken ground by actually showing a love scene (aired on December 30th, squeaking into 2009) with the two gay protagonists (no emerging from a shower, no ice cream, no jumping on the bed), and seemed to be the obvious choice.

All My Children’s Bianca and Reese were married in early 2009 on AMC but were then backburnered; GL’s Otalia were a frontburner storyline but never even got to kiss for real onscreen; and, Luke and Noah allegedly made love (off-screen) in early January, but then the Nuke consummation clock had to be retired – not because their love scenes became commonplace, but because ATWT’s gay characters were never allowed one again. In 2009, ATWT also introduced two additional LGBT characters: Mason, a professor making inappropriate advances at his student, and Zac, a bisexual kidnapper who favors sexual games. Great additions and fan favorites…NOT.

To many, Kish were the clear frontrunners and indeed, OLTL took home the GLAAD Award for Outstanding Daily Drama in 2010. However, by the time the award was actually given out on March 13th, Kish had already been put so far on the backburner they were in the next county. ABC not-so-coincidentally chose March 12th to make their official announcement, telling the Advocate that “while the show is concluding its gay story line and actors Scott Evans and Brett Claywell will be leaving the show, the door is open for their return in the future.”

That same day, a commenter posted on Michael Fairman’s site: “Onto that mess GLAAD, they gave the award to Nuke the year that Nuke was banished from kissing or showing any affection on ATWT! So GLAAD is a joke. And they’d be even more of a joke if they award it to Kish now that kish has been written off.”

Though GLAAD also issued a statement saying, "Last summer One Live to Live brought a groundbreaking relationship into the homes of millions with Kyle and Fish’s story, one that build acceptance and understanding of gay people," and that “ending the story is a step backward in the representation of gay Americans…We remain disappointed that ABC Daytime has chosen to stop sharing this powerful story with viewers of One Life to Live. GLAAD will continue to advocate that in the near future producers and writers at ABC Daytime incorporate gay and transgendered characters in their programming."

Awkwardly, Kish actors Scott Evans and Brett Claywell were on hand both as presenters and to accept the GLAAD awards on behalf of OLTL. Within weeks, they had aired their final episode.

2009 GLAAD Awards (20th) | Nuke kiss a bunch, and abstain, and wait…and wait, and win

Nominees: AMC (Bianca and Reese), ATWT (Nuke)

In 2009, ATWT took home their second consecutive GLAAD Award, for episodes airing in 2008.

Just to backtrack – Noah first appeared on ATWT on 1st June 2007. The Nuke kiss heard round the world (you know, the one with a bazillion views on LukeVanFan’s channel) aired in August 2007.  They kissed again in September 2007 when Noah finally admitted the first kiss wasn’t a joke and then it took 211 days, 14 hours, 45 minutes, and 45 seconds before they kissed again on 23rd April 2008. They kissed another dozen or two times before the end of 2008 but didn’t finally make love (off-screen) until January 2009 (and their off-screen romance was trumped by Kish’s at-the-deadline on-screen roll in the hay).

2008 was the year of the gay film festival/student election scandal, and also included most of the Brian storyline (where Luke’s closeted soon-to-be step-grandfather kisses him, but then impulsively marries Lucinda).

But let’s put this in perspective: the entirety of Kish’s storyline played out in a year, with their romantic relationship occupying only 5 months or so. Contrast that with Luke and Noah who lasted from June 2007 to roughly March 2010 from first kiss to last breakup.

Yet ATWT found themselves at the center of a media debate. Their decision to honor ATWT, despite the ongoing kissing ban prompted vocal protests from TV Guide Canada’s Nelson Branco and blogger Tom O’Neil, who writes the Golden Derby column for the LA Times’s The Envelope.

