Westeros

Thrones at the Emmys

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This year’s Emmy Awards have concluded and the results featured a few surprises in the acting categories, but the overall picture was as expected for Game of Thrones as it secured a total of 12 Emmys, tying last year’s record. Besides repeating for Best Dramatic Series, the show received direction and writing awards for “The Battle of the Bastards”. The shut out in the acting categories goes against prevailing opinions among entertainment pundits and journalists, but it seems that while the voting constituency (rule changes in 2015 are a big part of why Game of Thrones is now dominant in the drama category) loves Peter Dinklage, his puzzled reaction to last year’s victory moved the voters away from him and instead saw them return to an old stand by (Maggie Smith) and a long-time veteran (Ben Mendelsohn) over the remaining Game of Thrones nominees.

Some notable remarks followed the Emmys when interviewers asked the showrunners about the future of the series and the possibility of sequels. According to the Hollywood Reporter:

“You might want to ask George about that. It’s a great world George created and a very rich world,” said Benoiff. “I’m sure there will be other series set in Westeros, but for us this is it.”

Martin quickly stepped up to the mic: “I do have thousands of pages of fake history of everything that led up to Game of Thrones, so there’s a wealth of material there and I’m still writing more. But at the moment I still have this show to finish and two books to finish, so that’s all speculation for now.”

Benioff’s remark reiterates that he and Weiss are done with showrunning for the forseeable future when Game of Thrones wraps up, which is no surprise, but it seems that discussions at HBO are at the point where he seems to have no doubt that some sort of follow-on project is likely. On the other hand, as GRRM says, it all remains speculation until HBO is ready to lock something in. We suspect it’ll be a year or two before we hear of any firm plans for a spin-off series drawing from The World of Ice and Fire or A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.

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I am definitely happy about it!

But Lena Headey should have had her Emmy.

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The Battle of the Bastard won the award for Best Writing. This is downright hilarious. The show has reached the stage where it wins awards based on past glories no matter how horrible the current writing it is

Edited by David Selig

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Glad the cast lost. They were shit this year.

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6 hours ago, Woman of War said:

I am definitely happy about it!

But Lena Headey should have had her Emmy.

:agree:

She should have had it. Definitely.

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5 hours ago, David Selig said:

The Battle of the Bastard won the award for Best Writing. This is downright hilarious. The show has reached the stage where it wins awards based on past glories no matter how horrible the current writing it is

The Battle of The Bastards deserved best direction but it was ridiculous to award them for best script. The showrunners even said that in their interview: it was MS who made it happen.

Edited by Meera of Tarth

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58 minutes ago, Ruhail said:

Glad the cast lost. They were shit this year.

I think the ones nominated didn't deserve it, especially Peter, Emilia and Kit.

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I didn't see the competitors so I really can't say if they should have won but I thought that the best acting on the series this year came from Sophie Turner and from Lena Headey.

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3 hours ago, Meera of Tarth said:

The Battle of The Bastards deserved best direction but it was ridiculous to award them for best script. The showrunners even said that in their interview: it was MS who made it happen.

Yes, Direction, not writing...

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6 hours ago, Byfort of Corfe said:

I didn't see the competitors so I really can't say if they should have won but I thought that the best acting on the series this year came from Sophie Turner and from Lena Headey.

:agree:

 

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There's a good article here about the rule changes to Emmy voting.

Quote

You know that moment when you realize something inevitable is about to happen and you just have to sit there and accept it? You're like, "Oh, sh--," and time kind of slows down for a second? It happened to me during the Emmys last year...

This was supposed to be Jonathan Banks' to lose for his heartbreaking performance in Better Call Saul's Mike showcase "Five-O." When Davis opened the envelope and her mouth, she started formulating a consonant that sounds nothing like a "J": "Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones." I was in the backstage press tent and a collective, audible gasp-groan filled the room. There was an additional "Oh, no" from someone nearby. The guy next to me angrily but respectfully slammed the table. Not kidding.

