When Seth Rogen introduced the nominees for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series to start the 2021 Primetime Emmy Awards Sunday night, he was shocked to see so many people at the Event Deck at L.A. Live, a venue near the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. After going virtual last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Television Academy chose to have this year's ceremony in person with a limited number of guests. But Rogen - and many viewers at home - were still surprised to see so many stars in one spot.
"Good to be here at the Emmy Awards! Let me start by saying there are way too many of us in this little room," Rogen said to nervous laughter. "What are we doing? They said this was outdoors! It's not. They lied to us! We're in a hermetically-sealed tent right now. I would not have come to this. Why is there a roof? It's more important that we have three huge chandeliers than we make sure we don't kill Eugene Levy tonight. That is what has been decided. This is insane. I went from wiping my grocers to having Paul Bettany sneeze in my face."
In a response to Rogen's jokes, host Cedric the Entertainer began his next bit by assuring the audience at home that everyone under the tent was vaccinated. As Deadline reported last month, anyone who attended the Emmys and last weekend's Creative Arts Emmys were required to show proof of being fully vaccinated and a negative COVID test. Cedric joked about how good it felt like to be hosting in person. "Unlike what Seth was talking about, it feels good. We're all vaxxed," he said. "We had to get vaxxed to come here."
Rogen immediately started trending on Twitter, as many felt the same way when they started watching the show. "I appreciate Seth Rogen calling out the crowded indoor setting of the Emmys, both because I was thinking it and because it's now funny to watch the show scramble to course correct the narrative," critic Caroline Siede tweeted. "How much of the remainder of the Emmys will be devoted to people denouncing Seth Rogen," editor Katey Rich wrote.