Tom O’Neil wrote in his Gold Derby column GLAAD “repeated its outrage of last year, as far as I see it: The organization devoted to fighting discrimination against gays in the media again gave an honor to a TV show that appeared to discriminate."” He went on to allege that unnamed “cynics” gave the award to ATWT simply to get Van and Jake to show up at the awards ceremony.In the post, GLAAD president Neil Giuliano was quoted as saying:

Our job is to reward and recognize when there’s a fair and accurate portrayal of gay life in media. Are they always going to be perfect? No. But we do have an obligation to recognize them and thank people when they do move the needle. We’ve got to balance that with our frustration that it’s not as much progress as we want.

GLAAD has very much a carrot and stick approach, fighting defamation and working in media advocacy. The awards program is the time we recognize people for being fair, accurate and inclusive. It’s not the time we bring out the stick and raise our anti-defamation fists in the air about things people are not doing as well as they should.

But O’Neil concluded, "As the World Turns" didn’t provide a "fair and accurate portrayal" of gay romance in 2007 and 2008 — not unless we believe that gay people don’t kiss and have sex like the heterosexual couples we see engaged in steamy trysts on TV soap operas every day.

The Nelson Branco concurred in his usual calm, staid style (NOT) in a January 2009 Suds Report after the announcement of the nominees in which he railed against the “seemingly self-professed anti-discrimination organization,” the kissing ban, “the suspected homophobic soap, ATWT,” and the overlooking of the evening soap spinoff, General Hospital: Night Shift, which featured a gay couple, one of which was played by openly gay actor Chad Allen. You can decide for yourself who is being controversial, but he says:

Confrontational GLAAD spokesperson Damon Romine explained that Night Shift was not eligible under the daily drama category because of mere semantics. “ABC did submit GH: Night Shift under the prime-time drama category [because that was their only option]. I do know that the TV jury considered it very seriously. The drama series category is one of the most competitive categories of all, and there were 26 shows vying for five nominee slots,” he stupidly explained. When The Suds Report asked why GLAAD couldn’t have simply renamed the daily drama category, outstanding soap opera, so Night Shift could fairly compete (seriously, do you think the prime-time wing is watching SOAPnet?), Romine blatantly ignored any further emails from TVGuide.ca.Clearly, not anymore.

Jamey Giddens at Daytime Confidential clearly agreed with both in a post aptly titled “Which Daytime Soap Should Take Home the GLAAD Media Award for Their Passive-Regressive Storytelling?’, also singling out GH Night Shift by saying:

[Night Shift writer Sri] Rao, previously unknown to daytime, penned a beautiful, articulate, universal love story for SOAPnet’s criminally-ineligible-for-a-daytime-nod General Hospital: Night Shift. If SOAPnet’s cable cousins are going to do it that much better than the "real" soaps, they have got to figure out away for these shows to compete for industry awards. They get a way with paying Night Shift‘s cast and crew daytime wages, so why aren’t they eligible for daytime awards?

Note to GLAAD: Just because a program tells a gay story doesn’t mean it should be recognized with an accolade.

Following the Jamey Giddens piece, Daytime Confidential published a poll asking: At any rate, which soap do you want to take home the award: All My Children, for their rushed, plot driven Bianca/Zach/Reese piece or As the World Turns, who gave Nuke such compelling obstacles as Ameera the Iraqi Nuke Hag"?

  • All My Children–At least Rianca’s make-out scenes are hot! – 18% (91 votes)
  • As The World Turns–Okay, so the sex scene wasn’t Logo-worthy, it still broke new ground (Snicker). – 45% (236 votes)
  • Screw both daytime soaps nominated (Offscreen of course!) and give it to Sri Rao for Night Shift! – 37% (192 votes)
  • Total votes: 519

Incidentally, though the sex scene wasn’t Logo-worthy, it did prompt a short interview with Van and Jake on CBS’s Logo:

YouTube responded to TubePress with an HTTP 410 - No longer available

The loudest voice of dissent came from AfterElton.com’s Michael Jensen, who defended ATWT and GLAAD (as he has more recently). Jensen seriously throws down the gauntlet and names names, quoting Tom O’Neil’s post and then adding:

Seriously, Tom? The one daytime show that includes two regularly featured gay male characters – no other soap opera currently has even one – is biased against gays?

