Ruminating on the Emmy’s (this Sunday, September 23)


In the scheme of family, church, and world events, this Sunday’s Primetime Emmy Awards show sinks to the bottom of most people’s priority list. But if you are a hard-working writer, actor, producer, technician or assistant from all categories, awards matter. Especially to writers.

This Sunday is also the commissioning service for catechists and catechetical leaders at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels. I mention it here because of the media link. Five catechists who took the Advanced Media Literacy catechist specialization course at our center this summer will receive certificates at the ceremony, led by Archbishop José Gomez. As course participants tell us over and over, once you study media literacy, you never look at television the same way again. Maybe next year, one of them will take on primetime television.

Here are the shows that I think are deserving of recognition. My criteria begin with how well the show reflects human dignity. These are shows that I watch or have watched and TV movies I have seen.


“The Big Bang Theory”: It’s smart, celebrates nerdism, is really funny, and why no one has nominated Kaley Cuoco for an Emmy is a real mystery. She has been a brilliant comedic actress ever since she outshone her TV dad, the late John Ritter, in “Eight Simple Rules.” Some critics think the show exploits stereotypes. Of course it does, because all of visual media, especially comedy, use common understandings as shorthand. It’s how well a show is produced, how much genuine humanity comes through, that matters.

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