The Emmy Awards air this weekend on ABC, and in addition to our extensive thoughts on this year’s nominations, we thought it was time to recognize some of the good works that even the Academy didn’t want to honour. We did this for the Oscars, you may recall. While we’re looking forward to seeing rich, beautiful people pat each other on the back (like, actually), we’ve put together our own picks. Here are The 2016 Pop Culture Reference Awards for Excellence in Television or Something.
Best Use of a Tiny Girl Badass
Lyanna Mormont, showing the old dudes how it’s done on Game of Thrones.
Best Homage to a Bill Murray Movie
The “Fish Out of Water” episode of BoJack Horseman. How many friends am I going to lose if I start admitting out loud that I liked this episode more than Lost in Translation?
Best Season One
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Somehow this show managed to both transcend and reinforce its misogynist sounding title (the situation’s a lot more nuanced than that) all in its first year!
Best Performance by a Series of Wigs
Sarah Paulson’s wiggist, The People vs OJ Simpson: American Crime Story. Her hair gets its own episode, which accurately reflects how Marcia Clark was treated in the mid 1990s. Infuriating!
Best Use of Tape
Maria Bamford’s face, Lady Dynamite.
The Seinfeld Award for Excellence in Plots about Nothing
The “Getting There” and “Jews on a Plane” episodes of Broad City. How did they even make watching two people not accomplish their goal so entertaining? They might as well have been trapped in a parking garage or Chinese food restaurant.
Best Use of Oscar Winner Mary Steenburgen
Last Man on Earth. Mrs. Ted Danson plays a drunk who makes out with a CPR dummy and plays the accordion. Win.
Best Use of On-screen Text to Relay Information (and Jokes!)
Jane the Virgin. God damn, this show is great, guys. “That was the information Rose came for. Pun. Intended”.
Best Fight Scene
Daredevil in a staircase. Basically, expect Daredevil to win this award every year with “Daredevil in a tight space of some kind.”
Best Torture Tank Used to Control a Supervillain
Killgrave’s terrifying electrified room, Jessica Jones.
Best Useless Catchphrase that We Still Love
“Purse First”, Bob the Drag Queen, RuPaul’s Drag Race.
Best Wink at the Audience
The final shot of the season finale of Orange is the New Black. We’re not posting a photo for this one. Go watch the episode, dammit.
Best Incidental Diversity that Other Shows Should Mirror
Mr. Robot. A main character played by an American actor with Egyptian parents? A lady in a hijab that we never talk about? Black people? This show has it all!
The Firefly Memorial Award for Shows Taken Too Soon
Agent Carter. How very unfair that we had to watch you die twice this year.