2012 Primetime Emmys

I watched the Emmys so you didn’t have to.

Now normally I wouldn’t be watching the Emmys at all because I generally think they are pretty boring. I find most award shows boring, except for the Academy Awards. And I actually am not particularly bowled over by the Oscars either, but I’m far more invested in the outcome than any other ceremony.

Emmy voters tend to be fairly conservative in their votes; you see a lot of repeat winners a lot of years and I really don’t think that they get it right a lot of the time. The fact that The Wire (sing it with me – THE GREATEST SHOW ON TELEVISION) never received an Emmy in recognition of the outstanding acting is an embarrassment. So I take the results with a grain of salt.

But for you, dear readers, I was willing to give up my Sunday evening and sit through this foolishness. Because what kind of pop culture blogger would I be if I didn’t write something about the Emmys? Probably a more well-rested one, that’s for sure. But I’m willing to take one for the team and while I wasn’t at all impressed with the Emmys, there were a few moments that I was glad I did get to see live.

I kept a running diary of my thoughts as I was watching the show; now that I’m another year older my memory just isn’t what it used to be and I didn’t want to deprive you of my witty observations and insights. That just wouldn’t be fair to you. So without further ado, Heather’s thoughts on the 2012 Primetime Emmy Awards.

Red Carpet – didn’t watch it. I got home too late from football to catch it and it’s really just not up my alley.

Jimmy Kimmel’s Cold Open – I like Jimmy Kimmel a lot and I generally think he was a good choice to host, but this cold open didn’t do anything for me. The entire premise was just too silly, plus it forced me to put up with Zooey Deschanel, who is like nails on a chalkboard to me. Props to Lena Dunham for continuing to be awesome and get naked for the bit – something that those of us who watch Girls know she is willing to do – but I thought everyone involved deserved better.

I much preferred this opening from when Jimmy Fallon hosted a few years ago. This also cemented my total infatuation with Jon Hamm – he can sing on top of everything else? Swoon.

Opening monologue – generally pretty tepid. Not looking for Ricky Gervais’ scorched Earth technique that he employs at the Golden Globes, but this is doing Kimmel a disservice. He’s a funny guy. And it took approximately one minute for the obligatory Here Comes Honey Boo-Boo reference.

Supporting Actor in a Comedy

Nominees: Ed O’Neill (Modern Family), Jeese Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family), Ty Burrell (Modern Family), Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family), Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live) and Max Greenfield (New Girl)

Winner: Eric Stonestreet

I love seeing Amy Poehler and Louis CK together, so I am glad that they paired them for presenting. They were so cute on Parks and Recreation and both are awesome. Poehler looks fantastic.

This seems like a good time to say that I am kind of over Modern Family. It’s still a reasonably funny show, but it has not been nearly as good as everyone thinks since the first season. They have made Cam into a cartoon character and the story telling has, in my opinion, gotten very lazy. I’m not saying that it is bad, but it doesn’t deserve all the Emmy nominations. 4 actors from the same show in the same category is kind of ridiculous. I don’t really love any of these nominations.

Best Writing in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Louie, Girls, Parks and Recreation (2 episodes) and Community

Winner: Louis C.K, Louie

This is a very tough category, but I agree with Louis CK for the win. He’s a one man show; he does everything and deserves the recognition. But I would have been happy with any of these shows to win. The episode of Community that was nominated was brilliant. They really are all great. Lena Dunham received a lot of nominations, but I don’t think she’s actually going to win anything. I’m not a fan of these video vignettes of the nominees; I hope they aren’t going to use them all night. And I hope this is the end of all the Zooey I’ll have to endure for the evening. “Siri, what’s an Emmy?” Blech.

Supporting Actress in a Comedy

Nominees: Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory), Merritt Wever (Nurse Jackie), Julie Bowen (Modern Family), Kristen Wiig (Saturday Night Live), Sofia Vergara (Modern Family), Kathryn Joosten (Desperate Housewives)

Winner – Julie Bowen

I wasn’t particularly in love with these nominations either. I think they overlooked a number of performances that were much better than some of these. Merritt Wever looks terrible; her hair is an absolute mess. She should have paid someone to do it for her and if she did pay someone she should get her money back. I thought Kristen Wiig might have a shot here, but I should have known that no one stops the Modern Family steamroller. I am convinced that Julie Bowen is nuts; I have never seen an interview with her where I didn’t think that and this acceptance speech is doing nothing to disprove that. Though it is making me more impressed with the writers on Modern Family.