I shouldn’t be terribly surprised that I disagree with O’Neil. After all, this is the fellow who also wrote last year “Bizarre GLAAD nominations aren’t very gay” because the nominations for 2007 didn’t include The Kite Runner which O’Neil said featured gay subtext. That “gay” subtext? A teenage boy being raped by another teenager.

O’Neil and Branco’s anger stems from the fact that for 211 days, starting in September 2007 until April 2008, the two gay Oakdale teens didn’t kiss. Nor did they actually consummate their relationship until January of this year.

In the eyes of O’Neil and Branco, that makes ATWT homophobic and discriminatory, and GLAAD either stooges or publicity whores for honoring the show. After all, say the two men, ATWT lets its heterosexual characters hop in and out of bed at such a dizzying pace, viewers practically need a scorecard.

Yes, the show has a double standard in how it handles gay sex, but calling ATWT homophobic and condemning GLAAD for recognizing the Luke and Noah storyline as groundbreaking is just ludicrous. Not understanding that Procter & Gamble, the sponsor for ATWT, as well as everyone else involved with the show, faced criticism and potential financial losses for including a gay storyline in the first place, is simply being willfully ignorant.

That the show chose to stick with the storyline is to be applauded not criticized, and when the day comes that daytime soap operas can include steamier sex scenes between men, it will be because of As the World Turns – not in spite of it. 

By giving the award last year, GLAAD simply acknowledged that ATWT was doing what no other soap opera had ever done – include a gay male couple as a central part of their storyline. And not just any couple, a gay teen couple. However, while I would disagree with the argument, given the blatant kissing ban, a case could be made that ATWT shouldn’t have won last year.

Has As the World Turns done everything perfect in handling the Luke and Noah storyline? Far from it. The infamous mistletoe cut away during a Christmas episode as well as the Valentine’s Day episode where Luke and Noah only hugged while all the other couples kissed, were both serious missteps. 

However, not only did the kissing blackout end and Luke and Noah finally sleep together, but the show has also tackled a variety of gay-related issues including housing discrimination and homophobia. Pop star Cyndi Lauper appeared in an episode about tolerance that celebrated gay pride, a middle-aged gay man played Laurence Lau came out in another storyline, and just this month, the show added Zac, another teenage character who is either gay or bisexual.

I can see why O’Neil and Branco are so upset ATWT won this year. Imagine if every show so blatantly discriminated against gay characters! The outrage!

And who would the two men have the award go to?

All My Children currently features a lesbian couple, but according to AfterEllen.com, their storyline has been handled less than favorably.

As for gay male characters on other soaps, there are currently none. Zero. Zip.

Branco argues that the award should’ve gone to General Hospital: Night Shift for not only featuring a five-episode arc involving a gay romance, but because one of the roles was played by out actor Chad Allen. Unfortunately, GH: NS aired during primetime and thus was submitted for that category where it did not receive a nomination.

Branco argues GLAAD should have renamed the category “outstanding soap opera” thereby allowing GH: NS to “fairly compete.” That doesn’t sound like an outrageous suggestion and perhaps GLAAD will change their rules in the future.

But that doesn’t change the fact that GLAAD was absolutely right to give ATWT the award this year and last year. Indeed, a case can be made that by giving the show the award a year ago, the organization actually helped encourage the P&G to not only keep the characters despite the criticism from all sides, but to allow them to start kissing again as well as finally consummating their relationship.

In a perfect world, good gay characters would be commonplace on television. The world is far from perfect, however, and to throw words such as “homophobic” and “discriminates” at the one soap opera featuring gay male characters is ridiculous.

O’Neil and Branco claim that by calling out ATWT and GLAAD, they are advancing gay visibility. I’d argue they are setting it back. By hurling such invective at those responsible for creating Luke and Noah, the two men send a message that those behind the show better get everything exactly right or they’ll be crucified.

