Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Religion and politics at the 2017 Television Critics Association Awards as 'The Handmaid's Tale' wins two awards


I'm starting with two comments from the Booman Tribune version of  Lots of politics in nonfiction television at the 2017 Television Critics Awards to fulfill yesterday promise that I would write about the winners of the Television Critics Association Awards today.
Don Durito: Samantha Bee is crushing it! My spouse has been a huge fan of Samantha Bee's show and got me hooked. Especially in these times, gallows humor does well. Her time on The Daily Show during John Stewart's tenure was well spent.

Me: I really have to watch her on TV, not just YouTube, where I'm subscribed to her channel.  Unfortunately, her show was not voted the best this year. From the press release: "A&E’s investigative true-life series LEAH REMINI: SCIENTOLOGY AND THE AFTERMATH received the award for Outstanding Achievement In Reality Programming; and ESPN’s provocative five-part documentary event O.J.: MADE IN AMERICA nabbed Outstanding Achievement In News and Information."  May she have better luck at the Emmy Awards, where "Full Frontal" has 3 Emmy nominations and "Not the White House Correspondents' Dinner" has 4.
Did I call those?  Sort of.  I thought John Oliver would win instead of Bee, but I also wrote ""O.J.: Made in America" has been nominated for six primetime Emmy Awards" and is also an Oscar winner.  That should have told me that the critics would likely pick it.  On the other hand, I opined "I suspect they will vote for either Leah Remini, a story about Hollywood that other people in Hollywood would like, or 'The Keepers.'"  The critics voted like the Hollywood professionals, for a Hollywood story.

Remini's show about Scientology winning ties into two other shows that won on Saturday, "The Handmaid's Tale" and "The Leftovers," both of which are about religion and government's response to it.  "The Handmaid's Tale" won two awards, Outstanding Achievement in Drama and Program of the Year, beating "Stranger Things" in both categories and "The Leftovers" in the first.  While "Stranger Things" left these awards empty-handed, "The Leftovers" shared a win for Carrie Coon's performance in it and "Fargo."  I have to be happy for Coon and "The Leftovers," as I was rooting for her and she was snubbed for her performance in this show at the Emmy Awards.  On the other hand, I expect "The Handmaid's Tale" of a theocratic dystopian America will win more honors at the Emmys than I expected just a week ago.

"Stranger Things" wasn't the only speculative fiction program to leave without an award.  "The Good Place" lost to "Atlanta" for Outstanding Achievement in Comedy and Individual Achievement in Comedy (Danny Glover beat Kristen Bell) and lost to "This is Us" for Outstanding New Program.  I thought Glover would win, but called "Black-ish" to win the Comedy award.

Finally, "Big Little Lies" won for Outstanding Achievement in Movies, Miniseries and Specials, while "Speechless" won Outstanding Achievement in Youth Programming.  I was rooting for "Elena of Avalor" to win the youth category, but I did say "Speechless" was the one nominated show I would actually watch.

That's it for this TCA, now for the other TCA, the Teen Choice Awards -- but only after more about the Emmy nominees.

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