May 30, 1994 12:00 PM

The suspense dismounts. Susan Lucci, the Scheherazade of soaps, will definitely not be winning that elusive Emmy this year. That’s because although La Lucci will be the host of the Daytime Emmy Awards on ABC on Wednesday (May 25, 9 p.m. ET), she herself was not nominated. Lucci’s isn’t the only star snub. Many perennial Emmy contenders are conspicuously out of the hunt this year, including Elizabeth Hubbard (As the World Turns) and David Canary (All My Children). The real heat is in the races for Outstanding Younger Actor and Actress in a Drama Series. These categories used to be a juvenile joke. But ever since the age bracket was raised to 25, the competition has included some truly interesting actors. This year the favorites include Roger Howarth as One Life to Live’s bad boy Todd and Melina Kanakaredes as Guiding Light’s sweet Eleni. This shift in focus comes just in time for the soaps’ annual summer rejuvenation, when the serials try by hook and by crook to lure in layabout vacationing students with story lines featuring younger cast members. In fact, daytime is the only part of television that actually gears up for and grows more competitive during the summer months. By the way, among the legion of presenters at the daytime Emmys is the actor with my favorite name: Loving’s Randolph Mantooth.

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