Emmys 2012: Best and Worst Moments

The 2012 Emmy Awards are in the books, with the usual mix of perennial winners (The Daily Show making it a ten-peat), new blood (Claire Danes storming the Best Actress in a Drama category), and even a few “Why the Face?” victories (hello, Jon Cryer).

The winners and losers of the 2012 Emmy telecast, however, are an altogether different matter. Without further ado, let’s count down the 5 Best and 3 Worst moments of this year’s ceremony.

5) Presenting the statuette for Best Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, Mike & Molly star Melissa McCarthy makes hilariously ribald comments about each of the nominees. Among her best zingers? Jon Cryer (“God, I wore out that poster of Duckie”); Louis C.K. (“There’s something about that sweet, sweet, angry ginger baby skin that I like. I like it.”); and Larry David (“I don’t mind bald: Just think about it.”).

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4) 30 Rock‘s Tina Fey brilliantly sells a bit about forgetting her glasses and struggling to read the teleprompter, in which she describes the characters in the Lead Actress in a Drama Series category as a “an invisible shrimp trucker,” “a shoebrush lady of manure” and “another lawyer person…picture of a house?” Jon Hamm, horrified, deadpans, “You have to do better.” Au contraire, Mr. Hamm: Fey was absolutely perfect!

3) As Jon Stewart heads to the podium to collect his show’s 10th consecutive win for Best Variety, Music or Comedy Series, rivals Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Colbert wrestle him to the ground. A struggle (and hilarity) ensue.

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2) A documentary-style bit showing “behind the scenes” footage from Modern Family portrays its youngest star, Aubrey Anderson-Emmons (who plays Lily), as a cruel and inconsiderate brat, pranking Ty Burrell and Ed O’Neill into nasty on-set pratfalls, mocking Sofia Vergara’s thick Colombian accent and taunting gay co-star/onscreen dad Jesse Tyler Ferguson by eating Chick-Fil-A sandwiches during their scenes together. (“This is what I’m going to eat at my wedding. What are you going to eat at your wedding?”) Where’s Claire Dunphy to threaten somebody with a garbage disposal when you need her?

1) On her way to the podium to collect the prize for Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, Julia Louis-Dreyfus gets a warm embrace from fellow nominee Amy Poehler, and the duo “accidentally” swaps acceptance speeches. “First of all, I’d like to thank NBC, Parks and Rec, my beautiful boys Archie and Abel, and, uh…” begins the Veep star, before Poehler runs up to the stage and gives her the “right” notes. Louis-Dreyfus then goes on to give her “real” speech, before concluding, “There’s one last thing written here: ‘Lastly, isn’t it a shame that Amy Poehler didn’t win?’” Cut to Poehler, pencil in hand, nodding and mouthing the words “Good job.”

3) Modern Family producer Steven Levitan, collecting the Best Comedy Series prize, gets played off right after sharing an anecdote about the show’s cast watching the space shuttle Endeavor flying over the set. Then, as he tries to squeeze in some thank-yous, the lights get cut and his mic gets switched off. Congratulations?

RELATED | Emmys 2012: Modern Family, Homeland Clean Up, Mad Men Shut Out, Jon Cryer Pulls Upset

2) Jimmy Kimmel spends a few minutes on an “in memoriam”-style tribute to himself — with Josh Groban turning One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful” into a plaintive ballad — but it manages to score fewer laughs than the actual tribute to recently deceased TV stars that plays later in the telecast.

1) Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane takes cheap pot-shots at the entire reality-competition genre — while handing out the trophy for Best Reality Competition Host. “What a proud lineage our winner will join tonight,” MacFarlane snarks, while listing American Idol‘s deposed Brian Dunkleman, Blind Date‘s Roger Lodge, and “Joey Greco the guy who was on Cheaters and got stabbed on camera” as the only memorable hosts he can recall. Then, prior to announcing Tom Bergeon as the winner, MacFarlane notes the four also-rans in the category will be “put in a house together on an island with six douchebags” and forced “to team up in a race around the globe to see who can lose the most weight on a runway photo shoot and a tense bake-off with a pregnant 16-year-old.” Was this some kind of delayed payback for the less-than-scintillating Emmy hosting job by the category’s nominees back in 2008?

Anyhow, that’s my take on the 2012 Emmy telecast. What are your picks for best and worst moments of the 2012 Emmys? Sound off in the comments below!

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