A version of this story on Donald Trump at the Emmys also appears in the Down to the Wire issue of TheWrap’s Emmy magazine.
Donald Trump thinks the Emmys are a joke.
He’s 0-for-2 with Television Academy voters.
These facts are not unrelated.
In fact, as the bellicose orange-hued bloviator goes after a much bigger prize, his Emmy history might provide a small clue as to what could happen if he doesn’t actually end up in the Oval Office. Just as he’s upended traditional campaign etiquette, he trashed awards-show decorum when the show he hosted and executive produced, “The Apprentice,” lost to “The Amazing Race” in 2004 and 2005.
Making matters worse, it wasn’t even nominated for Outstanding Reality Competition Program for the next 10 years when it and its successor, “The Celebrity Apprentice,” were on the air.
“The Amazing Race,” said Trump at one point, is “irrelevant.” It’s “a piece of crap,” he added later. The CBS show’s 10 wins over 13 years are “a total joke,” he tweeted.
And on Twitter in 2012, he summed up the whole mess like this: “The Emmys have no credibility — no wonder the ratings are at record lows … ” [Note: They weren’t.] “The Emmys are all politics, that’s why, despite nominations, ‘The Apprentice’ never won — even though it should have many times over.”
As entertaining as it would have been to see Kevin Spacey call Jon Hamm a pathetic, boring lightweight after Hamm took home the Emmy last year, that’s not the way it usually works at awards shows. But that’s how it works with Trump, who even shared this sparkling anecdote on “The Celebrity Apprentice” in 2014, yet another year in which his show wasn’t nominated for anything:
“I got screwed out of an Emmy,” he said, thinking back to his first time as a nominee. “Everybody thought I was gonna win it. In fact, when they announced the winner, I stood up before the winner was announced, and I started walking for the Emmy. And then they announced the most boring show on television, ‘The Amazing Race.'”
Still, you have to give The Donald this: The man provided us with one of the most deliciously jaw-dropping moments in recent Emmy history. It came in 2006, when he and “Will and Grace” star Megan Mullally took the stage to “sing,” if that’s the right word — and no, it really isn’t — the theme from “Green Acres.”
If it wasn’t much of a song before he got hold of it, it was a quivering wreck when he was finished.
Trump, by the way, is a member of the Television Academy, and has been since the first season of “The Apprentice.”
So really, there’s no reason he couldn’t come back and make the Emmys great again.
See more of TheWrap Down to the Wire Emmys Issue: