Awards Season

Never Mind: The Emmys Will Show You Thanking Your Attorney After All!

An Emmy statuette

You might have seen less of the presentation of a few of this year's Emmys — but that plan was shot down after intense criticism. Vince Bucci/Getty Images Entertainment hide caption

itoggle caption Vince Bucci/Getty Images Entertainment

What have we learned from the dust-up over the Emmys' proposal to time-shift and slightly edit down the presentations of awards in eight categories, by presenting them just before the show and editing the footage a little? We have learned that people who are nominated for Emmys are very sensitive about the perceived slights in the way those awards are not only handed out, but televised. And now, they're getting their way.

The TV Academy has dropped the time-shifting plan, reportedly under threats from various guilds that if the awards in question weren't shown live — and if every moment of clapping, hugging, standing around, and thanking your lawyer weren't televised — the Academy would be punished with hefty license fees to use clips in future telecasts.

On the one hand, it seems ungracious to complain that not enough time is being spent televising yourself and those like you getting awards. It is a universe in which most of us simply don't live, where you can complain about the terms under which an award that's supposed to be an honor must be not only given but publicized. So much for "it's an honor just being nominated." Or even "It's an honor just actually winning the award."

But on the other hand, as previously discussed, how stupid was it to choose writers of dramas as one of eight awards you were seemingly demoting? It's all well and good to ask people not to take things as personal slights, but nerves are raw in Hollywood as much as they are everywhere else, and this is exactly how writers have often felt anyway — that they are underappreciated compared to actors and directors. It's just about the most foolish and politically ham-handed way this could have been approached, for my money, and it's no surprise that it blew up in their faces.

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