I promised" that I would "write about "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" and its competitors in the other six categories in which it is nominated. I wrote about five of them and compared "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" to "United Shades of America", noting that "the line between an informational nonfiction show and a reality show must be very fine." On that note, it's time to examine the final category in which the late Bordain's shows earned a nomination, Outstanding Short Form Nonfiction Or Reality Series, an award whose very title "reflects the fine line between informational nonfiction and reality programming" I pointed out.
The nomination is really for the web series "Anthony Bourdain: Explore Parts Unknown," not the main Sunday night show. The same is true of most of the other nominees, which are supplements to the main shows they are about. "The Americans: The Final Season" and "The Assassination Of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story: America’s Obsessions" are short-form documentaries about both the history being examined by the drama and mini-series and the making of the shows themselves, while "Top Chef: Last Chance Kitchen" serves as a side competition to the main show, much like "Comeback Kitchen" does for "Next Food Network Star." Only "Jay Leno's Garage" on NBC with replays on CNBC is a show in its own right. It is also the only repeat nominee, having been earned nominations for this award every year it has been presented. On that basis, I'd say it's the favorite, especially since last year's winner, “Viceland at the Women’s March,” did not return. I expect its main competition will be "Anthony Bourdain: Explore Parts Unknown" for reasons I will repeat below.
Speaking of which, here is what I wrote about the nominees for Outstanding Informational Series or Special, including "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown."
"StarTalk With Neil deGrasse Tyson" earned a fourth nomination for Outstanding Informational Series or Special, a repeat from last year. This joins its nomination for Reality Television at the 2018 EMA Awards, where I mentioned its Emmy nomination.I believe that the same sympathy vote will make "Anthony Bourdain: Explore Parts Unknown" the major rival to "Jay Leno's Garage" for Outstanding Short Form Nonfiction Or Reality Series.
I'd have rooted for "StarTalk with Neil deGrasse Tyson," as it was nominated for an Emmy last year and again this year. It lost to "Vice," which it is competing against for Outstanding Informational Series or Special this year, just as it was last year. I'll be writing about both later, especially "Vice," which also has nine News and Documentary Emmy nominations.I doubt either "StarTalk" or "Vice" will win. Instead, I think it will be either “Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath,” which won this category last year, or Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, which won the category the four years before that. Because of Bourdain's recent suicide, I suspect his show has the inside track. As for "My Next Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman," I will tell the show and Netflix the same thing I said about "Bill Nye Saves the World," just be happy to be nominated.
Follow over the jump for what I've already written about the rest of the nominations for "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown."
Here they are from 'Jane,' 'Icarus,' and 'Blue Planet II' — Nature, science, and politics in documentaries at the Creative Arts and Primetime Emmy Awards.
The nominees for Outstanding Cinematography For A Nonfiction Program pit nature against cuisine with "Jane" and two episodes of "Blue Planet II" representing nature, while one episode each of "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" and "Chef's Table" competing for cuisine. What a tough category! I think "Blue Planet II" is the favorite based on the win for "Planet Earth II" in this category last year, but I wouldn't be surprised if "Jane" pulls out an upset.I haven't changed my mind about any of the favorites in the two weeks since I wrote that entry, so it looks like I'm done with nonfiction and reality television nominees unless I want to examine "Who Do You Think You Are?" a nominee for Outstanding Structured Reality Program because it includes genetic testing. If I have time for it, I might. Otherwise, expect the next entry in this series to be about movies and limited series. Stay tuned.
More of the multiple nominees for documentaries and nonfiction appear as nominees for Outstanding Picture Editing For A Nonfiction Program, The Lagos episode of "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown," Episode 3 of "The Defiant Ones," "Jane," Part 3 of "Wild Wild Country," and "The Zen Diaries Of Garry Shandling." In this category, I think it's a contest between "The Defiant Ones" and "Jane" — nature versus show business. On that basis, I might give the edge to "The Defiant Ones."
Nature versus show business is also one of the themes in the nominees for Outstanding Sound Editing For A Nonfiction Program (Single Or MultiCamera) with "Blue Planet II" and "Jane" again representing the wild world while "The Defiant Ones" competing for entertainment. Joining them are the Seattle episode of "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" and Episode 6 of "The Vietnam War." Based on "Jane" winning the MPSE Golden Reel Award, I would say it's favored.
Nearly the same nominees appear in Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Nonfiction Program (Single or Multi-Camera) with "Wild Wild Country" replacing "Blue Planet II." Again, based on "Jane" winning the Cinema Audio Society award, I think it's favored, although "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown" earned a nomination in its category.
The usual suspects are also competing for Outstanding Writing For A Nonfiction Program, "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown," "The Defiant Ones," "Icarus," "Jane," "Mister Rogers: It's You I Like," and "The Vietnam War." Once again, I consider "Jane" to be the front runner because it won the Writers Guild of America (WGA) award for Documentary Screenplay with "The Vietnam War" to be its strongest competition as it was nominated for Documentary Script - Other than Current Events.