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Many people expected the 2020 Emmy Awards to be quite the unique experience, given how many celebs would be participating in the ceremony from home. Sure enough, things started off in appropriately weird ways for the intro segment, which featured on-hiatus talk show host Jimmy Kimmel dishing out Hollywood barbs and pandemic jokes to an audience from past Emmy ceremonies. As well as Ozark and The Outsider star Jason Bateman in the flesh. The only way anyone should welcome Jason Bateman, amirite?
To get a better idea of both the awkwardness and the amusement, check out Jimmy Kimmel's full monologue sequence below, complete with lots of crowd reaction shots...and even one from Jimmy Kimmel himself. [Cue the Twilight Zone music.]
In expected self-deprecating form, Jimmy Kimmel took a couple of shots at the mere idea of holding a "Pand-Emmys" ceremony in the midst of the pandemic, or at holding the Emmys during any other year. But 2020 has been the kind of year where a completely upended Emmy Awards might as well be the thing that makes everyone happy again. I mean, anytime Schitt's Creek and What We Do In the Shadows footage is shown, there's a reason to celebrate.
Before things (arguably) went on TOO long with the fake audience footage, Jimmy Kimmel pulled the wool up from everyone's eyes to reveal that he was not only alone on the stage, but mostly alone in the entire theater, other than a relative handful of celebs serving as presenters and comedic relief. After having watched NFL games with mostly recycled crowd noise, this entire gimmick put me on edge. But it was all saved in the end by Jason Bateman.
After revealing that the real crowd in the theater was largely just socially distanced cardboard cutouts, much like how other sports have handled intentionally sparse crowds, the camera revealed Jason Bateman to be in among the stationary subjects. He wasn't exactly alone. He was accompanied by his own cardboard cutout of him as a much younger actor. Or as the same-aged actor, since he's an immortal who doesn't age, much like Paul Rudd.
It would be interesting if, whenever Jimmy Kimmel Live! returns to ABC, the audience is just full of cardboard cutouts of celebs, as well as Jason Bateman. Sure, that would probably get in the way of Bateman getting back to work on Ozark for the fourth and final season, but that's just how it goes sometimes.
Be sure to keep up with all the big winners from tonight's Emmy Awards telecast, which is basically Schitt's Creek and a few other shows. Check out all the shows coming to TV in the near future with our Fall 2020 TV premiere schedule.