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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Little Orphan Emmy

In a powerful dramatic moment, Barbra Streisand sung “You’ll Never Walk Alone” in a surprise finale of the 2001 Emmy Awards. “This is just my little way of doing something ,” said Streisand, who dedicated the song to the victims of the Sept. 11 tragedy. “… The song was for all the people who had to go on … the song had a purpose,” Streisand said.No, I didn’t see it either.

Not many people did.

There are reasons for this, I suppose. America hasn’t really settled back into television- watching as quickly as the networks would have liked us to. The World Series was on at the same time, which couldn’t have helped. Plus, it was rescheduled twice. Maybe people thought they’d missed it already.

But I doubt it.

Even if we look past the inherent lack of essentialness that personifies award shows, there was nothing exciting about this year’s Emmys. The Sopranos won. Again. The West Wing won. Again. Law and Order won…you get the picture. Not that these aren’t deserving shows, but we’ve seen this all before.

Sure, Ellen DeGeneres gave out some zingers. Apparently, her closing comment about the Emmys being an act of counter-terrorism (“What would make Bin Laden madder than a lesbian on television, surrounded by Jews”) had people rolling in the aisles. But nobody tunes in to these shows to see the host.

The usually packed post-Emmy commentary message boards were also sparsely populated. What comments were there followed one of two tracks: Ellen was surprisingly funny, or why weren’t other shows (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Malcom in the Middle) chosen for awards?

No one mentioned Streisand’s song.

Which was fitting, I suppose. All the grand intentions in the world can’t hide the fact that the Emmys are just a way for television to pat itself on the back, which is fine, in another time or place. But TV’s viewing public are a little different now, and some things don’t seem as important anymore.

Streisand’s song loses its purpose if no one saw it. And what better way to end the 2001 Emmy awards than with an empty gesture from a billionaire claiming that’s the best she can do?

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