Television

The Infectious Joy of Watching Schitt’s Creek Sweep the 2020 Emmys

Schitt’s Creek made history at the 2020 Emmy Awards this past Sunday when it became the first show, comedy or drama, to win every single category for which it was nominated. It had been nominated in recent years but had never won until now, and with the series having concluded earlier this year, it made their well-deserved victories all the more satisfying.

In addition to winning its first two Emmys during the Creative Arts Emmy Awards the night before, Schitt’s Creek went on to win seven Emmys at the Primetime Emmy Awards. The show’s nine total Emmy wins are as follows:

  1. Outstanding Contemporary Costumes — Debra Hanson and Darci Cheyne (for “Happy Ending”)
  2. Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series — Lisa Parasyn and Jon Comerford
  3. Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series — Catherine O’Hara (for “The Incident”)
  4. Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series — Eugene Levy (for “The Pitch”)
  5. Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series — Daniel Levy (for “Happy Ending”)
  6. Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series — Daniel Levy and Andrew Cividino (for “Happy Ending”)
  7. Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series — Daniel Levy (for “Happy Ending”)
  8. Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series — Annie Murphy (for “The Presidential Suite”)
  9. Outstanding Comedy Series — Eugene Levy, Daniel Levy, David West Read, Andrew Barnsley, Fred Levy and Ben Feign

I can’t tell you how absolutely euphoric I was each time it was announced that Schitt’s Creek had won. I kid you not, the joy exploded from me. I cheered and clapped every single time. The winning streak began when the incomparable Catherine O’Hara took home the first award of the evening for Outstanding Lead Actress as the magnificent matriarch, Moira Rose, to which Dan Levy fittingly tweeted, “Well…Moira got her Emmy.” Catherine gave a lovely speech: “I will forever be grateful to Eugene and Daniel Levy for the opportunity to play a woman of a certain age, my age, who gets to fully be herself.” She concluded by affectionately saying: “Though these are the strangest of days, may you have as much joy being holed up in a room or two with your family, as I had with my dear Roses.

Next, Eugene Levy won for Outstanding Lead Actor, and it was so heartwarming to see how excited Dan was for his dad and the hug they shared. Eugene had a nice touch of humor in his acceptance speech, remarking about the irony of winning his first acting Emmy for playing the straight man of the Rose family: “Now I seriously have to question just what I’ve been doing for the past 50 years.

When Dan Levy won for Outstanding Writing for the show’s perfect finale, “Happy Ending,” the roles reversed as Eugene got to congratulate his son. You could see how proud he was with his beaming smile and their loving embrace. Dan’s acceptance speech was humble and overcome with emotion and filled with such immense gratitude: “Getting to write David Rose, getting to write this show, getting to tell the stories has been the greatest, most cathartic experience of my life.

Then Dan and Andrew Cividino won for Outstanding Directing for the series finale, and the two of them shared a powerful hug and thanked the show’s stars: “A special thank you to Catherine O’Hara and Eugene Levy. Their grace, their genius and their generosity, it bubbles through the entire set.” Dan had a self-deprecating moment when he won for Outstanding Supporting Actor: “The internet’s about to turn on me, I’m so sorry.” If anything his modesty made me love him more.

When Annie Murphy won for Outstanding Supporting Actress, I especially cheered, as Alexis Rose is personally my favorite character on the show, and in fact my favorite relationship is between the Rose siblings. Can I get an “Ew, David!” The main reason I love Alexis (and, of course, who doesn’t love “A Little Bit Alexis”) is that her character arc, to me, is the most rewarding to watch unfold throughout the show’s six seasons. Of course, credit goes to Dan Levy’s and the entire writing team’s profound storytelling for each member of the Rose family, but in particular, Annie’s performance in the last scene of “The Presidential Suite” is so eloquent and poignant, encapsulating her character’s growth and maturity. I loved when Dan gave her a hug and said in excitement, “You won!” Her speech was just as humble and gracious: “I’m so proud to be part of a show that stands for love and kindness and inclusivity and acceptance because those are things we need more than ever right now.

Eugene and Dan Levy closed out their speeches with the show’s final win of the night for Outstanding Comedy, summing up the heart of the series: “A celebration of inclusivity, a castigation of homophobia, and a declaration of the power of love.” I found their deep appreciation and joyous reactions completely infectious, shown in how happy they were for each other each time they won, such as Karen Robinson jumping out of her seat in celebration, or that fantastic compilation of Sarah Levy screaming in sheer excitement.

I truly couldn’t be happier for each and every one of them, such wonderful, talented people who deserve all the accolades. It’s perfect that Schitt’s Creek won all of these Emmy awards in its final season, as this was a show that started off small in terms of an audience and slowly grew its fan base year after year. Dan even tweeted: “A gentle reminder that TV shows need time and space to lay foundation, to develop, and to grow.” I myself started watching it last year and fell in love with it from the start. I wrote a post earlier this year, Nobody Cares, inspired by what I think is an underrated yet valuable message from an episode of the show. I also talked about the series on my podcast earlier this year, Episode 92 — Schitt’s Creek, and, as I said then, I can never praise the amazing characters enough and what the show stands for: a celebration of love in all its forms.

Congratulations to everyone who worked on Schitt’s Creek. To quote Alexis to David in the series finale, simply, sweetly, “Hey. I love you.”

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