North Texas Daily

Women shine at this year’s Emmy Awards

Women shine at this year’s Emmy Awards

Women shine at this year’s Emmy Awards
September 18
13:29 2017

Televisions highest honors were handed out Sunday night at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards.

Host and Emmy-winner Stephen Colbert kicked off the event with a fun sequence of song and dance which featured appearances by Anthony Anderson of ABC’s Black-ish, Allison Janney, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Chance the Rapper, among others.

In his opening monologue, Colbert did not hesitate to poke some fun at President Donald Trump, as well as the nation’s political state overall.

Coming off the heels of this politically-centered monologue was the awkwardly hilarious moment in which Sean Spicer popped on stage to exclaim that this will be the largest audience, period, to watch the Emmys both in person and on TV ever.

However, it was the women of the night who stole the show, as women of many colors and backgrounds were honored in what seemed like some of the toughest races ever.

Here is a breakdown of who was nominated, who won and who should have walked away with the award.

Outstanding Drama Series:

Nominees: Better Call Saul, House of Cards, Stranger Things, The Crown, The Handmaid’s Tale, This Is Us and Westworld.

Winner: The Handmaid’s Tale, up against stiff competition, won the award for its debut season. It is even more significant that this series is from a streaming platform. The dystopian series, based on Margaret Atwood’s 1985 novel by the same name, depicts life in the near future following a civil war and collapse in fertility rates, where fertile women are placed in the homes of the wealthy and suffer through ritualized rape in order to produce children for their male masters.

Who Should Have Won: It was a close call. With so many freshman series this year (and the noticeable absence of Game of Thrones, as it’s seventh season aired after the eligibility date for this years Emmy’s). I was stuck between rooting for either This Is Us and The Handmaid’s Tale, but I am happy with the prevailing series.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Nominees: Sterling K. Brown (This Is Us), Anthony Hopkins (Westworld), Bob Odenkirk (Better Call Saul), Matthew Rhys (The Americans), Liev Schreiber (Ray Donovan), Kevin Spacey (House of Cards) and Milo Ventimiglia (This Is Us).

Winner: Sterling K. Brown won his second consecutive Emmy, after winning last year in the Supporting Actor in a Limited Series category for playing attorney Christopher Darden in The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story.

Who Should Have Won: I was rooting for Brown in this category, as his performance as Randall in This Is Us is a revelation. He, and the show itself, is among the best in broadcast television.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Nominees: Viola Davis (How to Get Away With Murder), Claire Foy (The Crown), Elisabeth Moss (The Handmaid’s Tale), Keri Russell (The Americans), Evan Rachel Wood (Westworld) and Robin Wright (House of Cards).

Winner: Elisabeth Moss finally won. After being nominated eight times for her supporting role in Mad Men, it took Moss at center stage of this dystopian series to be recognized for her hard work.

Who Should Have Won: Elisabeth Moss was very deserving, but Robin Wright has been nominated five consecutive times for her role on House of Cards, and not to mention Keri Russell not even being nominated for the first three seasons of the brilliant The Americans before receiving her first nomination last year. And with past winner Viola Davis (who picked up an Oscar earlier this year) and breakout star Claire Foy also in the category, any of these women deserved to win.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Nominees: Jonathon Banks (Better Call Saul), John Lithgow (The Crown), Mandy Patinkin (Homeland), Michael Kelly (House of Cards), David Harbour (Stranger Things), Ron Cephas Jones (This Is Us) and Jeffrey Wright (Westworld).

Winner: John Lithgow walked away with his sixth Emmy, this one for playing Winston Churchill on the Netflix original The Crown, which chronicles the early reign of Queen Elizabeth II.

Who Should Have Won: Ron Cephas Jones was a breakout star in the debut season of NBC’s This Is Us, playing terminally-ill William. While there is no doubt that Lithgow is an amazing performer and that his turn from comedy to drama is striking, I still think Jones should have been honored this year instead of someone who already has five trophies.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Nominees: Ann Dowd (The Handmaid’s Tale), Samira Wiley (The Handmaid’s Tale), Uzo Aduba (Orange Is the New Black), Millie Bobby Brown (Stranger Things), Chrissy Metz (This Is Us) and Thandie Newton (Westworld).

Winner: Ann Dowd won her first Emmy on Sunday at 61 years old. The longtime character actress received two nominations this year, with the other being for her guest role on HBO’s The Leftovers.

