"It’s tempting to characterize Emmy voters as some sort of monolith willfully ignoring certain shows, when it’s actually a voting body with a lot of members, some of whom probably voted for other shows," says Jen Chaney. "Still, at a time when there are so damn many networks/platforms and series — and many people were quarantining and able to theoretically watch more television for at least part of the last year — it’s disheartening that the Emmy wins were not more surprising or widely dispersed. To put this in a little bit of perspective: Thirty years ago, in 1991, when there were far fewer series and networks/outlets, eight different shows were honored in the major comedy and drama categories. This year, again: There were three. Out of potentially hundreds that could have been nominated and taken trophies home. The people who care about television and awards shows — admittedly, an increasingly niche group — want to see shows and people recognized for taking big swings. They also want to see genuine inclusivity, not just in terms of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, and ability, but also via a more tacit acknowledgment of the breadth of shows that currently exist on television. The number of offerings recognized each year should be growing, not shrinking. True risks should be rewarded more often, not less."
The Emmys' "Just a Friend" cover made promises about diversity the voters didn't keep: "The Emmy edition of (Biz) Markie’s earworm included nods to classics like. Friends, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Sesame Street, as well as newer favorites including Ted Lasso, Schitt’s Creek and PEN15," says Tracy Brown. "It also included a shoutout to diversity on TV that the awards themselves, which shut out actors of color despite a historic number of nominations, did not reflect."
Emmy voters showed they aren't interested in "nerd TV" shows like WandaVision and The Mandalorian: "Absolutely zero genre shows or specials managed to snag a win at the 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards last night," says Rob Bricken. "Neither WandaVision nor The Mandalorian, which had over 20 nominations each in 2021, managed to win any of the big, important Emmys for episodes, directors, actors, etc. and were instead relegated to their more technical wins at the Creative Arts Emmys that took place last week. Instead, Netflix’s The Crown, Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso, and HBO’s Mare of Easttown and Hacks dominated the awards. These are all great shows—and I’m not saying there haven’t been plenty of great, non-genre TV series this past year or so—I’m just saying WandaVision’s Kathryn Hahn was definitely robbed."