And the winners are ...
|1||The Pacific (HBO)||8 wins|
|2||Temple Grandin (HBO)||7 wins|
|3||Modern Family (ABC)||6 wins|
Sunday night, the winners of the 62nd Primetime Emmy Awards were announced in a ceremony televised live on NBC. Combined with the statues handed out the previous weekend in a separate ceremony, the biggest winners of the year were the Tom Hanks-produced WWII miniseries The Pacific and made-for-TV movie Temple Grandin, both airing on HBO. And, with a total of 25 Emmy wins, that cable network finished 8 trophies ahead of its nearest competitor, ABC (which also boasted the most victorious broadcast network show, Modern Family).
In just a moment, we'll reveal just how accurate Metacritic users were in making their Emmy predictions, and we'll also sample the critical reaction to the Jimmy Fallon-hosted broadcast, which was highlighted by an opening song-and-dance homage to Glee. First, let's look at the evening's winners and losers.
Listed below are this year's winners in each of the major categories (including a few winners previously announced in an earlier ceremony). A complete list of winners in every category can be found at the official Emmy website.
|Best Comedy||Modern Family (ABC)|
|Lead Actor||Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory (CBS)|
|Lead Actress||Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie (Showtime)|
|Supporting Actor||Eric Stonestreet, Modern Family (ABC)|
|Supporting Actress||Jane Lynch, Glee (Fox)|
|Guest Actor||Neil Patrick Harris, Glee (Fox)|
|Guest Actress||Betty White, Saturday Night Live (NBC)|
|Writing||Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd, Modern Family (ABC)|
|Directing||Ryan Murphy, Glee (Fox)|
As predicted by nearly every expert, ABC newcomer Modern Family edged out fellow freshman comedy Glee for top honors, displacing NBC's 30 Rock, which had won the award in each of the previous three years. Actresses Falco and Lynch were also widely predicted to win their categories; it was Falco's fourth career Emmy win, but her previous three statues came in the drama category (for The Sopranos).
Stonestreet's victory, though certainly deserved, was more of a surprise; the former clown beat out several of his Modern Family castmates and last year's winner Jon Cryer for the trophy. Many people expected 30 Rock's Alec Baldwin to win in the lead actor category for the third consecutive year; instead, the award went to Parsons, who was nominated for just the second time in his career.
|Best Drama||Mad Men (AMC)|
|Lead Actor||Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad (AMC)|
|Lead Actress||Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer (TNT)|
|Supporting Actor||Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad (AMC)|
|Supporting Actress||Archie Panjabi, The Good Wife (CBS)|
|Guest Actor||John Lithgow, Dexter (CBS)|
|Guest Actress||Ann-Margret, Law & Order SVU (NBC)|
|Writing||Matthew Weiner and Erin Levy, Mad Men (AMC)|
|Directing||Steve Shill, Dexter (Showtime)|
As it did in each of the previous two years, AMC's Mad Men took home top honors in the drama category; the third-year show won a total of four Emmys in 2010. But it was fellow AMC drama Breaking Bad that dominated in the acting category. While Bryan Cranston's victory was widely expected (it was his third consecutive win), Aaron Paul's first Emmy win was not, but the Academy was able to resist sentimental favorites Michael Emerson and Terry O'Quinn from Lost to reward Paul's riveting performance.
Perhaps the most surprising upset of the night, however, came in the lead actress category. Kyra Sedgwick, star of TNT's highly rated cop drama The Closer, earned her first career Emmy over favorites Julianna Margulies, the Golden Globe winner for The Good Wife, and Glenn Close, a two-time Emmy winner for Damages. It was Sedgwick's fifth consecutive nomination for the role, but all she had to show for it previously was a 2006 Golden Globe award. And English actress Archie Panjabi was also a surprise victor; The Good Wife co-star's first-ever Emmy win (in her first nomination, no less) came at the expense of Mad Men's Christina Hendricks and Elizabeth Moss and Panjabi's own co-star, Christine Baranski.
