- That Mad Men bit in the opener was hilarious. John Slattery trying to "watch TV" on his telephone? Awesome.
- The Night That Friday Night Lights Finally Got the Recognition It Deserved, Part I: The boys from FNL were represented in the opening musical number! And Michael B. Jordan was even shirtless! Nicely done, Emmys!
- Dear Julie Bowen: You are fabulous. Please eat a cookie.
- Julianna Margulies announced that she's the funniest woman on television. "It's true. Look it up," she deadpanned. How wonderful is she? I'm so amazed by her, I don't even care that her dress looked ridiculous.
- "Welcome back to the Modern Family awards!" But seriously. They went four for four in the first part of the ceremony.
- Jim Parsons from Big Bang Theory won again...Really? I mean, he's good, but not back-to-back wins good. (Full disclosure: I don't watch BBT, and I'm still bitter Community didn't get nominated.)
- Great idea having all the Comedy Lead Actress nominees come up on the stage together. It was like a comedy supernova! At first we all just thought Amy Poehler was being funny and weird getting up onstage.
- And the Emmy goes to...Melissa McCarthy for Bridesmaids! I mean, Mike & Molly! But really, that award was like 65% Bridesmaids, 25% Gilmore Girls, and 10% Mike & Molly. It's a good thing we all love her or we would have been annoyed that she won. She gave an adorable and tearful acceptance speech though, and was appropriately humble.
- I was dying during The Office mash-up segment. First Tom from Parks & Rec, then John Slattery! But the best was Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul delivering crystal meth to Creed. Can this please be an actual storyline on this season of The Office? Okay wait, I lied, the BEST best part was NATHAN F---ING FILLION. Mariska Hargitay and Cee Lo's The Voice-style swivel chair were pretty hilarious too. BRILLIANT.
- As much as I wanted one of the men from The Good Wife to win Supporting Actor (Drama) so that I could either a) listen to Alan Cumming speak in his beautiful accent, or b) stare at Josh Charles' beautiful face, I was pleased to see Peter Dinklage win for Game of Thrones because I think he really deserved it.
- Jon Stewart and I were totally on the same page regarding co-presenters Sofia Vergara and Rob Lowe procreating. They look great together, and their children would be adorable.
- The Night That Friday Night Lights Finally Got the Recognition It Deserved, Part II: FNL beat Mad Men in the Drama Writing category! WOOOOOOT!
- The Night That Friday Night Lights Finally Got the Recognition It Deserved, Part III: In a spectacular upset, Kyle Chandler won for Lead Actor in a Drama series for his fantastic performance in the final season of FNL. The best part (aside from the whole thing) was that former FNL costar Minka Kelly presented the award to Chandler. (Cue weeping.) Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose! (Note: This almost makes up for the Emmys' complete neglect of Fringe and Community. Almost.)
- "Everyone is curious about why I am a lesbian. Ladies and gentlemen, the cast of Entourage." -Jane Lynch
- Time for the mini series category...also known as, the part of the Emmys where I wrote most of this blog post. I don't usually care about the mini series portion of the awards at all, but if you put Matthew Macfadyen in any montage, it'll get my attention. (His mini series Pillars of the Earth is officially in my Netflix queue.) Also, I was glad that Maggie Smith won for Downton Abbey, because she is Maggie Smith and she's awesome.
- Melissa McCarthy and Amy Poehler presented the Lead Actor in a Mini Series award together, which in itself was a stroke of genius. They made a great joke about men on TV finally breaking through the glass ceiling and getting to play such rich, multi-dimensional characters. Ha! Well said, ladies. Loved it.
- Mad Men and Modern Family won for Best Drama and Comedy series, respectively. Raise your had if you were surprised... That's what I thought.
- Someday, I will make my own TV awards show, and the winners for Best Drama and Comedy series will be Fringe and Community EVERY YEAR. FOREVER.
And with another year of Emmy nominations comes another dozen reasons for me to be disgruntled at the continual lack of appreciation for deserving shows, specifically my three favorite shows: Fringe, Community, and Cougar Town. The casts alone of these shows deserve an Emmy apiece for their brilliant work, especially Anna Torv and John Noble, who each played at least two different characters on Fringe this season, Courteney Cox and Busy Philipps of Cougar Town, and Community's Dani Pudi. At least I got to watch Fringe star Joshua Jackson announce the nominees this morning alongside Mike & Molly's Melissa McCarthy (who earned a nomination in the Best Comedy Actress category).
I was happy to see Friday Night Lights get some attention for its final season, earning nominations for Best Drama Series, Drama Actor, and Drama Actress (Kyle Chandler and Connie Britton). Another show that deserved all its nominations was The Good Wife, which was nominated for Best Drama Series, as well as getting nods for a handful of the stellar cast, including Julianna Margulies (Best Drama Actress), Alan Cumming and Josh Charles (both for Best Supporting Actor), and Archie Panjabi and Christine Baranski (both for Best Supporting Actress). If you've never seen the show, all these nominations might seem excessive, but trust me, The Good Wife deserves every one of them.
