Second of the first of all, these forking awards are on a MONDAY this year, instead of a Sunday. To quote one of the most snubbed should-be-nominees on our list, WHAT....MAN....DID THIS. Sunday is award show day. Sunday is the day you can spend sleeping in to prepare yourself for the excitement and the stress, making theme foods (my initial plan was: (veggie) shrampies with white chocolate sauce, clam chowder, frozen yogurt (can you tell what show I'm going to be talking about the most yet?)), and getting your tweeting fingers ready. More importantly, Sunday is the day I could have watched this forking show! Readers probably know I live in London, but I'm writing this from the USA. When I booked this visit, I was looking at dates and remembered thinking, 'oh that weekend is the Emmys! I'll fly back to London Monday night then so I can watch them on Sunday night with my family! What an auspicious turn of events! I get to watch live for the first time in years instead of cobbling together shitty youtube videos that random people took of their own TVs!' But NOOOOOOPE. Now instead of getting to live tweet I'm going to have to stick to day-after tweeting, which NO ONE cares about but I'm STILL going to do OBVIOUSLY because my takes are hot.
First: The most infuriating abomination of a category this year is Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics, which means Best Song. And not to belittle any of the nominees, but they're bullshit compared to literally any song from 'Crazy Ex-Girlfriend', the CW's musical dramedy about mental illness. It is one of the greatest shows ever to exist, and 80% of that is because of the songs. Each episode has 2-3 original songs that brilliantly evoke musical theatre standards, pop genres, and/or famous bands. The songs are written by Adam Schlesinger, who you may know either as the guy from Fountains of Wayne or as the guy who wrote the one-hit-wonder's hit song from 'That Thing You Do!' If you have any doubt in my opinion that his Crazy Ex songs should be the pictures next to the dictionary definition of Emmy-winning songs if audio could be captured as pictures, then just think for a second about how movie producers were like 'hey we are making a movie that ENTIRELY REVOLVES around a song being so great that it catapults all the action forward and we need you to just like, go write that song and have it all be believable' AND HE DID.
Here are the nominees:
- (WINNER) SNL: "Come Back Barack" - a very funny song and great moment on the show but not better than the actual best topical song of the year, "Let's Generalize About Men". I dare you to watch this and not squeal with glee at every moment.
- Big Mouth: "Am I Gay?" Again, fun song on an absolutely incredible show, but not better than the HILARIOUS and perfect ABBA-inspired "The First Penis I Saw"!
- A Christmas Story Live: "In the Market for a Miracle" Haven't Pasek & Paul won enough in literally like a 15 month span?? CHILL BOYS. Also, if we're talking Christmas miracles, what about "Maybe She's Not Such a Heinous Bitch After All"?? I mean hello, talk about perfectly capturing an era of music.
- The Good Fight: "High Crimes and Misdemeanors" I'm not even going to talk about how RUDE it is to nominate a song from the drama about lawyers and not the MUSICAL COMEDY about lawyers, but I'll say what about the Fosse-inspired "Strip Away My Conscience"?? I mean, you wanna talk clever writing, talk about what they rhymed with 'luridness' and still got approval from the censors. Man alive.
- Steve Martin & Martin Short's special: "The Buddy Song" JFC. I love these guys so much but puh lease. How about the Gene Kelly-evoking "Head in the Clouds"? This song is considered one of the WEAKEST of the season and listen to how great it is.
- If You're Not in the Obit, Eat Breakfast: "Just Getting Started" I don't know what this documentary?? is, but how about the amazing song "End of the Movie"? They actually got JOSH GROBAN to sing a song! And it was incredible! Man alive if this category were a table full of glasses I would knock it over.
Let's get to tonight's nominees already.
- Atlanta (FX)
- Barry (HBO)
- Black-ish (ABC)
- Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO)
- GLOW (Netflix)
- The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)
- Silicon Valley (HBO)
- Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix)
Now what should be up there? 'Maisel' should be fighting neck and neck with the most brilliant, hilarious, and surprisingly sincere comedy in existence, "The Good Place". I honestly cannot get over how wonderful this show is. Every inch of the writing, the production (those special effects, my god), and the acting is across the board magnificent. It has an extremely clever premise that keeps getting twisted and turned onto itself, with storylines you just seem to get a handle on blowing up with equal chance of im- or exploding. And they've made a generation of tv-watchers interested in moral philosophy and being better people. It's also beloved by critics. I love this show so much. Its absence is kind of hilarious, proving yet again that awards mean nothing.
