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The Emmys Needs More Award Categories

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It is high time for the TV academy to take another look at the categories of its Primetime Emmy Awards. The Emmys are the greatest single achievement for TV shows and actors. However, the lack of effective patrolling while administering nominations has deeply affected the prize’s status quo over the years. ‘Trene’ got nominated in the best miniseries in its fifth year while ‘Shameless’ submitted itself for best Comedy Series. Yes, it was the show where a baby was snorting cocaine.

In a few categories, the most irrelevant submissions get accepted, while highly predictable ones sit out. With a colossal boom in the number of shows and content airing networks, both on the web and on TV it’s difficult to sieve out the best ones. Few categories are intensely saturated. As Academy Primetime Emmy Awards, chairman/CEO Bruce Rosenblum notes that as compared to five years ago, there were 40% more drama series submitted for consideration last year along with 60% more comedies.

The identities of TV shows today are a far cry from what the used to be in the inaugural years of television. Comedies and dramas do not just separate themselves via 30 and 60 minute airing time or through multiple or single camera set-ups. Instead, they have stricter definitions. A drama may also be a comedy and vice versa. With several genres getting introduced, followed by the concept of multi-genre shows, categories at Emmy do not seem to cater well to the needs of TV today.

Best Villain/Villainess should be added in the Emmys

Cyborgs, serial killers, murderous moms, unholy demons, mafia bosses, corrupt capitalists, or simply lifeless vamps; evil takes myriads of forms on TV. In all honesty, rarely are TV shows ever good without them. From canny dialogues to the most strenuous scenes, our bad guys do a lot more than what the protagonists do themselves. They are the ones who suffuse logic into the show, justifying the actions of the other characters.

But they do not get their dues. How would you identify Game of Thrones’ Cersei Lannister? She does not simply support the script nor is she a hero. Lena Heady has created her own space on TV, and she deserves the same space on an award show as well. A separate category for villains will reduce the burden for remaining categories. Furthermore, underdogs will also be missed out less often. This specific category can be gender neutral as well.

Best Moment on TV        

Every minute of a TV show can be analyzed for the thoughtful input that has been incorporated in its making. A show may not be the best. However, a single scene from it maybe just worth watching. Intelligent scripts, epic monologues, creative epilogues and denouements,  stem-winding climaxes, and mind scrambling performances may be available only in limited amounts in a show, but they stand on their own anticipating acclaim.

With a dearth of miniseries and misbegotten TV movies, the two categories can be called for a merger. Consequently, an award for Outstanding TV Scene can be assimilated in the categories of Emmy nominations.

Outstanding Debut

If newcomers are acclaimed for their breakthrough, it will only do them justice. It normally takes several years to hone one’s skills. Rookie actors are more prone to making bad choices with TV shows. So, even if they perform well in their projects, they would go unnoticed.  The introduction of an award for debutantes can greatly boost their morale and encourage them to do more good work.

Such an award will also open the way for The CW shows to shine at Emmys. The cast of such shows is wildly popular. But this gets missed out at award shows owing to lack of experience in the industry. Some actors turn in commendable performances for their first-time breaks and obviously deserve some exclusive appreciation.

Adding two, or at least one more category while replacing others will only reinvent the Emmys to compliment the present era.  Change is intrinsic to time, and the scope for growth is always unlimited.

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