Issa Rae summed up last Sunday’s Emmy telecast in a perfect sentence when asked who she was rooting for on the red carpet. I’m rooting for everybody black The reporter stood stunned for a minute as if Rae was joking but she quickly cleared up that she was serious. And it was a night of black excellence indeed.
Going into the broadcast there were several categories that I had my eye on. Titus Burgess for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series, Sterling K. Brown for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series and Lena Waithe for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series…well two of out of three ain’t bad. I love Titus and feel that he was snubbed but of course Alec would walk away with the trophy for his portrayal of Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live.
Sterling’s win was well deserved and he was an odds on favorite going in. His speech was absolutely perfection (once I stopped shouting long enough to hear it) until he was unceremoniously played off the stage after just over a minute of talking. It’s worth noting that Nicole Kidman was on stage for much longer and was not played off. Thankfully, Brown was given the opportunity to finish his speech backstage.
The highlight of the night for me was watching Lena Waithe, the first African American Woman to be nominated and win for Writing in a Comedy Series. Her acceptance speech needs to be released on iTunes or Spotify so I can listen to it every morning for motivation. It was flawlessly delivered while several of her peers gave her a standing ovation. While addressing the LGBTQIA community she said, The things that make us different, those are our superpowers and was met with applause and tears. As a writer, her words were inspiring and I’ve overdosed on her Youtube and Podcast interviews over the past week just listening to her journey. Lena has worked hard and with some of the best in the business to get where she is and gives great advice about being a successful writer including joining writing groups, having table reads and building a network.
The other highlight of the night was Donald Glover who not only made history as the first African American to win an Emmy for Directing a Comedy Series, but also took home the award for Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for “Atlanta”.
It’s amazing that in 2017 we are still saying phrases like “the first African American to..” but yet here we are. It’s an honor to see these talented human beings knocking down doors and paving the way for other creatives to be on that stage one day.
Maybe even me or you 😉