‘Cagney & Lacy,’ Cosby Show Capture Top Emmys

Times Staff Writer

“Cagney & Lacey,” the police show that CBS once canceled and then resurrected when viewers protested, won as best dramatic series, and “The Cosby Show,” NBC’s first-year hit, was named best comedy at the 37th annual Emmy Awards on Sunday.

“Do You Remember Love,” a two-hour TV movie about a woman suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, won as best dramatic special of the 1984-85 TV season and also picked up Emmys for its star, Joanne Woodward, and for its writer, Vickie Patik. It was Patik’s first produced script.

“The Jewel in the Crown,” a 15-hour British production about the last years of English rule in India, was named best miniseries, and “Motown Returns to the Apollo” was named the season’s best variety program.

The three-hour ceremonies, broadcast nationally by ABC from the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, were presented by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. It went askew briefly when a tuxedo-clad man, later identified as a professional impostor, showed up on stage to accept the best supporting actress Emmy for winner Betty Thomas, who was on her way to pick it up herself.

The man was identified as Barry Breman, 38, of West Bloomfield, Mich., and was booked by Pasadena police for investigation of attempted grand theft, according to a police spokesman.


Although the camera had caught Thomas making her way to the stage, the telecast cut to a commercial after the impostor walked off with her Emmy, and it appeared she might not get to accept it on the air. But Thomas, who plays Officer Lucille Bates and was getting her first Emmy after four previous nominations, was given her time to speak when the program resumed.

“Cagney & Lacey” emerged as the biggest winner of the night, collecting four Emmys, including the third acting honor in a row for Tyne Daly, who plays New York Police Detective Mary Beth Lacey on the show.

Significantly for “Cagney & Lacey,” which has been hailed by critics and viewers for its strong portrayal of women in what traditionally has been a man’s job, its Emmys included one for writer Patricia Green and one for director Karen Arthur.

‘Ladies, We Did It’

One of the producers of the police drama, Terry Louise Fisher, summed up the show’s achievement by noting in her acceptance remarks that among the producers of the five nominated series, “I’m the only one on the list without a Y-chromosome. Ladies, we did it; it’s our year!”

“Cagney & Lacey” wound up with six Emmys for the season, having won for film editing and sound mixing in the earlier, non-televised ceremonies for the craft categories.

NBC’s “Miami Vice” series and the four-hour NBC drama “Wallenberg: A Hero’s Story” fared next best with four each.

NBC, which finished second in the prime-time ratings last season, garnered 12 Emmys on Sunday while top-rated CBS got 11 and ABC collected two. Including the earlier awards, NBC wound up with 25 Emmys, compared to 18 for CBS, 8 for ABC, 17 for PBS and 4 for syndicated programs.

4 for ‘Miami Vice’

“Miami Vice,” the color-coordinated, music-driven cop show that premiered last fall, had received 15 Emmy nominations to lead all other programs, but it won only for best supporting actor (Edward James Olmos), cinematography, art direction and sound editing.

“Hill Street Blues,” already the most-honored dramatic series in Emmy history--including victories the four previous years as best drama series--won only the award for actress Thomas this year. That gave it a total of 26 Emmys over its five-year history, leaving it three short of the Emmy champion, “The Mary Tyler Moore Show.”

William Daniels, who plays Dr. Mark Craig on “St. Elsewhere,” was named best actor in a drama, and Olmos, the brooding Lt. Martin Castillo of “Miami Vice,” won as best supporting actor.

In addition to being named best comedy series, “The Cosby Show” also won Emmys for writing and directing.

Bill Cosby, who stars in the series as a doctor and father of five, was not up for an Emmy himself, having declined to participate in the nominating process because of his opposition to competing with other actors.

As it turned out, he was very much a part of the ceremonies anyway. Co-executive producer Marcia Carsey cited Cosby as “the heart and soul of our show,” and director Jay Sandrich said that “so much of my work is shaped by Bill Cosby’s wit and philosophy of what a family could be.”

Guillaume Thanks Cosby

Even Robert Guillaume of ABC’s “Benson,” who won as best actor in a comedy series, got into the act. “I’d like to thank Bill Cosby for not being here,” he said in accepting his second Emmy.

Guillaume’s previous Emmy came in 1979 for his supporting performance on “Soap,” the show that introduced the wise-cracking character of Benson. He had been nominated as best actor five previous times.

Repeating their victories from last year were Jane Curtin as best actress in a comedy for her role as Allie in CBS’s “Kate & Allie,” and Rhea Perlman as best supporting actress in a comedy for her performance as the barmaid Carla on “Cheers.”

Perlman finished up her thank-you speech by expressing love for her husband, actor Danny De Vito, who previously had won an Emmy as the taxi cab operator Louie on “Taxi.” “I got two; you only got one!” she said with a giggle.

John Larroquette, who plays Assistant Dist. Atty. Dan Fielding on NBC’s “Night Court,” was named best supporting actor in a comedy. He gazed affectionately at the golden statuette and told the audience, “I’ve always been fond of short women.”

Despite being named best miniseries, public television’s “The Jewel in the Crown” did not receive any other Emmys.

Award for Richard Crenna

Richard Crenna was named best actor in a limited series or special for “The Rape of Richard Beck,” a TV movie for ABC in which he played a police officer whose attitudes about rape change dramatically after he is sexually attacked.

Kim Stanley won as best supporting actress in a limited series or special for her performance as Big Mama in PBS’s “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” while the award for best supporting actor in that area went to Karl Malden for “Fatal Vision.”

“Garfield in the Rough” was named best animated program.

In the variety categories, actor George Hearn and director Terry Hughes were honored for the TV production of the Broadway musical “Sweeney Todd,” and “Late Night With David Letterman” won for best writing.

The Emmy for costume design went to Travilla for “Dallas,” and John Addison got one for his music composition for “Murder, She Wrote.”

The TV academy also paid tribute Sunday to Alistair Cooke, the urbane host of public television’s long-running “Masterpiece Theatre” series. A distinguished journalist and broadcaster who has won five other Emmys, Cooke was cited for having brought his audience “a better understanding of the classics.”