I’D WALK A MILLION MILES FOR ONE OF YOUR SMILES, MY DEAR EMMY: The nominations for this year’s Emmys – known around these parts as the low self-esteem Oscars – were announced yesterday, to the usual head-shaking and hand-wringing. There aren’t a lot of surprises among the nominees, or the longer list of those excluded, starting with the 15 nominations earned by the final season of The Sopranos.


James Gandolfini got a best actor nomination, Edie Falco got one for best actress, and series creator David Chase got two for writing, amidst a bouquet of further nominations for cinematography, direction, editing, sound mixing, supporting actor (Michael Imperioli) and actress (Lorraine Bracco and Aida Turturro). The Sopranos – now coming to be seen as “The Sopranos Era” in the memory of TV executives and critics – wraps the industry in a blanket of warm, self-congratulatory fuzzies, and will continue to do so for years to come.


Expect HBO to clean up in almost every category that the show is nominated in this year, if only because – barring some new category yet to be invented – they can’t give The Sopranos any more awards in the future. Unless there are some hidden gems waiting in HBO’s fall lineup, it’s hard to imagine that the cable network will soon match the 86 nominations it got this year, an astounding 17 of which were for the TV movie Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee.


Also well-celebrated are ABC’s Ugly Betty – the network led the big four with 70 nominations – Heroes and 30 Rock. AMC got an unprecedented 16 nominations for Broken Trail, its first shot at a dramatic miniseries, while the CW managed just a single nomination for sound editing on an episode of Smallville – “less than Animal Planet, Cartoon Network and the History Channel earned, and equal to those procured by Turner Classic Movies, Starz, National Geographic Channel and Hallmark Channel,” as noted by Variety.


The most amusing category had to be Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics, which featured the YouTube hit Dick In A Box from Saturday Night Live, Peter’s Two Dads from an episode of The Family Guy, and Everything Comes Down To Poo, featured on the musical episode of Scrubs. We only hope that every nomination will be given a full production number on the 3-hour awards show on September 16, and wish that the Oscars’ musical interludes were half as amusing – though we’d settle for half as long.

The big losers – besides the CW – were 24 (punished for sucking like an open chest wound), Lost (for confusing people – hey, do you think Emmy voters watch that much more TV than Oscar voters watch movies?), Battlestar Galactica (ditto), The Wire (voters obviously couldn’t be bothered to rent the box sets and catch up), Desperate Housewives (for just not delivering that first season thrill) and Lauren Graham, whose invisibility to Emmys voters for every season of The Gilmore Girls is something of a running joke. Let me know who wins, because there’s no goddamned way I’m watching this thing.