Here’s Why The Internet Was Pissed After That Emmy’s Bit

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It’s not quite the Oscars slap that was felt around the world, but this year’s Emmy Awards did have its moments.

Like the photos of actor and stand-up comedian Quinta Brunson, winning her first Emmy for the show Abbott Elementary, with Jimmy Kimmel lying at her feet.

Needless to say it attracted a tonne of backlash. So, why exactly was Kimmel lying there and what are people saying about it?

Jimmy Kimmel Lying Down During Quinta Brunson’s Emmy Speech

Basically the moment was part of a bit that TV Host Jimmy Kimmel and actor Will Arnett were already doing to present the Emmy for “Writing for a Comedy series”. The joke was that Kimmel had lost that award so many times that he’d already gotten drunk backstage. Arnett proceeded to take the envelope from Kimmel’s lifeless body and announce Quinta Brunson as the winner.

Working in comedy themselves, the two were clearly having some fun with presenting the award. 

Why Was There Such A Backlash?

But people weren’t happy with Kimmel committing to the bit at the expense of Brunson’s well-deserved moment. She even mentioned him at the end of speech, because he was still lying there.

Kimmel really committed, which you can see in this clip where he’s literally dragged off the stage when the televised show had cut to commercials.

Podcaster Sam Sanders called it a “stinging metaphor” for Kimmel to be playing dead next to a “black woman accepting her rightful place in the future of TV”.

Editor Philip Lewis called it “highly disrespectful” and author Ernest Owens was “annoyed” that Jimmy Kimmel was “trying to take attention away from Quinta Brunson’s historic victory”.

And yes, Brunson is making historyHer three Emmy nominations made her the first black woman to be nominated in three comedy categories in the same year. She’s also the youngest black woman to be nominated as an actress in comedy, and her win in comedy writing makes her the second black woman to get that award — the first being Lena Waithe who won it with Aziz Ansari back in 2017 for Master of None.

Brunson Didn’t Mind But (Correctly) Thought The Internet Would

In her post-award interview with Variety, an interviewer asked Brunson how she felt about the bit.

“I don’t know, I don’t really — I know Jimmy Kimmel. I don’t know, I felt like the bit didn’t bother me that much. I don’t know what the internet thinks,” Brunson quipped.

She definitely called it, because despite Brunson herself seeming completely fine with the whole thing, the internet was annoyed. Some even edited Kimmel out of the photo completely, and this tweet points out the idea that Brunson had to be the one to “go above and beyond to explain that she’s not in fact offended”. 

Brunson did actually appear on the Kimmel’s talk show just a few days later where he apologised for the whole thing.