Guest Actor and Actress awards in Comedy

I’m with Matthew Perry – it’s kind of silly to go over the nominees for awards that were already given. And while no one can doubt my love as Jimmy Fallon, Jon Hamm was robbed in the guest Emmy category. He seriously killed in that live episode of 30 Rock. KILLED IT.

OK. I have to give it to them – that Modern Family vignette about the actress playing Lily being a monster was pretty darn funny. I’ll give credit where credit is due.

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Larry David (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men), Louis C.K. (Louie), Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory), Don Cheadle (House of Lies), Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)

Winner: Jon Cryer

It’s nice to see Mindy Kaling and Melissa McCarthy. Both are very funny ladies. But ugh – there is more to Melissa McCarthy than just rehashing her character from Bridesmaids. It’s getting old.

WHAT IS HAPPENING?!?!? Jon Cryer wins for Two and a Half Men? This is when the Emmys lost all credibility. That show is a steaming pile of poo. I’ve got no beef with Cryer, but he has business winning. I would have loved to see Louis C.K., but I would have been OK with Baldwin, who is always solid, or Larry David, who does what he does so well. Parsons is very good on BBT, but Sheldon is getting a little old. But Jon Cryer? Seriously? This will only encourage Chuck Lorre and no one wants that.

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Zooey Deschanel (New Girl), Lena Dunham (Girls), Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie), Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation), Tina Fey (30 Rock), Julia Louis-Drefus (Veep), Melissa McCarthy (Mike and Molly)

I did enjoy Kimmel referring to presenters as “award giver outers.” That just sounded funny

Colbert! If I wasn’t already excited about these nominees, having Stephen Colbert present would have done the trick. He’s fantastic. I’m glad Julia Louis-Dreyfus won. Veep is great and I just love her from her Seinfeld days. A really funny lady. And that bit with Amy Poehler was really good.

Reality TV…..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Winner – Outstanding Reality Competition Program: Amazing Race

Winner – Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program: Tom Bergeron

Random thoughts: The Beek at the Emmys? I never thought I would see the day that James Van der Beek was a presenter! And I appreciated them announcing the football score instead of stupid award show patter.

The Amazing Race almost always wins this. I have no idea why. It’s OK, but I wouldn’t consider it the juggernaut that it has become.

This The Big Bang Theory skit is funny. Sheldon watching the Emmys just for the accountants is pretty accurate. CPA! CPA!


I didn’t think Betty White was allowed to lose anything. Guess I was wrong. As long as Seacrest didn’t win I was happy. I dislike him intensely for no legitimate reason. Though he did help unleash the Kardashians on America, so I guess that is a reason.

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Nominees: Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad), Giancarlo Espositio (Breaking Bad), Brendan Coyle (Downton Abbey), Jim Carter (Downton Abbey), Jared Harris (Mad Men), Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones)

Winner: Aaron Paul

Holy Crap! Aaron Paul, bitches! I am so happy for him. He’s freaking amazing. Magnets! This was a tough category. I wouldn’t have been at all surprised if Giancarlo Espositio or Peter Dinklage won. In fact, this category has an embarrassment of riches. There were some fantastic performances last year.

This prank with Tracy Morgan doesn’t exactly work, but is moderately amusing. When channeled correctly, Morgan is pretty funny; when left to his own devices, he tends to get in trouble.

Presenters Martha Plimpton and Jeremy Davies may have the craziest hair combo of the night.

I generally hate the In Memorium segment, so Jimmy Kimmel paying tribute to himself, with Josh Groban singing “Beautiful” by One Direction was a nice change of pace.

Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Nominees: Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire), Michael C. Hall (Dexter), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey), Jon Hamm (Mad Men), Damian Lewis (Homeland)

Winner: Damian Lewis

How the f&$k does Jon Hamm not have an Emmy? This is crap! I’m outraged.

Lead Actress in a Drama

Nominees: Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife), Michelle Dockery (Downton Abbey). Elizabeth Moss (Mad Men), Kathy Bates (Harry’s Law), Claire Danes (Homeland)

Winner: Claire Danes

OK. I get it. I need to watch Homeland. I’m kind on the fence with Claire Danes – something about her rubs me the wrong way – but clearly this is a good show. Would have liked to see Elizabeth Moss recognized, but I’m OK with it. Plus Danes worked “baby daddy” into her speech, so that was fun.

