By: Vlada Gelman
I’d like to thank my mom for always believing in and my manager and the entire cast and crew, who work tirelessly, and the CW…
Yeah, you’re probably not going to hear that at the Primetime Emmy Awards this year, but that hasn’t stopped the CW from mounting its first ever Emmy campaign. Earlier this week, Deadline Hollywood Daily posted about the network’s OMFG FYC campaign, which consists of an insert in the new issue of Emmy magazine (more photos of which can be found here). Although the OMFG slogan is associated with GOSSIP GIRL — they considered the slogan, “Beautiful people deserve Emmys too,” according to DHD – the insert also features THE VAMPIRE DIARIES, ONE TREE HILL, SMALLVILLE and SUPERNATURAL. All the featured shows are produced by campaign brainchild Warner Bros. TV, which explains the absence of the CBS Television Studios’ 90210 and LIFE UNEXPECTED, the latter of which I think is more worthy than some of the WBTV shows.
But that’s only if we’re judging Emmy worthiness on a curve because, let’s face it, the CW shows don’t stand a chance. And let’s be honest — some of them, rightfully, doesn’t deserve a chance. But the bigger problem is that the CW has inherited its predecessor’s cloak of invisibility when it comes to the Emmys. Like the WB, it ceases to exist. Not everything on the WB was brilliant, but the fact that shows like BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, GILMORE GIRLS and EVERWOOD and their performers went unrecognized is a shame. The network did manage to get some nominations and a win (for FELICITY’s Keri Russell) at the much looser Golden Globe Awards.
While I don’t think that most of the CW shows can compare to the glory days of the WB, least of all Emmy-nominated shows like MAD MEN, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t some underrated talent on the network. The name that came up more than any other in the DHD comments is SUPERNATURAL’s Jensen Ackles and I’m inclined to agree. He’s the one person on the network that I think stacks up against the competition.
Also quite good, although not quite on the level of the Emmys yet, is GOSSIP GIRL’s Leighton Meester. I remember being impressed with the depth and sadness she brought to what could have been a superficial role all the way back in the pilot. And where there’s Blair, there’s usually Chuck, but I’m not as big of a fan of Ed Westwick and his whispery approach to the character as some people seem to be.
And this will probably get me some virtual rotten tomatoes, but if there was an award for Best Vampire Show, I’d give it to THE VAMPIRE DIARIES over TRUE BLOOD. OK, now I duck for cover. I’d also take SUPERNATURAL over LOST any day. The show had an uneven season, but the “Changing Channels” episode was one of the most creative, ambitious and successful episodes I saw this past season (read my review). Smartly, “Channels” was one of the episodes Warner Bros. put up on their Emmy site for consideration. The other was one of Ackles’ best episodes, “The End,” in which he played two versions of the same character.
The other submissions:
• GOSSIP GIRL: “Ex-Husbands and Wives,” “Last Tango, Then Paris”
• ONE TREE HILL: “Last Day of Our Acquaintance,” “I And Love And You”
• SMALLVILLE: “Savior,” “Society”
• THE VAMPIRE DIARIES: “Pilot” (Really? I’m hoping the “Content unavailable. The requested content has been removed” message means they’re reconsidering their decision.), “Lost Girls” (much better!)
(I’m not so sure the music video-like trailers on the insert’s DVD will appeal to voters, but fans would probably love them. This “O’ Death” trailer is included for SUPERNATURAL, but the ones for THE VAMPIRE DIARIES and GOSSIP GIRL appear to be new.)
But none of these shows or actors will likely hear their name called when Emmy nominations are announced July 8, except maybe in technical categories. Not only do they have the unfortunate honor of being on a smaller network that’s dismissed by Emmy voters, they also have to contend with the fact that there’s just a lot of damn good television out there. When the excellent FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS still isn’t getting recognized, we have bigger fish to fry with Emmy voters. But I guess it’s nice of WBTV and the CW to support their own.
Which CW shows and actors do you think are Emmy-worthy? Or should the CW just sit this one out?
Vlada resides in Los Angeles, where there are stars in the sky and on the ground. She has worked for Entertainment Weekly, TVWeek and The Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills, CA, and contributes to the LA Times Show Tracker blog. She runs the TV blog Staying In and can be found on Twitter: @stayingin.