They also send a message to anyone else considering adding gay characters that they better think twice. After all, with ATWT being called homophobic while actually including gay characters, what TV producer wouldn’t think twice before risking the same fate by adding a gay character to their show?

Does this mean ATWT can’t be criticized? Of course not. AfterElton.com has written extensively about these issues (here and here), but in doing so we always tried to acknowledge the reality of ATWT’s situation and gave them credit where credit is due.

As for ATWT’s only competition, AMC, AfterEllen.com wrote:

Finally, the writers failed to take into account the particular protectiveness many fans of all sexual orientations feel for Bianca, a long-running and much-loved character.

She is not only one of the few truly good characters on All My Children, she is one that has been screwed over a lot.

Yes, bad things happen to soap characters all the time, but this character has seen more than her fair share of pain, and — owing to the double standard of how lesbians are portrayed on TV — far less than her share of good times.

Hmm….substitute the word “Luke” for “Bianca” and we see the pattern of treatment of frontburner, “good guy,” LGBT characters on daytime. But two more reasons why AfterEllen says AMC’s Bianca an Reese were doomed?

Choosing not to develop the relationship between Reese and Bianca on camera. The two women just dropped into Pine Valley as a fully formed couple, created havoc with the lives and relationships of other characters, and now will (probably) do most of their reconciliation off-camera. That makes it difficult for viewers to care about this relationship, or this storyline.

And, the kicker:

Marrying Bianca off to someone the audience doesn’t know isn’t a smart move, but marrying her off to someone who cheats on her the night before their wedding feels like one punch in the gut too many.

And, BTW, Reese cheated with a MAN. AfterEllen concludes:

With such a bad setup, it’s no wonder audiences have reacted negatively to this storyline. No amount of lesbian wedding promos can make up for such glaring structural flaws.

As the old saying goes, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still just a pig. Even when it’s a lesbian pig.

2008 Awards (19th) | Noah comes out, Nuke kiss a couple of times, and win

Nominees: AMC (Bianca and Reese), ATWT (Nuke)

Though much of 2006 focused on Luke’s coming out story, for most of the first part of 2007 Luke was largely a prop in storylines involving Faith and Lily (at least as best as I can recall and recreate from the SOC recaps). So ATWT won the 2008 award for their exclusively for their Nuke storyline. This would have included Noah’s coming out arc, as well as dealing with Col. Mayer’s serious, serious homophobia. It also included only their first kiss and the infamous Mistletoegate incident at Christmas (when all the straight couples were seen kissing, but Luke and Noah leaned in and the camera panned away to the mistletoe hanging overhead).

Tom O’Neil had also blogged a blistering protest of ATWT’s first award, comparing Nuke’s kissing ban to Rosa Parks’ civil disobedience, and accusing GLAAD of giving the award to ATWT (a show that’s blatantly engaged in discrimination) to get A-list stars to assist their fundraising efforts:

Not only are the program’s gay lovers Luke (Van Hansis) and Noah (Jake Silbermann) forbidden to kiss on the CBS soap series, but they were, apparently, even forbidden to kiss at the GLAAD Awards where they were being honored for nondiscrimination! When journalists asked the actors to smooch for the cameras on the red carpet, Hansis and Silbermann coyly dodged the request and — adding insult to injury — would only pucker up on either side of the actress who portrays Noah’s bogus green-card wife on the show. When the request for the gay kiss was channeled through reps for "ATWT," it was clear from their grumblings, evasive replies and conspiratorial whispers among themselves that they were the ones squashing it.

"While there may be some compromises made about what’s being shown, the story line is very romantic," [GLAAD spokesman Damon] Romine says. "They were the first gay couple on daytime TV ever to share a kiss, so that was pretty monumental.