The Comedy categories were flooded with Modern Family nominees, which made up four of the six Best Supporting Actor noms (Ty Burrell, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Ed O'Neill, and Eric Stonestreet), as well as two for Supporting Actress (Sofia Vergara and Julie Bowen), and a nomination for Best Comedy Series, which is probably theirs to lose. Parks & Recreation managed to get a nomination for Best Comedy Series, which was one of the best surprises of the morning. This past season of Parks & Rec was outstanding, and its great to see them get noticed for it. I'm a little disappointed that the only cast member to get an individual nomination was Amy Poehler, because the supporting cast is fantastic, but Modern Family ate up all the Supporting spots. Another pleasant surprise was Martha Plimpton's nomination for Best Comedy Actress for Raising Hope. Fox's freshman comedy is a hilarious portrait of blue-collar family dysfunction, and I'm glad it got a little recognition, especially for the wonderful Martha Plimpton.
Other noteworthy snubs: The Walking Dead, True Blood, Sons of Anarchy, Treme, Big Love
For a full list of nominees, click here.
Okay, so the Emmys aren't for another three months, but that doesn't mean we can't take a few minutes in the middle of the summer to give some much-deserved appreciation to some criminally overlooked shows. Frankly, I'm sick of the Emmys (and the Golden Globes) blatantly snubbing what I think are the best shows on television, specifically Cougar Town, Community, and Fringe, none of which have received Emmy nominations (not counting Sound Editing and Visual Effects, both of which Fringe has been nominated for). These poor shows have had to endure the embarrassment of getting moved to Friday nights, being cursed with a terrible name, and having to air on the same night as Outsourced...Can we please just give them a little respect? Cougar Town doesn't even have any cougars in it! And they make ample fun of their unfortunate title. JUST WATCH IT. I guarantee by the fifth episode, you'll be hooked. Abed from Community loves Cougar Town so much, he guest starred on it! And it was so wonderful to see my two favorite comedies collide that I almost wept with joy. Thank God those two little underappreciated comedy gems have formed an alliance of awesomeness, despite being on different networks. And Fringe may not have the strongest ratings, but it has the wrath of the Browncoats behind it (for anyone unfamiliar with the term, "Browncoats" refers to fans of the canceled sci-fi series Firefly), and we are determined not to let Fringe suffer the same unjust fate as Firefly.
As a perpetual champion of the underdogs (and a fan of too many TV shows gone before their time), I was positively ecstatic to see that the winners of the Critics' Choice Television Awards included such fantastic actors as Busy Philipps, who plays the bubbly and hysterical Laurie on Cougar Town; John Noble, whose performance as tortured mad scientist Walter (and his evil doppelgänger) on Fringe gets more spectacular by the week; and The Good Wife star Julianna Margulies, who has already won a Golden Globe for her role on The Good Wife, but she's just so unbelievably good that no amount of awards can begin to adequately honor her greatness. I was also pleased that Community was nominated for Best Comedy Series, and Danny Pudi (who plays the aforementioned Abed on Community) earned a well-deserved nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. This category also included Nick Offerman from Parks and Recreation (whose mustache alone deserves an award), and winner Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother). I would have been thrilled to see any of them win, but NPH deserved it.
Looking at the list of nominees for the Critics' Choice Awards, I really felt like most of them deserved to be nominated. I'm not saying I'm the most qualified person to determine who's worthy of a nomination and who's not, I'm just noting that my personal opinions are very well reflected by the Critics' Choice Awards, while I tend to curse profusely at the Emmy nominations and winners when they're announced. Maybe it's because I'm just more prone to agree with the critics when it comes to TV (except about Mad Men), or maybe it's that I still have hope for network television, which the Critics' Choice Awards seem to vindicate, while the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is busy throwing Emmys at HBO and AMC. Or maybe it's just nice to see my favorite shows finally get some recognition other than being on a list of "bubble shows" or having the lowest ratings in its time slot. So thank you, Critics' Choice Television Awards, for honoring the overlooked, the underrated, and the misunderstood. (Seriously, it shouldn't even be called Cougar Town!) Here's hoping that the Emmys will follow your lead and spread the love to some of the great shows that no one watches.
You can find a full list of the Critics' Choice Award winners here.
Emmys 2010: Everything Important and/or Interesting, Plus My Biased, Semi-Well-Informed Take on the Night's Winners and Losers
Last night, approximately 13.5 million people tuned in for the 62nd Primetime Emmy Awards. To the other 289.5 million people in the country, what could you possibly have been doing that was more important than watching the Emmys? I hope for your sake you TiVoed it.