Also, 'Crazy Ex Girlfriend' should be on this list. Its latest season was riveting, dark, and risky. They took chances that no other show would take, and kept a story, one that could have gone out of control, together with a steady hand.
And what about 'Brooklyn 99', after how much it was in the news after being cancelled (and picked up again)?? We love that damn show! I mean even my beloved 'Jane the Virgin' is better than some of the stuff on this list. And 'Big Mouth' in its debut season was flawless! Where is that? Ugh Emmy voters. Also, enough with these expanded categories. It's clearly not helping to refuse to narrow it down, so keep it to 5. I hate treating this like participation trophies. When the best of the year aren't competing, the winner isn't really going to be the best, is it. When Federer or Serena decline to play in a slam it's not like the eventual winner is the best if they didn't play the best.
OUTSTANDING DRAMA SERIES
- The Americans (FX)
- The Crown (Netflix)
- Game of Thrones (HBO)
- The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu)
- Stranger Things (Netflix)
- This Is Us (NBC)
- Westworld (HBO)
I'm so tired, like sooo tired, of 'Game of Thrones'. Is it really still on? Still treating women like objects and what not? Hates it. I did love this season of 'Stranger Things', but not in like an 'emmy-winning' way. They're all FINE, I guess, but if anything but 'The Americans', in its perfect final season', sweeps tonight, it'll be wrong. 'The Americans' played the long game over 6 seasons, drawing subtle, nuanced storylines with outstanding performances and writing that came together in its depressing, unavoidable, great ending. It should absolutely win.
I don't have time to go into every category of acting nominees; I got a plane to catch. But I'll say a few things. Ted Danson MUST win for TGP. He is American's national treasure for a reason. If you thought his laugh in Season 1 episode 13 was iconic, wait till you see his relieved "Oh you guys!" from this season. I could cry just thinking about that and about when he solved the trolley problem. Tell me any of the other nominees deserve to win. I'll wait. And then I'll tell you why you're wrong.
As for lead actress in a comedy, it doesn't even really matter. Rachel Brosnahan on 'Maisel' is the clear best option, and even if a properly done category should probably win. But all her competitors should be different. This hundo p should have been Rachel for 'Maisel', Kristen Bell for 'The Good Place' (absolute BRILLIANCE), Rachel Bloom for 'Crazy Ex Girlfriend' (if you aren't jumping up and down in agreement, you haven't watched her), Tracee Ellis Ross for 'black-ish' I guess, and Gina Rodriguez for 'Jane the Virgin'. No matter what you think about that show, how telenovela it is (ps it's a telenovela), Gina is sensational. And yeah, that's five. FIVE NOMINEES PEOPLE. IN EVERY AWARD SHOW, IN EVERY CATEGORY. DO IT.
As for lead actors in drama, if anyone but Philip and Elizabeth, our beloved Russian spies, win, it's wrong. WRONG.
What else is wrong?
Supporting actress, comedy: How D'Arcy Carden wasn't nominated for 'The Good Place', I'll never know. She's a critical darling, like everything about that show, and created an entire KIND Of character. I also would have voted in Donna Lee Champlin for 'Crazy Ex'. She's remarkable. I don't even want to talk about how many people are in this category (too many) and how many make no sense. But lets please give it to Alex Borstein for being incredible on 'Maisel'.
Supporting actor, drama: Does a category that doesn't include Noah Emmerich in 'The Americans' even count? No, no it doesn't. Stanny Beems will always have a place in viewers' hearts, and no one else on this list can come close to what he did.
Ok I am going to stop ranting about awards that DO NOT MATTER and finish taking this out of my suitcase (it's too heavy (as always)). Watch tonight and let me know your thoughts in the comments; I'll be on a plane so keep me informed. And if you haven't watched the shows on this list that I've said are amazing, what are you waiting for???