PASADENA, Calif. (AP) _ A parade of glitz and glamor outside this year’s Emmy extravaganza contrasted dramatically with a more serious backstage mood set by winning shows on Nazi atrocities, abortion and the atomic bomb.
Those arriving Sunday afternoon for the 41st annual presentations included glamorous stars of such TV hits as ″L.A. Law,″ ″Golden Girls″ and ″Murder, She Wrote″ wearing what some considered to be fashion reruns.
″It’s too bad,″ said fashion gadfly Mr. Blackwell, who shunned the customary tuxedo in favor of a business suit. ″If it was nighttime you couldn’t see the dresses as well. They would look better.″
Designs included tailored suits, shimmering sequins, miniskirts and ethnic costumes.
Perhaps the most unique outfit was that of costume designer Paula Glock, who embellished her black minisuit with brass knives, forks and spoons. She called the getup ″Dinner For Two.″
But the head-turner of the arrival scene was Jean Kasem, wife of Casey Kasem, who had 25 pounds of metal draped on her.
The creation, which she said was titled ″metal mass,″ was designed by Anthony Ferrara. It was topped with a black helmet with rows of beads falling below her chin.
″At least Jean knows what being a star is all about,″ said Blackwell, who turned thumbs down on most of the star styles.
″There’s too much cheap glitz,″ Blackwell said. ″There’s nothing new. No one can figure out what a fashion statement is. This is probably one of the most eclectic masses of yesterday.″
A noticeably slimmer Susan Ruttan of ″L.A. Law″ wore a tight brocade minidress fashioned with a net pouf around the neck. Asked who designed her dress, she said, ″I did 3/8″
″It looks like it,″ sniffed Blackwell.
Inside Pasadena Civic Auditorium, the Emmys took a more solemn tone as winners grappled with questioning about the serious nature of their television productions.
″Roe vs. Wade,″ the much-criticized account of the historic battle for legalized abortion, brought one of the nation’s most heated controversies backstage after capturing an Emmy for Holly Hunter and sharing the award for top drama-comedy special.
″I think this is an award for the drama, not the politics,″ said Alison Cross, co-producer and writer.
Cross, who was forced by NBC to rewrite the script 20 times, said, ″We tried very hard to make this as good a show as possible and not make compromises necessary for television.″
The show told the story of Norma McCorvey, the real life ″Jane Roe″ whose U.S. Supreme Court case established a woman’s legal right to abortion.
In her acceptance speech, Miss Hunter thanked Ms. McCorvey for ″continuing to fight and keep women from being second-class citizens and for refusing to give up her right for reproductive choice.″
″Roe vs. Wade″ was not the only winner that was inspired by news headlines.
Writer Abby Mann, who won for his, ″Murderers Among Us: The Simon Wiesenthal Story,″ about the famous Nazi hunter, criticized the TV industry for not addressing serious subjects more frequently.
″The industry as a whole is terribly cowardly and ignorant toward those subjects,″ he said, ″and I’m ashamed of it.″
Actor Larry Drake, who won for his role of a mentally retarded office assistant on ″L.A. Law,″ said his award meant more because his character is ″well received″ by the mentally retarded community.
Producer and writer David Rintels, whose ″Day One,″ the story of the making of the first U.S. atomic bomb, tied with ″Roe vs. Wade″ for outstanding drama special, said it was a fight to get the show on the air.
″It took 4 1/2 years,″ he said. ″It took some courageous support from the network (CBS). It was thrilling that we had the resources and support to do it the way we wanted.″
Even comedy winners seemed in a serious mood.
Rhea Perlman, who won as best supporting actress for the fourth time for ″Cheers,″ said ″I don’t think anybody deserves it this many times.″