"I know that this isn’t making everyone happy," he adds. "They want this couple to be seen as other couples, but I’m looking at this from a historical background and my 20 years of working with daytime, how long it’s taken to get to this point and, while maybe concessions are being made, I’m hoping that, as the audience grows to accept the story being told now, that we’ll reach the point where a relationship between two men can be seen in an authentic way like other romantic characters. It’s clear that the writers and directors are doing the best they can to tell this gay love story within whatever boundaries they’ve been given."

GLAAD chiefs can be pleased that some gay progress is being made on "As the World Turns," but it should not give the series an award while the program forces Luke and Noah to sit in the back of its lovers’ bus, smoochless.

After the ludicrous point about the actors not kissing, poor Van and Jake resorted to issuing a statement that was published on AfterElton.com:

We were honored to have been asked to appear at the GLAAD Media Awards on Monday night. As actors, it is such a privilege to be part of this important evening. It was our choice not to kiss each other on the red carpet. While we love and support the characters we play, we attended the Award show as actors, not characters.

Van Hansis and Jake Silbermann

Sheesh – it’s like RPF fanfiction gone out of control!

Wrote one fan, going by Gregorzick, on the DaytimeRoyaltyOnline boards:

As a openly gay male, am I suppose to laugh or cry or both? :shrug:

2008 marked AMC’s fifth nomination. Wrote SoapsSheKnows about the AMC storyline that lost out to Nuke:

The trans-gender storyline involving Zarf/Zoe and the romantic relationship brewing between Zoe and Bianca has been a hot-button topic for the past year. The storyline was very popular among fans who rooted for Zoe as she began the transition from physically male to physically female. Since Zoe left Pine Valley to return to Europe in the spring of 2007, fans have missed her presence. A few cameo appearances by Eden Riegel (Bianca) just haven’t been enough to satisfy the Pine Valley faithful.

2007 (18th) | Luke comes out but loses out to Bianca and Zarf/Zoe kiss

To give you some background, according to his Wiki, Van Hansis took over the role of Luke Snyder in December 2005. His coming out story played in spring 2006. Though nominated, Luke’s coming out story on ATWT lost to AMC in 2007. Both General Hospital and Passions also received nominations.

Wrote SoapsSheKnows.com about the AMC storyline:

AMC has been touted as a pioneer in daytime television for pushing the envelope. The show broke ground when Bianca Kane, Erica’s daughter, came out about her sexuality. It was a first for daytime television. The show also aired the first female-on-female romantic kiss. Recently, the writers created the character of Zarf/Zoe, a rock star, who came out of the closet as a woman living in a man’s body. The storyline is very popular among fans who are rooting for Zoe as she begins the transition from physically male to physically female.

According to his Wiki, Jake Silbermann joined the cast of ATWT in March 2007. His first airdate was June 1, 2007, but presumably he began filming considerably beforehand. On March 26th, he attended the GLAAD awards with co-stars Van Hansis and Jennifer Landon (Gwen). He described his experience at the GLAAD gala by saying, “It was emotional. People are very excited about this, and it was great being at the awards and feeling that and realizing that this is more than a role.”  

2006 and before

Since Luke Snyder’s sexuality was revealed only in 2006, ATWT received no nominations in the immediately previous years (it’s possible they received much earlier nominations, but I don’t have access to that information). Just to complete the listing (winners in bold), all sourced from Wiki:

  • 17th Annual GLAAD Media Awards, awarded in 2006 for episodes airing in 2005
  • 16th Annual GLAAD Media Awards 2005
  • 15th Annual GLAAD Media Awards 2004
  • 14th Annual GLAAD Media Awards 2003
  • Prior nominees and winners not available on Wiki nor the GLAAD site – if anyone wants to provide the additional information, please let me know

Selection of Nominees and Award Recipients

GLAAD has historically held multiple award ceremonies each year (usually NYC, LA, and San Francisco, and sometimes others) with The Outstanding Daily Drama Award being awarded in the marquee New York event. This year’s event, the 22nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards will be held in New York City at the Marriott Marquis on 11th March 2011. The awards cover media images that appeared during the time period January 1, 2010 – December 31, 2010.

