I am a TV junkie.
I could say I have tried 12 step programs, detox units, and literary clubs to wean me off my habit but to no avail, and frankly I am not even slightly disappointed. Mainly because, these days, and it is increasingly so, TV is where all the real visual creativity is happening; it’s where many of the true visionaries are plying their trade and creating TV so powerful, clever or funny that you wonder why the movies, now reduced largely to remaking the same tired, dumb movies over and over, don’t just give up, hand their big screens over to TV, and let us all move in and watch wall to wall true creativity writ large. (Of course trying to clean up in of those cineplex bathrooms would require the patience of a saint, and the dexterity of a gymnast, but you get the idea.)
|Jane Lynch hits the stage at The Emmys after her opening previously filmed piece of liquid crystal fabulousness.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G7C50iY04M8 (such a fun opening piece!)
So what is any TV junkie worth his or her remote doing tonight? Well they’re glued to their set watched TV’s night of nights unfold. Well, truth be told, as I write this, the Emmys have ended, the red carpet has been trod, surprise guests unleashed (no more so than Charlie Sheen popping up to present Best Actor in a Comedy Series), and Jane Lynch has performed her magic, managing to be oh-so-clever and funny all at the same time, and having a bundle of fun with an opening piece that features hilarious interactions with the cast of Big Bang Theory and Mad Men, among others, all based on the conceit that all the characters in every TV show live in the same building. What follows is not an exhaustive roll call of winners but rather my run down of what matters to me and a few choice photos to make it all visual and pretty (even so, a full list of winners and losers follows at the end of the blog since I am nothing if not a completist…. at times.)
First up, I am thrilled that Jim Parsons aka Sheldon Cooper of Big Bang Theory has won the Emmy for Best Actor in a Comedy Series. He is such a supremely talented actor, and while BBT is a true ensemble relying on all its characters to bring on the laughs, it is Jim Parsons gift for comic timing and nuance that holds it all together, and is the focal point for the show. Well done Jim!
Keeping in the comedy vein, and who wouldn’t want to in a world as grim as ours is at the moment, Modern Family got the gong for Best Comedy Series (second win for them in this category), and it is richly deserved too. What could have been just another family-based sitcom, is instead richly nuanced, an accurate reflection of family life, and society generally in the 21st Century, and agent for social change – two gay fathers? Will civilisation survive this?! Of course it will, dear right wing poppets – all wrapped up in a heartwarming (but thankfully for those wanting to avoid pixal-caused pop culture diabetes, not corny) hilarious half hour that is a treat to watch each and every week.
They also walked away with wins for Julie Bowen, Outstanding Supporting Actress, Comedy (with a dress that must have drawn the heterosexual male demographic to the screen like moths to the proverbial) and TyBurrell, Outstanding Supporting Actor, Comedy (who wowed the crowd with a very funny stand up routine in lieu of thanking everyone, and his dog.)
And finally in amongst Martin Scorsese deservedly winning for directing Boardwalk Empire, and my one of my favourite comediennes around, Melissa McCarthy, who I have loved and adored since her days on The Gilmore Girls, winning for Outstanding Lead Actress, comedy in Mike and Molly, the English period soap, Downton Abbey with it’s exquisite portrayal of British aristocracy just prior to World War 1 when everything changed forever, romped home with four awards and proved that quality everything can triumph in a sea of mediocre reality TV shows, and poorly written scripted shows.
I wouldn’t call this year’s ceremony a massive surprise, especially with shows like Amazing Race winning the Reality Show category again (less an indictment on the show itself, which I love, but more a reflection of the paucity of true genius in the category generally) and Daily Show winning for the ninth straight year (mainly because it is awesomely fantastically hilarious and deserves to just be automatically given the Emmy for as long as it’s on air), but Jane Lynch was fun and refreshing, the genuine joy of many of the winners contagious (Melissa McCarthy’s teary speech was touching), and it managed to celebrate all that’s good about TV without overstaying it’s welcome.
|Melissa McCarthy holding her Emmy statuette aloft
Here are the night’s winners:
Outstanding comedy series: Modern Family
Outstanding drama series: Mad Men
Outstanding miniseries or movie: Downton Abbey
Outstanding lead actress, miniseries or movie: Kate Winslet, Mildred Pierce
Outstanding supporting actor in a miniseries or movie: Guy Pearce, Mildred Pierce
Outstanding directing for a miniseries, movie or dramatic special: Brian Percival, Downton Abbey
Outstanding lead actor in a miniseries or movie: Barry Pepper, The Kennedys
Outstanding supporting actress, miniseries or movie: Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey
Outstanding writing for a miniseries or movie: Julian Fellowes, Downton Abbey
Outstanding lead actor, drama: Kyle Chandler, Friday Night Lights
Outstanding lead actress, drama: Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Outstanding supporting actor, drama: Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones
Outstanding directing, drama: Martin Scorsese, Boardwalk Empire
Outstanding supporting actress, drama: Margo Martindale, Justified
Outstanding writing, drama series: Jason Katims, Friday Night Lights
Outstanding variety, music or comedy series: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Outstanding directing for a variety, music or comedy series: Don Roy King, Saturday Night Live (host: Justin Timberlake)
Outstanding writing for a variety, music or comedy series: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
Outstanding reality competition: The Amazing Race
Outstanding lead actress, comedy: Melissa McCarthy (Mike & Molly)
Outstanding lead actor, comedy series: Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Outstanding writing for a comedy: Steve Levitan, Jeffrey Richman (“Caught in the Act”), Modern Family
Outstanding director, comedy: Michael Alan Spiller (“Halloween”), Modern Family
Outstanding supporting actor, comedy: Ty Burrell (Modern Family)
Outstanding supporting actress, comedy: Julie Bowen (Modern Family)