Emmys 2012: Numbers up, but repeat winners were, too

September 24, 2012

The 64th annual Primetime Emmy Awards snagged 800,000 more viewers than last year, reaching 13.2 million people Sunday night, according to the network.

The numbers up “about 1 million more viewers than the last time the trophy show was broadcast on ABC four years ago, when it was hosted by the panel of reality series hosts — a broadcast widely regarded to have set a new standard for bad Emmycast ideas,” says TV Columnist Lisa de Moraes.

“Last year, 12.4 million people tuned in to the ceremony on Fox, down from the 13.5 million that watched in 2010.”

But while more people may have tuned in, some found frustration in the number of repeat winners. Aside from “Homeland” unseating “Mad Men” in the best drama category, other winners were unsurprising, says Style writer Dan Zak:

The other big winners were tiresomely predictable, and predictability makes for really, really, really bad television. The much-heralded Lena Dunham, the 26-year-old creator and star of HBO’s buzzy “Girls,” lost all three of her solo nominations within the first 45 minutes of the show. ABC’s “Modern Family” won its third consecutive Emmy for comedy series, and its supporting actors, Julie Bowen and Eric Stonestreet, exercised their “Why am I winning this again?” faces. Five of the first six acting awards went to performers who had already won once for their roles. These winners all seemed chagrined or perplexed, and spent a precious portion of their speeches apologizing to their overlooked — and, in all instances, more deserving — co-nominees. Even Jon Cryer’s wife seemed baffled when Cryer won best leading actor in a comedy for “Two and a Half Men.”

This is an endemic problem for the Emmys, says de Moraes, who addressed the topic following related questions in her live chat Monday:

OSCARS VS. EMMYS:

I watch the Oscars every year because the movies are new every year. The Emmys are so boring because almost every category is a repeat winner. So it just becomes the same exact people thanking the same exact agents every year. At least Mad Men finally lost this year. Last season of Mad Men was just one depressing episode after another.

LISA DE MORAES :

Redundancy is the enemy of  the Emmys and when the TV academy and show producers figure that out, they'll be making progress. So far -- no luck. Term limits maybe? That said, there was more turnover this year than in the past several -- new winners for best drama series, actress and actor -- that's three  biggies. The comedy wins were a repeat of last year...

PATHETIC!:

Hi Lisa -- after last night the Emmys ceased to be an important awards show, not that it wasn't headed that direction already. The show itself couldn't have been more awkward and awful (I never did figure out what the Tracy Morgan bit was about), but worse than that we're back to the whole repeat winner issue. I have nothing against the winners themselves, but why on earth doesn't the academy or whoever adopt some rules about how many times a person/show gets to win? Or are nominees simply going to have take themselves out of the running to avoid embarrassment (as I believe Candace Bergen who decided that 5 for Murphy Brown was enough)?

LISA DE MORAES : The competition would lose all credibility if there were term limits because then what is really being judge -- certainly not which programs and actors were the best in their field...If the members of the Hollywood creative community had any good sense, they would stand down as, like you said, Candace Bergen did after winning several consecutive Emmys for best comedy actress, to give others a chance... Instead, they continue to submit themselves for consideration, and then, when they win -- a 10th time in a row, they nick the Emmy show -- during the Emmy show -- for being so redundant.. Yes, I'm looking at you, Jon Stewart...

More on the 2012 Emmy Awards:

View a complete list of Emmy winners

Decoding fashion statements of the stars

Celebritology: When Julia Louis-Dreyfus wins, Amy Poehler wins

Celebritology: E! introduces mani-cam

Emmy Creative Arts winners

An assessment of the broadcast

The 10 best and worst dressed

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