LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Two high-profile revivals of broadcast network hits from yesteryear – “Will & Grace” and “Roseanne” – were shut out of this year’s contest for best comedy series as Emmy voters mostly embraced newer offerings from cable-TV and streaming platforms.
The two snubbed series marked comebacks for network staples of almost polar-opposite pedigrees – one show about four upscale singles widely credited with bringing gay men and women into mainstream pop culture, and the other a blue-collar family sitcom whose reboot was hailed in a congratulatory phone call by President Donald Trump.
Each show scored a best supporting actress bid for one of its co-stars – Megan Mullally as the tart-tongued Karen on NBC’s “Will & Grace” and Laurie Metcalf as Jackie, the politically liberal foil to her more conservative sister, the title character on ABC’s “Roseanne.”
But the latter show’s lead performer and creator, Roseanne Barr, was noticeably absent from the roster of this year’s contenders for best comedy actresses.
After returning to the airwaves to high ratings and generally warm reviews, Barr has largely faded from the spotlight since sparking an outcry with a notorious off-camera racial slur on Twitter, comparing a former Obama administration adviser to an ape.
ABC responded by canceling the show’s revival last month, but later announced plans to launch a “Roseanne” spinoff without Barr in the fall. The original “Roseanne” aired from 1988 to 1997.
In addition to Mullally’s Emmy bid, “Will & Grace” drew four other nominations, including a guest-actor nod for Molly Shannon, a “Saturday Night Live” veteran who appeared on the resurrected show playing a neighbor of the show’s two titular lead characters.
But the only nomination scored by “Roseanne” other than Metcalf’s nod for supporting actress was for the rather obscure technical category of best multicamera picture editing for a comedy series.
Another ABC sitcom considered a front-runner for best comedy series, five-time category winner “Modern Family,” sustained just one minor nomination this year – for sound mixing.
The only major broadcast network show to earn a spot in the best comedy race on Thursday was ABC’s “black-ish.” It was joined by an HBO series making a comeback this past season, “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” along with four brand new offerings – “Atlanta” on FX, “Barry” on HBO, “GLOW” on Netflix and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” on Prime Video.
Rounding out the category were two returning comedies – “Silicon Valley” on HBO and “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” on Netflix.
Reporting by Steve Gorman; Editing by Lisa Shumaker