Here is another case of the Emmys making themselves irrelevant by giving trophies to the same people over and over. I get it—Jon Stewart’s tenure at The Daily Show is over, and his wins for Outstanding Writing in a Variety Series and Outstanding Variety Series are his send-off from the television academy. Next year, I’m sure it will be Last Week Tonight with John Oliver’s turn. Except their turn should have been this year, because Stewart’s retirement notwithstanding, Jon Oliver was better. Yeah, it’s Stewart’s last year, but it was also David Letterman’s and he didn’t get a retirement Emmy. If you’re not going to spread that fare-thee-well love around, then for the love of entertaining television, make it a real competition. The Daily Show already has a mess of Emmys. Maybe it’s time to move onto something fresher.
Duana and I had a conversation about Stewart’s sincerity in positioning his female writers up front on stage when The Daily Show won. There is no escaping how overwhelmingly male the late night writing rooms are, and I think Stewart is sincere in that he knows it’s a problem and he’s aware of the criticism, and he wants to highlight the role women play in his writers’ room. I don’t think it’s meant to be self-aggrandizing or to put himself above the fray, but then, I like Stewart and want to give him the benefit of the doubt. So what do you think—was it a calculated move to get ahead of potential criticism, or an honest attempt at highlighting diversity in late night television?