Don't you think FOX should have cut to black at the end of the Emmy Awards broadcast?
Right before announcing "The Sopranos" as winner of the best drama category, wouldn't it have been great if they'd cut to black just before naming the show?
"And the Emmy goes to..." (BLACK).
That would have been a rather nice comeuppance to David Chase and company, after stiffing us with that sad sack ending. Or better yet, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences could have delayed the announcement for 18 months, like the breaks these artistes took between seasons.
Instead, we're stuck with such gems as Sally Field using the dreaded GD word [goddamn], and then wondering why it was bleeped.
"I didn't say anything bad," she told me backstage. "I was just adamant about what I said."
Yeah, that's why they bleeped you, Sally. Whatever happened to "You like me. You really, really like me?" This time it was "If the mothers ruled the world, there would be no [GD] wars in the first place."
And here I was thinking that it was those mother-[fill-in-the-blank] who flew planes into the World Trade Center that started a war.
Wrong interpretation of "mothers," I guess.
Speaking of blasphemy, I ran into Kathy Griffin on the red carpet, who thought it ironic that she would stop and chat with me.
"You guys have been beating me up all week," she said, referring to coverage of her dissing of Jesus at last week's Creative Arts Emmy Awards program.
You see, Griffin's win somehow didn't make the prime time program (otherwise known as the adult table), so instead of being gracious and going forth with the fact that she would forever be known as "Emmy Award-winner Kathy Griffin," she had to make headlines, thus ensuring everyone knew she won an Emmy.
Funny how I catch up with Griffin so often on red carpets (i.e., wherever there's a camera — I'm going to start calling her Tom Arnold).
Meanwhile, I was seriously pumped that I got to hang out with (sort of) my best TV friends, Ari Gold, Dana Gordon, Johnny Drama and Turtle of "Entourage."
Jeremy Piven won his second Emmy for playing the cynical and win-at-any-cost Los Angeles talent agent Gold on the HBO show, and we talked a little Shakespeare backstage. Piven comes from a show biz family. His father played King Lear and his mother is currently directing a play in his hometown of Chicago.
The gorgeous and pregnant Constance Zimmer, who plays movie mogul Dana Gordon on "Entourage," was even prettier in person than she is on the show, and Jerry Ferrara seems to be enjoying himself immensely as Turtle.
"I'm more than just the driver, that's for sure," he said.
Kevin Dillon said he was disappointed that his Johnny Drama didn't get a part in "Rush Hour 3."
"Bret [Ratner, the director] just couldn't make it happen logistically," he told me before the show.
If you ask me, even the fictional Johnny Drama has higher standards than that piece of garbage Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker cashed in on (or out on, depending on how you look at it) this summer.
One of the more outrageous moments came when Brad Garrett told his sexy co-presenter that she "just made Charlie Sheen's to-do list."
Don't get me wrong, it was pretty funny, but it was still a little too early in prime time for that kind of humor.
Then again, that sound bite ran in morning news programs everywhere Monday morning, so I guess it doesn't make a difference when he said it.
My favorite moment of the broadcast was when Ricky Gervais wasn't around to accept his Emmy for "Extras," so Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert gave it instead to "our friend Steve Carrell," prompting the "40 Year-Old Virgin" to rush the stage for a gleeful celebration dance with his former "Daily Show" co-stars.
Incidentally, "The Daily Show" won the award for best variety program. When the nominees in this category were named, producers and writers showed a lot of creativity by presenting them in video packages.
Conan O'Brien's staff, for instance, was played by a bunch of migrant day laborers piling into the back of a pick-up truck driven by Conan, and Bill Maher did his bit in a men's bathroom, with lots of toe-tapping going on in the stalls.
All in all it was a fun night with the stars. Usually I Grrr the whole celebrity enterprise, but these were the adults. There was no "[Blank] in a Box" or half-naked lip-synchers at the Shrine Auditorium.
In fact, Tony Bennett was there, and you don't get much more class than that.
Still, here are my nominations for Most Annoying Emmy:
Kathy Griffin: For harping about her crass comments on Jesus.
Lewis Black: For his rant about the graphic promotion for upcoming television shows. They're still not as bad as most other promos. At least they're family-friendly. There's nothing worse than watching a family-oriented program and seeing a promotion for the latest "Who Wants to Sleep With My Mother" reality show.
Sally Field: She could have made her point without using the swear word.
Columnists: Any columnist who suggests the bleeping of Field was "political censorship" is an idiot.
Brad Garrett: Really crude comments about Patricia Heaton.
Neil Patrick Harris: Leering at 18-year-old "Heroes" star Hayden Panettiere was really inappropriate, and if I were Hayden's father, I might have pulled my daughter off the stage right there on national television.
I'm no prude, but seriously, Doogie Howser is gay, so I'm not really sure what the heck he thought he was doing (assuming he wrote his own lines).
Gay or straight, however, that was a jerk move, and added nothing to the broadcast — and even if he was supposed to be in his "How I Met Your Mother" character, it is presumptuous and naive to think the whole audience is in on the joke.
Katherine Heigl: In a room filled with legends, if someone mispronounces your name, you might want to let it go. Instead, the "Grey's Anatomy" beauty rudely corrected someone who mispronounced her name. And then, after winning the award for best supporting actress in a drama series, she cursed. What is this, amateur hour?
Ryan Seacrest: Great job emceeing the program, but I could have done without the little bit with Jason, the FOX.com blogger, when he took the kid's PDA and asked that he "zoom in" on that picture of Vanessa Hudgens. His one mistake in an otherwise solid night.