Outstanding Variety Series

Nominees: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Colbert Report, Real Time with Bill Maher, Saturday Night Live, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon

Winner: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

10 years in a row for Jon Stweart and the team at The Daily Show. Well deserved – and glad to see the blood feud with Colbert and Fallon lives on.

Supporting Actress in a Mini-series or Movie

Nominees: Sarah Paulson (Game Change), Frances Conroy (American Horror Story), Jessica Lange (American Horror Story), Judy Davis (Page Eight), Mare Winningham (Hatfields and McCoys)

Winner: Jessica Lange

I still don’t understand how American Horror Story is a miniseries. But whatever. That ship has sailed. Jessica Lange was pretty fantastic so I’m OK with her win. She made Constance one of the most interesting characters on that show, which is impressive when one of your costars is a guy in a gimp costume.

Supporting Actor in a Mini-series or Movie

Nominees: Ed Harris (Game Change), Denis OHare (American Horror Story), David Stathairn (Hemingway and Gellhorn), Martin Freeman (Sherlock), Tom Berenger (Hatfields and McCoys)

Winner: Tom Berenger

I would have given this to Martin Freeman for Sherlock; I liked Hatfields and McCoys just fine, but Sherlock was far better and smarter. I didn’t even realize that Tom Berenger was in Hatfields and McCoys, however, so I guess he really disappeared into that role. Or I just wasn’t paying attention.

Lead Actress in a Mini-series or movie

Nominees: Julianne Moore (Game Change), Connie Britton (American Horror Story), Nicole Kidman (Hemingway and Gellhorn), Emma Thompson (The Song of Lunch), Ashley Judd (Missing)

If your show is cancelled because it is terrible, you should not get to be considered a mini-series/movie. Ashley Judd, I’m looking at you. TV loves to reward film actors who “slum it” by appearing on the small screen, so I’m not at all surprised that Julianne Moore won. I didn’t love Game Change, but thought Moore did a good job overall. Palin has been very good for actors, as Tina Fey won an Emmy for playing her on SNL.

Lead Actor in a Mini-series or movie

Nominees: Woody Harrelson (Game Change), Clive Owen (Hemingway and Gellhorn), Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock), Idris Elba (Luther), Kevin Costner (Hatfields and McCoys), Bill Paxton (Hatfields and McCoys)

Winner: Kevin Costner

Presenter Gennifer Goodwin = adorbs. Man ABC is really pimping out their entire stable of stars tonight. Has anyone not presented?

I was pulling for Benedict Cumberbatch (who actually deserved it) or Idris Elba (who I just love) for this one, but I figured that Kevin Costner would win as the biggest name nominated. Emmy voters are fairly predictable. But man, Costner did not look at all happy to be there. And what the hell was he talking about?

Outstanding Drama Series

Nominees: Boardwalk Empire, Breaking Bad, Downton Abbey, Mad Men, Homeland, Game of Thrones

Winner: Homeland

This best drama category is like picking my favorite child – I love them all so much. So of course the only one I don’t watch wins. This Homeland is quite a show; I have 7 days to watch the first season.

Outstanding Comedy Series

Nominees: Curb Your Enthusiasm, Girls, 30 Rock, Veep, Modern Family, The Big Bang Theory

Winner: Modern Family

Yay! Michael J. Fox is a presenter. I’d like to see him and Tom Hanks in a “nicest man in Hollywood”-off.

Blurg. Another bs win for Modern Family. It ain’t the shit, y’all. The best comedies weren’t even nominated, so I don’t even count this award.

LOL – not only did the cast of Modern Family get played off, they actually TURNED THE LIGHTS OFF on them. Brilliant. This year’s Emmy director just screwed himself out of an Emmy next year. Peeps don’t like that. A very weird ending.

The 2012 Emmys were kind of a mixed bag this year; Kimmel was fine, but is capable of much more. Modern Family won too many awards. I’m now stressed out about catching up on Homeland. Some of the best shows weren’t nominated for the right awards (I still love you Community!). I think I would have been better off going to bed early and just reading the results the next morning.

Did you watch the Emmys? What did you think?

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