Mixed messages have spilled forth from the Hollywood hype machine, as HBO’s acclaimed video game adaptation, The Last of Us, proved the big winner at January 6’s Creative Arts Emmy Awards, taking home eight trophies. But the show was completely snubbed at the following night’s Golden Globes. Read on for more “art is subjective” and “awards are dumb” analysis.
The Creative Arts Emmys are held separately from Primetime Emmys, the latter taking place on January 15, after being delayed from September 2023 by the various Hollywood strikes. The former is more focused on behind-the-scenes elements and guest stars, rather than glossy A-listers in their sparkly dresses, and it was here that The Last of Us (TLOU) scooped an armful.
The Creative Arts Emmys have amazingly specific categories, like Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup, and Outstanding Main Title Design, both of which were won by TLOU. To this the show added Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Picture Editing, and Special Visual Effects. It also picked up both Outstanding Guest gongs, with Storm Reid picking up one for her role as Riley Abel in the episode, “Left Behind,” and Nick Offerman grabbing the other for his amazing portrayal of Bill in “Long, Long Time.” As such, The Last of Us won the most awards of the night doubling a three-way tie for second place, with four each going to The Bear, Wednesday, and The White Lotus.
Meanwhile, at The Golden Globes, The Last of Us was up for three categories: for Best Actress in a TV Series (Bella Ramsey), Best Actor in a TV Series (Pedro Pascal), and Best TV Series. It won in none of them, on a night when Succession was the big TV winner, taking the award in all three categories.
The same battle will take place on January 15, when the Primetime Emmys once more pit Succession and The Last of Us against each other for “outstanding” drama awards such as, Drama Series, Lead Actor, Lead Actress, Directing, and Writing. There will also be serious competition from Better Call Saul, The White Lotus, and Yellowjackets. And, honestly, I don’t fancy TLOU’s chances in any of the categories, given it was (whisper it) you know, fine. Surprisingly good for a PlayStation game adaptation, but, well, another zombie show.
This newfound rivalry between Succession and The Last of Us did lead to one stand-out moment at an otherwise peculiar Golden Globe ceremony. While new host Jo Koy absolutely fell on his ass with a dire monologue, Kieran Culkin got the biggest laugh of the night when accepting the award for Best Leading TV Actor for Succession. Having beaten Pedro Pascal’s nomination for TLOU, everyone’s new favorite Culkin brother said that he’d previously accepted he was never going to be on the stage, and how this was therefore a “nice moment,” before adding, “Suck it, Pedro. Sorry… Mine.” Pascal roared with laughter, before sticking out his bottom lip and pretending to cry.