Monday night’s Emmys weren’t controversial and didn’t include many classic water-cooler moments.
But the broadcast was solidly entertaining and funny in a pretty sophisticated way. And it was over at 9:58 p.m.
Here are my picks for the top five moments of the show:
1. Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Bryan Cranston make out: The “Veep” star and “Breaking Bad’s” leading man, who co-starred in a hilarious pre-Emmys pawn shop skit that’s been circulating on the Internet, started their Emmy-night bit with a funny exchange that included her poking fun at his thin mustache. “Hold on, Clark Gable, hold on,” she said.
It continued with her telling him that he looked a lot like a guy who once starred on “Seinfeld” as her love interest. She explained the character in great detail.
“That was me,” he said dryly. “We actually had a kissing scene together.”
She looked at him incredulously.
Moments later, she earned her third consecutive best comedy actress Emmy for “Veep,” and Cranston grabbed her on her way to the stage, planting a steamy, lengthy kiss on her lips.
“He was on ‘Seinfeld,’ ” she said before starting her acceptance speech. (He was.)
2. “Weird Al” re-imagines TV themes: His singing voice could use some fine-tuning, but “Weird Al” Yankovic’s comedy is still as sharp as ever.
He livened up the super-slow center of the Emmys show with a quick parody in which he made up lyrics for the theme songs to some Emmy-nominated shows, including “Game of Thrones” and “Modern Family.”
“Jon Hamm never won an Emmy. Oh, who cares? He’s still Jon freaking Hamm,” he sang to the tune of the “Mad Men” theme.
3. Robin Williams tribute: Billy Crystal delivered a beautifully understated tribute to Robin Williams toward the latter half of the Emmys. It wasn’t hokey. It didn’t solicit the easy, expected tears. It didn’t sound scripted. It sounded like a man delivering a eulogy at a funeral for a good friend.
“I used to think if I could just put a saddle on him and stay on for eight seconds, I’d do OK,” Crystal said before sharing several personal anecdotes about Williams.
It was followed by just a few clips of Williams at his comedic best, on stage and on late-night talk shows.
The perfect tribute was over in less than five minutes.
4. America’s funniest people all in one room: If the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles had been wiped out on Monday night, the world would be a much, much less funny place today. Host Seth Meyers. Emmy winners Sarah Silverman and Stephen Colbert. Jimmy Fallon. Jimmy Kimmel. Andy Samberg. Melissa McCarthy. Amy Poehler. All the best comedians in 2014 were in that room.
A highlight was when “The Colbert Report” won the Emmy for Best Variety Series and presenter Gwen Stefani accidentally pronounced it “Stephen Col-burt.”
The Colbert writing team came on stage along with fellow nominee Jimmy Fallon.
“It’s unbelievable. She said it wrong, so there must be a mistake,” Fallon said before proceeding to deliver most of Colbert’s acceptance speech as Colbert whispered the words in Fallon’s ear.
5. A fitting farewell for “Breaking Bad”: Few predicted that the amazing “Breaking Bad,” which finished its run on AMC almost a year ago, would sweep the big categories at the Emmys. But it did, earning the awards for Best Drama Series, Best Actor for Bryan Cranston, Best Supporting Actor for Aaron Paul and Best Supporting Actress for Anna Gunn. The show also earned a writing award.
In his acceptance speech, Paul said of his character, meth dealer Jesse Pinkman, “I miss him.”
We do, too.