Who Should Have Won: With two-time Emmy winner Uzo Aduba in the category again, breakout star Chrissy Metz and 13-year-old Millie Bobby Brown of the hit series Stranger Things, it was hard to predict who would prevail. But I was happy to see an acting veteran get some recognition.

Outstanding Comedy Series

Atlanta, Black-ish, Master of None, Modern Family, Silicon Valley, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Veep.

Winner: Veep won this award for the third consecutive year and has been nominated every year of its run. This amazing and vulgar gem of a show has been on a hot streak the last few years, and I hope its recently announced seventh and final season takes home as many awards as it possibly can.

Who Should Have Won: Veep. Veep. Veep.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Donald Glover (Atlanta), Aziz Ansari (Master of None), Zach Galifianakis (Baskets), Anthony Anderson (Black-ish), William H. Macy (Shameless) and Jeffrey Tambor (Transparent).

Winner: Donald Glover, for his role as Earnest “Earn” Marks on the FX original series, won. His performance, and the series overall, received widespread critical acclaim.

Who Should Have Won: This one went to the deserving nominee, as Glover is a young and brilliant comedian who has been producing quality material for years.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Pamela Adlon (Better Things), Jane Fonda (Grace and Frankie), Lily Tomlin (Grace and Frankie), Allison Janney (Mom), Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep), Ellie Kemper (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt) and Tracee Ellis Ross (Black-ish).

Winner: Julia Louis-Dreyfus made Emmy history, winning her sixth consecutive Emmy for her role as Selina Meyer in HBO’s Veep. No other performer has ever won six Emmy awards for any single role — especially not in a row. This win brings Louis-Dreyfus’s acting Emmy total to eight (tying the record also held by Cloris Leachman). Seven of them were for lead actress in a comedy, and the other win was for supporting actress in Seinfeld. She has also won three other Emmys as an executive producer on Veep.

Who Should Have Won: Louis-Dreyfus is undeniably amazing, and while it would be great to award other deserving actresses for their work, I think Louis-Dreyfus deserves every award possible for Veep.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Alec Baldwin (SNL), Louie Anderson (Baskets), Tony Hale (Veep), Matt Walsh (Veep), Ty Burrell (Modern Family) and Tituss Burgess (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt).

Winner: Alec Baldwin’s turn as Donald Trump in most of SNL’s season 42 episodes made him the clear favorite to win this category, despite strong performances from other nominees, including two-time winner Hale and last year’s surprise winner Louie Anderson.

Who Should Have Won: Baldwin was always the clear winner.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Vanessa Bayer (SNL), Leslie Jones (SNL), Kate McKinnon (SNL), Judith Light (Transparent), Anna Chlumsky (Veep) and Kathryn Hahn (Transparent).

Winner: Kate McKinnon took home her second consecutive Emmy for her work on SNL, and deservedly so. She is easily one of the strongest performers to come out of SNL this decade — maybe ever. Her ever-growing number of impressions continues to impress, and I hope she will stay on SNL for the foreseeable future.

Who Should Have Won: McKinnon all the way. However, I am slightly saddened that Anna Chlumsky has yet to be rewarded for her work on Veep. I have hopes that she may finally win for the acclaimed comedy’s upcoming final season.

Outstanding Limited Series or TV Movie

Nominees: Genius, Fargo, The Night Of, Feud: Bette and Joan and Big Little Lies.

Winner: Big Little Lies, the limited series starring Oscar-winners Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon among other talented performers, took home the big award of the night despite competing against strong competition from past winner Fargo and the critically-acclaimed The Night Of and Feud.

Who Should Have Won: All of these limited series and anthologies are top notch TV, but the show seemed to be mostly about Lies. The Night Of would have probably come in as a close second. I couldn’t count out Feud, as its portrayal of aging Hollywood women and their mistreatment by the industry was all too relevant, despite being set in the ’60s.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or TV Movie

Nominees: Ewan McGregor (Fargo), Geoffrey Rush (Genius), Riz Ahmed (The Night Of), John Turturro (The Night Of), Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock: The Lying Detective) and Robert De Niro (The Wizard of Lies).

Winner: Riz Ahmed, who was also nominated for outstanding guest actor in a comedy series for HBO’s Girls this year, took home the gold at his first Emmys. In the limited series, he portrayed a Pakistani-American Muslim college student who was accused of murdering a girl in New York City.

