PRESENTED BY CHARLIE AND DONALD KAUFMAN: I want to acknowledge two TV shows this season for a special achievement--and that is "Outstanding Achievement In Meta-Commentary." Meta commentary and breaking the fourth wall to talk directly to the audience is always a dicey proposition, with high risk, and two TV shows in particular managed to walk that tightrope this year without falling over. And the winners are...(drum roll)
For Outstanding Achievement In Meta-Comedy, the winner is Arrested Development. Would any other show on television be able to get away with an episode (the brilliant "S.O.B.'s"), making fun of just about every sitcom convention, ridiculing repeated network notes, and the show itself, even the possibility of the show changing networks. Outstanding work.
For Outstanding Achievement In Meta-Drama, the winner is Boston Legal. The meta-jokes were constant, but small enough that they were frequently of the blink and you'll miss it variety, be it Denny Crane complaining about his Alzheimer's "constantly being a plot point," Alan and Denny rendezvousing on the balcony noting that "I haven't seen you much this episode," Alan explaining where he was while was "on hiatus" after not seeing someone "since he was on Sundays," or Denny saying "You mean, we don't know if he's innocent or guilty? I hate it when we end that way!" The politics got heavy handed and shrill for much of the season, but the meta kept Boston Legal as a must-watch.