Nominee Selection
Nominees are selected by juries comprised of volunteers with interest and expertise in the particular media category they are judging.  In 2007, nearly 90 volunteers served on 10 separate Nomination Juries, selecting 117 nominees in 25 English-language categories, and 55 nominees in 15 Spanish-language categories.

In addition to year-round media monitoring by the juries, GLAAD issues a Call for Submissions, encouraging media outlets to submit outstanding work for consideration.

Nominating Juries may select up to five nominees in each category.  If no projects are deemed worthy of nomination in a particular category, the jury may choose to not award that category.  At the end of the year, the Nominating Juries submit their list of recommended nominees to GLAAD’s staff and Board of Directors for final approval.

All media projects with LGBT images are evaluated using four criteria:

  1. Fair, Accurate and Inclusive Representations – Rather than portraying the LGBT community in broad stereotypes, the project deals with the characters or themes in a fair, accurate, and multi-dimensional manner.  (This is different than a “positive role model.”)  Inclusive means that the diversity of the LGBT community is represented.  This includes economic, geographic, and political diversity, as well as people of color, seniors, differently abled people, etc.
  2. Boldness and Originality – The project breaks new ground by exploring LGBT subject matter in non-traditional ways and handles the LGBT content in a fresh and original manner.  Is this project cutting-edge?
  3. Impact – The project impacts society in a significant way.  Does this project dramatically increase the cultural dialogue about LGBT issues?  Or, does this project reach an audience that is not regularly exposed to LGBT images and issues?
  4. Overall Quality – A project of extremely high quality adds impact and significance to the images and issues portrayed.  Fair, accurate and inclusive images can sometimes be weakened when they are part of a poor-quality project.

Selection of Award Recipients
Over 900 GLAAD Media Awards voters contribute to the selection of award recipients in each category via online balloting.  Voters are comprised of three groups:  GLAAD staff and board, GLAAD Media Circle members, and GLAAD volunteers & allies (which includes previous Special Honorees, key media industry allies, volunteers from the Nominating Juries, and Event Production teams).

The votes of these three groups result in a final slate of award recipients, which is then given to GLAAD’s Review Panel for certification.  The Review Panel is comprised of the GLAAD Board co-chairs, senior GLAAD program staff, and media industry experts.

The members of the Review Panel are expected to view all of the nominees in each category.  The final slate of award recipients is certified by the Review Panel, based on the results of the online balloting and their own expert opinions.

8 Responses to “ATWT Snubbed by GLAAD Media Awards”

  1. mmc says:

    I wish the show could come back but that’s just wishful thinking on our part.P&G wants nothing more to do with soaps and that’s sad.Lukes story was always one of my favorites, but only when Van Hansis took over the role.he’s a sweetheart.And i do remember Hank….it really is amazing that they had a gay character all those years ago.They were at the forefront and should receive an award for that alone.And I’m so grateful that lovelure keeps Luke and Reid alive for us and that were kept up to date on van and Eric.love you LL !

  2. mmc says:

    Van Hansis and Eric S. stevens should have received an award for being in a love story that was so wonderfully unique.It also showed Luke and Reid to be two men who became better with and for each other.And they did away with the gay stereotype. Their love story was like none i had ever seen before.

  3. maris says:

    Well well well… sour grapes, I might say.

    • lovelure says:

      Hmmm… are you referring to GLAAD, ATWT, or me?

      • maris says:

        Well, you must admit you sound a bit bitter. I know Luke and Reid fans were expecting GLAAD award for ATWT this year, but obviously there weren’t any good daytime gay storylines to award.

        Just better accept that.

        • lovelure says:

          Grrr…I just deleted my lengthy reply. Will try to recreate it now.

