News

Women Lead Emmy Awards' Biggest Moments

Julia Louis-Dreyfus' historic win, Donald Glover's dominance, and Sean Spicer are among the ceremony's highlights.

by and | September 17, 2017 | Comments

The 69th Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony on Sunday held a few big surprises, including stories by and about women dominating top awards and veteran NBC variety show Saturday Night Live leading the award count.

See the full list of the night’s winners here, but the year’s top winners overall were:

Saturday Night Live – 9
Big Little Lies – 8
The Handmaid’s Tale – 8
Stranger Things – 5
The Night Of – 5
Veep – 5
Westworld – 5

Here are five of the biggest surprises and moments from Sunday’s ceremony and what social media observers had to say about the results.


1. Stephen Colbert’s Politically Charged Opening

Host Colbert kicked the program off with a cameo-filled musical number (including a verse by Chance the Rapper, who urged viewers to record their shows and be politically active) followed by a similarly themed monologue meant jokes about Hollywood, the TV industry, and yes, politics, including an appearance from a former White House player that caused jaws to drop.


Colbert’s Daily Show background means he never steers clear of politics, and after a politically charged opening musical number and monologue, he brought out a major surprise: former White House spokesperson and SNL subject Sean Spicer. And yes, it was kinda awkward for Melissa McCarthy, who won an Emmy for playing him at the Creative Arts Emmys last weekend.


2. Donald Glover’s Big Wins

Not only did Glover take home an award for Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series — the first African-American person ever to do so — for an episode of Atlanta, he also won for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy.


3. Ann Dowd and Kate McKinnon’s Tearful Speeches

Both Dowd, a first-time winner, and McKinnon, who took home the trophy last year, were so overcome with emotion (and seemed to be in disbelief of their wins) that they were in tears throughout their (still-eloquent) speeches.


4. Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ Historic Win

The Seinfeld star is already a TV icon, but by winning her sixth consecutive Emmy for Veep, Louis-Dreyfus broke the record for most Emmys won by a single actor for one role. (The previous record holder was Candice Bergen for Murphy Brown).


5. Women’s Tales by Women Dominate

Taking Outstanding Drama Series, Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for Elisabeth Moss, Dowd’s Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, and Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for Alexis Bledel, as well as Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series for Bruce Miller and Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for Reed Morano, the Hulu original based on Margaret Atwood’s classic novel, The Handmaid’s Tale, proved to be the little drama series that could. Atwood got a standing ovation when she joined the cast and producers on stage.

Big Little Lies, also based on a novel by a female author, Liane Moriarty, also scored big wins for Outstanding Limited Series, Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Television Movie for Nicole Kidman, Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Television Movie for Laura Dern, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Television Movie for Alexander Skarsgård, and Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie or Dramatic Special for Jean-Marc Vallée.


Adding to the female milestones was Lena Waithe, the first black woman to win for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series. Waithe shared the award with Master of None co-writer Aziz Ansari for the episode “Thanksgiving.”

