NBC's only soap tied with CBS' highest-rated soap for Outstanding Drama Series this year, making it the second time in history two soaps have shared the honor (the first time was in 2007, when Guiding Light and Y&R both took home awards in the category).
The win was extra special for DAYS, as not only does it mark the series' third win in the category, it also came just in time for the show's 50th anniversary. "To be honest with you, my dad [Ted Corday] started this show and never dreamed it would make it to a year," said executive producer Ken Corday in the pressroom. "He said, 'Maybe six months,' and he didn't live to see the first anniversary of the show. My mother [Betty Corday] carried it through the 80s into its golden age, and she didn't live to see the 30th anniversary of the show. And I stand here tonight, very choked up, because we're embarking on what could be the next 10, 20, 30, 50 more years. Who's to say? It's just a golden moment, absolutely."
Though she didn't win an Emmy this year, former DAYS cast member Alison Sweeney [ex-Sami Brady] joined Corday and her costars on stage in the pressroom, where she took the opportunity to give the soaps' crew a shout-out. "We're so lucky to have them every single day in our lives," she said in near tears. "Every single one of us up here owes it to [the crew] for making this happen.... I look at all those faces over there, and I wish you knew what they do every day to make this happen, to make this statue happen for us. It's yours, you guys. Thank you."
The cast of The Young and the Restless took the pressroom stage right afterward in a much more casual fashion: both executive producer Jill Farren Phelps and cast member Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki Newman) kicked off their shoes before discussing how thrilled they were with the win.
"It's a phenomenally talented group of actors, directors, writers, producers, and it's wonderful to be recognized, so I think we're all very happy," Phelps said. "It's always very good for morale."
As for whether or not the exec was shocked to tie with DAYS, she said "Absolutely surprised."
However, Scott wasn't so shocked. "When I heard tie, I thought, 'We got it!'" she joked.
In all seriousness, when asked whether or not ties make the Daytime Emmys look like the Montessori School of Award Shows, Phelps admitted perhaps there's a flaw in the system. "It's wonderful to win, and... all of us are a community of people, and nobody understand what we do better than those of us who do it, but when it was a four way tie [for the nomination], it was anybody's guess as to who was going to win," she said. "[However], we're who we have left, so we need to support each other. We need to keep this medium strong."
Added Scott: "I don't think a lot of the audience realize that all of us there in that big room... we all know and pretty much love everybody at every table from the different shows... so we're happy for everybody who wins. So even though we're divided into separate shows, we really are a big community, and we want our other friends on the other shows to win, too."
Y&R was first nominated for Outstanding Drama Series in 1975 and won that year. It has since gone on to win eight more times, including this year's win.