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September 26, 2008 |

By Ted Boynton | Boozehound Cinephile | September 26, 2008 |

Pop Culture Item Consumed: The red carpet event and awards show for the 2008 Emmy Awards, or as we like to call it at our house, CraptemberFest. Consistent with Boozehound tradition, i.e., repeating something I did one time for a different awards show seven months ago, we have some very special awards of our own to hand out.

This was my first viewing of the Emmys in over a decade. Although we grudgingly watch the Oscars each year despite the numerous shortcomings of the Academy Awards, we actively avoid the Emmys most of the time. Even when there are high-caliber television shows on the air, the Emmys usually manage to fuck things up so badly that it’s difficult to believe anyone takes them seriously. Case in point: five seasons of “The Wire,” the best television program ever aired, resulted in one Emmy nomination for writing, and notably, that was for the relatively inferior fifth season. Not surprisingly, it didn’t win. I’m glad “Mad Men” won, but I’m scratching my head over “The Wire” not winning a single Emmy, ever.

Beverage Consumed: We drank champagne for the glamorous Oscars, so what goes with the Emmys? Vodka Slurpees. We used to do this when I was in high school: Buy as many giant Slurpees as you think you’ll want. These will melt on the way home, so you’ll want to mix them with more ice and plenty of vodka in a blender. Blend until Slurpee consistency is re-achieved. Drink. Try out Apu impression while saying “Slurpee” over and over. Mix next batch. Do not forget to put blender top on before blending. Repeat as needed or until overcome by sugar rush.

Yes, there are much better drinks out there that I haven’t shared with you yet. I’m not wasting them on the fucking Emmy Awards.

Summary of Action: Let’s hand out some hardware!

Hide Those Sweater Kittens Award: To the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences itself, for adopting a diametrically opposed position to the Oscars in its approach to the Chesticle Patrol. Case in point: an unusually modest Susan Sarandon, who shows so much tit at the Oscars that she can actually be nursed through your television screen. Alas, at the Emmys there was nary a bare hooter-top in sight, with the ultra-notable exception of Christina Hendricks, but she doesn’t count — trying to cover up her chest with a ball gown is like throwing a doily on Free Willy and Orca. Which brings us to …

emmy2008-rc42.jpgDid Someone Say Pillow-Fighting the Bishop?: Someone is going to have to invent a new word for Christina Hendricks, because “voluptuous,” “buxom,” and “sensual” are not getting it done. Pneumatolicious? I assume Christina has a disclaimer tattooed on her thigh: “Erections lasting more than four hours may require medical attention.”

To Thine Own Self Be True Award - Attention Whore Division: Oprah Winfrey, who predictably could not make it through her introduction without reminding people that “TV can cause people to buy books,” then obstinately waited for applause for her book club. Does performing good works indicate good character if those works are constantly accompanied by self-aggrandizing reminders to everyone of just how awesome you are? Oprah doesn’t drop a quarter in a homeless man’s hat without calling a press conference. (She also presumed to lecture Groucho Marx over his statement that television is educational because it drives him to another room to read a book. You know what, Orca? Groucho and I agree that you should go fuck yourself. There, I said it.)

To Thine Own Self Be True Award - Douchetool Division: To the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, for designating the five nominees for Outstanding Reality Television Host — Tom Bergeron, Howie Mandel, Jeff Probst, Ryan Seacrest and Heidi Klum, aka the Four Skidmarks of the Apocalypse plus a hot chick — as the hosts of the Emmys. This is the equivalent of having a gang of pubic lice host the awards for things you like about your body.

Too Close for Comfort Award: Ryan Seacrest interviewed Neil Patrick Harris on the red carpet, and all went well until … bump-bump-bummmmm … NPH’s boyfriend showed up. Seacrest looked like he just found half a centipede in the banana he was fellating. “Seacrest, out” indeed.

The “Let Me Confirm Your Opinion of My Intellect” Award: Jennifer Love Hewitt tells Seacrest that the set of “The Ghost Whisperer” is beset by all manner of mysterious phenomena, indicating the show is haunted. Jennifer, that keening you constantly hear on the set is the breeze whistling through your ear holes. Also, if you continue to insist on hiding the sweater cows, we’re going to have to revoke your invitation. What’s the point? It’s like Seacrest showing up without his signature awkward gay undercurrent.

Felicity Huffman WTF? Award: Which one of these doesn’t belong? Magnolia; TransAmerica; Phoebe in Wonderland; “Desperate Housewives.” Give it up, Felicity. It’s serious-actor time.

Some People Just Have It Award: Brooke Shields, both on the red carpet and during the show, looks like an old-time movie star. She’s a TV star in a film star’s body and just looks like she belongs at the Oscars. Having her in the same zip code with Jennifer Love Hewitt is like pitting Seattle Slew against a dwarf burro with three legs and oversized teats.

The McCleveland McSteamer Award: Fucking Patrick Dempsey. I really used to like him. Can’t Buy Me Love, Loverboy … he was a cute, unassuming kid with a genuinely self-deprecating wit. Now when I see him — studiously scruffy beardlet, smug TV actor smile — I just keep praying the sky will dump a blizzard of running lawnmowers on him. During his interview with Seacrest, Dempsey continuously interrupted his date-for-hire every time she started to say something. I’m sure she doesn’t know much beyond the going rate for a lap dance in West Hollywood, but that’s still just jackass behavior.

No Such Thing As Karma Award: To Jeremy Piven, who beat out Rainn Wilson and Neil Patrick Harris for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy. I like “Entourage” just fine, but here we have the douchophone getting an award for playing himself, while two of the more nuanced, subtle comedic talents out there get stiffed. That about right, Emmy?