Tag Cloud

Character Guide ratings Apple TV+ concert Pixar Drama reviews Esquire 4/20 TNT TLC Lifetime Christmas movies legend Holidays MTV Musical comedies Turner Classic Movies christmas movies YouTube Red HBO Go DirecTV Paramount satire disaster dragons travel Amazon Turner Opinion Broadway telelvision TV Land BBC Pet Sematary Fox News rom-coms NBA blaxploitation know your critic TV movies Superheroe WarnerMedia live action Calendar crime drama nfl harry potter miniseries First Look Hulu RT History high school Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt VOD french Nickelodeon 71st Emmy Awards Martial Arts Academy Awards biography cancelled TV series true crime Emmy Nominations The Witch popular zero dark thirty Women's History Month Ellie Kemper boxoffice Marathons reboot Box Office kids Hear Us Out animated period drama Family cancelled halloween tv The Purge Baby Yoda Oscars jamie lee curtis Television Critics Association Vudu adenture razzies HBO Pride Month romantic comedy Ghostbusters Comic Book 2021 stand-up comedy Best and Worst rotten movies we love Emmys Nominations Paramount Network History DC streaming service monster movies Grammys Ovation TIFF comiccon fast and furious spanish language Crunchyroll ESPN LGBT hist best CBS golden globe awards Song of Ice and Fire Biopics GLAAD Spectrum Originals godzilla renewed TV shows hidden camera Bravo theme song dark Netflix Peacock movies football mission: impossible Universal cancelled TV shows tv talk women spy thriller Warner Bros. Quiz 93rd Oscars Trivia indiana jones TCA Awards dceu Creative Arts Emmys The CW Brie Larson toy story Television Academy Rocketman blockbuster SDCC japanese Chilling Adventures of Sabrina venice A&E zombie cults based on movie spain sequels ABC The Walking Dead Mindy Kaling Starz screenings deadpool cinemax classics anthology Sundance Now adaptation king kong trailers joker MSNBC sequel superman universal monsters award winner Disney streaming service crime thriller BET richard e. Grant adventure remakes Black Mirror directors Tubi CNN Western Disney YouTube Premium Exclusive Video italian teaser Sundance TV what to watch robots LGBTQ movie Tarantino mockumentary Shudder olympics cancelled television book adaptation lord of the rings YA quibi Sneak Peek 24 frames Thanksgiving TBS Extras Reality rotten Hallmark Christmas movies superhero video talk show latino cartoon franchise child's play video on demand sitcom unscripted Tokyo Olympics Pop cooking kaiju series NYCC crime VH1 New York Comic Con breaking bad 72 Emmy Awards Mary poppins Travel Channel 2019 zombies asian-american australia Teen psychological thriller ABC Signature 2015 CW Seed scene in color king arthur target Hallmark comics name the review 99% Fox Searchlight science fiction TCA Discovery Channel Cartoon Network Infographic Amazon Prime jurassic park war PaleyFest Comedy Central international 2018 hollywood canceled TV shows Lifetime Disney Channel james bond Black History Month TruTV fresh streaming movies dogs Lucasfilm social media GoT stop motion Lionsgate suspense Video Games justice league romance Pirates politics blockbusters chucky Wes Anderson docudrama Avengers CMT DC Universe Dark Horse Comics independent Trailer mutant Christmas discovery 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards a nightmare on elm street 2017 Comic-Con@Home 2021 Arrowverse Music Awards Tour USA Network Apple TV Plus serial killer Mary Tyler Moore Mudbound 20th Century Fox saw ViacomCBS Netflix Christmas movies Classic Film Tomatazos Captain marvel casting Disney Plus sports OneApp strong female leads APB Epix free movies twilight festivals ABC Family FXX VICE boxing spinoff DC Comics indie television aliens golden globes nature doctor who Elton John worst Sci-Fi Food Network foreign See It Skip It Fantasy werewolf Election AMC Horror marvel cinematic universe dramedy facebook comic books Chernobyl BBC One elevated horror kong Animation E! First Reviews Summer Acorn TV die hard Columbia Pictures E3 Nat Geo Apple HBO Max IFC Rom-Com Fall TV Image Comics Marvel revenge Binge Guide Awards cops ID game of thrones Amazon Prime Video Certified Fresh worst movies emmy awards political drama Winners Podcast spanish 007 SXSW wonder woman Stephen King thriller medical drama Kids & Family crossover witnail historical drama green book streaming Film 2020 National Geographic Pacific Islander TV TCM Adult Swim Syfy Alien Legendary rt archives singing competition USA news documentary ghosts japan Premiere Dates Paramount Plus Sony Pictures TV One Holiday basketball obituary all-time YouTube pirates of the caribbean Endgame WGN 1990s transformers Polls and Games Year in Review technology President IFC Films aapi Red Carpet Masterpiece Crackle 90s Toys BBC America Star Trek El Rey docuseries new zealand diversity PlayStation scorecard new star wars movies Logo Anna Paquin nbcuniversal Rocky Spike American Society of Cinematographers 45 Amazon Studios Heroines festival prank police drama Cannes ITV sag awards Pop TV Rock Marvel Studios Comedy binge TCA 2017 cats comic 2016 X-Men Film Festival Countdown Comics on TV Photos toronto batman films Set visit stoner RT21 versus natural history vampires documentaries Mystery dc Star Wars OWN NBC Disney+ Disney Plus Spring TV critics anime The Academy game show Showtime scary movies Country book Writers Guild of America laika A24 Tumblr heist movie The Arrangement children's TV black Reality Competition Funimation canceled The Walt Disney Company Mary Poppins Returns south america FX on Hulu hispanic Musicals PBS BAFTA psycho Britbox TV renewals parents cars slashers Superheroes FX San Diego Comic-Con space composers Valentine's Day 21st Century Fox supernatural DGA screen actors guild Schedule BET Awards GIFs Trophy Talk new york CBS All Access Walt Disney Pictures Watching Series TCA Winter 2020 Cosplay Winter TV Shondaland halloween Super Bowl Sundance Freeform MCU spider-man finale criterion Action Marvel Television SundanceTV FOX Interview archives