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It's okay that this year's Primetime Emmys are favoring mass appeal over the niche and artsy

  • "The Emmys just can’t win," says Inkoo Kang of the Primetime Emmys favoring of shows with mass appeal over niche shows in recent years. But as Kang points out, the Oscars have largely celebrated niche movies "to accusations of self-sabotaging irrelevance." Kang adds: "Perhaps I’m going a little easy on the Television Academy, which, in voting on the Emmys, bestowed its garlands on only a handful of series this year despite theoretically having had a lot more time to catch up on their screeners during quarantine. Awards prognosticators are expecting Ted Lasso and The Crown to sweep the comedy and drama categories at Sunday’s award ceremony (to be hosted by Cedric the Entertainer), not least because they’ve respectively received 20 and 24 nominations. Other members of the 20-nods-or-more club include The Mandalorian (which tied with The Crown for the most Emmy nominations this year), WandaVision, The Handmaid’s Tale and Saturday Night Live, the sole network series of the bunch. I understand where the gripers about nomination hoarding are coming from, whether they lay the blame on too much TV or lazy and unimaginative Emmys voters. But the fact remains that the medium’s most prestigious award can’t fully convey all the excellence on television; there’s simply too much of it, and so much under the radar. But the case for the Emmys as a collective showcase of the industry’s middlebrow finest is an easy one to make — at least for the medium’s sake....It wasn’t too long ago when the Emmys earned the derision directed its way for, say, its umpteenth best-comedy trophy for Modern Family, a sitcom that felt past its prime almost as soon as it debuted. But in an era of infinite programming options, it’s comforting to have a consolidation of prominent picks to choose from, even if not every nominee is everyone’s cup of tea. The fact that there’s such great genre and tonal variety among the nominations, with, for example, WandaVision alongside Mare of Easttown, The Queen’s Gambit, I May Destroy You and Underground Railroad in the refreshingly undetermined limited series category, is one reason to celebrate their inclusion."

    TOPICS: The Crown, CBS, 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards, The Handmaid's Tale, I May Destroy You, Mare of Easttown, The Queen's Gambit, Saturday Night Live, Star Wars: The Mandalorian, Ted Lasso, The Underground Railroad, WandaVision, Award Shows, Emmys