Emmy awards honor the best of 2014 television

Emily Berthiaume, Teen Interest Editor

The 66th annual primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Seth Meyers, aired on Monday, August 25, with broadcast and cable TV and previous Emmy winners taking home the most awards. BBC and PBS’s Sherlock took home the most awards of any individual show, with seven wins. Netflix’s original shows Orange is the New Black and House of Cards, which had 16 nominations combined in the main categories, only won one award, for Uzo Aduba in Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series. Laverne Cox and Natasha Lyonne from Orange Is the New Black were also nominated in this category. Out of all twelve main acting awards, only two went to non-previous Emmy winners.

Sherlock, which was nominated 12 times this year and had never won any previous Emmys, ended the night with a win for Lead Actor in a TV Movie/Miniseries for Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock himself and Outstanding Supporting Actor for Martin Freeman as Watson. Other wins included Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special for writer Steven Moffat.

AMC’s Breaking Bad won big Monday night. Breaking Bad, which recently concluded its final season, won five awards total, and had its second win for Outstanding Drama. Bryan Cranston won for Best Lead in a Drama for his portrayal of Walter White, a former chemistry teacher who found out he had terminal cancer and decided to sell meth to provide for his family. This was his fifth Emmy. Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama went to Aaron Paul for his portrayal White’s partner, Jesse Pinkman, and Anna Gunn, who played White’s wife, won Best Supporting Actress. In his acceptance speech for Outstanding Drama, the show’s creator, Vince Gilligan, said it was a “wonderful time to be working in television”. AMC has won six of the last seven Emmy Awards for Outstanding Drama Series, which is a first for any network. Mad Men on AMC won four times, in 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.

In the comedy section, ABC’s Modern Family took home the highest award for Outstanding Comedy Series. Ty Burrell won Outstanding Supporting Actor in Comedy Series for his role as Phil Dunphy, a father of three kids who prides himself in being the “cool” dad.

Julianna Marglies won Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her role as Alicia Florrik in CBS’s legal drama The Good Wife, which was her third Emmy. Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series went to Julia Louis-Dreyfus for Veep, which was her third consecutive Emmy and fifth overall.

Because of the large amount of repeat winners, NPR described the show as “a bit like seeing an old flame promise to treat you better, only to slide right back into the same old disappointing behavior.” Of all 12 acting awards handed out, only two went to non-previous Emmy winners.

While diversity was common in the nominations – 11 black actors were nominated – only two actually won, and those in guest acting. Ever since the early 1950s, no woman of color has won in drama – Kerry Washington for Scandal was passed over this year. Mindy Kaling and Sofia Veragara also noticeably received no nominations.

The show was not all business, however – first-time host Seth Meyers of Late Night with Seth Meyers provided the evening laughs. When Jimmy Kimmel was on-stage, he poked fun at the conventional movie stars that were nominated for Emmys that night, such as Matthew McConaughey and Julia Roberts. He also made fun of Ricky Gervais, who was nominated for Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series for his Netflix show Derek.

“That is not a television face. That is a movie star face,” Kimmel said of McConaughey, then prompted the audience to look instead at Ricky Gervais. “That is not even really a television face,” Mr. Kimmel said. “That is a Netflix face.”

“Weird Al” Yankovic also made an appearance, making up words to wordless theme songs of shows currently on television, including Mad Men, Scandal, Homeland, Modern Family and Game of Thrones. Another funny moment came when Jimmy Fallon ran on stage after The Colbert Report won for Outstanding Variety Series over his show, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. He insisted there must be a mistake and then made Stephen Colbert’s acceptance speech as Colbert dictated it in his ear.

Overall, the Emmy Awards were successful, and many Hollywood stars went home with Emmys, most of them their second or even third.