Emmys showcase diversity and variety, while bashing Donald Trump

Updated 5:26 AM EDT, Mon September 19, 2016

Story highlights

Top Emmy awards spread among 12 networks and streaming services

The night featured comedy and celebration mixed with politics

(CNN) —  

The Emmys celebrated diversity, spread the wealth among a vast assortment of networks and – thanks to the proximity to the presidential election – directed more than a few barbs at Donald Trump.

Host Jimmy Kimmel generally brought a breezy tone to the telecast, from riffing on the acceptance speeches (he quipped that the late O.J. Simpson attorney Johnny Cochran was “smiling up at us”) to a clever opening sequence that incorporated an unexpected cameo by Jeb Bush.

As for the awards themselves, the host joked that anyone without a dragon or a White Bronco in their show might as well leave early, which turned out to be both funny and prescient given the dominance of “Game of Thrones” and “The People v O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story.”

Having already won multiple Emmys during earlier ceremonies, those programs were heavy favorites, which likely robbed the evening of some suspense. “Game of Thrones” tallied a record 12 trophies for the second consecutive year.

HBO rallied at the end, claiming the night’s biggest honors – best drama and comedy – for “Thrones” and “Veep,” respectively, both repeat winners. “People v O.J.’s” haul included a trio of acting wins for those who played attorneys in the sensational trial: Courtney B. Vance, Sarah Paulson and Sterling K. Brown.