Sunday evening’s 2021 Emmy Awards received off to a rollicking begin — and not often let up, leaving final yr’s COVID-shellshocked ceremony safely in its rearview mirror.
What a distinction a yr makes.
There were no big surprises; as expected, each “Ted Lasso” and “The Crown” cleaned up (Best Comedy, Best Drama and stars/cost-star of each, together with Jason Sudeikis and Olivia Colman). “WandaVision” didn’t win, however there’s all the time subsequent yr.
Host Cedric the Entertainer led a boppy opening rap music/tribute to the late Biz Markie (“TV, I got what you need”) — signaling that, regardless of COVID protocols, it was all about having enjoyable. Tracee Ellis Ross, Billy Porter, Annaleigh Ashford, LL Cool J, Dave Burd, Anthony Anderson and many others received into the act. But Rita Wilson? Why?
Cedric’s opening monologue was intelligent and topical and felt like a (toned down) model of his stand-up act. I favored that, for as soon as, the preachiness and politics had been stored largely at bay. “Hacks” star Jean Smart gave a classy acceptance speech, choking everyone up when she thanked her late husband, Richard Gilliland, who died in March. A memorable second.
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The “Schitt’s Creek” gang’s teleprompter snafu was entertaining (whether or not actual or scripted). There had been some misfires: obnoxious “The Queen’s Gambit” director Scott Frank, who wouldn’t shut up and ignored his musical cue to get off the stage (twice); Bowen Yang’s “counting my steps” shtick; and the Tichina Arnold/Beth Behrs “heckling” bit.
But I actually favored the intelligent “Emmys Group Therapy” bit (Jason Alexander, Scott Bakula, Alyson Hannigan, Fred Savage, Zooey Deschanel, Dr. Phil). Deschanel: “I haven’t won an Emmy. My generation isn’t into awards. We’re all deserving of love and respect … but also, where’s my bleepin’ Emmy?
“All in all, it was a energetic, fun-filled telecast — a uncommon “talker” in a often boring, overblown style.
Surprise: Hannah Waddingham for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy.
Not as a result of she doesn’t deserve it (she does), however as a result of I figured she would cancel out fellow “Ted Lasso” co-star Juno Temple. Would’ve been good to see the “other Hannah,” Einbinder, win.
Snub: Ann Dowd
Seriously? Gillian Anderson? For Best Supporting Actress in a Drama? Her desiccated Margaret Thatcher in “The Crown” sounded constipated — actually. What the hell was that? Ann Dowd, who continues to shine as Aunt Lydia, deserved this.
Surprise: Kaley Cuoco’s neon ‘revenge’ gown.
“The Flight Attendant” actress, who was nominated tonight for Best Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, surprised on the pink carpet and throughout the awards ceremony, for her first look with out her husband Karl Cook. The 35-year-old actress announced she was separating from her husband of three years in early September.
Surprise: Will this man please shut up!
Scott Frank, the director of “The Queen’s Gambit,” wouldn’t shut up and dissed his playing-off music and prattled on and on. His longer than wanted acceptance speech was actually obnoxious and uncalled-for.
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Snub: Michael Okay. Williams
Michael Okay. Williams ought to’ve received for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama. Not due to his latest loss of life on the age of 54, (the voting passed off earlier than that, anyway), however as a result of he delivered a finely crafted, nuanced efficiency in “Lovecraft Country.” Winner Tobias Menzies was positive as Prince Philip — however sufficient with “The Crown” already.
Surprise: Reggie Watts
Who knew that comic Reggie Watts had such a terrific announcer’s voice? He adopts numerous accents in his off-kilter standup act — however this can be a first. He confirmed up for his announcer’s gig.
Surprise: Olivia Colman for Lead Actress in a Drama Series
She was positive, however my cash was on Uzo Aduba for “In Treatment.” At least they ignored Elisabeth Moss. Enough with all of the full-screen close-ups of her smirking on “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
Snub: “The Boys”
“The Boys” ought to have received Outstanding Drama Series (although it’s extra of a darkish comedy). It’s the best-written, most sharply acted present on tv proper now — a surreal mixture of violence, humor, intercourse and gore.
Surprise: Josh O’Connor for Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series
He was strong as Prince Charles in “The Crown” and delivered a measured, mature efficiency. I’m shocked, however glad, they awarded a first-time nominee.
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