|Best Made-for-Television Movie||Temple Grandin (HBO)|
|Best Miniseries||The Pacific (HBO)|
|Lead Actor||Al Pacino, You Don't Know Jack (HBO)|
|Lead Actress||Claire Danes, Temple Grandin (HBO)|
|Supporting Actor||David Strathairn, Temple Grandin (HBO)|
|Supporting Actress||Julia Ormond, Temple Grandin (HBO)|
|Writing||Adam Mazer, You Don't Know Jack (HBO)|
|Directing||Mick Jackson, Temple Grandin (HBO)|
|Reality Program||Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution (ABC)|
|Reality Competition||Top Chef (Bravo)|
|Reality Host||Jeff Probst, Survivor (CBS)|
|Variety, Music or Comedy Series||The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Comedy Central)|
|Variety, Music or Comedy Special||The Kennedy Center Honors (CBS)|
|Animated Program||Disney Prep & Landing (ABC)|
|Nonfiction Series||The National Parks: America's Best Idea (PBS)|
|Nonfiction Special||Teddy: In His Own Words (HBO)|
Bravo's Top Chef had a message for The Amazing Race: please pack your knives and go. The victory for the cooking competition means that CBS's long-running, globe-trotting scavenger hunt (a seven-time winner) is no longer the only show ever to take home an Emmy in the reality competition category. Disney Prep & Landing's victory was also a surprise; it was the first time since 2004 that neither The Simpsons nor South Park won the animated program award. But The Daily Show with Jon Stewart was able to do what The Amazing Race could not: win an Emmy for the eighth consecutive year, in the process denying viewers a chance to see Conan O'Brien deliver an acceptance speech for his canceled Tonight Show.
How accurate were the predictions?
One month ago, we polled Metacritic users on their predictions in 22 Emmy categories. As a whole, the user consensus picks were correct in just 12 of the 22 categories (55%), though many individual users performed better. The most accurate individual Metacritic users were:
- Jayon (17 out of 22 correct)
- Joshua Hunt (16 correct)
- Mike Gordon, Alex Herrmann, Luis Sanchez, Marco Savoia, and Jason Simpson (15 correct)
How was the telecast?
Well, it wasn't terrible. The consensus among critics seems to be that pacing was a major problem, while Fallon was a mixed bag as the host.
Everyone seemed to love the partially pre-recorded opening number, in which Fallon was joined by Jon Hamm, Jane Lynch, Tina Fey, Joel McHale, and other stars in a Glee-inspired number set to Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run." But writing in The Hollywood Reporter, Andrew Wallenstein notes that though Fallon started strong, he eventually faded as the broadcast wore on:
He relied too much on recurring bits that just weren't funny, including reciting Twitter suggestions to introduce award presenters and toting an acoustic guitar into the audience for quickie sing-alongs with the likes of Kim Kardashian and Julianna Margulies.
Similar comments came from TV Guide's Matt Roush:
Fallon was an affable and hard-working host, killing in his music parodies but dying any time he turned to that awful gimmick of Twitter-izing the presenter intros.
Though he (and most other critics) also hated the Twitter bits, TV Squad's Joel Keller liked Fallon as a host, and blamed the show's producers for not using the comedian enough during the broadcast's second half. In fact, many critics complained about the pacing and organization of the broadcast. Here's Alan Sepinwall, in HitFix:
Given how marginalized the movies & minis genre has become - dominated by wonderful but mostly little-seen HBO projects - it felt bizarre to have so much of the climax of the night be devoted to them, and then to have the "Mad Men" and "Modern Family" series wins be rushed through as an afterthought at the end.
On the other hand, some reviewers felt the show moved more smoothly. In The New York Times, Alessandra Stanley wrote:
It was a refreshingly light and speedy night that got a little manic at times. And that was a smart tempo.
Another fan was Mary McNamara. In the Los Angeles Times, she wrote:
There was a spring in the step of the 62nd Emmys that's been missing from awards shows so generally and for so long that some of us had begun to believe it had been permanently unsprung. Ambitious, energetically hilarious, and, most important, almost seamlessly constructed, this year's telecast actually did what the Emmys are supposed to do — celebrate television.
At TV Worth Watching, critic David Bianculli also called this year's telecast "a solid success, as was host Jimmy Fallon, who had energy to spare from the film-to-live opening segment on."
In addition to the opening number, most critics also praised another pre-recorded segment featuring the cast of Modern Family (with the addition of George Clooney) as the evening's funniest moment, while presenter Ricky Gervais also generated laughs merely by mentioning the name of Bucky Gunts, a director nominee for the Winter Olympics. But several critics noted the shocking omission of late TV writer/producer David Mills (The Wire, NYPD Blue) from this year's In Memoriam montage.
By the way, the early overnight ratings suggest that this year's broadcast will show a very slight improvement over last year's ceremony (and may in fact mark a three-year high for the event). And another positive: the show actually ended on time.
What do you think?
Were you happy with the Academy's selections? Did you like the broadcast, and Jimmy Fallon as host? Let us know in the comments section below.