          Hmmm…if I sound bittter, I may need to go back and re-edit this post because that’s definitely not my perspective. I was definitely a little surprised, but not because I thought Luke and Reid (and Noah) was the perfect gay storyline and deserved to be honored, but rather due to precedent. ATWT has won two GLAADs in the past; the award’s been given unchallenged in the past; and for all ATWT’s shortcomings, I really don’t think there’s any comparison between ATWT and say, Y&R. Re: there being no “good daytime gay storylines” this year, I guess I’d have to say that I don’t think that this storyline is any worse than those that have won in the past (perhaps that’s damning with very faint praise), though I do feel that Reid Oliver was particularly compelling character.

          If you want to see me bitter, you can check out the “Happily Ever After” and “Man Behind the Curtain” posts from September. Those were definitely written in my bitter phase (and probably should be toned down now that I have some perspective). But arguably, they are strong arguments for why ATWT should not receive a GLAAD Award, not in favor. As you say, the award is for ATWT, not for Luke and Reid. Though the actors are the most visible faces representing the storyline, the award goes to the creative team, and I can certainly understand why GLAAD would choose not to honor the team that killed Reid, left Luke grieving, and sent Noah off to LA alone.

          In the meantime, the entity I feel worst for in all this is GLAAD. Until gay storylines become sufficiently mainstream that GLAAD Awards shouldn’t be necessary, both GLAAD and industry executives will be walking a fine line trying to do “what’s right” and doing just enough to make progress at a glacial pace. Hollywood strikes me as having become more and more fiscally conservative over the last many years as viewers’ entertainment options have exploded. What else could explain the bottomless pit of remakes, sequels, and reality programs we’ve been subjected to recently? That environment does not encourage risk-taking; it encourages the creative equivalent of “buying IBM.”

          Which is worse? A half-decent/half-sucky gay storyline, or none at all? I’d vote for the half-decent storyline because at least it’s visible and has the potential to move at least some people (thought not as many as if it were 100% well done). I would count LuRe in that category. I know for myself, it’s created a material change in my awareness and thinking, and based on the numerous posts across the internet, I’d say it’s safe to say I’m not alone. I think that’s what GLAAD has tried to reward in the past, but all they’ve had to show for that is public questioning of their integrity (giving away awards to fundraise) and namecalling (rewarding the discriminators!). The Nelson Branco and Tom O’Neil arguments were picked up pretty widely in the press, turning a good thing (honoring the efforts daytime did make, however crappy), into bad (drawing attention away from the (more deserving) other award recipients).

          So I find it interesting that GLAAD has decided to abstain this year in particular. Yeah, it could be as you say, lack of good storylines, but I honestly don’t think it was any worse this year than it has been in the past, so why give the award previously, and not this year? I mean, really? Ameera and jumping on the beds was a good storyline? At least Zac and Zoe didn’t win!

          But I don’t blame GLAAD for wanting to avoid potential backlash (and I think there would be a vocal campaign were ATWT to win). Perhaps it’s intended to send a message (that’s what prompted the headline I chose, not because I was personally disappointed that they weren’t nominated)? So, yeah, given GLAAD’s history, I do believe that ATWT was snubbed. Whether or not it was deserved, I’ll leave up to you to decide for yourself.

          Perhaps GLAAD have just decided to set the bar higher. It seems like they’re no longer giving an “A for (a half-baked) effort” and are sending a message that fairly well-drawn (well, this is daytime, we’re talking about) frontburner characters are no longer good enough. If so, I can only hope that daytime executives are able to deliver a nomination-worthy storyline before the genre disappears from television.

          • tom brown says:

            As The World Turns was the front runner for gay men on daytime tv. They had “Hank” in the 80s and he was a hero on the show. In the 2000s They were awsome in bringing “Luke” to age as a young gay boy and keeping his story front & center through his coming out, his first love, and his last love. They were fantastic stories that I miss watching everyday. GLAAD should of given them a special award for their support of gays throughout the years. I am still hoping someone will bring the show back.

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