Monday, August 25, 2014

The Emmys are now on Monday

Unfortunately, I won’t be watching the Emmys this year. I teach a class in comedy at USC on Monday nights. I secretly think that’s why the Emmys moved from Sunday, to avoid my snarky recaps. Yes, I could DVR them, start watching when I got home at midnight then stay up all night writing but that’s the kind of stuff you do when people pay you.   So what I shall do instead is write my review BEFORE the show.  After all, you KNOW what you are going to see. 

At least I have the option of not watching the Emmys. If you’re attending them you don’t have that luxury. One year David Isaacs and I were nominated for a CHEERS we wrote. At the time blue ribbon committees were assembled for a long weekend. Each committee was assigned a category and sat together to watch all the nominees. They each then filled out their ballots, ranking the contenders.

A few days before the ceremony I got a call from a friend who happened to be on the blue ribbon committee judging our category. He wanted to give us the heads-up that we had won. Our episode clearly received the best reaction; big laughs all the way through.

So I was really looking forward to the ceremony. David and I prepared our speeches and were ready to go.

You can probably guess what happened next.

Not only did we lose, but it was the very first award of the night. Now we had to sit there for three excruciating hours and watch happy winners and clunky self-congratulatory TV salutes.

The next day at the office we got several calls from other blue ribbon committee members who we didn’t know. They all said there must’ve been some mistake. To everyone’s knowledge we had won. They suggested we investigate.

The trouble is there’s no graceful way of doing that. What, we were going to demand a recount? They’d discover that yes, indeed, a mistake had been made and send somebody to the winner’s house to take the Emmy away from him and drop it off at my door instead? Or they’d do the recount and discover the results were in fact, accurate. Then we’d REALLY look like assholes.

No, we just had to suck it up. But it was a lonnnnnnnng night.

Best of luck to everyone tonight, even if others who weren’t nominated are more deserving or you’re in categories you have no business being in.

23 comments:

Bill said...

Probably should have brushed that story under the red carpet, still not gracious, it's a no win tale.

Darren said...

What did win ?

Barry Traylor said...

Darn. The only thing I look forward to regarding the Emmys is your recap. I'm not going to waste my time watching it.

Cat said...

What episode was yours, Ken?

VincentS said...

FRIDAY QUESTION: Although the "pilot" for THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW - which was actually an episode of THE DANNY THOMAS SHOW - was multi-camera, when the show proper was green-lit Andy Griffith insisted that it be single camera, his reasoning being that if the actors were performing in front of a studio audience they would be pushing for laughs. What's your take on that, Ken, especially since you're a director as well?

Anonymous said...

Back to Monday? Don't you mean back to Sunday? Or am I reading it wrong? I'm confused.

James Van Hise said...

I lost interest in the Emmys a few years ago when the whole theme of the night was celebrating reality shows, in front of an audience filled with actors and writers whose careers have been negatively impacted by the over abundance of cheap, terrible so-called reality shows (can you say Kid Nation?). The topper was when they spent the last segment of the show (at least ten minutes) having some kind of contest to choose the best reality show host. Just terrible.

Marty Fufkin said...

As per Anonymous, I was confused by the headline too ... Back to Sunday you meant, right?

Anyway, the awards story is quite ironic, when you think about how many sitcoms have used the "awards ceremony mistake" in their plot, most notably the beloved Mary Tyler Moore.

Dan Ball said...

Getting gypped on the Emmy sounds like something from a Bar Wars episode. Like if GARY'S was actually a competing sitcom, one of their writers would've "extended the olive branch" by telling you the win was in the bag. Then, you guys get ready to rub it in their face with the acceptance speech, then you lose and egg's all over your face.

Dan Ball said...

Getting gypped on the Emmy sounds like something from a Bar Wars episode. Like if GARY'S was actually a competing sitcom, one of their writers would've "extended the olive branch" by telling you the win was in the bag. Then, you guys get ready to rub it in their face with the acceptance speech, then you lose and egg's all over your face.

VP81955 said...

NBC is airing the Emmys on a Monday because it deems exhibition football more important to run on Sunday. Thankfully, I'm a baseball fan (go Nats!).

Ed Dempsey said...

It almost sounds like Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics. Since they seemed like a shoe-in, each person just voted however, thinking that everyone else would vote for Chicago. Oops...

Scooter Schechtman said...

The Simpsons episodes made a few references to getting snubbed by the Emmys ("unless of course that delightful Billy Crystal is hosting!"). By the way the FXX channel has been showing Simpsons nonstop from beginning to end, giving me a chance to catch good ones not in my dvds. Right now they're up to 1998.

The Bumble Bee Pendant said...

The Emmys are usually the most boring of the award show. I think this is becuase the nominees are often shows the general public doesn't watch (Parks and Recreations, Girls) or don't pay for (subscriber cable networks or netflix)

Network TV which still gets the most viewers are very poorly represented (usually deservedly so).

I do want to see Billy Crystals tribute to Robin Williams.

Rob Larkin said...

I haven't watched the Emmy Awards in decades so I'm definitely going to miss your snarky review, which I always enjoyed.

Wendy M. Grossman said...

Yeah, unless the committee members themselves were proposing to do the investigating, you were out of luck.

wg

Charles H. Bryan said...

Yes, it would be difficult and awkward to make that request, but demanding a recount is a great story idea for CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM. At first, I thought of Larry David demanding the recount, but it might be better if he was one of the people who told someone else that they were winning.

Besides, Emmy Shmemmy. THE WIRE never won for Best Drama.

Thomas said...

FRIDAY QUESTION:

I just read this:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/08/25/emmys-facts_n_5699168.html

And it says "winners" have to buy their own Emmy for 400 bucks. Who pays this - the studio? The agent (out of your earnings)? Or do the winners just get an invoice.

And since I'm posting this in a story about your loosing - all things considered, wouldn't you rather have the 400 bucks?

Ken Levine said...

Thomas,

That's not true. We don't pay for our Emmys. Maybe if a bunch of people win the Academy only gives out two or three and the rest have to pay, but no. No one I ever met who won an Emmy had to pay for it.

Chris said...

Friday question: if you have a scene that plays out in two adjacent sets, can you shoot it continuously if you block it well enough?

James said...

That's why the Teddy Awards episodes of the old MTM Show were usually great. You could be Ted and trip the winner on his way to the podium...

The Welshman said...

Similar thing happened at the Welsh BAFTAs last year, which was followed by an embarrassing u-turn.

http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-24372831

Mark said...

Hello, Ken. I bought "Must Kill TV" and "Where Am I" and discovered your blog just recently. I had a Friday question:Was there ever any plans for an expanded role for Harry Anderson on Cheers before he got Night Court? I thought he was great as Harry The Hat. Anyway love the blog.