Live Blogging The 68th Annual Emmy Awards: Thoughts and Reactions

Its television's biggest night; the 68th Annual Emmy Awards. Shows like The People v. OJ Simpson and Transparent all vying to win awards in various categories. Three hours of pulse pumping drama as viewers hold their breath to see if Julia Louis-Dreyfus will win her fifth consecutive Emmy for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series putting Mickey Mantle and Michael Jordan to shame. How many times can celebrities make comments at out crazy political scene and try to make the banter before announcing the winner less awkward. 

Follow Man of the Hour as we recap the Emmys as it goes on. 

Even the opening proves Veep is the best

The Emmys open with a video package as Jimmy Kimmel Live!’s Jimmy Kimmel tries to get to the Emmys through a white bronco chase, a James Corden’s Carpool Karaoke and a dragon for Game of Thrones. But, the best is when Julia Louis-Dreyfus appears as Selina Meyer revealing that her nickname in Spanish class was El BJ.

Jimmy Kimmel has the right balance of Hollywood establishment and apathy

The reason why Ricky Gervais always courted such controversy is because his jokes were always tinged with truthful spite. When he talked about the hypocrisy of Hollywood, he meant it. Here Jimmy Kimmel throws softball jokes at “Lame” Maggie Smith, chastising her for never showing up to the Emmys. But, he continues to remind people that the Emmys are important. He makes fun of the fact that the Emmys are so proud of themselves for having such diversity that the white people in the audience should hug a person of color closest to them. Sure, he makes an ill-advised Bill Cosby joke, but you still love him anyway.

But, this is the same reason why his late night show is so popular with celebrities. For one it is in Hollywood. For another, he is the Dean Martin to the celebrity’s Frank Sinatra. He lets them poke fun at themselves without it hurting their brand. That is a good position to be in Hollywood.

F*** Yeah Alan Yang

Master of None won Best Writing for a Comedy Series, written by two Asian writers, Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang. During Yang’s speech he mentions the lack of shows about Asians on televisions saying that there is little difference between the number of Italians and Asian Americans in the country yet, the Italians have The Godfather, Rocky and The Sopranos while Asians have gotten Long Duk Dong. For everyone complaining that people talk too much about White Privilege and the lack of importance of representation in culture, they should take heed to that comparison.

Creative Arts Emmys aka The Emmys in which the only important category was for Outstanding Guest Actor and Actresses

Award shows always favor the actors because they are who the people see. Yet, the two-night award did not even get the Academy Awards treatment for their Scientific and Technical Awards where it would get a quick Cliff-Notes like rundown. I guess categories like Outstanding Documentary and Cinematography is not worth noting.

Does it get tiring to win Emmys, Julia?

Five straight years of winning for Veep, 22 nominations and eight Emmys. Give Tracee Ellis-Ross a chance. But, in all seriousness the wonderful Julia Louis-Dreyfus gave a great speech about building bac up the wall between the fictional politics and the real one before he gave a touching tribute to her father who passed away last Friday.

A touching tribute to Garry Shandling

For many young people, Garry Shandling is simply a hydra member in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But for people of a certain age or comedy lovers, he was a comedic genius and icon. He passed away last March at the age of 66. Yet, before prestige television became a thing, he subverted the sitcom format in two forms. He subverted the traditional family sitcom with It’s the Garry Shandling Show and then how we thought of late night talk show with his spoof, The Larry Sanders Show. The Emmys gave him a tribute that is well deserved with Jeffrey Tambor, his co-star on Larry Sanders giving him a final, “Hey Now!”

 Leslie Jones diffuses an embarrassing moment to prove that she is the best

During the obligatory accounting firm segment where they thank the accounting firm for tabulating the votes, Leslie Jones gets to poke fun at her unfortunate Twitter bullying that she received earlier this year. She took comedy and made the best out of the situation in a funny way. She got to go to Olympics, star in a blockbuster and be one of the funniest parts of the Emmys. Take that all the Twittr haters.

Rest easy Voice Over person

She had to say The People OJ Simpson: American Crime Story so many times and she did it in what seemed like a breath.

John Landgraf the most celebrated man at the Emmys

Thanks to The People vs. O.J. Simpson winning several of the key Emmys including Outstanding Limited Series. and the even a surprise win by Louie Anderson on the little seen Baskets, John Landgraf the head of FX got the most thanks throughout the show. With Atlanta and Better Things being so good this year, this may not change next year.

The ill-advised timing of the walk off music this year

Whether it is playing off Aziz Ansari even before he got a chance to speak or cutting to commercial in the middle of the producers of The People v. OJ Simpson celebrating their win for Outstanding Limited Series, the playing people off during their speech has always been a constant complaint during award shows. Maybe it would be better if the show as short but if the show is already three hours plus, might as well let it be a little longer by letting people finish thinking their loved ones.

One of the best directed… anything lost to Grease: Live

Beyoncé’s Lemonade is one of the best cinematic achievements of the year. Sure it was hard to make a live spectacle like Grease: Live but, if I could get on my Kanye-style high horse, Beyoncé had the best directing in a television, variety special. Stop denying someone who has nothing more awards and acclaim than she currently has. She clearly does not have enough.

Dame Maggie Smith won an Emmy and didn’t show up

A running joke throughout the show was how Maggie Smith has been treating the Emmys like The People’s Choice Awards by not coming to the Emmys every year she has been nominated for Downton Abbey. Maybe after winning four times already makes it a little less special. But, it was the last season of Downton Abbey and she got another win for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.

 

The video packages have been weird

My favorite part of award shows is when they show a little clip of the actor when their name is called during the roll call of the nominees. This year has been really weird in that some of the categories got a little picture of them in the series. Some got an audience reaction shot and then the drama categories got an Oscar moment that showed them in their most dramatic. All I ask for is consistency.

The Emmys celebrates the rise of Rami Malek

With Malek’s win of Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series for Mr. Robot, he gasped, “Tell me this is real.” Malek has been working in Hollywood for a long time, appearing in small roles like Larry Crowne. The best thing about the Emmys, that the Oscars can never do is that actors of a lesser name get to be stars. You do not see enough Sarah Paulsen, Christopher Darden, Regina King or Rami Maleks in movies. Television gets them onscreen and on awards shows.

Surprise wins all evening

Everyone knew The People v. OJ Simpson and Julia Louis-Dreyfus would win their respective categories. But, as a person who made terrible predictions and have been having a terrible batting average, the Emmys can surely be surprising. Louie Anderson won for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for Baskets and Kate McKinnon eked out a win for a great season on Saturday Night Live. But, the biggest surprise yet equally deserving win was Tatiana Maslaney winning Outstanding Actress for Orphan Black. This is an actress with a high degree of difficulty playing several versions of herself. She has been nominated for several consecutive years now but has always been blocked by other actresses. But this year is the year for the first time Emmy wins with Rami Malek and Tatiana Maslaney. 

A deserving win for Veep

It’s hard being the perennial favorite but Veep deserves its win for Outstanding Comedy Series. It is the smartest and funniest series on television playing so well to the current political climate that is starting to look more and more realistic. It is the second straight year it won the category and it had tough competition from Master of None to Transparent, all of which would equally deserve to win this award. How do I keep heaping praise on this great show?