Steve Carell's cameo was a sparse, well-executed reunion, leading up to the sentimental farewell to the anonymous-looking workplace that was ground zero for nine seasons of comic adventures. "There's a lot of beauty in ordinary things," says Pam (Jenna Fischer). "Isn't that kind of the point?"
An interesting character in the comics, the plastic-looking swamp suit and campy villain (played by Louis Jordan, no less) pretty much drove a stake of holly through its heart. Although there was that shot of an unconscious Adrienne Barbeau being carried through the swamp.
David Hasselhoff -- toward the end of his run on "Baywatch" -- as the cigar-chomping, eyepatch-wearing hero? It was enough to make you want to cover the other eye, too.
Even in the comics, the idea of an anthropomorphic duck being romantic with a human woman was a tad creepy. But there are really no words to describe how unfortunate it was on screen.
While generally considered a firstrate movie overall, the campy villains (specifically, Ned Beatty as Lex Luthor's sidekick) and kicker in which Superman flies around the globe to turn back time remain sore points. As my brother said at the time, "If he can do that, why bother trying to stop anything in advance?"
More silliness, nothing worse than the "kiss of forgetfulness," in which Superman inexplicably erases Lois Lane's memory that he's Clark Kent, after he "trips" in the Honeymoon Suite.
Really, so much from which to choose, so little time -- from casting Richard Pryor for comic relief to Jon Cryer as Lex Luthor's spiky-haired nephew and micro-budgeted special effects.
It's kind of a toss-up regarding which was more awful: This theatrical version, starring Matt Salinger, or a 1979 TV movie with a motorcycle-riding Reb Brown in what looked like a football helmet.
The 1930s pulp hero was enjoying a Marvel Comics resurgence when the unforgivably campy movie starring Ron Ely was released. Fans should have known it was a stinker from the trailer, when Doc's eye literally twinkles and he tells a woman who says she's in love with him, "Mona, you're a brick!"
Normally, an animated Saturday-morning series would draw a bit of a pass, but this one carries a special asterisk: Since one member of the quartet, the Human Torch, had been separately optioned for a movie that never happened, the producers replaced him with a wisecracking robot named H.E.R.B.I.E. -- presumably because "R2D2" was taken.
Although many fixated on the Caped Crusader's codpiece, the real crime here was one of tone, as director Joel Schumacher's cheeky take virtually brought the character full circle from Tim Burton's dark 1989 feature to the 1960s "Wham! Biff! Pow!" TV show. So bad, in hindsight, it might have helped drive Arnold Schwarzenegger into politics.
"The Talk" (pictured) submitted its season- three premiere, a thought- provoking episode in which the hosts went on air without wearing any makeup. "The View" went with a poignant show from January 2012 in which the hosts interviewed mentors from their lives. "Live! With Kelly and Michael" scored a nod for the freshman season with new co-host Michael Strahan. Ellen DeGeneres, overlooked in the host category, still has something to dance about since she scored a nod in this grouping as executive producer of "The Ellen
Five-time Emmy-winner Mark Teschner submitted a reel containing the newest batch of pretty lab technicians and appealing student nurses on "General Hospital," including the delightful Teresa Castillo, who plays Sabrina.
Judy Blye Wilson (The Young and the Restless), a three-time Emmy- winner, has great diversity in her reel. It includes familiar faces from primetime such as Catherine Bach (as a scene-stealing meddling mama), the late Bonnie Franklin and SAG-AFTRA's president himself, Ken Howard.
Marnie Saitta is once again nominated as talent-finder for "Days of Our Lives," the soap that had perhaps the biggest casting coup of 2012 with Eileen Davidson, (pictured) who returned to Salem after an absence of over a decade.
In past years, there have been multiple candidates within
single nominations (for example, when the ladies of "The View" were nominated). This year, all the contenders are solo acts: Anderson Cooper, Steve Harvey, (pictured) Ricki Lake, Dr. Mehmet Oz and Rachael Ray will compete for Emmy gold as hosts of their respective shows. Harvey's chances for a statuette are increased, since he's also up for gameshow host for keeping the peace on "Family Feud."
Last year's winner "Jeopardy" is competing against "Family Feud," "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire," Cash Cab" and CBS' two gameshows -- "The Price Is Right" (pictured) and "Let's Make a Deal." Price might get the sentimental vote after having submitted its 40th anniversary episode, but it would be serendipitous if Deal won, because former host Monty Hall is set to receive this year's Lifetime Achievement Award along with producer Bob Stewart.
"The One Life to Live" (pictured) submission includes beloved matriarch Viki delivering a heartfelt monologue as to why fans love soap operas.
"The Young and the Restless" went with an entry that features humor and drama surrounding the return of presumed dead patriarch Victor. Nominee Maria Bell and her team won this award in 2011. "The Bold and the Beautiful," by head writer and Emmy winner Bradley Bell, went old school with the emotional death of Stephanie.
"General Hospital" scored a nod
for veering the show away from being mob-centric to its hospital roots, telling stories that are dramatic, quirky and enormously respectful to its 50-year history. Top scribe Carlivati, who is also nominated for One Life, tells
tales with an energetic pace that makes viewers feel like they can't miss a day -- nor do they want to.
There's an interesting entry in the drama race this year -- "One Life to Live" (pictured) is on the ballot because it aired several episodes in January 2012 during the eligibility period. The axed ABC sudser was top-notch and certainly deserves the nod, but ironically, it could take votes away from the rejuvenated "General Hospital," with both nominated serials sharing the same creative team -- Frank Valentini and Ron Carlivati.
"The Bold and the Beautiful" could walk away with its fourth Emmy in this category with two powerful episodes that featured the tearjerker passing of the show matriarch Stephanie (Susan Flannery). "Days of Our Lives" exec producer Ken Corday and co-exec producers Greg Meng and Lisa de Cazotte made big use of the show's cast in its submissions: One episode was packed with special effects as a gas explosion rocked the town of Salem. The other entry dealt with the resulting emotional fallout.
Few would have been surprised if "Today" had landed in the drama series category, given the highly publicized brouhaha the show went through last year with its awkward host transition from Ann Curry to Savannah Guthrie. The NBC morning show competes this year for morning program against perennial nominee --
and ratings rival -- "Good Morning America." A year after only those two breakfastcasts were nommed in the category, "CBS Sunday Morning" joins the fray.
Primetime Emmy winner Peggy McCay, last nominated in this category in 1986, gave a heart- wrenching and understated performance on "Days of Our Lives" as a matriarch grappling with the onset of Alzheimer's. "The Bold and the Beautiful" stars Susan Flannery and Heather Tom, both previous winners in this category, also gave compelling turns as their characters grappled with, respectively, terminal cancer and postpartum depression.
Two-time Emmy-winner Michelle Stafford's (pictured) nomination is bittersweet. The actress recently announced that she'll be exiting her role as the fiery Phyllis on "The Young and the Restless."
Three actors from "The Young and the Restless" -- Peter Bergman (a three-time Emmy-winner), veteran Doug Davidson and the always-watchable Michael Muhney -- are up for this award along with Jason Thompson of "General Hospital" (pictured). Muhney, a first-time nominee, tells Variety that if Thompson wins, it won't be because the votes for the Y&R trio split, but because Thompson's reel as a widower doctor mourning his late wife -- who (surprise!) isn't truly dead -- is simply superb.
This case for who's going to win this category perhaps should literally be brought in front of Judge Judy. The perennial Emmy candidate, nominated again this year, has never won the award, even back when the program competed numerous times in the special-class series category. The other two contenders this year are "Last Shot With Judge Gunn" (which won in 2012) and veteran judicial series "The People's Court."