The Daily Show with Trevor Noah won a Primetime Emmy for outstanding talk series at the 75th Emmy Awards, which were finally presented on Monday (Jan. 15) at the Peacock Theater at L.A. Live in Los Angeles. The Emmys were to have taken place in September, but were delayed because of strikes by Hollywood writers and actors.
This was The Daily Show with Trevor Noah’s first win in that category. Trevor Noah had the unenviable task of following Jon Stewart (whose The Daily Show won 11 times in this category) as host of the Comedy Central franchise, but Noah gradually proved that he was up to the task. The biracial Noah is the first host of color to win in this category. The Daily Show is only the second show to win in this category (or predecessor categories) with two different hosts. The first was The Tonight Show, which won both under Johnny Carson (in 1977 and 1992) and Jay Leno (in 1995).
Noah is hosting the Grammy Awards on Feb. 4 for the fourth year in a row. He is a Grammy nominee for best comedy album for I Wish You Would, so he could win two EGOT-level awards in the space of 20 days.
The path to Noah’s victory was paved when the Primetime Emmys moved Late Night With John Oliver, which had won outstanding talk series the last seven years running, to a new category – outstanding scripted variety series, where it competed with Saturday Night Live and A Black Lady Sketch Show. Those two shows had formerly competed for outstanding variety sketch series. SNL had won in that category the last six years running, so this year’s Oliver vs. SNL showdown was a real battle of Emmy juggernauts.
Elton John Live: Farewell from Dodger Stadium won the Primetime Emmy for outstanding variety special (live). This gives Elton John his first Primetime Emmy, to accompany his five Grammys, two Oscars and one Tony. This makes him the 19th EGOT, and the second-oldest at the time of completing the awards sweep. Elton is 76 years and nine months old. Sir John Gielgud (also English and gay, like Elton) was 87 years and four months when he completed the sweep. Helen Hayes was a bit younger than Elton (76 years and four months) when she became an EGOT.
RuPaul’s Drag Race won outstanding reality competition program. It’s the MTV show’s fifth win in that category in the past six years. Its streak was interrupted last year by a win for Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls, which has yet to air its second season. RuPaul won as an executive producer of the show. This is his 14th Primetime Emmy.
Quinta Brunson, the star and creator of Abbott Elementary, won as outstanding lead actress in a comedy series. She’s only the second Black actress to win in that category, following Isabel Sanford, who won for playing Louise Jefferson on The Jeffersons in 1981.
Ayo Edebiri won outstanding supporting actress in a comedy series for her role in The Bear. She’s only the third Black actress to win in that category, following Jackée Harry for 227 (1987) and Sheryl Lee Ralph for Abbott Elementary last year.
Succession won outstanding drama series for the third time in four years. Its streak was interrupted two years ago when it was on hiatus and The Crown won the award. Succession defeated The Last of Us, which was the first live-action video game adaptation to be nominated in a major Emmy category.
Kieran Culkin from Succession won for outstanding lead actor in a drama series. He defeated two other actors from that series – Brian Cox and Jeremy Strong. This marked the first time three actors from the same series were nominated in that category.
Pedro Pascal from HBO’s The Last of Us was also nominated in that category. He was also nominated in two categories at last week’s Creative Arts Emmys – outstanding guest actor in a comedy series for hosting SNL and outstanding narrator for Patagonia: Life on the Edge of the World: Mountains (CNN). These three nods made him the most-nominated Latino in a single year in Emmy history.
Succession and The Bear were the night’s top winners, with six awards each. BEEF won five awards. Last Week Tonight with John Oliver won two.
In addition to the 27 awards presented on the live telecast (counting the Governors Award), Emmys were awarded in 97 categories at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards on Saturday, Jan. 6, and Sunday, Jan. 7. An edited presentation of the Creative Arts ceremonies is available for streaming on Hulu.
Combining awards on this night and those won at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards, The Bear was this year’s top winner with 10 awards, followed by BEEF and The Last of Us, with eight each; Succession with six; Welcome to Wrexham and The White Lotus with five each; Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie, and Wednesday with four each; and Dancing with the Stars, Elton John Live: Farewell From Dodger Stadium and RuPaul’s Drag Race, with three each.
Sung Jin Lee (BEEF) and Christopher Storer (The Bear) were this year’s top Emmy-winning individuals, with three awards each – as director, executive producer and writer of their hit series.
Charlie Puth and The War and Treaty sang Puth’s Wiz Khalifa collab “See You Again,” which topped the Billboard Hot 100 for 12 weeks in 2015, over the In Memoriam segment. (The original version honored Paul Walker, the late star of the Fast & Furious franchise.) The In Memoriam spot saluted such late TV giants as Norman Lear, Angela Lansbury, Suzanne Somers, Leslie Jordan, Cindy Williams, Bob Barker, Paul Reubens, Tommy Smothers, Barbara Walters, Harry Belafonte and Irene Cara. The spot concluded with a bit of the famous Friends theme “I’ll Be There For You” in honor of the series’ co-star Matthew Perry.
Additionally, Travis Barker played drums during Anthony Anderson’s show opening performance.
GLAAD won the Governors Award, which probably pleased longtime gay activist Elton John (who wasn’t present to accept his award) as much as his becoming an EGOT.
The eligibility period for this year’s Primetime Emmys was June 1, 2022 to May 31, 2023. The show was broadcast on Fox, with former blackish star Anthony Anderson hosting. The show was executive-produced by Jesse Collins, Dionne Harmon and Jeannae Rouzan-Clay of Jesse Collins Entertainment.