There were a lot of standing ovations throughout the night during the 74th Emmy Awards for incredible moments like Abbott Elementary star Sheryl Lee Ralph’s powerful speech, in which, she belted out a song, and when actress Selma Blair took the stage to present the award for Outstanding Drama Series. However, one person spent part of the night doing the total opposite of standing.
Late night host Jimmy Kimmel was dragged out onto the stage by actor Will Arnett, before he announced the winner for Best Writing in a Comedy Series – Abbott Elementary creator and writer Quinta Brunson. As Brunson took the stage, she peered down at Kimmel, saying “Jimmy, wake up. I won. Jimmy?” However, Kimmel committed to his bit, laying right at the base of the mic stand throughout her entire acceptance speech without budging.
Fortunately, Brunson didn’t mind it too much as she proceeded to give her acceptance speech and later told the press backstage, “I don’t know. I know Jimmy Kimmel. The bit didn’t bother me. Honestly, Jimmy gave me my first big late night spot, he was one of the first people to see Abbott Elementary. He was the first person to message me on Instagram. He was so excited that he was going to be on ABC. I was happy it was Jimmy. He’s one of the comedy godfathers. Tomorrow maybe I’ll be mad at him.” Brunson will be Kimmel’s guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! Thursday night, so, to be determined whether or not she changes her mind on what she really thinks about his antics.
However, viewers did not take kindly to Kimmel’s bit and even took to Twitter Monday night with scathing tweets:
Of course, the rest of the night’s winners did not have to accept their awards with a passed-out human at their feet. In fact, the night was filled with some very powerful and emotional speeches. Here is Yahoo Entertainment’s guide to the highs, lows and head-scratchers of this year’s Emmy awards.
HEAD-SCRATCHER: Kenan Thompson’s opening dance to remixed beloved TV themes
Last year’s first The Emmys back in-person opened with Cedric the Entertainer enlisting LL Cool J, Dave “Lil Dicky” Burd and Rita Wilson to do a TV-themed version of the 1989 favorite “Just a friend.”
While Thompson didn’t bust out his vocal skills, he did bust out some moves as he danced to some of the best TV theme songs from Friends, The Brady Bunch, Stranger Things, and Game of Thrones.
While some viewers were asking why Thompson decided to remix the beloved Friends theme song, others were thoroughly entertained.
HIGH: Sheryl Lee Ralph belting out a song before delivering an epic speech
When the Abbott Elementary star took the stage to accept her award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, the first thing that came out of her mouth were the lyrics to Dianne Reeves’s 1993 song “Endangered Species.”
“I am an endangered species/ But I sing no victim’s song/ I am a woman, I am an artist/ and I know where my voice belongs,” belted Ralph, who then launched into a powerful speech as she stated, “To anyone who has ever, ever had a dream and thought your treatment wasn’t, wouldn’t, couldn’t come true, I am here to tell you that this is what believing looks like. This is what striving looks like and don’t you ever, ever give up on you, because if you get a Quinta Brunson in your corner, if you get a husband like mine in your corner, if you get children like mine in your corner, and if you’ve got friends like everybody who voted for me, cheered for me, loved me. Thank you.”
Everyone there in the theater and at home watching were blown away by Ralph’s empowering speech and moment, which was easily the biggest and best highlight of the night. Some even called it “The best Emmys award speech in history.”
HIGH: More powerful and emotional acceptance speeches from Lizzo and Zendaya
Rapper Lizzo, who won the Emmy for Outstanding Competition Program for Lizzo’s Watch Out For the Big Grrrlsgot emotional Monday as she shared, “First of all, I’m very emotional, and the trophy is nice but my emotion is for these people who are on the stage with me. The stories that they shared, they’re not that unique, they just don’t get the platform telling stories. Let’s just tell more stories. When I was a little girl, all I wanted to see was me in the media. Someone fat like me, Black like me, beautiful like me. “
Later in the night, Zendaya won her second Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series Emmy award for her incredible performance in Season 2 of Euphoriaand eloquently shared, “My greatest wish for Euphoria was that it could help heal people and I just want to say thank you to everyone who shared their story with me. I want you to know that anyone who has loved a Rue, or feels like you are a Rue, I want you to know that I am so grateful for your stories and I carry them with me and carry them with her. Thank you so much.”
LOW: Winners’ speeches being abruptly cut off
A few of the winners pointed out how once they hit the stage they only had 30 seconds to give their acceptance speech, but when The White Lotus star Jennifer Coolidge accepted her award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or TV Movie, the veteran actress was rudely cut off by not one but two walk-off tunes. “Wait. Hold on. Wait. Hold on. Wait, hold on… okay,” said Coolidge as she ultimately accepted her cut off and hilariously started dancing to the upbeat song telling her to wrap it up.
The audience laughed and cheered as Coolidge was, well, Coolidge.
HIGH: So many fun, surprise cameos!
While most of the night’s presenters were announced ahead of time, a few A-listers surprised the audience Monday night like the Queen of Media herself, Oprah Winfrey, who presented the Lead Actor in a Limited Series or TV Movie award to Michael Keaton for Dopesickformer Voice judge and music superstar Kelly Clarkson who presented Zendaya with her award, Selma Blair who presented the big award of the night – Outstanding Drama Series to Successionand former SNL comedian Pete Davidson who made his first big public appearance since his split from Kim Kardashian.
Davidson provided some laughs before presenting the award for Outstanding Comedy Series to Ted Lassowhen he took the time to praise his former SNL cast member Kenan Thompson and joked, “This is just like SNL because Kenan is doing all the work and I’m refusing to say what the writers want.”
However, maybe one of the most exciting surprise cameos of the night was the Good Burger reunion between Thompson and his former co-star Kel Mitchell, likely to promote a possibility Good Burger 2 sequel, which Thompson recently teased.
Watch ‘Abbott Elementary’ star Sheryl Lee Ralph belting out her emotional Emmy acceptance speech:
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