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TV Review: 65th Primetime Emmy Awards

CBS aired the 65th Primetime Emmy Awards hosted by Neil Patrick Harris on Sunday night at 8 ET/5 PT. The show was full of surprise winners, including first-time wins for The Voice and the Colbert Report. But what did critics think of the show? The following are reviews of the broadcast from around the Web, compiled by B&C.

“As the man in the firing line, Neil Patrick Harris will likely cop a lot of flak. But with so many blundering producing decisions intruding on his limited time at the podium, the host didn’t really stand a chance.”
–David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter

“Snark triumphed Sunday night as Twitter comments about the 2013 Emmy telecast were infinitely more entertaining than the show itself.

“Really, the 65th Primetime Emmy Awards was the most bizarre, poorly produced Emmy night in memory, rife with inexplicable award winners and a lackluster-to-weird entertainment quotient.”
–Joanne Ostrow, The Denver Post

“‘I’ve been getting a lot of tweets asking why I haven’t done a big musical number,’ said Harris. ‘I’m more than a song and dance man.’

“Or … is he?

“Though hosted by über-showman Neil Patrick Harris and marked by the sort of dark-horse upsets (Jeff Daniels for lead in a drama!) and overdue wins (Stephen Colbert, twice!) that usually energize a telecast, the 65th Primetime Emmys was dead. Literally and figuratively.”

–Mary McNamara, The Los Angeles Times

“We might be living in the Golden Age of Television, but the Emmys looked as if they were slapped together last Thursday by a bunch of interns.

“Host Neil Patrick Harris received an intervention from his How I Met Your Mother co-stars for EHD — ‘excessive hosting disorder’ — but the joke was on us. Harris seemed lackluster and under-rehearsed.

“Not even the ‘The Number in the Middle of the Show’ with the ‘Emmy Gold Dancers’ could pep up this sad little spectacle.”
–Mark Perigard, The Boston Herald

“If it’s a new and golden age of television, as so many presenters insisted, you couldn’t tell from the host, Neil Patrick Harris, who treated the Emmys like the Tonys and made self-conscious jokes about the precariousness and even irrelevance of classic television in the era of on-demand premium cable and Internet streaming.”
–Alessandra Stanley, The New York Times

“‘No one in America is winning their Emmy office pool,’ declared host Neil Patrick Harris late in Sunday’s Emmy Awards ceremony. ‘Surprises galore.’

“He wasn’t kidding.”
–Gary Levin, USA Today (opens in new tab)