EMMYS 2013: How Much Reality is Too Real?
We are taking a break from fashion this week. It’s only a mild hundred and two here in the Desert today but I’m still not really in the mood to discuss all the boiled wool and fur showing up in stores right now and, aside from the fact that I learned a fantastic new way to tie a scarf yesterday, nothing notable has happened the past few days anyway. On the other hand, Killough feels that things are heating up in the Emmy race and already covered in some great detail his feeling on who should and who would win in the traditional categories. I’m going to take a stab at the reality genre, since that’s pretty much all I watch anyway.
[heading]Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program[/heading]
This category is peopled by such luminaries as chef Anthony Bourdain of The Taste and hosting fixture Tom Bergeron on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars. Cat Deeley is quite fetching on Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance but all that weird interpretive dance shit makes me uncomfortable. Come to think of it, the fact that they’re still putting Betty White to work on Betty White’s Off Their Rockers makes me a little uncomfortable, too. My boyfriend Scott is in completely in love with Project Runway‘s Heidi Klum and I think Tim Gunn is brilliant but that show lost its luster when it moved to the Lifetime network. Also, they haven’t had any cute guys on there in ages.
I think Ryan Seacrest, as over-hyped as he is, could be deserving of this award for his work on American Idol. He is both cheesy and the main reason the Kardashians came to terrorize the televisions of America but I’ve witnessed firsthand his hosting expertise a few times and have to admit that he is smooth, professional and engaging in front of even the largest live audiences. He can also fix an awkward situation before the people watching from home even notice a glitch. I was sitting about thirty feet away at last year’s Idol Finale when record exec Jimmy Iovine was brought up to the judge’s table for a funny bit about how he always called Jennifer Lopez the wrong name. They couldn’t get his chair to level properly in the short time allowed and, in the split second before the show went live, Seacrest flung the uncooperative chair off the stage and positioned Iovine perfectly between Lopez and Randy Jackson without missing a beat. Was it enough for me to forgive him for the Kardashians? Probably not, but I was seriously impressed.
None of the actual nominees can hold a candle, however, to RuPaul Charles and his work on RuPaul’s Drag Race and I hope The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences soon realizes this grievous omission. Chair-tossing skills aside, can you name me one other host who lovingly guides contestants through the show as a gawky, bald guy then appears for the judging as a sassy, drop dead gorgeous femme fatale? That’s right, you can’t. Case closed.
Who should win: RuPaul
Who probably will win: Who the hell knows? Betty White, probably.
[heading]Outstanding Reality-Competition Program[/heading]
Our second category includes So You Think You Can Dance and Project Runway as well as the glittery-costumed Dancing with the Stars but I feel they’ve all been dragging on a bit too long. I mean, there’s a reason The Price is Right and Wheel of Fortune aren’t on that list. Top Chef may seem fresher but it’s always been problematic for me because the show is about the flavor of these amazing dishes that we cannot taste on our side of the television screen. The Amazing Race on CBS should probably win for the sheer logistics of filming these nutjobs running all over damn place in different countries around the world but I didn’t even watch it when hunky Chippendales dancers were competing so that’s saying something. Maybe NBC’s The Voice has a chance because those swiveling Star Trek chairs are cool and Adam Levine is dreamy.
It would be a hollow victory though, because, as you probably have noticed, RuPaul’s Drag Race didn’t receive a nomination. The reality-competition show with the most heart and the lowest budget was overlooked even though the world has never before seen such masterpieces concocted of bronzer and duct tape or experienced the wonder of a drag queen with a glue gun. It’s a crime, really.
Who should win: RuPaul’s Drag Race, duh.
Who probably will win: The Voice
[heading]Outstanding Reality Program[/heading]
Finally, we arrive at the category where the nominees read like stuffy, educational public television stuff even though Antiques Roadshow is the only one that’s actually on PBS. Deadliest Catch and Myth Busters are on Discovery and Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives is on Food network. ABC’s Shark Tank has nothing to do with sharks but Undercover Boss on CBS is exactly what it says: a boss who goes undercover in his own business. I happened to catch the episode where the president of Hooters was shocked to learn that Hooters wasn’t a place he’d want his own daughter working.
It’s interesting that none of the blockbuster reality shows like the Real Housewives of anywhere or Keeping Up with the Kardashians were noticed by the Academy. Maybe they’re trying to keep their noses clean by focusing on the highbrow shit. The fun stuff like Say Yes to the Dress and Bar Rescue that I could watch for hours on end was also overlooked but I don’t have a problem with that. It’s not exactly award-worthy programming, as you can imagine. Since I’ve never seen most of the nominated shows, I’m going by the titles on this one, kind of like choosing a wine with the best looking label.
Who should win: You guessed it. RuPaul’s Drag Race!
Who probably will win: Let’s say, um, Deadliest Catch.
Gosh, that was nearly as much fun as predicting the Oscars without seeing any movies!
love this article, james!
JimShippee Thanks Jim!! Glad you enjoyed it!