The CW to Emmy Voters: We Exist!

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.

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  • joshemerson

    That reminds me, I said I was going to catch up on Supernatural this summer. I sort of just quit watching it a year or two ago, not because it was bad or anything.

    The CW at the Emmys is mostly a joke, though I've always said that Sophia Bush of One Tree Hill is great. She makes that show.

  • Nicole Woods

    It would be nice to see shows like Supernatural or the Vampire Diaries be recognized, but alas I doubt that will ever happen. I can be a wishful thinker though, right?

    Side note, PISSED they Life UneXpected isn't in there. I genuinely enjoyed that show.

  • Abby

    If Ray Wise didn't get a nomination for his Devil on Reaper, there's not much hope for anyone else. A real pity though. I sure think Ian Somerhalder deserves one for Vampire Diaries. A real star-making turn.

  • Jenny

    Lmao, CW and the Emmy's don't even belong in the same sentence! We all know like the author that won't be happening. I'm not going to lie… The CW is focused more on eye candy then actually assembling a talented cast and telling engaging stories. If genius shows like Buffy, Everwood, Jack & Bobby, Felicity, and Gilmore Girls got ignored there is absolutely no chance for The CW. Most of The CW's programming is not even half as good. Excluding Vampire Diaries, Supernatural, and Life Unexpected of course.

  • angrodpallanen

    I love the shows on the CW, but they aren't Emmy material. Though I and Love and You was a beautiful episode and Sophia Bush should just get an Emmy for being so incredibly beautiful (oh, and talented)

  • Guest

    hey some CW shows like Vampire Diaries, are better than some emmy nominated materials, I really don't know why shows like grey's anatomy get nominated maybe just cuz its shown on a network like ABC, I try to keep up with that series but i just can't, its boring, however Vampire Diaries is very intriguing, don't think just cuz its station at CW makes it an ordinary teen series, if it was shown on ABC or CBS, i bet it will get notice for emmy nominations, but besides Dexter, VD is one of those shows i like to keep track with.,,

  • angrodpallanen

    If you've seen the finale, you'll know why Grey's gets nominated and TVD doesn't. I love both shows, and do think TVD is very addicting, but the writing and acting just doesn't get close to that of Grey's. If you saw Bailey's (forgot her name) acting and then see that of Nina Dobrev's, I just don't see them as equal competitors.

  • Jenny

    Uh, Sandra Oh also delivers absolutely amazing work. She can't be touched.

  • athena0606

    it would be nice to see some new blood take home some Emmy's but I don't know about all the actors on the CW I'd say that Jensen definitely deserves a nod as those Erica Durance whose brought new depth and vulnerability to her Lois Lane did you see Charade awesome!

  • angrodpallanen

    How could I forget, just used an example, but yes, Sandra Oh pretty much owns every cast member on TVD, this coming from someone who loves Somerhalder and Melinda Clarke.

  • Aaron

    Im very upset that Supernatural never gets a nod or even a look at. They have one of the most creative writing staffs and some of the most talented actors (Jensen, Jared). I now its the the CW and all, but still. Their episodes are always filled with such emotion, especially in this season's finale, which should have also got nominated.

  • Babebubeboink99

    LOL. CW in the Emmys? With the amount of great tv that the last season brought in? Yeah, I don't think so. Also maybe it's because Emmy voters, and some viewers, don't take the CW shows very seriously.

  • Misty

    I am a closet OTH watcher and even I can admit that the talent is limited except for Bethany Joy Gallioti(Haley) who outshines the rest of the cast and is a wonderful actress. But the material she gets just isn't worthy of an Emmy, even though she can rock anything they throw her way no matter how bad it can be.

  • BrookeDavisFan19

    It would have nice if Sophia Bush was recognized for her brilliant performances but I wasn't expecting her to be nominated.

  • Wilson Crawford

    So the finale was great? What about the rest of the season? I find that Grey's Anatomy is a tired show that needs to have one or two more seasons and then end. It's getting old and ridiculous and with the exception of the finale, there's nothing emmy-worthy there past certain wonderful actors in the show itself.
    TVD I wouldn't expect to be in the same league as something that is emmy-worthy, but honestly, I wouldn't count GA in an emmy-worthy league either. (At least not anymore)

  • Wilson Crawford

    90% of the CW's shows can't be taken seriously…But Supernatural at the very least should be.

  • angrodpallanen

    Story-wise, only the finale was interesting enough. But as far as acting goes, I still believe GA has some of the best actors on TV right now. They are just all very underused. The rest of the season was basically everybody having 1 or 2 storylines because there are too many characters and there's not enough to focus on. It's hard to root for couples if there are so many and all with their own issues. I'll follow GA until the end, but I could do with an end date too.

  • Xxforblueskiesx

    While I agree most of the CW is a fail – You have to recognize the few actors that really deserve a nomination. Sophia Bush and Ian Somerhalder. Sophia has been brilliant in every performance for the past 8 years – Her acting is amazing. And Ian Somerhalder MAKES The Vampire Diaries.

    At least these two should be recongized for their talent.

  • Hlfudge

    The vampire diaries is one of the best tv shows I have seen in awhile along with Nikita, hell cats, gossip girl and I think when the secret circle comes out it will be just as good as the rest of the cw shows ( I’m also thinking of starting supernatural )