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July 16, 2016 at 3:12 pm #1201873583
I’m not sure, somebody can correct me on this, but I think they’re giving out the OUTSTANDING WRITING for a VARIETY SPECIAL EMMY on the main show this year, and looking at the nominees, there’s four stand-up specials, Amy Schumer, John Mulaney, Patton Oswalt, and Tig Notaro, and the last one is Triumph the Insult Comic Dog. This is the category that encompasses, all the Award shows Writing, and other Special Class Programs and Concerts and such things, but while only Amy Schumer snuck into Variety special, the Writers apparently just, picked the stand-up performers. I remember there was this conversation two years ago when Sarah Silverman won over Billy Crystal and the Golden Globes about how the Writers like it when there’s one singular voice, and that’s why she one. Maybe, it’s that they just admire stand-up comedy special, and to be fair, there’s hundreds of them now over, every outlet you can think of. It’s no longer just Gallagher and George Carlin on HBO anymore, so there’s room here.
So, I’m curious if anybody knows, is there any talk of separating out the Stand-Up Special into their own category. Or categories, even for next year. I mean, this is the clearest sign yet, that maybe they need to be separated, the fact that none of the Awards shows or other special class broadcasts got into Writing,…- Is there any talk/conversation within the Academy of this happening? And what do you guys think, should there be a separate set of catagories for Stand-Up Specials?July 16, 2016 at 3:27 pm #1201873590
It couldn’t hurt to have them separated. One category Special Class-Variety Special and one Special Class-Stand Up Special.July 16, 2016 at 8:38 pm #1201873661
“Rule of Fourteen” from the Emmy rulebook: If for two consecutive years, the Board of Governors identifies that there are (or would have been had the category been in place) fourteen or more entries that define such a significant, specialized and distinct achievement that they no longer are represented adequately within an existing category, they may, at their discretion, separate these entries into a new category.
There were seventy-five submissions for Variety Special this year. Thirty-two of those were stand-up specials, plus there were even a few more comedy specials with stand-up in them. So you might be onto something.
My only hesitation is that the Rule of Fourteen has been applied in recent years to emerging formats that struggled to earn recognition in existing categories. For example, despite earning both writing and directing nominations for three consecutive seasons (and multiple acting nominations that third year), Portlandia never got a nomination for Outstanding Variety Series, so it made sense to split off sketch series to get the recognition that they deserved. Or actors in short-form series were obviously not getting nominated against actors in full-length series.
But stand-up specials are having no problem getting nominated in the main Variety Special category. Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo is the only stand-up special this year that has more than one nomination, so it is fittingly the only stand-up special nominated for Outstanding Variety Special. But Bill Maher’s stand-up special actually had zero nominations last year other than Outstanding Variety Special, so stand-up specials are evidently not disadvantaged at all.July 17, 2016 at 2:33 am #1201873721
Yeah, I see your point about the earning recognition question, I think the one other small qualifiers might be in determining what qualifies as a Stand-Up Special. For instance, Kathy Griffin holds the record for most televised stand-up special, but one of the ones that’s counted in that record is her first stand-up special which was her HBO “Comedy Half Hour” special, which was more like a Stand-Up Series at the time. I don’t think they have that now, maybe Comedy Central or somebody like that has something similar, but how/would those count as Comedy Special if they’re apart of an regular series that shows stand-up performances. I guess it would be treated the same way, say “Great Performances” gets treated as separate entries, but that’s why I’d recommend that this probably needs to be a separate category, ’cause that could lead to a lot more eligible stand-comedy specials than even the ones that are submitted now. I’m actually shocked to learn it was only 32, there’s seems to be a new one on Netflix, Hulu, LouisCK.com, HBO, Showtime and Comedy Central every other week, and that’s not counting any stand-up comedy series that could have episodes listed into Variety Special. I definitely think it’s time they look into this. And the fact that they are getting nominated, and at higher number, that could mean they’re over-advantaged in the category?
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