Without question, the greatest moment of the show was the first seven minutes. The opening sketch (which can be seen here) features Jimmy Fallon (the host), the cast of Glee, and an exciting assortment of other TV stars (and Kate Gosselin) doing a hilarious, Glee-inspired rendition of one of my all-time favorite songs, "Born To Run," by the legendary Bruce Springsteen. It starts out with Jimmy Fallon and the Glee kids, who then recruit Tina Fey (my idol) before finding Jon Hamm dirty dancing with Betty White in a dressing room. (By the way, between his stripper dance moves and his Emmy-nominated stint on 30 Rock, I'm starting to think Jon Hamm might be the funniest dramatic actor on TV.) Once they start singing, familiar faces start popping up everywhere, including Jorge Garcia (Lost), and Joel McHale (star of the hilarious-but-underappreciated Community), all giving their best impressions of the Boss. The best part has to be Tim Gunn, who (literally) rips off Fallon's shirt and stuffs a red baseball cap in his back pocket, imitating Springsteen's famous Born in the U.S.A. album cover. Once they storm the stage, clad in matching Glee costumes (except for Fallon, still in full Bruce garb), Randy Jackson joins Fallon center stage, Tina Fey and Jon Hamm dance like they're extras in Grease, and finally Glee's Amber Riley belts out the last note. And THAT is how you open an awards show.
Of course, I might be saying that because they happened to choose an intro that included several of my favorite things on this earth. Let's recap: Glee + Tina Fey + Betty White + Lost + Joel McHale + mockery of Kate Gosselin + Tim Gunn + a Bruce Springsteen song = one of the greatest moments of television I have ever witnessed.
Aaaand the night just went downhill from there. Not in a disappointing way, but in a how-can-you-possibly-top-that? kind of way. Although, some would argue that George Clooney's Modern Family skit (watch it here) was even better. But I'm running out of space, and you're running out of attention span, so let's get to it. Here are the night's highs and lows...
HIGH: Eric Stonestreet wins Outstanding Supporting Actor for a Comedy Series for his role on Modern Family. And he begins his acceptance speech by saying, "All I wanted to be was a clown in the circus." And, on a related note...
HIGH: Jon Cryer does NOT win Outstanding Supporting Actor for a Comedy Series for his role on Two and a Half Men. I've never understood why that show has been on the air as long as it has, or what the thrill is in watching Charlie Sheen play Charlie Sheen. Note to Two and a Half Men: No one cares. Sincerely, The World.
LOW: What was up with the ridiculous Tron-meets-The Matrix video game theme of the giant screens onstage last night? Come on, NBC. I expect that from Fox, but not from you.
HIGH: Jane Lynch wins Supporting Actress for Glee. She had this one in the bag, and her acceptance speech was humble and wonderful, thanking her parents, showrunner Ryan Murphy, and her wife.
LOW: Why does Chris Meloni looks so angry all the time? Is it because Law & Order: SVU didn't get nominated for Outstanding Drama? Honestly, at this point there are enough Law & Orders on TV that they could have their own awards show.
HIGH: Jeff Probst's dimples.
LOW: Jim Parsons and Sofia Vergara present together onstage. One plays a theoretical physicist on Big Bang Theory, and the other one is Sofia Vergara. There's no scenario in which these two people should be standing next to each other. It's just unnatural. And they knew it, because there's no way the awkwardness of that presentation was faked.
HIGH: Modern Family creators spoof Old Spice commercials: "We're on a horse."
LOW: Bryan Cranston wins Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series for the THIRD YEAR IN A ROW. Seriously, Bryan, give someone else a chance for once. I'm sure your work is great and all, but like I told my mother, getting an Emmy for playing a meth dealer with cancer is like getting an Oscar for playing a disabled concentration camp survivor. It's just not fair to the other nominees. Plus, I really felt it was Hugh Laurie's year to win for House.
HIGH: Archie Panjabi wins Outstanding Supporting Actress for a Drama Series for her role on The Good Wife. I've only just started watching this show, but I'm already blown away by Archie Panjabi's performance as the hardened in-house private investigator.
LOW: "And the Emmy goes to...Kyra Sedgwick?" (And she makes Tina Fey hold her Emmy statue while she gives her speech!) Apparently in the Emmy business, you either win every year (like the aforementioned Cranston and fellow AMC darling and three-peat Mad Men), or you can win once for every fifth nomination, like Sedgwick. I guess her win for The Closer was overdue, but I really thought Julianna Margulies would win for her first season of The Good Wife. Maybe in four years...
HIGH: Julianna Margulies presents the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award to former ER costar and onscreen love George Clooney. Did anyone not get all nostalgic watching those two reunite onstage?
LOW: Sorry, miniseries and made-for-TV movies, but no one really cares. (Although, I have been meaning to watch The Pacific.)
HIGH: The fact that people are still willing to risk letting Ricky Gervais perform on live television.
LOW: Lost gets no Emmy love for its final stellar season. I guess it was just too complex for Emmy voters to understand its genius.
HIGH: The realization that George Clooney should a) guest star on Modern Family for real, and b) marry Sofia Vergara.
That's a wrap! If you haven't seen at least two of the shows I mentioned throughout this list, you have some homework to do before the Golden Globes.