Who Should Have Won: This was another stiff category that contained two Oscar winners and a past Emmy winner. I was rooting for McGregor. His roles as brothers Emmit and Ray Stussy in the brilliant anthology Fargo were the best performances of his career.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or TV Movie

Nominees: Felicity Huffman (American Crime), Nicole Kidman (Big Little Lies), Reese Witherspoon (Big Little Lies), Carrie Coon (Fargo), Jessica Lange (Feud: Bette and Joan) and Susan Sarandon (Feud: Bette and Joan).

Winner: Nicole Kidman won her first Emmy for playing Celeste Wright in HBO’s Big Little Lies. Kidman portrays a wife and mother who is being abused by her husband. In her acceptance speech, Kidman thanked the academy for recognizing her work, and hoped it would shed light on the issue of domestic abuse, which she said happens much more often than we allow ourselves to believe.

Who Should Have Won: This may be the toughest category ever to have to choose just one winner. Emmy-winner Huffman has given three powerful performances in Crime to no prevail, Witherspoon gave her all in the same series Kidman won for and Coon gave a scene-stealing performance in Fargo this year. On the other hand, you have Oscar-winners playing Oscar-winners in Feud, which depicted the real-life feud between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford with strong performances from legends Lange (a past winner in this category) and Sarandon.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series

Nominees: David Thewlis (Fargo), Alfred Molina (Feud: Bette and Joan), Stanley Tucci (Feud: Bette and Joan), Alexander Skarsgard (Big Little Lies), Bill Camp (The Night Of) and Michael Kenneth Williams (The Night Of).

Winner: Alexander Skarsgard took home the gold in somewhat of a surprise win. While Big Little Lies was a breakout series this past year with excellent performances all around, I would not have guessed Skarsgard would win.

Who Should Have Won: Hard to say in such a crowded category, but David Thewlis was delightfully villainous as V.M. Varga in the third season of FX’s anthology series Fargo, and Stanley Tucci was great in FX’s other anthology entry Feud. I personally was rooting for Thewlis here.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or TV Movie

Nominees: Regina King (American Crime), Laura Dern (Big Little Lies), Shailene Woodley (Big Little Lies), Michelle Pfeiffer (Wizard of Lies), Judy Davis (Feud: Bette and Joan) and Jackie Hoffmann (Feud: Bette and Joan).

Winner: Laura Dern won her first Emmy after six nominations for her work in Big Little Lies. In her acceptance speech, Dern thanked the many women who surround and inspire her, including her powerful Big Little Lies costars.

Who Should Have Won: I think they got this one right. Dern has been acting for decades, and it is about time she receive some recognition. Regina King, who won two consecutive Emmys for her amazing work on American Crime, was not able to achieve a three-peat this year, but she is still a legend.

Also, I am not over the fact that Mary Elizabeth Winstead did not even receive a nomination for her role in Fargo. A major snub.

Outstanding Variety Sketch Series

Nominees: Billy on the Street, Documentary Now, Drunk History, Portlandia, The Tracy Ullman Show and Saturday Night Live.

Winner: SNL was the clear winner here. Coming off one its strongest seasons and with 22 nominations — more than any other season — it has an immense amount of support from Hollywood. If any other series had won, it would have been quite the upset.

Who Should Have Won: Short and simple — see above.

Other significant wins:

Master of None’s Aziz Ansari and Lena Waithe won the Emmy for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series for the episode “Thanksgiving,” which is based on the real-life coming out story of Waithe. The episode traveled through time, depicting several Thanksgiving’s between 1995 and 2017, with Angela Bassett guest starring as Denise, Waithe’s mother.

With this win, Waithe become the first African-American woman to win the Emmy for comedy writing.

NBC’s The Voice won its fourth Emmy for outstanding reality competition series.

Overall, it was the women who truly shined Sunday night.

So many strong women were not only nominated, but also prevailed for portraying equally strong and compelling women.

With The Handmaid’s Tale’s eight wins, including those for Drama Series, Lead Actress, Supporting Actress, and Big Little Lies’ eight wins, including those for Limited Series, Lead Actress and Supporting Actress, it seems clear that Hollywood is getting better at creating great roles for women and then honoring them for their tremendous work.

About Author

Sean Riedel

Sean Riedel

Sean Riedel was the news editor at the North Texas Daily from August 2018 to May 2019, and previously served as a staff writer from June 2017 to August 2018.

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1 Comment

  1. Nick
    Nick September 19, 04:40

    Nice summary. Right there with you regarding M E Winstead; nice to hear it mentioned. I’m not over it, either.

    Reply to this comment

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