I was prepared for Game of Thrones' eventual and first-ever drama series win, but Dinklage's win confirmed what I was probably in subconscious denial about: Game of Thrones will now win all the Emmys until Game of Thrones is over... Which is great for the show and HBO, but ironic for what is universally accepted as Thrones' weakest season. So why did this happen -- and why will it continue to happen? The new voting system. I broke down the whole voting process here, but the gist is this: Last year, the Television Academy opened up voting...

The expanded voting pool has basically turned the Emmys into a glorified People's Choice Awards. What's the biggest show on TV? Exactly. What was everyone talking about last summer during the voting period? Hint: Rhymes with Shmon Shmoe.

Under the new system, voters are still supposed to watch all the submitted episodes. But they probably haven't/don't... So what's the inclination? You vote for what you like, what you watch, what you recognize, what you hear about, and your friends. This system puts a premium on popularity instead of quality...

Even Dinklage, who was barely in Season 5, looked sort of embarrassed and more or less said in his speech that it should've gone to Banks. David Benioff and D.B. Weiss' writing win for "Mother's Mercy"? That finale was a collection of OMG scenes threaded by lazy storytelling. And it beat out cohesive, arguably better-written episodes from The Americans, Better Call Saul and Mad Men x 2. And the series win? It was coming after the rule change, but any true fan knows the first four seasons were better and more deserving...

The old system was by no means perfect, and I'm not suggesting that people didn't vote for their friends or based on buzz or name recognition then (Emmy voter laziness is second only to Screen Actors Guild Awards voter laziness). But the limited pool tape system required due diligence and gave the underdog a fighting chance if and when voters truly judged the submitted work in front of them...

Earlier this year, the TV Academy tweaked its voting guidelines again. Instead of ranking choices 1 through however-many-nominees-there-are-in-the-category, voters now just have to vote for their preferred winner. That'll make it even easier for mindless name-checking and populist favorites to win regardless of quality... unless members start to take their voting privileges seriously. Otherwise the Emmys will just be a popularity contest from here on out, and that'll be a real shame.

http://www.tvguide.com/news/game-of-thrones-will-dominate-emmys-until-it-ends/

(fixed the quote)

Edited by Le Cygne

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There is a rumor that HBO confirmed on Emmy ceremony that the infographic with Jon's parentage is absolutely official. Is it really true?

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On 9/20/2016 at 0:07 PM, Le Cygne said:

There's a good article here about the rule changes to Emmy voting.

http://www.tvguide.com/news/game-of-thrones-will-dominate-emmys-until-it-ends/

 

Blaming the rules change is a faulty premise, albeit en vogue.  To follow @David Selig 's line of thinking, if you view the Emmy's as a "glorified People's Choice Awards," then they were so before the changes anyway.  Look at the comedy categories - immediately before the changes Modern Family won FIVE in a row.  In those same five years Jim Parsons picked up four Best Actors, with Jon Cryer in between.  

This is not to say I agree with, for instance, Dinklage over Banks last year.  That's outrageous to me (as is, of course, D&D having two writing trophies), but part of that is obviously because I'm a huge fan of Banks - thought he should have won this year too.  Did the rule change help GoT?  Probably.  But certainly an alternative explanation/other factor is simply the general lag of academy voters on catching up to the most popular/buzzworthy show.  Even before the changes, there was often a lag on certain shows, e.g. Breaking Bad.  And, it's not as if the Emmys were not susceptible to the 'popularity contest' aspect beforehand.

Point is, we don't really know what the effects of the voting change are.  I do find it hilarious when people decry the change considering the main substantive alteration is simply giving more members a chance to vote.  Kind of makes me wonder if such people were in charge of any actual electoral system.  Or is elitism only warranted when it comes to TV shows? 

Also, they changed the rules again from ranking to only give one's first preference this year.  So, we can play link wars - there's a good article here about the rule changes to Emmy voting:

Quote

This was intended as a corrective for the effects of 2015’s change, which at times made the Emmys look like a popularity contest. Essentially, an obscure performance on an underrated series would have a better chance of winning than before, assuming the fanbase was passionate enough.

