In case you missed it…

The morning after an awards show, even for a mag like ours, can feel like cleaning up after a cocktail party. “Did it really go on that long?” “What was going on with all that sea-green?” “Did they really make one of the few high-profile black men in the room feign a heart attack?” When the brain  clears a bit, we remember the highlights —and, thanks to our intrepid group of live bloggers, the moments less elevated.

In general, as Willa Paskin said the next day at Salon: “Well, that was painfully dull.” The pacing and rhythm of the show didn’t even try to mask what felt too often like a coronation for Hollywood favorites, ending with the entire cast of Modern Family crowding onto the stage to accept their award. “Is it just me, or is this a really slow-moving program?” asked WVFC publisher Pat Allen—and she wasn’t the first. But some moments still stand out. And we can all be proud of the showing of the WVFC demographic, especially as Modern Family siren Sofia Vergara enters it. “As we say about Sofia and the “number” . . . This is what 40 looks like!” Allen added.

Our Top Story Tonight Is . . . Homeland.

“My favorite show! I should buy a lottery ticket!” said a WVFC board member when the complete sweep by the Showtime drama became clear. And even though its star, Claire Danes, is barely 33, we can hardly begrudge her victory, especially when it was accepted so graciously by Danes (whose pregnancy made her more humanly beautiful, in our opinion).  The other semi-surprise was the victory of the TV movie Game Change, including its star (as Friend of WVFC) Julianne Moore.

The evening’s end was notable not just for the absolute bulls-eye of Jon Stewart’s acceptance speech, including the F-bomb, but also for the graceful presence of Michael J. Fox. “What a guy. He reminds us of courage and commitment, doesn’t he?” said Dr. Allen. “Perfect person to end the night.”

The rest of the evening was more predictable, except for our own rollicking company. We did disagree often: one commenter thought Moore should be winning the award for “portrayal of a banana,” while Pat Allen said, “Julianne Moore is wearing the most wonderful color! And she can speak intelligently without a script.”  The latter fact was not shared by all the accepters, as one commenter snarked. “These award shows make me so grateful for the writers of the shows I watch. Actors should be mute until given decent lines.” (Consider all the inanity we endured during the two-hour fashion parade preceding the event.)

The Red Carpet. The Colors! The Armor! The Dread Mani-Cam!

 

Who’s ever seen so much yellow? Such unashamed WVFC orange? Perhaps it was meant to keep us all awake. But there was plenty else to do that.

 

The horror. E! Channel’s “mani-cam,” meant to display fine manicures, mostly looked like Chiller Theater. “The mani-cam on E! makes me ashamed to be female,” wrote one anonymous commenter. Another mused, “Every time a woman puts her hand in that box, I hear  fear is the mind killer . . .

We were equally scornful of Ginnifer Goodwin’s orange-lace confection (above left), and what Eleanore Wells called simply: “Oops, Jena Malone” (above right).

 

 

 

 

Then there was Lucy Liu in Versace (left), who likely showed up to  promote her new Sherlock Holmes show but garnered comments more appropriate to Star Trek. “Wow,” said Rachel Rawlings, “Wow, Lucy Liu is wearing World of Warcraft armor with at least 5 times the normal surface area.” Then there was this immutable rule laid down by our fashion police: “Sparkly headbands should NOT be worn by girls over the age of 13 . . . I’m talking to you, Amanda Peet.”

 

 

 

 

Our fashion mavens did find a bit to praise, tagging as winners Padma Lakshi in Monique Lhullier (left) and Tiny Fey in a  classic Vivienne Westwood (right).  WVFC senior editor Deborah Harkins exclaimed, “Love the old-movie-cliché transformation of Tina Fey. She takes off her glasses, and . . . why, she’s beautiful!”

 

 

 

 

Harkins was equally effusive about one  of the night’s seemingly perpetual nominees, Mad Men’s Elisabeth Moss: “Mouseburger no more! Oh, what blondeness and a non-Peggy outfit can do.” Moss is seen at right next to castmate Christina Hendricks, who lost last night to Force of Nature Maggie Smith.

If Only: Where We Still Have to Go

While enjoying the froth and enduring the blahs, we did note some of the larger context, including the paucity of non-acting awards for women. “Looking forward to reading about the dearth of women writers and directors,” Dr. Allen said, but it’s hard to write about a dearth. The lack of such awards made for an eerie silence on the stage.

Of the acting nominees, Eleanore Wells noted something else equally important: “We’re a nation of immigrants, yet not an African-American, Latina, Indian, or Asian among them. Doesn’t look like America in 2012.” We all groaned when more than one male-dominated writing team signed off on their acceptance speeches with “Thank you to our wives!”

As we all quit laughing about last night’s disaster, our task is to work to ensure that it doesn’t reoccur. As our Alexandra Mac Aaron wrote in yesterday’s Emmys post, ” We hope that, as more new shows centered around women succeed, these professionals will be recognized for what they’ve done as well as what they wear.” And we’ll seek out the professionals working behind the scenes who make the game change for good.

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