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Monday, February 20, 2006

Emmy omissions

July 21, 2004

I’m stunned. Baffled. Almost speechless.

What kind of world do we live in where Donald Trump’s reality show is nominated for an Emmy, but the funniest sitcom actor on TV, Scrubs’ John C. McGinley, isn’t?

I’ll tell you, Tubers. It’s a world gone mad. Mad, I tell you. That’s the only plausible explanation for last week’s entertainment debacle, otherwise known as the television Emmy nominations.

I’m convinced the members of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences just shut their eyes and pull names out of a hat, rather than watch these shows. And it’s obvious that even with TiVo, a TV guide, and a remote control, they couldn’t find their way to The WB, if they tried. How else can you explain the blatant shutout of its programs and actors?

There were no better supporting-actor performances this year in all of television than that of Angel’s Spike (James Marsters) and Smallville’s Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum.) I’m convinced that no WB show or actress, no matter how fantastic, will ever be nominated.
It’s clear the Emmy nomination process needs an overhaul. It’s as messed up as Donald’s comb-over.

What they did wrong:

  • Scrubs, consistently the best comedy on TV, didn’t even score a nomination in the best comedy series category, yet the tired Everybody Loves Raymond and Will and Grace did.
  • Adding insult to injury was the omission of any acting nominations for the Nip/Tuck cast. Love him or hate him, Julian McMahon’s Christian Troy is the most delicious villain to come along since J.R. Ewing.
  • Mark-Paul Gosselaar of NYPD Blue (Det. John Clark, Jr.) should have been among the best supporting actors in a drama category.
  • As if reality TV hasn’t evaded every facet of our lives already, the Academy added two reality categories to honor these types of programs. If they really wanted to add a category, how about best sidekick. Then, The O.C.’s Seth (Adam Brody) or Angel’s Spike might have a chance at getting the recognition they deserve.
  • The Academy nominated very few newcomers. I, for one, am tired of seeing the same shows and actors year after year. Regardless of how good The Sopranos is, did it really deserve to eat up 20 of the nominations?
  • I can’t help but chuckle at the animation category that has South Park competing against SpongeBob SquarePants. Is it truly fair to judge children’s animation in the same category as adult animation?

What they did right:

  • We saw a few new faces, at least. Bonnie Hunt (Life with Bonnie) and Amber Tamblyn (Joan of Arcadia) got acting nominations. And Arrested Development was among the shows up for best comedy.
  • Scrubs was nominated for best writing.
  • John Ritter was nominated for 8 Simple Rules. Sadly, the honor came posthumously.
  • Monk’s Tony Shalhoub and Friends’ Matt LeBlanc (Joey) received nods for best actor in a comedy series.
  • The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Late Show with David Letterman garnered nominations for best writing for a variety, music or comedy program.
  • The Academy regained its senses, momentarily, and selected the Citibank Identity Theft Card Protection commercial as one of the year’s best. Those commercials are a hoot, and it’s good to see original ideas being recognized.

    The Emmys will be presented Sept. 19 on ABC. Gary Shandling is set to host.

    Watch if you dare, or even care at this point. But don’t be surprised if the same familiar faces go home with Emmy gold.

    We all know it’s not really about acting anyway. It’s all about what they’re wearing.

    Originally published 7/21/04 in The Exponent Telegram newspaper.


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