The awards show

I caught a bit of the Emmys on Sunday night. It’s been DVRed, but finding time to watch it this week will be tough. Easier instead to read the rundowns posted yesterday, either from NYTimes or Vulture, or from Twitter feeds and other social postings.

Two years ago, roughly at this time – following the Emmys, I posted on awards shows. It’s funny to think that again the Emmys prompts a post. After rereading my post from two years ago, I’m happy to say I’ve made some forays back into the entertainment business. Small steps.

But the awards show is an interesting animal. We’re watching the congratulations of people who likely enter our home at some point during the year, when otherwise we’d be watching the shows which they are on. The ratings were a record-low on Sunday, which may have something to do with the abundance of that other that we could be watching. We also are much more involved during the year with celebrity gossip thanks to social media.

So is there a place in the cultural consciousness for award shows? Should they even be televised? I’m sure that the question will continue being thought about among television executives trying to decide how best to sell to advertisers.

Award Shows

So the Emmys just passed. A few months ago the American Theatre Wing presented the Tony Awards. We’re moving into Oscar season, and films will inevitably start vying for position. And we’re left wondering – is it worth it?

There are questions of racism and sexism. Shonda Rhimes had this to say. Amber Tamblyn also made the news this week, bringing the industry as a whole to task.

Yet, viewers tune in to the congratulatory events, rooting for our favorites, almost American Idol-style. We want our picks to win.

I get a unique cross-section of opinions when the conversations start up around me. Though I haven’t done much in theatre or film the past couple of years, many of my colleagues and friends still work in the industry. Listening to them I hear of the problems going on set or backstage.

Sexual harassment among a prominent improv troupe. Pay discrepancies for actresses vs. actors. Unfair practices in casting when it comes to non-white performers.

And still, being entertainers, many people not in the industry would chalk it up to inflated egos not getting their way. They say it when it comes to sports, and authors, and performers.

“Get a real job,” they might say. And, in the face of their individual struggles, they are justified in that opinion.

As with most things, it’s not a simple cut-and-dry matter.

So go watch the movies. Get a Movie Pass for ten bucks a month. Make your pick for Best Film. The Academy Awards are right around the corner.