Programming

'Modern Family,' 'Mad Men' Take Top Emmy Honors

ABC freshman sitcom snags best comedy Emmy, displacing '30 Rock;' 'Mad Men' wins third consecutive drama Emmy 8/29/2010 08:42:38 PM Eastern

Emmys 2010: Complete Coverage from B&C

It was Modern Family's night at the 62nd
Primetime Emmy Awards. And the freshman show's raft of awards -- as well as
some token Emmy gold for Fox's Glee
and CBS' The Big Bang Theory and The Good Wife -- was enough to give
broadcast television an awards season shot in the arm.

Modern
Family
won the Emmy for outstanding comedy
series, displacing oft winner 30 Rock.
The ABC comedy also took home Emmys for supporting actor for Eric Stonestreet
and writing for series co-creators and executive producers Steve Levitan and
Chris Lloyd.

Accepting the Emmy
for outstanding comedy series, Levitan noted, "We're thankful that families are
sitting down together to watch a television show. And we're so thankful that
you are letting us into your families."

AMC's Mad Men won its third consecutive drama
series Emmy beating out HBO's True Blood,
Showtime's Dexter, CBS' The Good Wife, ABC's Lost and AMC's Breaking Bad.

In a succinct
speech, series creator/executive producer Matthew Weiner thanked his cast and
crew adding, "We're now in our fourth season. I didn't even think we'd get
through half of one."

In fact, cable swept the top drama awards. Kyra Sedgwick took home the Emmy for
lead actress in a drama for TNT's The
Closer
. She beat out Friday Night
Light
's Connie Britton, Damage's
Glenn Close, Law & Order: SVU's
Mariska Hargitay, Mad Men's January
Jones and The Good Wife's Julianna
Margulies.

Bryan Cranston won his third consecutive lead actor Emmy for his work in AMC's Breaking Bad.

Cranston, who plays a chemistry teacher-cum-meth dealer, delivered a humble
acceptance speech, saying his fellow nominees including Mad Men's Jon Hamm, Friday
Night Lights
' Kyle Chandler, Lost's
Matthew Fox, Dexter's Michael C. Hall
and House's Hugh Laurie, were
"robbed."

"You're only as good as the company you keep," said Cranston.
"And I am honored to be in your company."

Cranston's co-star Aaron Paul won his first Emmy for outstanding supporting
actor in a drama series. Paul, who was nominated last year, thanked series
creator Vince Gilligan, his mom and Cranston.

"To work with you every single day is a dream," Paul told Cranston.

But Archie Panjabi continued broadcast's winning streak, taking home the Emmy
for outstanding supporting actress in a drama for CBS' The Good Wife.

"This is amazing for my career," said Panjabi. "Thank you so
much."

And Jim Parsons snagged the Emmy for outstanding actor in a comedy series for
his role as uber-geek Sheldon Cooper on CBS' The Big Bang Theory.

Parsons thanked his cast mates, who he praised as "so talented and so darn
hard working."

He also thanked series creator Chuck Lorre and the show's writers "for
stories that are so worth working on."

"I feel so lucky to be working at all," said Parsons. "But to
get to be working on this character is really beyond fortunate."

And although Modern Family's Julie
Bowen and Sofia Vergara also were nominated for outstanding supporting actress
in a comedy, that Emmy went to favorite Jane Lynch, who plays the acerbic
scene-stealer Sue Sylvester in Fox's Glee.

Lynch thanked her wife Lara Embry and their daughter Hayden. She also thanked Glee "lord and creator" Ryan
Murphy and acknowledged that acting is the only thing she ever wanted to do.
"I'm an actor," she said. "We have no other choice -- or
skills."

Glee series creator and executive
producer Ryan Murphy won for best direction in a comedy. Murphy dedicated the
award to arts education in general and his art teachers in particular who
taught him to "sing and finger paint."

Edie Falco, the former Sopranos star
who has a shelf of awards for her dramatic work, was the lone cable winner in
the comedy category, taking home the Emmy for outstanding actress for her
eponymous role in Showtime's Nurse Jackie.
But she wryly noted in her acceptance speech: "I'm not funny!"

And Bravo's Top Chef finally broke The Amazing Race's stranglehold on the
reality competition series category. The CBS series had won the award all seven
years it's been handed out.

Backstage after Top Chef's win,
co-host Padma Lakshmi noted that she threw down the gauntlet for her Amazing Race competitors.

"I was really mean to the host of Amazing
Race
on the red carpet," said Lakshmi. "I hit him with my purse
twice. I said, ‘I'm gonna take you down!' And guess what, I was right!"

Conversely, The Daily Show with Jon
Stewart
again took home the Emmy for outstanding comedy/variety series, the
show's eighth consecutive win. Daily Show
executive producer Roy Albanese said that although the show had monopolized the
category, "It's tough to feel bad. We work really hard. It is."

As
usual, HBO swept the movie and miniseries categories. Temple Grandin took home the Emmy for made-for-TV-movie while
Claire Danes, David Strathairn and Julia Ormond took home acting awards. Tom
Hanks and Steven Spielberg's ten-part World War II miniseries The Pacific won the outstanding
miniseries award beating out PBS' Return
to Cranford
. And Al Pacino took home the Emmy for
lead actor in a miniseries or movie for his portrayal of controversial
physician Jack Kevorkian in HBO's You
Don't Know Jack
.

Pacino mused about getting "inside [Kevorkian's] head" in the process
of making the film. Kevorkian was in attendance at the Nokia Theater and Pacino
noted that it was "an honor getting to know him." Kevorkian stood up
to take a bow.

George Clooney accepted the Bob Hope Humanitarian Award -- and he took a swipe
at the media's penchant for sensationalism in his acceptance speech.

"It's important to remember how much good can get done because the bad behavior
sucks up so much of the attention and the press," he said.

Clooney, whose aunt Rosemary Clooney was a friend of Bob and Delores Hope,
observed that it's easy to help when a crisis is fresh. "The hard part is
seven month later when we're on to a new story," he said, "And quite
frankly we fail at that. I fail at that."

RELATED: More Emmys coverage from the BC Beat blog
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