Published January 13, 2015
From lip-locks to teary-eyed thank-you speeches, the 55th Annual Primetime Emmys covered it all Sunday.
The spat of public celebrity kissing continued when Brad Garrett (search) from "Everybody Loves Raymond" planted a smooch on Garry Shandling during his opening monologue -- a parody of the infamous Madonna-Britney kiss at MTV's Video Music Awards.
Once the lingering lip-lock ended, Shandling quipped, "I want to say to CBS, he's worth every nickel," referring to Garret's salary dispute with the network.
Garrett must be earning his raise: He won the award for best supporting actor in a comedy series for the second year in a row. The highly-rated "Raymond" also won its first Emmy for outstanding comedy series, and it was honored for best writing in a comedy series. The program was the most-honored series of the night with five awards.
The kissing continued when Doris Roberts , also of "Raymond," won for best supporting actress in a comedy and got a full-mouthed smooch from Matthew Perry of "Friends."
But the actor-on-actor action stopped there. The cast of “The West Wing,” which was expected to get whacked by “The Sopranos," won its fourth Emmy for outstanding drama despite sagging ratings. The White House drama also received the Emmy for best directing.
But HBO’s mob drama was not neglected. Edie Falco (search) took home her third Emmy for best actress in a drama for her role as Carmela. James Gandolfini, who plays mob boss Tony Soprano, also won his third Emmy for best lead actor in a drama. The show won best writing in a drama series. And Joe Pantoliano (search), won for best supporting actor in a drama for his role as the wiseguy Ralph Ciferetto.
The tough-guy actor sniffled as he tried to hold back tears while accepting his award, and said working on the drama was "an honor and a pleasure."
Tony Shalhoub (search) of "Monk,” who won for lead actor in a comedy series, also choked back tears and paid tribute to his nephew who recently passed away. The actor said his nephew had "a warm laugh" and "a good heart" and "was taken from us suddenly."
On the other end of the spectrum, Debra Messing (search) of "Will & Grace" was giddy with joy when she won her first Emmy for lead actress. "Oh my God," said Messing. "I never thought this was going to happen." She had been the only major cast member of her NBC show not to win an Emmy – and had lost three times before.
There were also emotional tributes paid to a number of performers and industry figures who died this year including Bob Hope (search), John Ritter, Gregory Hines and Fred Rogers.
Tyne Daly won the best supporting actress in a drama series award for her role on "Judging Amy."
"The Daily Show" with Jon Stewart fulfilled critic's predictions by winning as best variety show and breaking David Letterman's five-year winning streak. "The Daily Show" was also honored for its writing.
"The Amazing Race" took home the first Emmy for outstanding reality series, beating out the ever popular "Survivor" and "American Idol."
Wayne Brady was named best individual performer in a variety show for "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" The comedy trophy in the directing category went to "Curb Your Enthusiasm."
The award for best miniseries went to the science fiction drama "Steven Spielberg Presents Taken." In other miniseries or movie categories, Maggie Smith won lead actress for "My House in Umbria." The movie "Hysterical Blindness" won best supporting actor and actress honors for Ben Gazzara and Gena Rowlands, respectively.
TNT's "Door to Door" -- based on the true story of Bill Porter, a salesman with cerebral palsy -- was honored as best made-for-TV movie. William H. Macy, who portrayed Porter, won best actor in a miniseries. The movie also won writing and directing awards.
Audience favorites, “Friends,” “Sex and the City,” and HBO's “Six Feet Under,” which came in with 16 nominations, were all shut out of the major categories. The undertaker drama won only a single technical award.
The second Bob Hope Humanitarian Award was presented to Bill Cosby. And Henry Winkler introduced the tribute to Ritter who died suddenly this month.
In the creative arts ceremony held earlier this month, awards were announced in craft categories including outstanding choreography, editing and makeup.
Four acting awards for guest roles also were given out. Emmys for best guest actress and actor in a drama series went to Alfre Woodard for "The Practice" and Charles S. Dutton for "Without a Trace."
For guest actor and actress in a comedy series, the winners were Gene Wilder for "Will & Grace" and Christina Applegate for "Friends."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.