"Next question, please"

I remember reading a book many years ago in which a news reporter was suffering through an interview with a vapid beauty pageant winner who was sprouting the usual spiel about world peace, and the reporter thought to himself that he wished that just once one of these beauty queens would say something like, "I just want to fuck."

Because there was a total lack of anything else on television late yesterday afternoon, I put on the Red Carpet interviews of celebrities arriving for the Emmy Awards. Interviews, my ass. Ninety-eight percent of the time, the questions focused on one topic: "What are you wearing?" "What's the name of your dress?" Curiously, the words design or designer were never mentioned; they must be taboo. I don't see why; this is obviously actors plugging the people who made their dresses (and their shoes and purses as well), which I suspect they get for free in exchange for plugging them on the air. (I could be wrong about this, but a few years back when I saw an actress being interviewed who, when the interviewer thanked her for speaking with her, quickly said, "You forgot to ask me who did my dress," and then shouted out the name of the design house as they cut to a commercial, I began to sense a little mutual back-scratching going on.)

The interviews on the E! channel were notorious for asking this question and this question only. No mention of any nominations the attendees may have received, or the shows or TV movies they've done, just the name of the - excuse me for saying this - designer. One actress whom I saw on both E! and the pre-show on the network that carried the show made it a point to plug the designer of her handbag on both shows. Now, I like to see men and women all dressed up, but I don't need to know the names of the designers. Maybe I could appreciate this better if I was going to run to an exclusive boutique on the Magnificant Mile and put in an order for that dress by Randolph Duke, or those shoes, or that handbag. But since I'm not, it reminds me of politicians making back-door deals, without the smoke-filled rooms.

Something I did enjoy was seeing the actors' spouses or dates interview with them. In the past wives have been seen more than husbands, for reasons I'm unsure of, but last night I saw non-celebrity spouses everywhere, which I thought was a nice touch. It must get a little old to stand in the background while your spouse talks to this one and that one on the air. I've always wondered if there's a specified area for the non-celebrity escorts to stand together while they wait, or if they just stand on the edge of the red carpet.

Everyone was polite and more than willing to name their designers - even the escorts - but like that character interviewing the beauty queen, I do wish that just once somebody would refuse to answer and suggest instead, "Why don't you ask me about the performance I'm nominated for?" What a shock that would be.

Maybe next year.

5 comments:

Patricia W. said...

Couldn't stomach it. Did catch Wayne Brady hugging a young girl, presumably his daughter, who was totally not into the whole Red Carpet thing.

Emmys were boring too.

bettye griffin said...

I missed that. But I did hang with the show until they started with the Reality Programming award. I was also very surprised that Charles Lane, who died recently at age 102, was not included in the memorial tribute. He had a recurring part on Petticoat Junction and showed up in a few I Love Lucys. Then again, maybe they considered him to be more of a film actor (the man appeared in small parts in countless movies.)

Finally, will somebody please show Vanessa Williams what is flattering for her and what is not? Such a pretty girl, and she always looks so bad. At least Stevie Wonder has an excuse . . . .

Donna said...

You think the Red Carpet shows are bad? You should see "ET" and "The Insider" in the weeks leading up to the show. The only thing they care about is showing the actors deciding from the many choices of gowns, to the jewels and shoes and who will be doing their hair and makeup. It's so silly.

And the after show interviews are a joke: "How did you feel? Were you surprised?" Duh, yeah... Just once I wish they would ask one of the losers, "How did you feel? Do you think he/she deserved to win?" And wait for the reaction...

Gwyneth Bolton said...

"Why don't you ask me about the performance I'm nominated for?" What a shock that would be.

Thant would be shocking, huh? I watched the Emmys. They darn near put me to sleep... Boring...

Gwyneth

bettye griffin said...

Donna,
An interviewer was about to cut to another red carpet arrival and asked the actress who plays Ugly Betty if she knew this person. "Ugly Betty"'s hesitation before answering "Yes," told me she'd never heard of her, but I give her credit for covering nicely after being put on the spot.

Gwyneth,
Maybe that's why I'm dragging this afternoon . . .?