The 10th Anniversary TV Land Awards were broadcast on Sunday, April 29, and as usual, they didn’t disappoint. With Kelly Ripa as host and numerous celebrity presenters and honorees, we were treated to warm moments, heartfelt speeches, jokes, crazy outfits, and dancing. Lots of dancing. In case you missed it, here are 10 highlights from the 2012 TV Land Awards, the ultimate awards show honoring classic television.
1. In a costume-tastic intro segment, host Kelly Ripa recruited fashion guru Carson Kressley to help her pick out the perfect outfit for the awards show. “I need something special … something classic, yet fashion forward,” she said. What followed was a dizzying array of wardrobe changes transforming Ripa into a “Star Trek” cadet, Daisy Duke in “The Dukes of Hazzard,” Tootie in “The Facts of Life,” Morticia Addams, Wonder Woman (“Too flashy — but let me wear this home for Mark”), Lucille Ball, Zooey Deschanel (“too adorkable”), Cher in full Native American garb, Velma in “Scooby-Doo,” Sue Sylvester in “Glee,” and finally, Catwoman from “Batman.” Meow!
2. What an entrance! To start the show, Ripa was lowered onto the stage in her skin-tight Catwoman outfit (and ears), talking a bit about each of the night’s honorees. She went on to introduce the night’s first presenter, “a first-rate broadcaster, a generous humanitarian, and my sister in perk-hood — and one hell of a cage fighter — Katie Couric.” There to present the Fan Favorite Award to “the original two broke girls,” Couric told the crowd, “Please don’t leave me hanging up here,” before launching into the “1, 2, 3, 4 …” chant of the “Laverne & Shirley” opening theme. The audience enthusiastically chanted along (Faith Ford was seen shouting out with gusto), and Couric even did her own knee-dip at “Schlemiel!”
3. Penny Marshall, David L. Lander, Michael McKean and Cindy Williams accepted the Fan Favorite Award for “Laverne & Shirley,” and all gave touching thanks to the fans and their fellow castmates. But naturally Lander (Squiggy) got the crowd’s biggest laugh with just one word: “Hello.” (He followed that with another classic Squiggism: “Thank you, you may be sitted now.”)
4. Whoopi Goldberg presented the Groundbreaking Award to “In Living Color” — “the ultimate watercooler show,” as she put it — and the large cast seemed clearly excited to be up on stage together, like an old group of friends. After Keenen Ivory Wayans joked that “We were just a bunch of … geniuses!” he stepped aside to let a thrilled Jim Carrey have a few words: “C’mon. This is a tsunami, a wave, a crest of talent, that I feel so incredibly lucky to have been sucked up into. It was bigger than us, and we all knew that. And we had every experience under the rainbow in this show. We laughed, we cried, we broke down walls, and eventually we elected a president!” (Well, who knows? Maybe they sort of did.)
5. No “In Living Color” reunion would have been complete without the Fly Girls. Carrie Ann Inaba, one of the original Fly Girls, said, beaming, “This was one of the only shows that truly gave credit to our dancers. It was RIDONKULOUS.” Marlon Wayans interjected, “I want to thank Keenen for having the Fly Girls because I got to look at their butts every day.” And of course, Shawn Wayans (who started on the show as a DJ) got in one last word: “And I got to play music to their butts.”
6. The “Murphy Brown” cast’s acceptance of the Impact Award contained moments both funny and poignant. Creator Diane English, acknowledging Murphy Brown’s debt to the legendary newscaster who passed away this month, said, “I often describe the character [Murphy] as Mike Wallace in a dress. He’s going to be very missed, and I’d like to dedicate this to Mike.” Faith Ford described auditioning for “Murphy Brown” and feeling she hadn’t done a good enough job, so, “I walked and came back in and said, ‘I know how Corky would dance.’ Y’all wanna see it?” She then proceeded to do a cheerful little two-step for the crowd. And Charles Kimbrough, channeling the laconic Jim Dial, gave his thanks entirely in character, saying only, “Thank you very much. I was really lucky to get the job.” Or at least we think he was in character.
7. John Legend said of Aretha Franklin, recipient of the Icon Award, “I am so thrilled to introduce true music royalty, and an undisputed icon, here to sing for her subjects — the queen herself, the one and only Aretha Franklin.” The Queen of Soul, dressed in regal white robes, showed her age not one bit as she busted out with “Respect,” getting the crowd on its feet in a lively call-and-response that could have just as easily taken place 40 years ago. “It’s the Icon Award,” Franklin said in accepting her honor, “but in Mr. Legend’s own words, we’re just ordinary people.” Now that’s paying respect.
8. Bonnie Franklin, Valerie Bertinelli, Mackenzie Phillips, Pat Harrington, Glenn Scarpelli and Richard Masur accepted the Innovator Award for “One Day at a Time” from Fran Drescher. Not surprisingly, Mackenzie Phillips, who grew up on the show amid much-publicized drug and family troubles, seemed most affected by the honor. “When I took the role on ‘One Day at a Time,’” she said tearfully, “I did not take the role with any expectations of getting a family … I didn’t know that I would be getting a mom who actually held me to a higher standard than my own mother did, ever; a sister who loves me to this day with unconditional kindness and acceptance; and [gesturing to Harrington] the best Dutch uncle a girl could ever ask for … And a little brother, my dear friend Glenn Scarpelli …. I’m just so honored to be here with my, maybe not my family of origin, but certainly one of my families of choice.”
9. A little older but still wearing his trademark gray suit and bow tie, Pee-Wee Herman accepted the Pop Culture Award from Mike Myers with a call-back to something any kid who watched “Pee-Wee’s Playhouse” will remember. “We wanted you to laugh until you fell off the couch, and scream when you’d hear the secret word,” he said. “And today’s secret word — it’s slightly corny — but it’s ‘gratitude.’ … Thank you for visiting my playhouse for all these years, and please don’t forget this, my little monsters: If anyone ever makes fun of you, the best comeback is still, ‘I know you are, but what am I?’ And what am I? A person filled with gratitude.” With that, the word “gratitude” flashed on the overhead screens, and the crowd obligingly — what? — screeeeeaamed.
10. To close the show, Kelly Ripa appeared on stage one final time, surrounded by the Fly Girls from “In Living Color.” “Before we go, I have one more confession to make,” Ripa said. “Anybody that knows me knows that I always wanted to be a Fly Girl. Only two things held me back: rhythm and coordination. So, to teach me how are the Fly Girls.” Together with her new mentors, Ripa shimmied and bopped as house band the B-52s played “Rock Lobster” and the credits rolled. Now that’s a party.
@Marie_Todd: What a great evening! Kelly Ripa and girls.
@carrieanninaba: On our way to the tvland awards! Like my dress? Lol…
@MARLONWAYANS: Three the hard wayans… Me dub and I at the tvland awards honoring in living color
Be sure to tune in to the 10th Anniversary TV Land Awards on April 29 at 9PM/8C!
‘In Living Color’ is honored with the “Groundbreaking Award” at the 10th Anniversary TV Land Awards. Tune in on April 29 at 9PM/8C!