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  • Writer's picturePierre Eustache

The best Emmys 2020 moments happened both on- and off-screen

Courtesy of ABC

Last night, Jimmy Kimmel hosted the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards, and it was one for the history books, in more ways than one. One show dominated like none before it, multiple records were broken, and the biggest Zoom meeting in Hollywood provided some unique moments. Here are some of my favorites:

'Schitt's' Sweep

Eugene and Daniel Levy's little Canadian gem won big at the awards show and made unprecedented history in the process. Schitt's Creek won all seven Primetime Emmy categories it was nominated for, a first for a comedy series. It was also the first time any series, comedy or drama, won all four acting award categories. I knew that Catherine O'Hara and Eugene Levy would have their Emmy moments (and I loved how hard everyone—especially Daniel—cheered for them), but the biggest Schitt's surprise came when Annie Murphy won hers. Her performance as Alexis Rose is perhaps the most underrated hilarious role on the series, and I was both shocked and thrilled to see her get that trophy.

Black Power on the Rise

During his acceptance speech for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series, Daniel Levy gave a deserving shout out to Issa Rae and the writing staff of Insecure, who were not nominated. Even though Rae's Emmy moment is yet to come, it was still a landmark event in Black television history. Seven Black actors and actresses walked away with statues, the most ever in a single night. The moment was not lost on winners Regina King and Uzo Aduba, both of whom wore t-shirts bearing the image and name of Breonna Taylor.

Zendaya is Emmy

Speaking of Black actresses, one of them became the focus of what was undeniably the biggest upset of the entire evening. Zendaya bested a category of heavy hitters, including Laura Linney and Olivia Colman, to nab the award for Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her role on Euphoria. In the process, Zendaya became the youngest actress ever to win that trophy, and watching her family and friends go nuts while she herself struggled to hold back tears was a key highlight of the ceremony.

Stay At Home

The nature of the ceremony itself provided some classic moments, both on screen and off. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the Emmy recipients were broadcasting from remote locations, which allowed for some unique situations. When Aduba won her Emmy, she yelled to let her mother know that she won, and when Yahya Abdul-Mateen II won for his performance in Watchmen, he gave a gracious and poignant speech and toast, and then he ran off with excitement right before the camera cut. Some of the actors also shared some behind-the-scenes moments on Twitter. Dan Levy provided his sister Sarah's reactions to all their show's wins, while Ramy Youssef showed us what it looked like if you were a part of the Schitt's club:

We Thank You

For me, the best part of this broadcast was that they didn't try to completely ignore the affects of the pandemic—in particular, how it has changed the lives of the very people who tune in to watch all of these shows. They did include a somewhat funny montage to show what some of the actors have been doing during the shutdown. More meaningfully, though, some of the award throughout the evening were presented by frontline and essential workers who shared the struggles they have experienced over the last six months, both physically and emotionally. I was genuinely touched, and it was a moment of inclusion that the show definitely needed in these times.

Did your favorite shows get Emmys? What was your favorite moment? Tell me in the comments below!

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