Each year, the four daytime drama series air more than 250 hours of original content compared to 20something for their primetime counterparts. This year, nominated performers had no restrictions on the number of episodes that they could pull material from for their reels. The only two requirements were that the episodes aired during the 2018 calendar year and that the total running time of the reel did not exceed 15 minutes.
In following the industry standard, NATAS did not make this year's Emmy reels available to the public. However, Soap Central was able to review the reels, and we've provided synopses of their content reels, including airdates, episode numbers, and links to our comprehensive recaps of those episodes so you can get a better feel for what action took place. Please note that the running times listed for each clip include the opening slate and end-of-reel bumpers. For its purposes, NATAS does not count that time in its official run time figures.
Here are the clips submitted by the Lead Actor nominees this year for Emmy consideration.
Reel Synopsis: Sonny yells at Mike when Mike misplaces a large sum of cash only to later find it in a cigar box. Sonny tells Carly and Jason that Mike has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease and sobs as he realizes that there is nothing he can do to help. Sonny struggles to remain strong when Mike doesn't recognize him as his son. Sonny reflects on his life and how things could have been, including how his son Dante could have become involved in the mob. Sonny listens as Mike struggles to come to terms with the fact that he will one day no longer be able to care for himself. Sonny helps by singing along with Mike when Mike forgets the words to Frank Sinatra's "Summer Wind."
Reel Synopsis: In a crowded movie theater, a documentary about Dina Mergeron reveals that Jack was not John Abbott's son. Later, Billy tries to assure Jack that nothing could change the fact that John was Jack's father. Later, Jack raged as he, Ashley, and Traci remembered when they were children and their mother left them. Jack learns that Ashley rigged the DNA test results to show that John wasn't Jack's father. He removes Ashley's nameplate from the CEO's office door and throws a chair through the window.
Reel Synopsis: Stefan taunts Chad by telling him the details of how he'd had sex with Abigail. Abigail accuses Stefan of rape, but he tells her that he sees things differently. Stefan refuses to believe that "Gabby" is back. Stefan holds Gabi bound to a chair and threatens to make her suffer for what she's done to him. He holds a hot fireplace poker to her face and threatens to make her ugly. Stefan offers up a Christmas toast to his late father, Stefano.
Reel Synopsis: Chad learns that Abigail is pregnant -- and that Stefan is the father. Chad accuses Abigail of loving Stefan. While on a remote island, Abigail unexpectedly goes into labor, creating a frenzied and comical situation. Abigail eventually gives birth to a baby girl.
Reel Synopsis: Kevin counsels Franco when Franco worries that the sexual abuse he endured as a child might make him turn into a predator. At Ferncliff, it is revealed that Kevin's supposedly dead brother, Ryan, is very much alive. Ryan attempts to convince an orderly to release him from his cell. Kevin tells Ryan that he had him sent to Ferncliff in an attempt to redeem him, but Ryan insists that he doesn't need to be redeemed. Ryan attacks Kevin and trades places with him, leaving Kevin bound in a straitjacket at Ferncliff and Ryan roaming free in Port Charles. Ryan returns to Ferncliff to torment Kevin. Ryan tells Kevin what he's been up to -- divorcing Laura on his behalf and killing two people. Laura worries that something isn't quite right with "Kevin," and Ryan responds by stabbing her.