So here’s the thing: I know awards of any kind are entirely subjective. Still, when there’s a general consensus among the public, you tend to expect certain things. For example, everyone knew Brokeback Mountain was a superbly made movie and deserved an Academy Award nomination.
I also know that people watch way too much television. That should, I would think, include members of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. Still out of all the major (and even minor) awards shows, the one that seems most out of step with the public consciousness remains the Emmy Awards. I find that odd given how much television we all watch and talk about.
As a result, in looking over yesterday’s nominations I remain genuinely amazed at how clueless the membership appears. What’s worse, steps taken to correct the oversight (so credit to the Academy board for finally addressing the problem) didn’t work. This year, the top 15 nominations in every category were reviewed by a special panel to finalize the nominations.
The final list came out yesterday and it was received with a collective sense of surprise…at the lack of fresh names. As usual, anything deserving on UPN or WB or even Sci-Fi were ignored despite critics and audiences raving about certain shows or performers.
Personally, I was disappointed to see the brilliant writing and Lauren Graham’s work on Gilmore Girls got passed over for a fifth straight year. Battlestar Galactica has some strongly written episodes and some nice performances that might have deserved a nod, but it got technical nominations for things like costumes.
You also have to scratch your head how Martin Sheen, who had little work with this season, got another nomination for West Wing but Hugh Laurie got passed over for his superior work on House. Speaking of that show, Sela Ward deserved a guest star berth. At least the academy acknowledged Michael J. Fox’s fine performance on Boston Legal.
It’s getting to the point where I suspect the Academy needs to make certain the voters have actually watched any of these shows or perhaps instill term limits. Or, maybe add actual fans of television to aid in the nomination process. I certainly don’t want the Emmys turned into the People’s Choice Awards, but clearly something drastic needs to change.