This Year's Emmys are Just Like 2004

When it comes to pop culture, a lot can change in 10 years. So-called "perfect" couples break up. Reigning teen queens get dethroned, beloved heartthrobs traded in. Long-running TV shows go off the air, blockbuster movies lose their momentum. But awards shows? They always stay the same. Sure, the nominees may change and the formats may vary, but no matter how long it's been, most ceremonies look and feel strikingly similar to their predecessors. Just take this year's upcoming Emmy Awards, for instance; despite the newness of contenders like Silicon Valley and Orange is the New Black in the mix, the 2014 Emmys are actually pretty similar to the show that aired a decade ago, way back in 2004.

And no, that doesn't mean there's going to be a Brad and Jen reunion or the return of Sex and the City, as much as fans still mourning the end of those days might hope. But in terms of theme, tone, and more than a few major nominees, 2014's Emmy Awards are not going to be really all that different from 2004's show — in fact, in some cases, the two ceremonies seem eerily similar. For instance:

The Movie Star Takeover

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2014: More than a dozen acting nominees at this year's show are better known as movie stars. Kevin Spacey, Claire Danes, Matthew McConaughey — they're all A-list film actors who decided to give TV a chance, leading the recent trend of movie stars moving to TV in order to snap up good roles and win a shelf-load of trophies.

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2004: But apparently, that trend started long ago, because in 2004, nominees included Al Pacino, Meryl Streep, Glenn Close, Emma Thompson, and Alan Rickman, among other major movie stars.

Allison Janney Winning Everything

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2014: Janney's already won an Emmy this year for a guest role on Masters of Sex, and there's a chance she'll pick up another for her supporting role on Mom, because Allison Janney wins everything.

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2004: Janney picked up her fourth Emmy for The West Wing, because Allison Janney wins everything.

Unless Edie Falco Does, Instead

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2014: To be fair, Falco and Janney are competing in different categories. But they've both still been nominated many of the same times, and often in the same category. This year, Falco's up for Lead Comedy Actress for Nurse Jackie, her fifth nomination (she's won once).

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2004: Falco was nominated for Lead Drama Actress for The Sopranos, against — who else? — Allison Janney.

TV Focusing on the AIDS Crisis

2014: The Normal Heart, about a group of men dealing with the AIDS crisis in the early '80s, is the expected winner of the Outstanding Television Movie category. Stars Mark Ruffalo, Matt Bomer, Jim Parsons, and others are also up for awards.

2004: The major miniseries that year was Angels in America, about the effects of AIDS on the lives of several people living in 1985. In addition to winning Best Miniseries, the program won honors for Meryl Streep, Al Pacino, Jeffrey Wright and more.

Everyone (Almost) Loves Matt LeBlanc

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2014: LeBlanc is a Lead Comedy Actor nominee for Episodes, his third for the show. He's never won.

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2004: LeBlanc was a Lead Comedy Actor nominee for Friends, his third for the show. He never won. Coincidence or conspiracy?

HBO in the Lead

2014: Sorry, Netflix: you may be the up-and-coming network, but HBO's still the reigning king of Emmy nominations. This year, the channel earned 36 nominations for shows like Game of Thrones, Girls, and Veep.

2004: HBO earned a whopping 56 nominations, a dozen of which came from The Sopranos. The shows may change, but it seems that no matter how many years go by, HBO is still the network that everyone — or at least Emmy voters — is watching.

Images: Getty Images (8); HBO (4)