×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Talk Series See Emmy Boosts From Political Impact

The c-word didn’t sink Samantha Bee, but the streak is over (for now) for Bill Maher. And this year’s batch of Emmy nominations leave no doubt that the T-word remains a geyser of material for nominees.

TBS’ “Full Frontal With Samantha Bee” became wrapped up in the cultural debate about whether the anti-Trump bent of late-night is sharpening the political divisions in the country. Bee apologized for calling Ivanka Trump a “feckless c—,” but there was still a big question about whether the vulgarity would nix her chances for back-to-back series noms. Bee weathered the crisis thanks to otherwise strong reviews and respect within the creative community. It also didn’t hurt that Bee’s vulgarity came over an issue that stirred widespread bipartisan outrage (Trump’s family-separation immigration policy).

Moreover, amid the industry’s focus on gender parity and diversity, this was not the year for Emmy voters to field an all white-male lineup for variety talk series.

Comedy Central’s “Daily Show With Trevor Noah” rode a wave of good reviews and buzzy moments to the show’s first variety talk series nom since the South African comedian’s tenure began in 2015.

Bee, Noah and their competitors — ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” HBO’s “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver,” CBS’ “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” and “Late Late Show With James Corden” — have one thing in common: a sharp focus on President Trump and related subjects. “Corden” is a slight exception, as it generates more buzz through the viral success of taped segments such as “Carpool Karaoke” and “Crosswalk the Musical.”

“Last Week Tonight” has logged back-to-back wins for series, but Kimmel could be the one to beat this year.
Kimmel made headlines for weeks by going toe to toe with congressional leaders and helped raised awareness of what was at stake in the Republican plan to repeal Obamacare.

There’s nothing Emmy voters like to reward more than cultural impact.

More TV

  • Arrow -- "Elseworlds, Part 2" --

    'Elseworlds, Part 2' Recap: Batwoman's 'Arrowverse' Story Begins

    SPOILER ALERT: Do not read if you have not yet watched “Elseworlds, Part 2” the second part of the 2018 “Arrowverse” crossover, which aired Dec. 10. “Arrow’s” leg of the “Elseworlds” crossover had a little more to think about than “The Flash’s,” mainly because it served as the first introduction to Ruby Rose’s Batwoman. For [...]

  • Michael Uslan's U2K Becomes Asia-Hollywood Formats

    Michael Uslan's U2K Becomes Asia-Hollywood Formats Pipeline (EXCLUSIVE)

    Michael and David Uslan, the father and son producing team with credits that include “The Dark Knight” and “Sabrina: Secrets of a Teenage Witch” have struck a cluster of deals that makes them a two-way conduit for TV formats between Hollywood and Asia. U2K, a company that includes the Uslans and Jon Karas (“Believe in [...]

  • Court TV Brand to Resurface as

    Court TV Brand to Resurface as New Channel From Scripps Co.

    Court TV is back in session. The cable TV channel that once carried gavel-to-gavel live coverage of high-profile trials will be revived by a new owner, nearly a dozen years after it was shuttered by Turner Broadcasting. Katz Networks, a division of E.W. Scripps Co., plans to revive Court TV as a new channel designed [...]

  • Gina Rodriguez Carmen Sandiego

    TV News Roundup: Netflix's Carmen Sandiego Series With Gina Rodriguez Sets Premiere Date

    In today’s TV news roundup, Netflix announced a premiere date for its upcoming Carmen Sandiego series and Stars released the premiere date for its original comedy series “Now Apocalypse.” DATES Lifetime will debut a new Gretchen Carlson documentary Jan. 14 at 10 p.m. ET/PT, Variety has learned exclusively. The two-hour special titled “Gretchen Carlson: Breaking [...]

  • Craig Hunegs WB

    Craig Hunegs to Exit Warner Bros. TV Group and Digital Networks (EXCLUSIVE)

    After nearly 25 years in the Warner Bros. family, Craig Hunegs is exiting his post as head of business for Warner Bros. TV Group and president of the studio’s digital networks wing. Hunegs said he has been discussing his exit with Warner Bros. chairman-CEO Kevin Tsujihara for the past several months. At a time of [...]

  • 'Walking Dead' Profits Dispute Heading to

    'Walking Dead' Profits Dispute Heading to Trial

    The long-running legal battle between Frank Darabont and AMC over profits from “The Walking Dead” will run a bit longer, as a judge ruled Monday that the case must go to trial. Darabont and CAA sued the network back in 2013, arguing he was deprived of $280 million in profit participation because AMC did not [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content