Hannah Gadsby, the Fonz and a proposal: What went down at the Emmys 2018

Hannah Gadsby picked up an Emmy for her special <i>Nanette</i>.

Hannah Gadsby picked up an Emmy for her special Nanette. Photo: AAP

Presenting the directing award for a drama series at the 70th Emmy Awards, Australian comic Hannah Gadsby, fresh from her phenomenally successful Netflix special Nanette, stole the spotlight.

“This is … not normal? The world’s gone a bit crazy,” she said, musing on the night’s professed commitment to diversity.

“I mean, somebody like me – a nobody, from nowhere – gets this sweet gig, free suit, new boots, just ’cause I don’t like men? That’s a joke, of course,” she continued.

“But what are jokes these days? We don’t know.

Nobody knows what jokes are. Especially not men! Am I right, fellas? That’s why I’m presenting alone.”

The riff had Twitter calling for Gadsby to be hired as next host for the TV awards show, but it was just one of a grab bag of big moments.

The September 17 (US time) show kicked off with Kate McKinnon, Ricky Martin, John Legend and others singing We Solved It, a ditty that sarcastically celebrated the record-breaking 38 people of colour nominated in acting categories.

More than an hour into the show, “six awards, all white winners,” co-host Michael Che noted. “One lady won twice.”

That would be Amy Sherman-Palladino (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel) the first woman ever to score both comedy writing and directing Emmys.

“My panic room is going to be so pretty!” she declared, holding up both trophies. (The Amazon show also won best comedy series.)

Winning best supporting actor in a comedy for Barry, Happy Days legend Henry Winkler, 72, was anything but Fonzie cool.

“I wrote this 43 years ago,” he started his speech.

“If you stay at the table long enough, the chips come to you and tonight, I got to clear the table.”

Henry Winkler Emmys 2018

Sit on it: Henry Winkler (with Tim Kash) bemoans how long it took to win. Photo: Getty

Winkler’s co-star Bill Hader won for best actor in a comedy, and in a did-I-just-see-that moment, hugged a man dressed up as fellow nominee Donald Glover’s Atlanta character Teddy Perkins, complete with white face makeup, prosthetics and a black wig.

While many assumed it to be Glover, Reddit and Twitter later guessed it was actually his Atlanta co-star Lakeith Stanfield because Glover was seated nearby. Or it may have must been a stand in. Confused?

Either way, social media went nuts.

Donald Glover white face

Betty White, 96, reflected on her own marathon stint at the table while being honoured for 80 years in the business.

“It’s incredible that you can stay in a career this long and still have people put up with you,” she said. “I wish they did that at home.”

Glenn Weiss Jan Svendsen

She said yes! Glenn Weiss and Jan Svendsen make it official. Photo: Getty

The night’s most emotional moment came courtesy of Oscars director Glenn Weiss, who proposed to girlfriend Jan Svendsen from the stage as he accepted his 14th Emmy.

“I want to call you my wife,” he said, as the audience, including a teary Benedict Cumberbatch and crying Claire Foy, gasped and guided Svendsen to the stage to accept her engagement ring.

Leslie Jones’ emotional reaction became an instant meme but best actor in a drama Matthew Rhys joked that his The Americans co-star and real-life love Keri Russell “said if you propose to me I will punch you clean in the mouth”.

In the end, despite the song and dance, only three awards were handed out to people of colour – to Regina King (Seven Seconds), RuPaul (RuPaul’s Drag Race) and an overcome Thandie Newton (Westworld).

“I don’t believe in God, but I’m going to thank her tonight,” Newton said. “I’m so f—king blessed.”


Outstanding drama seriesGame of Thrones (HBO)

Outstanding comedy series: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)

Outstanding limited series: The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story (FX)

Outstanding lead actress in a drama series: Claire Foy, The Crown (Netflix)

Outstanding lead actor in a drama series: Matthew Rhys, The Americans (FX)

Outstanding lead actress in a comedy series: Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)

Outstanding lead actor in a comedy series: Bill Hader, Barry (HBO)

Outstanding supporting actress in a drama series: Thandie Newton, Westworld (HBO)

Outstanding supporting actor in a drama series: Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones (HBO)

Outstanding supporting actress in a comedy series: Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)

Outstanding supporting actor in a comedy series: Henry Winkler, Barry (HBO)

Stay informed, daily
A FREE subscription to The New Daily arrives every morning and evening.
The New Daily is a trusted source of national news and information and is provided free for all Australians. Read our editorial charter.
Copyright © 2024 The New Daily.
All rights reserved.