They Say The Neon Lights Are Bright

So Sunday night was Tony Night. Generally, I adore the Tonys, because as you may have figured out from me mentioning every month or so, I really love theater. I hadn’t seen much of the nominated work this year, and we were being led by Hugh Jackman instead of Neil Patrick Harris, being that NPH was busy winning a Tony this year.

It’s a slightly different vibe than the past few years and the show kind of suffered for it. Jackman’s past outings hosting were great. The year that he was nominated for The Boy From Oz, was a particular favorite of mine, but this year felt like the host was phoning it in. The show as saved by truly transcendent nominee performances, however. Sutton Foster’s performance for Violet was unbelievable, as was Idina Menzel’s for If/Then. Obviously, I lost my mind as Jessie Muehler sang “I feel The Earth Move” only to be joined by Carole King. (And then when Meuhler won. I mean, seriously.)

I also wish that Rocky would have chosen something other than the final fight to be it’s performance. (One of the duets or either of Rocky’s Act I songs…)

Bryan Cranston won, because this is an award show, so obviously, he had to win something. I’m halfway convinced that he might get an Oscar for Godzilla this year…

But of course this is the Tonys, and the evening will always belong to two people.

And those people are Neil Patrick Harris and Audra McDonald.

For her portrayal of Billie Holiday in the play Lady Day At Emerson’s Bar And Grill, Audra won her 6th Tony. She is now the most decorated Actress in Tony history. She’s amazing. Her speech was emotional and lovely and her tribute to her daughter and step sons were completely wonderful. She cried. She always cries. Also, at the very end, when Hugh called the all the winners up on stage with him, she sprinted up. Because she’s the best. Our First Lady, Audra McDonald just always owns the Tonys.

The there was NPH. Neil is currently performing in Hedwig And The Angry Inch, which is a story about a rocker who went through a botched sex change operation, which leaves her with only an “angry inch” as genitalia. The song that they sang on The Tonys was “Sugar Daddy” and it was incredible. NPH was walking around the audience and gave Sting a lap dance. His acceptance speech was lovely, thanking his husband David, talking to their children, apologizing for his extended absence from their normal routine. It was just lovely.

There’s one more thing that I wanted to touch on that separates the Tonys from other awards shows.

And that’s women.

While yes, seeing that The Gentleman’s Guide To Murder won for Best Musical was fun, I don’t think anyone was even talking about the Best Musical Category. You know what everyone I know was talking about?

Best Performance By An Actress In A Musical.

Jessie Muehler won.

She was up against Idina Menzel, Sutton Foster, Kelly O’Hara and Mary Bridget Davis.

All of these roles were fully realized characters driving forces in their shows. Not a one was “The Love Interest” to a male lead. In the case of Idina and Sutton, they were the reason that shows happened at all. If you look at representation, it’s just no contest that women are better represented on Broadway than in other media, and I’m absurdly proud to be so much a fan of something that for some reason seems ahead of the rest of the things I love in this way.

No one waffles on Broadway that a female star and female driven vehicle will open. Even before Frozen, I doubt anyone hesitated to finance and bring If/Then around.

Violet is an obscure strange musical that used to play black box theaters, but attach Sutton Foster to it and it’s worth opening on Broadway.

Wicked celebrated it’s 10th anniversary this year.  10 years of a show that’s entirely about the friendship between two women is THE HIGHEST GROSSING SHOW IN BROADWAY HISTORY. It’s just a part of the fabric of the culture that I hope the rest of the things I love start paying attention to. We spend money, and spend a lot of it, when we see ourselves represented in some way.

Also diversity! Both of the straight play awards went to Women of Color (but I mean, it’s Audra, Queen of the Tony’s), as was the Best Actor In A Supporting Role In A Musical, and a musical about trans people was a major winner. Queer themes aren’t exactly as breakthrough on Broadway as elsewhere, because, it’s Broadway, but it’s still pretty cool.

I’m just saying that while Broadway isn’t perfect about these things, they’re worlds ahead of other forms of mainstream media and deserve at the very least a pat on the head.

Emmy Live Blog

Hello All! I’m actually doing this “liveblogging” thing for the Emmy’s! (I swear I’m not giving up half way through it this time!)

Here We Go!

7:50 PM: Emmy time! Just spent the day watching Katie be awesome in The Music Man, and catching up with Kate. Cherry on top of an awesome weekend.

7:56 PM: Jesse Tyler Ferguson is amazing. I love him so much! I love his Burberry bowtie.

7:57 PM: Zooey is pretty.

7:58 PM: Yes, this is the kind of insightful commentary you can look forward to all night.

8:00 PM: All of the best TV women in this sketch! Also Naked Lena Dunham is a nice touch!

8:03 PM: Julia just makes everything that much better! So does Ellen.

8:04 PM: I’m a little disappointed Jimmy didn’t wear the too small pants.

8:06 PM: Chik Fil A joke, perfect! “Being a Republican in Hollywood is like being a Chik Fil A sandwich on the snack table at Glee.”

8:10 PM: I forgot how much I loved so many of these shows in comedy montage. So psyched for the new season.

8:11 PM: Louis and Amy are going to be hilarious. Actually I’m already laughing.

8:12 PM: I love Eric Stonestreet, but it should have been Schmidt!