Why Were the 2016 Emmys So Great? In Part Because of the Awards' New Voting System

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On 9/21/2016 at 11:53 PM, dsug said:

so much salt in this thread its hilarious 

 

Why? Because people find Thrones undeserving winner in some categories? Well, not to break the news, but quite the number of people do feel that way. On this site, as well as out of it.

The writing win is considered to be one of the worst wins of the night. Rare are those who would question Sapochnik's work and many mourn that Headey lost but there were SO many things against Lena's chances this year. Overall, people were shocked to see neither supporting male character winning, but overall, it is not like Thrones has some universal love. Because it most certainly doesn't.

16 hours ago, dmc515 said:

Blaming the rules change is a faulty premise, albeit en vogue.  To follow @David Selig 's line of thinking, if you view the Emmy's as a "glorified People's Choice Awards," then they were so before the changes anyway.  Look at the comedy categories - immediately before the changes Modern Family won FIVE in a row.  In those same five years Jim Parsons picked up four Best Actors, with Jon Cryer in between.  

It should be noted that before, Thrones was facing heavy-weights in their prime - Mad Men, Breaking Bad, even Downton Abbey. Also, Thrones' popularity at the end of season 3 and at the end of season 6 is not even comparable.

Quote

And, it's not as if the Emmys were not susceptible to the 'popularity contest' aspect beforehand.

I would agree to this. But, the fact is the awards in movie/TV industry are mostly that - popularity contest. So rarely we get to the best, it is more of the best most people liked. Some awards, like Globes, can't even pretend to have some integrity as they mostly serve to be as close as possible to the Oscars.

Quote

Point is, we don't really know what the effects of the voting change are.  I do find it hilarious when people decry the change considering the main substantive alteration is simply giving more members a chance to vote.  Kind of makes me wonder if such people were in charge of any actual electoral system.  Or is elitism only warranted when it comes to TV shows? 

It is not about elitism. It is about popular vote meaning Emmys are closer to People's Choice Awards than they are to the other side of the spectrum. And while actors do like whatever award you give to them, most of them would prefer to have one Oscar than 10 People Choice Awards. With these changes, Emmys lost that. The name-checking, while always a risk, became even a bigger problems with the new "popular vote" systems. Simply, who in their right mind would award "Battle of the Bastards" with writing award? An entire episode who made ENORMOUS leaps of logic to have its WOW moment? An episode where the characters behaved like idiots because well, the plot demanded of them to do so? It was one of the wins people feared will happen, and popular vote allowed it to happen. Because most people were thinking of Sapochnik's work or music, or they were, like so many fans, impressed with the stunts and choreography. But awarding it with Emmy for writing? That is a huge stretch. 

On 9/20/2016 at 6:07 PM, Le Cygne said:

There's a good article here about the rule changes to Emmy voting.

http://www.tvguide.com/news/game-of-thrones-will-dominate-emmys-until-it-ends/

 

We will have the break next year as they will be illegible. 

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1 hour ago, Risto said:

It should be noted that before, Thrones was facing heavy-weights in their prime - Mad Men, Breaking Bad, even Downton Abbey. Also, Thrones' popularity at the end of season 3 and at the end of season 6 is not even comparable.

Agreed - the competition has thinned.  Coincidentally, this has nothing to do with rule changes.  As for popularity, it reached uber-stardom (i.e. ~ 9 million streaming + tv viewing) around midway through season 3, and the buzzworthy peak, or at least plateau, is almost undoubtedly the Red Wedding.  So, I disagree a bit with your timeline.

1 hour ago, Risto said:

So rarely we get to the best, it is more of the best most people liked. Some awards, like Globes, can't even pretend to have some integrity as they mostly serve to be as close as possible to the Oscars.

Again, credibility is in the eye of the beholder.  For comparison's sake, I'd say there's a Oscars > Emmys > Globes paradigm, and I doubt that's going to be altered by the rules change for most people.  What is of obviously more concern to the Emmys are the record low ratings.

1 hour ago, Risto said:

It is not about elitism. It is about popular vote meaning Emmys are closer to People's Choice Awards than they are to the other side of the spectrum.

