The Emmys were last night! Some things happened, some people won awards, but most importantly, Cary Joji Fukunaga and I fell in love. I hope. Please? No? Fine. I had no idea who he was before he won Outstanding Director-Drama, but I’ve spent a good amount of time researching him since then and now I’m just sure we’d get on swimmingly. I thought Kit Harrington had stolen the mandoo (a male updo, so says Pinterest) scene for the evening, but then Cary won and we all got to bask in the glory of his French braids–into it.
I consumed approximately 4 hours and 45 minutes of Emmy programming that didn’t involve mandoos, though, so let’s get to that stuff also. Here are some of my best and worst moments of the night.
I thought that Meyers did a great job as host. His opening monologue was funny and not too mean-spirited, he employed the help of his famous, equally funny friends, and he moved the pace along as best he could. He wasn’t too present, but he also wasn’t too MIA.
One of these funny friends of Seth’s happened to be Billy on the Street star Billy Eichner, who I’m obsessed with. I love him maybe as much as he loves Meryl Streep (a lot). Meyers and Eichner showed a special segment of Eichner’s “For A Dollar” game, in which he runs up to random people on the street and screams questions at them. If they answer correctly, they win a dollar. If not, well, they get screamed at. Billy on the Street is definitely getting more and more popular as time goes on, but I’m happy he was able to have such a huge audience for this, because he deserves a lot more recognition.
Ricky Gervais’s presenting/accepting of an award
Ricky Gervais has been nominated for 21 Emmys and has only won twice. Before presenting the award for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special, he took the time to give the acceptance speech he would have given, had he not lost to perennial-Best-Actor-in-a-Comedy-Series-winner Jim Parsons. Watch the whole thing over at The Hollywood Reporter.
Tim Whatley and Elaine Benes 4ever
I didn’t connect the dots at first with this one. Bryan Cranston and Julia-Louis Dreyfus presented the award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, and before they did so, Julia pointed out that Cranston looked just like one of Elaine’s many love interests on Seinfeld–dentist to the stars Tim Whatley. Louis-Dreyfus didn’t believe him, he insisted that it was him and that they even had a kissing scene together, but she just moved on. But when she was walking to the stage to accept her award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, Cranston ran to her and started making out with her to prove that he was, indeed, Tim Whatley. It all came back to her then. I really appreciate the creativity and planning that Julia Louis-Dreyfus puts into her acceptance speeches every year. She later said that her and Cranston had run the kiss by both of their respective spouses. Good thinking.
Robin Williams tribute
It came out earlier in the week that Billy Crystal would be paying special tribute to his friend during the In Memoriam segment of the show. I think most people were already gutted just thinking about it. Crystal paid very nice tribute to Robin Williams, sharing personal stories from family gatherings and times not caught on camera. It’s always nice to hear the human stories behind the entertainers. We, as common folk, get to watch them play their lives out on TV and in movies, but we rarely get to catch glimpses of their real lives. I think everyone felt and hoped that Robin Williams was always that goofy, bust-your-gut-laughing kind of guy, and Crystal showed us that he was. It was a very special tribute to a man so treasured within and outside of the entertainment world. I’m sure many people in the room had known Williams personally, and the ones who didn’t wish they had.
It started with a few weird, out-of-place record scratches during intro or outro music, and then Breaking Bad started winning and things got real weird. The band played the show’s theme song, but then added some weird Samsung flip phone wind chime ring tone circa 2004. At a certain point, it really started to give me anxiety. It was awful but it just kept going! Damn you, talented cast of Breaking Bad, for winning so much and making the band play the song repeatedly. Speaking of winning so much…
Nobody new won anything exciting
Aside from first-time winner and big time hottie Cary Fukunaga, all of the usual suspects won: Modern Family, Breaking Bad, JLD, Jim Parsons, and The Amazing Race. Scott Feinberg of The Hollywood Reporter suggested that the voting system be deregulated to help with so many unsurprising repeat winners and allow for more variety. I’d be interested to see what would happen if the Television Academy did something like that. I’m on board.
The Normal Heart was robbed
The Normal Heart was an incredibly important, well-executed movie that deserves all of the credit it received upon release and way more credit than it received last night. Four of the six men nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie came from The Normal Heart, yet none of them won. Mark Ruffalo did not win for his role as Ned Weeks, a character based on Larry Kramer. Ryan Murphy did not win for Outstanding Directing, nor did Larry Kramer win for Outstanding Writing. Ay yi yi! Come on! Thankfully, the movie was recognized as the best of the year, winning Outstanding Television Movie, but I thought it deserved way more than just one award.
Overall, I thought the Emmys were good but not great. The star power was definitely there, but I would have liked to have seen more variety in the winners