Emmy Awards score big for CBS

Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images
Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

But still beat by Da Bears.

Despite going up against a Sunday Night Football game whose teams have one of the most rabid fan bases in the NFL, the Primetime Emmy Awards still managed to snare a 4.9 adult demo rating (18-49) and 17.36 million viewers, the largest total audience in eight years; and the highest-rated adult demo in six years. The program is up 26 percent in 18-49, and up 50 percent among adults 18-49 from last year’s ABC telecast.

However, Jay Cutler & Co. in a winning effort over the floundering Pittsburgh Steelers drew a 6.9 adult demo rating and 18.69 viewers for NBC. As expected, Chicago overnight household numbers for the Bears game towered over those for the Primetime Emmys, and the case was the same in Pittsburgh, I’m sure.

Ironically, it was an NFL lead-in (a overrun from a Bills-Jets game) that provided a boost for the Emmys.

The total viewers and adult demo numbers were preliminaries; final numbers will be released on Tuesday.

As for the Emmy show itself, it was a disappointment and for the most part, boring – even with the talented Neil Patrick Harris hosting. The show began with Harris and one by one can the spirited hosts of Emmy pasts – Jane Lynch, Conan O’ Brien, Jimmy Fallon, and Jimmy Kimmel. With five hosts on stage, it reminded me of the time five reality TV hosts helmed the ceremony… fail. To end the skit, Tina Fey and Amy Poheler were in the audience, asking Harris to “twerk”. At least this time, William Shatner didn’t appear to demand they show up.

The overall tone of the telecast was somber, as the Emmys paid tribute to several TV stars who passed away in the past year, including Jean Stapleton, James Gandlofini, and Glee star Corey Montieth, who is by far the most controversial a he died from a drug overdose in Vancouver July 13. They did have an In Memoriam segment, with Larry Hagman and Jack Klugman, among those featured.

The singing and dancing segments were awful – once again giving yours truly bad memories – this time of Rob Lowe and Snow White at the 1989 Oscar telecast. And also note the absence of clips throughout the telecast, making it seem they were doing this Emmy show on the cheap.

At least Seth MacFarlane didn’t show up.

And on a separate note, it is a shame critically-acclaimed series Community and New Girl (yes, New Girl) – were not nominated in any category, especially in the Outstanding Comedy Series category. Despite being overrated at times, both sitcoms were far more deserving than Girls or Veep.

Onto the winners: While Modern Family snared its fourth Outstanding Comedy Series award, Breaking Bad “broke” through and finally won an Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series. Not surprisingly, premium cable dominated the acting and writing awards, with Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons earning his third consecutive award for Lead Actor in the Comedy Series – the only rep from the broadcast networks to do so.

The Voice pulled a major upset over The Amazing Race for Outstanding Reality Competition and The Colbert Report ended the ten-year reign of The Daily Show as Outstanding Variety, Music, or Comedy series champion.

And Netflix made history Sunday night as the first Internet streaming service ever to win an Emmy award, with House Of Cards‘ David Fincher taking the prize for Best Director.

To see the complete list of Primetime Emmy winners, click here.