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THB #184: Emmy, Emmy, Emmy!!!
And in breaking news, Emmy Rossum was not nominated for an Emmy.
The evolution of streaming continues, but this is a year in which streaming and COVID led to a lot of adults watching a lot of the same TV.
And the result in the Emmy nominations is… the same old, same old.
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“They” added Abbott Elementary. “They” added Severance. “They” added Yellowjackets.
But we are still all about Barry, Better Call Saul, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Euphoria, Hacks, The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, Ozark, Stranger Things, Succession, Ted Lasso, and What We Do In The Shadows.
That’s 11 shows locked into the 2 primary categories. Which is why both Comedy and Drama have been expanded to an odd 8 nominees… cause otherwise it would be like the HFPA, where someone has to die to fill a slot.
Nominees Only Murders in the Building and Squid Game, both of which launched just after Emmy last year, feel like they have been around as long as the others. Only Murders is already well into the season it will be nominated for next year.
Even the “snubs” (I hate that usage) are unsurprising.
Yellowstone isn’t in its first rodeo. Four season, 1 nomination… for “Outstanding Production Design for a Narrative Contemporary Program (One Hour or More).” So you thought this was going to be the season where ATAS voters changed their narrow minds? Ha. Kelly Reilly not kissing enough babies for them to recognize the singularity of her performance of that hugely popular character?
And 1883 got the ol’ heave ho to boot.
Once a show isn’t “an Emmy show,” it almost never becomes one, no matter what.
Ghosts may be the most popular ongoing sitcom in the world right now. But damned if The Academy is going to give them an inch… not a guest nomination… nothing. Enjoy your big paychecks, Ghost-ers, cause Emmy will probably never call, through no fault of your own.
Look… I’m happy for a wide range of people today. Martha Kelly in Euphoria is sublime and might have been overlooked. All 3 women who got guest nods for Succession are great… even though I wonder if 1 show getting 3 of 6 nominations is a good thing. Same with Hacks with 4 of the 6 Guest Actress slots.
This is the problem with ever being negative about any acting or show nominations… it’s rare that you actually are passionate enough to say, “the nominee doesn’t deserve it.” Everyone is wildly talented and at some strong moment in their craft.
But 4 of 6 slots for Guest Actor for Succession? Suffocating.
Love that they nominated Fanning and Hoult for The Great, but nothing for the writing they make sparkle, much less a Best Comedy slot?
Donald Glover is greatness… but he is barely in this last season of Atlanta. And the writing is everything. Do we really need multiple episodes nominated for Barry and What We Do In The Shadows? Maybe a rule that lets you nominate multiple scripts, but only one nominee per show? Honestly, if you love a show, every season has at least 4 or 5 great episodes… so we are already hedging.
That said, the top drama and comedy acting slots changed nominees out almost completely. Sudeikis is the only repeat in Lead Comedy Actor. Jean Smart and Kaley Cuoco are the repeaters in Lead Comedy Actress.
Lead Actress Drama is a complete turnover… but none of the nominees from last year are eligible this year. Likewise, the only Lead Actor Drama who was still eligible this year was Sterling K. Brown, who, along with This Is Us, did the classic Emmy final season disappearing act (also Black-ish and PEn15.)
Emmy doesn’t do the Jewish goodbye… it’s “if we aren’t going to see you again, we have already forgotten your name” in most cases.
What were voters thinking, not giving Pam & Tommy a nom for prosthetics? Are they just prudes? Episode Two of the season includes the talking penis… but it also includes a lot of stunning prosthetic work with a lot of active nudity that the director didn’t have to cut around. Maybe they thought the actors just have all of those parts.
I was particularly pleased with both P&T actors getting nominations, along with Seth Rogen, who is really the lead, not supporting. The series is imperfect, but the acting work by Stan & James is quite special… so real it doesn’t seem like acting. And I think this is Rogen’s best work ever as an actor. He doesn’t play Seth Rogen. He acts. Huzzah!
Shall we discuss that Emmy let The White Lotus get noms in Limited Series as production on the 2nd season gets underway?
So now that we have the expected nominations, let’s pick the winners!!!
Comedy: Ted Lasso
Limited Series: between The Movie That Matters (Dopesick) vs The Series You Really Loved (The White Lotus).
Competition: RuPaul’s Drag Race
Variety Talk: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Doc Series: The Beatles: Get Back (Cosby outside shot to upset)
Doc Special: George Carlin's American Dream
Television Movie (WTF is that?): The Survivor
I’m sure that of these 21 guesses, 2 will be wrong.
Note… none of this has anything to do with my personal taste.
But I would really like to see the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences clear the board and really think hard - or in a cloud of mellowing herb - about how to embrace a more interesting swath of shows come Emmy season. I mean, rethink the whole structure.