The Emmys Snub Beyonce & 'Lemonade' In The Biggest Upset Of The Night
Listen, Beyoncé may have spent the VMAs broadcasting to the world that she is not a god, but I'm still calling her Beysus. As such, I was on the edge of my seat during the 2016 Emmys, wondering if Beyoncé's Lemonade was going to win the Emmy for Best Directing for a Variety Special. Somehow, despite her other three Emmy nominations, Queen Bey had yet to land an actual win, which meant that Best Directing for a Variety Special was her last chance to squeeze an Emmy in next to her Grammys. Honestly, I had no idea how the good people who vote on these things were going to be able to justify not giving Beyoncé the award for the visual feast that was Lemonade — or how they were justifying not giving her one to this point. Then, during Sunday's ceremony, Beyoncé was snubbed for the Emmy, and that makes no sense.
Admittedly, Directing isn't the first Emmy that I would think to give to Beyoncé's Lemonade. Of all the things I focused on when it came to the film, the directing — though magnificent — wasn't even in the top five. And yet for Grease Live to have taken home the Emmy for Directing over Beyoncé's Lemonade, and, worse, for Beyoncé's Lemonade to have been nominated for four Emmys and lost every single one, feels like a slap in the face to what an incredible project the singer put together. Ever since the release of her 2013 self-titled album BEYONCÉ , it has felt like she has re-invented herself with each new album. Lemonade came at a time when one would almost think it impossible for her to top her last reinvention, the one that launched her to goddess status.
And yet she did — and, even better, she did it in a way as surprising as the time she secretly put a whole album on iTunes and then promptly broke iTunes. When we first heard the news that Beyoncé's Lemonade would be debuting on HBO, no one but Beyoncé and HBO had no idea what that even meant. No one had any idea what Lemonade was. An album? A movie? A concert special? And what we got was a visual exploration of the harm and healing of infidelity, of how it tears your relationship but, more importantly, your self apart. We got a celebration of black culture, and a condemnation of violence against black people. We got — well, literally, I could gush about Lemonade all day, but many other thinkpieces have done it better.
So it's incredibly bewildering to me that Beyoncé didn't win an Emmy for the film that accompanied what many consider to be her greatest album ever. I don't have anything against Grease Live per say, but I don't think that, in a few years, Grease Live will have the same cultural and emotional impact that Lemonade had. The directing was part of that impact, and, though I personally would have given Beyoncé the Emmy for Outstanding Variety Special (sorry, The Late Late Show Carpool Karaoke Primetime Special), I still can't believe the film didn't win anything at all.
But, hey, as Jimmy Fallon joked, I wouldn't want to be Grease Live "when Kanye finds out." Emmys, I'mma let you finish, but Beyoncé had the best variety special of all time. OF ALL TIME.