The entire Academy is, I think, less than 20 thousand voting members.  Statistically, comparing this to the PCA is laughable.  More importantly, what is the qualitative difference between the average academy member and someone on their previous "blue-ribbon" panels?  Ensuring each voter views the episodes of all nominees?  If you think being forced to watch an hour of television is going to change the mind of industry insiders, well...then we are at an impasse.

To clarify my "elitism" statement and extend the electoral system metaphor, this is the equivalent of granting the vote to all eligible citizens rather than solely property owning white males.  If you're a member of the Academy, then I assume you make (or at least made) your living at least in some part by working in television.  I think that's a valid enough qualification to vote.  Why are we assuming the previous system systematically attracted members that had some type of further expertise, or were more averse to voting for the most popular candidate?

1 hour ago, Risto said:

We will have the break next year as they will be illegible. 

I'm not a huge fan, but pretty sure the only illegible aspect of D&D's writing are Dany's "Dothraki" speeches :P  

Edited by dmc515
more averse, not less

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16 hours ago, dmc515 said:

Agreed - the competition has thinned.  Coincidentally, this has nothing to do with rule changes.  As for popularity, it reached uber-stardom (i.e. ~ 9 million streaming + tv viewing) around midway through season 3, and the buzzworthy peak, or at least plateau, is almost undoubtedly the Red Wedding.  So, I disagree a bit with your timeline.

It is not about the thinned competition. It is about what was popular 3 years ago. Your numbers are wrong. The "Red Wedding" episode and the finale afterwards was watched by 5 million live + streaming. Compared to the this year's finale which almost crossed 9 million viewers live, we would agree that the popularity then and now isn't equal. Three years ago, "Downton Abbey" for instance, came out after incredibly powerful season, "Breaking Bad" was, on the roll with the end of Season 5. It is not always about the quality, but also the perception of quality. Even though, nothing truly changed in GoT, more and more people are ready to say they love it. It became cultural phenomenon. These days, Thrones doesn't have the competition, because the best shows "Mr Robot" and "The Americans", two impressively written shows, are too niche for the the popular vote.

16 hours ago, dmc515 said:

The entire Academy is, I think, less than 20 thousand voting members.  Statistically, comparing this to the PCA is laughable.  More importantly, what is the qualitative difference between the average academy member and someone on their previous "blue-ribbon" panels?  Ensuring each voter views the episodes of all nominees?  If you think being forced to watch an hour of television is going to change the mind of industry insiders, well...then we are at an impasse.

The differences are huge. I am not so fond of "blue-ribbon" panels myself, but they at least WATCHED everything.  There is no way anyone can convince me that even half of the people who had the job to vote for these things actually watched all nominees. And with tape system gone, mistakes like the one in Writing can easily happen as they don't watch an episode. Most of time, it seems, they are clueless who is being nominated for what. So, yes, before was better. Not because Thrones wasn't winning but because those panels made sure that they at least watched the relevant shows. The buzz here is what is killing the award. Enough tweets and enough articles and you create the atmosphere and the narrative where people just go with the flow. 

16 hours ago, dmc515 said:

To clarify my "elitism" statement and extend the electoral system metaphor, this is the equivalent of granting the vote to all eligible citizens rather than solely property owning white males.  If you're a member of the Academy, then I assume you make (or at least made) your living at least in some part by working in television.  I think that's a valid enough qualification to vote.  Why are we assuming the previous system systematically attracted members that had some type of further expertise, or were more averse to voting for the most popular candidate?

No, it isn't. The only valid qualification is their knowledge of the current TV. And most of them would even publicly admit that they haven't seen the half of the shows being nominated. Following your metaphor, it would be as if I, the citizen of Serbia, would be allowed to vote in USA and choose between Hillary and Donald, just because I am an adult. 

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23 hours ago, Risto said:

It is not about the thinned competition. It is about what was popular 3 years ago. Your numbers are wrong. The "Red Wedding" episode and the finale afterwards was watched by 5 million live + streaming. Compared to the this year's finale which almost crossed 9 million viewers live, we would agree that the popularity then and now isn't equal.

