Donald Trump may have dominated the conversation at the Emmys, but diversity was the star of the show.
During the #OscarsSoWhite controversy of the last two years — during which every single nominee in the acting categories was white — TV was often mentioned as a counterpoint, where a diverse mix of stars and creators have found their own niches. And Sunday night, stars of every hue and persuasion seemed to walk away with hardware.
“Mr. Robot” star Rami Malek took home one of the prestigious awards at the end of the night, scooping up the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, which only capped a triumphant night for faces Hollywood has long overlooked.
The first award of the evening went to Louie Anderson, a white male, but three of the other nominees for Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series were African-American. And the very next award, Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series, went to an episode of Aziz Ansari‘s “Master of None.”
Regina King won the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie for her performance in “American Crime.” And the most nominated show this year, FX’s “American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson,” delivered acting Emmys to two African-American men: Sterling K. Brown for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or a Movie and Courtney B. Vance for Outstanding Lead Actor in that same category.
Jill Soloway won her second consecutive Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series Emmy for Amazon’s “Transparent.” The show’s star, Jeffrey Tambor, also took home his second-straight award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series for his portrayal of a transgender individual, and Tambor used his speech to call for more actual transgender actors and creators to tell those stories.
Comedy Central’s “Key & Peele” knocked off “Saturday Night Live” to claim the Emmy for Outstanding Variety Sketch Series. President Obama is a noted fan of the show, singling out one of its recurring sketches, “Luther the anger translator,” as a personal favorite.
At this year’s Emmys, there certainly seemed to be something for everyone.