8:16 PM: Why is Kristen Wiig getting a special Emmy? What a stupid thing. The point of SNL is to leave your mark. If Chevy Chase didn’t need one, then Kristen Wiig doesn’t!

8:18 PM: Sorry, I just don’t get why everyone loves her so much.

8:20 PM: I’m really glad Louis won. Like, really glad. I mean, I would like Community and Parks and Recreation to get theirs. But he’s so freaking amazing.

8:23 PM: Yay Julie Bowen! I’ve loved her since Ed and love that she’s getting hers.

8:25 PM: Did someone dare her to say the word “nipple” over and over again?

8:29 PM: Nothing to do with the Emmys, but who else is excited for Once Upon A Time taking on Peter Pan?

8:31 PM: Oh Matthew Perry, you scamp!

8:34 PM: Oh Lena Dunham and your playful anti semitism.

8:37 PM: I would love to see Ken Jeong as Lily.

8:38 PM: All Mindy, all the time!

8:39 PM: Why Jon Cryer? Please end that show!

8:41 PM: OK, if Amy doesn’t win now, I’m going to throw something!

8:44 PM: YAY Steven Colbert. I love you so much!

8:46 PM: See, this bit that they’re doing is why I can’t believe that she still hasn’t won.

8:49 PM: Since I don’t watch much Reality TV I will have less to say in this section.

8:50 PM: They’ve made me interested by having Damon and James introduce the category.

8:52 PM: I have always tried to avoid watching The Amazing Race because I can’t afford to be addicted to another show.

8:57 PM: Haha, Sheldon likes the accountants!

8:58 PM: Ughhhh, Seth McFarland.

9:00 PM: Aww, I ❤ Tom Bergeron. I’m glad he won, since Padma wasn’t nominated.

9:03 PM: Really, Emmys? Everything amazing that happened on Mad Men this year and you pick Megan and Don’s weird sex game?

9:05 PM: But, but…Tyrion…naw, I hear Breaking Bad is awesome (I have never watched it.)

9:06 PM: Also, Aaron Paul is adorable. I think I love him a little bit.

9:11 PM: “Newsies” should win all the Emmys.” – Mary

9:13 PM: SAVE THE CHEERLEADER SAVE THE WORLD!

9:18 PM: Mad Men continues it’s perfect record of never having won an acting award. (Losing to Maggie Smith is acceptable)

9:24 PM: These little packages are just precious!

9:25 PM: I’m on pause because this is my mom’s favorite part (even if it’s a joke!)

9:30 PM: This package about himself is hysterical. And I love with Josh Groban does stuff like this.

9:32 PM: I am 100% on the Jon Hamm train. I love how he’s just kind of given up by this point!

9:35 PM: Alright, I’m caught up.

9:37 PM: I hope Jon gives Elisabeth her Emmy.

9:38 PM: Oh, but the 90s kid in me is so happy to see Claire Danes do anything. Thank you for introducing me to unconventional Shakespeare.

9:39 PM: Also, she “holla’d” at Mandy Patinkin. Which, yeah, I would probably do that too…even if I wasn’t nominated for acting with him.

9:42 PM: AZIZZZZ!!!!

9:43 PM: Aziz making fun of the Brits. BEST BIT EVER!

9:45 PM: I love Louis, I really do. But I want the Tony’s to win things.

9:50 PM: Ricky Gervais is going to say something not even vaguely controversial that everyone is going to say was really offensive.

9:53 PM: Aww, yay! Go Tonys!

9:56 PM: Nope, this is the best part of the Emmys, this is the best part of television in the history of the world.

10:04 PM: I’m kind of really bored right now. Was Missing a miniseries? I thought it just got cancelled?

10:06 PM: Yeah, that had to happen. American Horror Story is freaking amazing. But I love Sarah Paulson.

10:12 PM: This is the suuuuppper boring part.

10:13 PM: Ellen helps though.

10:15 PM: I didn’t watch Hatfields & McCoys maybe I should have? When there isn’t baseball I find Kevin Costner tedious.

10:17 PM: Well, now I’m going to cry. Thanks Ron Howard…

10:21 PM: That was nice. Really, it was.

10:26 PM: I hate Lucy Liu’s dress, but she and Kiefer are probably my two favorite TV actors.

10:27 PM: Um, I did not know that Jonathan from Buffy wrote Game Change…that’s nice.

10:35 PM: I did not know that Lindsey Lohan was playing Elizabeth Taylor, but she too is a trainwreck, so this makes sense.

10:37 PM: Also, I guess I have to watch Game Change.

10:38 PM: The Republican in me just couldn’t so it.

10:39 PM: “If you build it, he will come.”

10:41 PM: I really want to see Argo. I really want the world to appreciate Ben Affleck again. (I know, this is a strange wish. But I love him.)

10:42 PM: TOM HANKS!

10:48 PM: Someone in the AMC publicity department is getting fired tomorrow. Also Matthew Weiner is probably drinking a lot of scotch.

10:52 PM: This is 40 is going to be the best movie ever.

10:55 PM: Me: Heh, Johnny Galecki is so little Mary: Not as little as Peter Dinklage

10:56 PM: Modern Family wins, surprising no one.

Well, that was the Emmys! Thanks for watching with me!