Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Emmy Awards Trounced in Ratings by Football, Not a Surprise as Network Shows Ignored Again


The 2022 Emmy Awards, you may have heard, were a gigantic ratings disaster.

The NBC show on Monday night scored just 5.924 million viewers, the smallest ever audience. But what did anyone expect?

Monday Night Football was shown not just not on ABC but over at ESPN as well. Their totals came to almost 17 million fans. That didn’t leave much room for the Emmys.

And the Emmys, sorry, looked bad to begin with. The list of presenters was unremarkable. The list of nominees was predictably all from cable and streaming. There was no nod to anything mainstream, network, or otherwise unique. The most praised presentation came from Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez, from the cult “Only Murders in the Building” from Hulu. The best speech was from Sheryl Lee Ralph, but that couldn’t have been promoted because no one knew it would happen.

Did they think giving Geena Davis, not a TV star, an award for promoting gender equality would make anyone tune in? What, are you kidding? If I had been watching TV Monday night (I was in Toronto seeing cool films), I would have flipped over to baseball or football immediately. How about tributes to popular people? Anniversary reunions of beloved TV casts? Something for the people who actually watch TV?

Indeed, the Emmys ignore the shows that get the 3 to 5 million viewers a night per show, like “Ghosts” and “The Conners.” Or even “This is Us.” The cable shows they honor, all high quality and “in,” get less than a million viewers, some less than half a million.

So, you know, NBC was lucky to get 6 million people. You reap what you sow.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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