We’re just days away from the Primetime Emmys, which air Sunday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC, and as we did last year, we have a bit of last-minute advice for the Emmycast’s host. This time it’s Jimmy Kimmel, ABC’s late-night guy, who’s on a roll after the alphabet network announced that “Jimmy Kimmel Live” would be moving to 11:35 in January.
Kimmel’s a pretty experienced host, so this assignment might not be as daunting for him as it might have been for Jane Lynch last year. But if Jimmy were coming to us for some tips (and we’re sure he’s eager to hear what we have to say), here are some dos and don’ts we think he should adhere to.
DO keep your snarkiness intact. Kimmel’s really good at what we like to think of as gentle edginess; he can easily drop a devastating line and do it in a way that makes even the person being made fun of smile. He’s especially good at making fun of how silly the spectacle of show business is, which we saw when he sported PJs and a bedhead when he was a last-minute sub for Nick Offerman at the early-morning nomination announcement. We’d love to see more of that bemused air from him during the Emmy dog and pony show.
DON’T bite the hand that fed you. Well, maybe Jimmy can nibble it a bit. We know from his takedown of Jay Leno that Kimmel has no problem dropping the smile and going for the jugular. But we think he knows that the Emmy ceremony is not the time for that. Kimmel has his network and his soon-to-be-upgraded show to think about, so he can’t do a Ricky Gervais and even be moderately mean. Either way, Kimmel and his writers are skilled enough that they don’t have to go that route to be funny.
DO utilize your celebrity buddies. Like his pal Jimmy Fallon, Kimmel and crew are good at writing and producing videos that are funny and have viral potential. And since Fallon started the “tradition” of doing a video to kick off the ceremony — it was one of the few parts of Lynch’s hosting gig that went poorly — Kimmel should go all in and put his contacts to work. We may not get a sequel to “I’m F***ing Matt Damon,” but if we can get something close to what he did with Ellen DeGeneres or Oprah Winfrey, we’d take it (maybe have Jon Hamm and Bryan Cranston face off in a cage match?).
DO use your regular bits and players. Wouldn’t it be funny to see him do an Emmy version of “This Week in Unnecessary Censorship?” Plus, one of the things we love about “JKL” is the family feel that surrounds the show. Uncle Frank Potenza is gone, unfortunately, but Jimmy’s buddy and bandleader Cleto Ecobedo should be the conductor, security guard Guillermo D�az can be a seat filler, Cousin Sal Iacono could interview the winners backstage and Aunt Chippy Potenza can … well, he should be able to think of something for Aunt Chippy to do, because we like her so much. However….
DON’T call Adam Carolla. We’re tired of seeing him, and we’re sure he’s sick of being Jimmy’s sidekick.