There’s Something in My Eye Award: During Ricky Gervais’s presentation, they ran some clips of prior acceptance speeches, including last year’s ceremony, when John Stewart and Stephen Colbert called Steve Carell on to the stage to accept Ricky Gervais’s Emmy for “Extras.” Carell ran up on the stage, and he and Stewart and Colbert were jumping and hugging. It was humorous, but also touching, and even more so in retrospect, and I welled up just a bit to see them like that, the three of them in the rush of their respective successes, grinning and excited. There’s just darned few people in show business I admire more than those three, and if you ever laugh at a single word the Boozehound says, then let me thank those guys right now. Gervais’s follow-up bit with Carell about getting his Emmy back was also the funniest moment of the show. What a surprise that Gervais and alums of “The Daily Show” provided a glimpse of how good an awards show could be in some parallel universe where TV isn’t controlled by dipshits.

Now back to the suck.

Special Honorarium for the Dragon at the End of the World Eating Its Own Tail: In the category of Outstanding Director for a Variety Program, both the “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report” are nominated. And the award goes to … the director of the fucking Oscars. Yes, let’s commemorate yet another yawner of an Academy Awards program, in which they managed to squander John Stewart as host. That was some accomplishment.

Guess Who Isn’t Coming to Dinner Award: Conan O’Brien gets in the best dig of the night, commenting that he “had a few more jokes, but Katherine Heigl told me she didn’t think my material was Emmy-worthy.” Heigl couldn’t be reached for comment because no one gives a fuck what she says or thinks.

“I’ve Got Chunks of Guys Like You in My Stool” Award: Um, Igor Ivanovivicek (sp?) beats out John Slattery (“Mad Men”) for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama? Slattery has a second penis that he uses just for slapping guys like Igor in the face. Fucking Emmys.

Grizzled, Muscle Chick Award: Is Holly Hunter an upmarket Melissa Leo or a downmarket Kyra Sedgwick?

The Alan Ball Award for Tone-Deaf Taunting: Here is an actual exchange between “host” Tom Bergeron and “host” Ryan Seacrest:

TB: And now the two funniest men in America.
RS: Hannity & Colmes?
TB: No, I meant intentionally funny.


Get it? Because Hannity & Colmes are fuckwit fascist demagogues, so we laugh when they talk! Because we’re the smart ones, so their right-wing stupidity makes us chuckle.

(Is anyone else suspicious about the continuous Emmy battle between “Recount” and “John Adams,” nominated in many of the same categories, as an overtly pathetic maneuver on the Emmys’ part to appear pro-America? We’re patriotic! We love Revolutionary War America! But we’re also bitter about Bush stealing the election. Again. So this proves that liberals aren’t unpatriotic. This is somewhat amusing when the Oscars do it, because they actually are the “elite” in The Liberal Elite. When TV people do it, it’s just sad.)

Über-Nerd Joke of the Week Award: Actual comment scratched in the margin of my Emmy notes:

“Marcia Cross’s leaf-motif dress looks like an Ent stole the drapes from Tara to sew a gown for the ball. ‘Hrrrmmmm, hooooom, hrrrmmmmm, Ah do duh-clayah!’ (Is Ent too esoteric?)”

No cannabis was harmed in the making of this Boozehound column.

Do Not Resuscitate Award: Robin Williams was nominated for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Dramatic Series; I think it was for “Law & Order: Petty Misdemeanors.” It’s such a desperate grab to roll back the clock to his justifiably well-regarded turn in “Homicide: Life on the Street” in 1994. Robin, give it up. It’s over.

The Award for Raiding Madonna’s Closet: Is there a greater physical contrast of on-screen versus off-screen than January Jones? On “Mad Men” she’s a dead ringer for Grace Kelly. Every other time I’ve seen her, she looks like a crack-addled Jennifer Jason Leigh. Her Emmys “gown” was a bustier with a tatty skirt stitched on, and I wasn’t sure if she stole it from Madge’s dry cleaning or escaped from the second floor of the saloon in Dirty Dingus McGee. Have some pride, woman.

One Douchebag Short of a Six-Pack Award: To Adrian Grenier, Kevin Connolly, Jerry Ferrara, Kevin Dillon, and the unfortunate Perrey Reeves, aka the cast of “Entourage” without Jeremy Piven. Apparently he travels alone in case a roofied-up starlet keels over in the immediate vicinity.

I Don’t Care If He’s a Complete Prick Award: Justice prevails as Alec Baldwin wins for Lead Actor in a Comedy for “30 Rock.” I’m not sure there has ever been a more perfect fit between actor and role. Well, aside from Christina Hendricks in the role of “Ted’s one-sie.”

Contradiction in Terms Award: I’m sure glad they saved the Outstanding Host of a Reality Program for the end. So much excitement! Can’t wait to find out who won!

So That’s What Madonna Will Look Like in 20 Years Award: Who advised Mary Tyler Moore to go sleeveless? Ropey, stringy biceps swinging like sausages in a pillow case. Ugh.

How the Pairing Held Up: Empty convenience-store calories + Stoli = just about dead-on appropriate. No nuance, no subtlety, just a brick to the back of the head softened with some sweetness.

Tastes Like: Like a Slurpee with vodka in it. I’m far more interested in what Christina Hendricks tastes like. Criminy that woman is the definition of paint-stripping hotness.

Overall Rating: I give it an Emmy! Which probably means it sucks.

Ted Boynton is a dedicated sot who plans to leave his barstool to stalk Whit Stillman, now that someone has found Whit Stillman. Ted also manages to hold down a job and a wife, three hours each per day, whether they need it or not. Readers may scold, hector, admonish or taunt Ted by e-mailing him at [email protected]

... And That's When Christina Hendricks Melted My Face Off

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