Monday, September 22, 2008

the tribe has spoken

The highlights of last night's Primetime Emmy Awards for me were Josh Groban's medley of TV theme songs and Jimmy Kimmel's presentation of the award for best reality host. Groban showed a sense of humor about himself that was only hinted at in Jimmy's infamous Ben Affleck video. He used his operatic voice to sing "The Simpsons" and comedic voices to sing lyrics from "South Park" and other shows. Thankfully in this day and age, the video clip is only a click away.

I so wanted the five nominees for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program to be eliminated one by one. Jimmy made a joke along those lines by saying that they were each "in the bottom two." I thought I was going to wake my wife with my laughter when Jimmy said that the winner would be revealed "after the break." And then really did go to commercial. Because "Survivor" is the granddaddy of the genre, it made sense that Jeff Probst would win. Over the years, his questions during Tribal Council have become a more and more important part of the show. However it's still a little weird that he always says the exact same things when "immunity is back up for grabs" or when he'll "go tally the vote." Phil Keoghan deserved a nomination for "The Amazing Race," which has won the Emmy for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program six years in a row. Of the five nominees, I would have voted for Tom Bergeron. He consistently exhibits grace and wit under the pressure of a live show.

It sounded like they almost muted the sound of the audience during the "In Memoriam" segment. So often the photo montage of the deceased at awards shows becomes a referendum on their popularity based on the amount of applause they get. They probably should have eliminated the laughter and applause from the original clips too. Just play the sappy music while showing the faces and names of the departed. Do you think they showed George Carlin twice on purpose or by accident? He was both the first and last person in the montage.

Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin and "30 Rock" all deserved their awards. Although as Fey pointed out, the wrong episode won the writing award. The voters chose to honor a script that mocked the government rather than a funnier script that poked fun at a '60s-era comedy writer. I guess they couldn't honor Tommy Smothers and drag out some "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In" cast members and then give an award to an episode with Carrie Fisher as an out-of-it writer of a show just like those. By the way, how uncomfortable were you during the "tribute" to "Laugh In"? That should have been prerecorded and edited. And rewritten. Or omitted. There were enough other stars who griped about their bits being cut due to time. They should have cut that awkward moment instead.

As much as I like "Dexter," I was still delighted to see Bryan Cranston win for "Breaking Bad." His victory was a mostly unexpected surprise. As I wrote back in January, his performance is riveting.

I'll admit that the Emmys were mostly forgettable. Perhaps a better show would be the Tubey Awards from Television Without Pity. It's fun to see who they pick as their favorite and least favorite characters. They hit the nail on the head by saying that Maya from "Heroes" is both the most unwelcome new character and the character most in need of being killed off. I guess we'll see if that happens when "Heroes" returns to the NBC schedule tonight.

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Blogger Meaghan said...

Well, Maya became sluttified in the premiere, so maybe there is hope for her ultimate demise.


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