Emmy veterans get lots of love at annual awards show

Posted Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014  comments  Print Reprints

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Same awards, different day.

The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, handed out Monday night at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles for excellence in television, felt like what the TV industry doesn’t give us much anymore: a summer rerun. Modern Family was named best comedy for the fifth time, while Breaking Bad — coming out of its highly acclaimed final season — took the top prize for drama for the second year in a row.

Other repeat winners included Jim Parsons from The Big Bang Theory (actor, comedy), Julianna Margulies from The Good Wife (drama, actress), Julia Louis-Dreyfus from Veep (comedy, actress), Ty Burrell from Modern Family (supporting actor, comedy) and Anna Gunn from Breaking Bad (supporting actress, drama).

Modern Family has now tied Frasier as the sitcom that has won the top honor the most.

The sense of deja vu overwhelmed what had been a year in which such new series as HBO’s True Detective and Netflix’s much-talked-about Orange Is the New Black and House of Cards were generating much of the water-cooler buzz.

Breaking Bad was the big winner of the night, bringing home five statues, with Moira Walley-Beckett getting one for writing, drama series, to go along with the acting trophies.

Modern Family collected three, including one for director Gail Mancuso. Also awarded three was Sherlock: His Last Vow in the miniseries or movie category, where the show’s Benedict Cumberbatch was named best actor, Martin Freeman best supporting actor and Steven Moffat best writer.

American Horror Story: Coven went home with two awards, one for Kathy Bates (supporting actress, miniseries or movie) and one for Jessica Lange (actress, miniseries or movie).

The rather predictable nature of the awards matched the ceremony itself. Saturday Night Live alum Seth Meyers, who now stars in NBC’s Late Night, was an amiable host but didn’t push any boundaries.

Still, that didn’t mean there weren’t some memorable moments. Billy Crystal offered a touching remembrance of Robin Williams. “He made us laugh. Hard. Every time you saw him,” Crystal said of the late comedian at the conclusion of a tribute to industry members who died last year. “Robin Williams, what a concept.”

Though True Detective star Matthew McConaughey went home empty-handed, his presence sparked a lot of attention from the stage. Jimmy Kimmel, in reference to his Oscar win for Dallas Buyers Club, said, “How many speeches of yours are we supposed to sit through?”

“So you won Oscar, [ People magazine’s] Sexiest Man Alive and now you want an Emmy, too. Isn’t that a little bit greedy?” fellow True Detective star Woody Harrelson teased.

Then Mancuso, during her speech, said, “If you don’t mind, Matthew McConaughey, I’m gonna make eye contact with you right now.”

The Normal Heart, which won for television movie, provided a moving moment as one of those brought onstage was Larry Kramer, the writer of the autobiographical play about the early days of the AIDS crisis upon which the production is based. He has been ill in recent years and, even though he didn’t say anything, his presence added a sense of grounded reality to an event celebrating fantasy.

This report includes material from The Associated Press.

Cary Darling, 817 390-7571 Twitter: @carydar

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