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38th Primetime Emmy Awards

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

38th Primetime Emmy Awards
  • September 21, 1986
  • September 6, 1986
    (Creative Arts Awards)
LocationPasadena Civic Auditorium, Pasadena, California
Presented byAcademy of Television Arts and Sciences
Hosted byDavid Letterman
Shelley Long
Most awardsCagney & Lacey (4)
Most nominationsThe Cosby Show (13)
Outstanding Comedy SeriesThe Golden Girls
Outstanding Drama SeriesCagney & Lacey
Outstanding MiniseriesPeter the Great
Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy ProgramThe Kennedy Center Honors
Television/radio coverage

The 38th Primetime Emmy Awards were presented on September 21, 1986, at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California. The Emmy ceremony was cohosted by David Letterman and Shelley Long. During the ceremony, Letterman saluted Grant Tinker, who had stepped down as chairman of NBC due to its parent company, RCA, having been acquired by General Electric. The ceremony was also memorable for the presentation of the Governors' Award to Red Skelton, presented by comedy legend Lucille Ball, who in his acceptance speech said he had missed being on TV for the previous 16 years.

This year's ceremony saw the return of the guest acting category. The top shows of the night were The Golden Girls which won Outstanding Comedy Series and two other major awards. The Golden Girls became the first series to gain three nominations in a lead acting category, they would repeat this feat multiple times. For the second straight year Cagney & Lacey won for Outstanding Drama Series, and led all shows with four major wins. With help from the guest acting category, The Cosby Show with 13 nominations broke the record for most major nominations by a comedy series of 11 set by The Mary Tyler Moore Show in 1977. This record has since been surpassed.

Winners and nominees



Outstanding Comedy Series Outstanding Drama Series
Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Program Outstanding Drama/Comedy Special
Outstanding Miniseries


Lead performances

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Special Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Special

Supporting performances

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Special Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or a Special

Guest performances

Outstanding Guest Performer in a Comedy Series Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series
  • Roscoe Lee Browne as Prof. Barnabus Foster on The Cosby Show, (Episode: "The Card Game"), (NBC)
    • Earle Hyman as Russell Huxtable on The Cosby Show, (Episode: "Happy Anniversary"), (NBC)
    • Danny Kaye as Dr. Burns on The Cosby Show, (Episode: "The Dentist"), (NBC)
    • Clarice Taylor as Anna Huxtable on The Cosby Show, (Episode: "Happy Anniversary"), (NBC)
    • Stevie Wonder as Himself on The Cosby Show, (Episode: "A Touch of Wonder"), (NBC)
  • John Lithgow as John Walters on Amazing Stories, (Episode: "The Doll"), (NBC)
    • Whoopi Goldberg as Camille on Moonlighting, (Episode: "Camille"), (ABC)
    • Edward Herrmann as Father McCabe on St. Elsewhere, (Episode: "Time Heals, Part 2"), (NBC)
    • Peggy McCay as Mrs. Carruthers on Cagney & Lacey, (Episode: "Mothers and Sons"), (CBS)
    • James Stacy as Ted Peters on Cagney & Lacey, (Episode: "The Gimp"), (CBS)


Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series
Outstanding Directing in a Variety or Music Program Outstanding Directing in a Miniseries or a Special


Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series
Outstanding Writing in a Variety, Music or Comedy Program Outstanding Writing in a Miniseries or a Special
  • Late Night with David Letterman, (Episode: "Fourth Anniversary Special"), (NBC)
    • The 40th Annual Tony Awards, (CBS)
    • Great Performances, (Episode: "Sylvia Fine Kaye's Musical Comedy Tonight III"), (PBS)
    • The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, (NBC)
    • AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Billy Wilder, (NBC)

Most major nominations

By network [note 1]
  • NBC – 79
  • CBS – 39
  • ABC – 13
By program
  • The Cosby Show (NBC) - 13
  • St. Elsewhere (NBC) – 10
  • The Golden Girls (NBC) / Moonlighting (ABC) – 9
  • An Early Frost (NBC) / Cheers (NBC) – 8
  • Cagney & Lacey (CBS) – 7

Most major awards

By network [note 1]
  • NBC – 17
  • CBS – 9
By program
  • Cagney & Lacey (CBS) – 4
  • The Golden Girls (NBC) / St. Elsewhere (NBC) – 3
  1. ^ a b "Major" constitutes the categories listed above: Program, Acting, Directing, and Writing. Does not include the technical categories.


External links

This page was last edited on 12 July 2022, at 20:26
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