We’ve already talked about how 2012 is a disappointing year with the Reality – Competition Series category at the Primetime Emmy Awards, but thankfully we cannot say the same thing about the hosts. While Jeff Probst does still deserve to be a part of this list as the reigning champ and one of the best in the business, the majority of the contenders here are deserving, and in the case of some of them, they fit the requirement perfectly for a great reality host — namely that we can’t imagine the show without them.
Now trying to rank these contenders is not going to be easy, mostly because we’re not always sure that Emmy voters really bother to watch some of the shows that are submitted to them for voting. So for some of this, we’re just going to have to assume that voters know what they are doing.
5. Phil Keoghan, “The Amazing Race” – There’s no question that Phil adds to the charm of this show, and it is tough to imagine this show really without him on the mat. However, should we really reward a guy whose primary responsibilities include narrating and talking to teams on a mat at the end of the episode.
4. Betty White, “Betty White’s Off Their Rockers” – We still have a hard time buying that this is really a competition show, and we also suspect that White, as much as we love her, made this list largely because she is Betty White and it kept Probst from winning again. This show doesn’t really deserve to be here, but White has an outside shot just because she is, after all, Betty White.
3. Ryan Seacrest, “American Idol” – Does Seacrest seem a bit snippy and arrogant at times? Sure, but nobody gives this guy enough credit for what he does. Week in and week out, he tackles the biggest reality show on TV, and keeps every part of it professional — he knows the right questions to ask, when to cut off the judges, and how to make even the smallest performance seem life-altering. Ryan was really made to do his job.
2. Tom Bergeron, “Dancing with the Stars” – We feel bad for Tom sometimes with “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” mostly because it diminishes his talent and keeps people from how much talent he has — which is also why we occasionally feel bad for him over the co-hosts that he has had on this nominated show over the years. He’s funny, plays up the camp quality of his show, and we literally could not imagine this show without him. Easily, Tom is the most under-appreciated personality quite possibly on all TV.
1. Cat Deeley, “So You Think You Can Dance” – We say all of these great things about Tom, but we will still be stunned if anyone other than Deeley is picked for the Emmy. Her show is a critical darling, and she also plays well to all audiences thanks to her professionalism, empathy for the contestants, and ability to keep what is often a very complicated show on track. While we’d be happiest with a Tom win, it’s hard to argue against Deeley taking home the trophy.
Who is your pick for the Emmy here? Be sure to vote in our poll below! To check out some more of the latest Emmy coverage, be sure to either visit the link here or click on the photo to the right of this article.