It got the numbers from here.  While I don't think they're wrong, I certainly was in my haste to interpret episodes 31 - 40 as Season 3 rather than (obviously) Season 4.  So yeah, my bad.  My point was, at least in Season FOUR, the episodes reached levels that were comparable to Season 5.  Why did the latter win and the former didn't?  Breaking Bad final season.

The rest of your argument is centered around the fact Thrones is the unquestionably top "buzzworthy" show now while before other shows such as BB and DA were true rivals.  Like I said, I agree with this - and that certainly is about "thinned competition" of a sort btw - and it has nothing to do with rule changes.  As an aside, I think Mr. Robot is vastly overrated, preachy crap - but I actually thought it had a good chance to win based on the buzz factor.

23 hours ago, Risto said:

So, yes, before was better. Not because Thrones wasn't winning but because those panels made sure that they at least watched the relevant shows. The buzz here is what is killing the award.

 Again, why do you think being forced to watch an episode is going to change the mind voters?  Why would such blue ribbon voters be less susceptible to the buzz factor?  There is absolutely no evidence for this and I think it is a rather naive assumption.

23 hours ago, Risto said:

The only valid qualification is their knowledge of the current TV. And most of them would even publicly admit that they haven't seen the half of the shows being nominated. Following your metaphor, it would be as if I, the citizen of Serbia, would be allowed to vote in USA and choose between Hillary and Donald, just because I am an adult. 

No, the appropriate metaphor would be instituting some type of standard to ensure citizens (i.e. members) were informed about the candidates/issues.  The rule changes, by your estimation, would be if a citizen would be allowed to vote just because they are an adult, with no check on their knowledge of the race/politics in general.  Which of course happens all the time and any efforts to impose any informational standard is elitism.

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57 minutes ago, dmc515 said:

It got the numbers from here.  While I don't think they're wrong, I certainly was in my haste to interpret episodes 31 - 40 as Season 3 rather than (obviously) Season 4.  So yeah, my bad.  My point was, at least in Season FOUR, the episodes reached levels that were comparable to Season 5.  Why did the latter win and the former didn't?  Breaking Bad final season.

The rest of your argument is centered around the fact Thrones is the unquestionably top "buzzworthy" show now while before other shows such as BB and DA were true rivals.  Like I said, I agree with this - and that certainly is about "thinned competition" of a sort btw - and it has nothing to do with rule changes.  As an aside, I think Mr. Robot is vastly overrated, preachy crap - but I actually thought it had a good chance to win based on the buzz factor.

With awards, it is all about buzz. It is all about narrative. Do we think that anyone other than Jon Hamm would have won last year after being year after year snubbed? Last year, "Game of Thrones" was undoubtedly the "Jon Hamm of drama category". And it really didn't have any competition, not in terms of quality, but more in terms of buzz-worthiness. Mad Men was going quietly, Downton and Homeland became yesterday's news, The Good Wife stopped being "the best TV drama on network" It is all about the moments, Which is how we all explain the 1998 Oscar race for Best Actress :D

The fact that Thrones is the most popular and is winning has a lot to do with rule changes. The popularity is unquestionably linked with popular vote. Always was, always will be. Mr Robot had the chance, but it was a bit too niche. Two main competitors - "The Americans" and "Mr Robot" were truly more of niche TV that were pushed because there were a lot of empty spaces and there was enough buzz to include them. I mean, Drama categories this year went from totally traditional and boring (while, we have to understand that Smith's win was parting gift to Downton Abbey) to the utter amazement with Malek and Maslany. And even with these two, I suspect Academy was playing to be more modern. Nowadays, they all try to make a point that unlike "racist" AMPAS, all of them are nice and dandy. So, it's not all bad. But, it does get wobbly on certain things.

Quote

Again, why do you think being forced to watch an episode is going to change the mind voters?  Why would such blue ribbon voters be less susceptible to the buzz factor?  There is absolutely no evidence for this and I think it is a rather naive assumption.

I mean, how do you expect someone to properly vote for the episode if they haven't seen it? The blue ribbon are also susceptible to the buzz factor, but I think what we now get are generic choices made by uninformed opinions. 

Edited by Risto

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