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The President and the Emmys and more odd details

By Alan Pergament

Some odds and ends from today's Emmy nominations -- with an emphasis on the odd -- after looking at about 50 pages of nominations:

Did President Obama get an Emmy nomination?

Technically, probably not.

But his appearance in the "Funny or Die" bit with Zach Galifianakis called "Between 2 Ferns" was nominated in the category of outstanding short format, live-action entertainment program.

In the brief bit, the president was trying to reach younger people by plugging the website HealthCare.Gov, which at the time was a disaster.

In the same category competing with the president is Bruno Mars' halftime show during the Super Bowl.

Jerry Seinfeld got a nomination in the short format nonfiction program category for his series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee." Among his competitors in the category, "Jay Leno's Garage."

Showtime's "Homeland" was snubbed in the best drama category, but I can't see any reason to complain. Last season was pretty routine by its own standards. It took way too long to get going. Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin received nominations for their work on the series that probably should have ended after two seasons.

Netflix, thanks to the "House of Cards" and "Orange is the New Black," received 31 nominations, which was seven more than Showtime received. The streaming service may be more of a threat to pay-cable channels than the broadcast networks.

With the help of all the nominations for "American Horror Story: Coven," "Fargo" and "Louie," FX networks had 45 nominations, one less than NBC and eight more than ABC.

Billy Crystal's moving HBO special from his one-man Broadway show, "700 Sundays," deservedly got a few nominations. They included one for the writing by Crystal. I loved the special, partly because I grew up on Long Island and his high school basketball team at Long Beach used to play against my high school.

The underrated HBO movie, "Muhammad Ali''s Greatest Fight," got a TV movie nomination. I show that film to my sports journalism class semi-annually. It is about the boxing great's court fight after claiming to be a conscientious objector during the Vietnam war. The case landed in the Supreme Court, which found an unusual compromise to eventually rule in his favor. The film has a great cast that includes Christopher Plummer and Frank Langella. It also illustrates in an entertaining way how Supreme Court justices can fit the law to suit their own social and political beliefs. But if you've been paying attention to the present court, you probably know that.

Jodie Foster got an Emmy nomination for directing an episode of "Orange is The New Black."

It looks like the Aug. 25 Emmy program on NBC will be a coronation for HBO's "Game of Thrones" considering all the nominations that it received. That probably means I'll have to give it another try. My sons, my brother and several of my friends swear by it. But I've tried three times to watch the pilot and couldn't figure out what was going on and gave up each time. Well, maybe the fourth time will be the charm.

Remember the moving Super Bowl ads from Budweiser, "Puppy Love," and "Hero's Welcome." Both are nominated in the outstanding commercial category. 


Television | TV news
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About Talkin' TV

Alan Pergament

Alan Pergament

Alan Pergament has continued to blog about television topics since retiring in 2010 as The News' television writer after 28 years on the beat. From local on-air personalities to ratings to the latest on network and cable programming, he keeps you informed.

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