Peabodys Smile on Hot Tranny Messes, Tina Fey

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You're either in, or you're out. And this year, "Project Runway" is in. The University of Georgia's Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, after surveying the vast wasteland that is electronic media, has found 35 recipients worthy of 67th-annual Peabody Awards.
Heidi (r.) and Co. snap up big-time award.
Heidi (r.) and Co. snap up big-time award.
And alongside such serious undertakings as "A Journey Across Afghanistan: Opium and Roses," a documentary from Bulgaria's Balkan News Corp.; "The Long Road Home for Our Nation's Veterans," a series of moving reports by ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff (himself a recovering Iraq War casualty); and Univision's "Ya Es Hora," a public-service campaign that taught legal aliens how to apply for American citizenship, is Bravo's fashion-design competition, which we can thank for entering into the national lexicon the phrase "hot tranny mess."

In honoring "The Colbert Report," which brought us "truthiness," the Peabody committee said: "Let none dare call it 'truthiness.' Colbert, in his weeknight Comedy Central send-up of politics and all that is bombastic and self-serving in cable-news bloviasion, has come into his own as one of electronic media's sharpest satirists."

Another send-up of media culture, NBC's "30 Rock," also scored a nod. "Tina Fey's creation is not only a great workplace comedy in the tradition of 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show,' complete with fresh, indelible secondary characters, but also a sly, gleeful satire of corporate media, especially the network that airs it."

Two cable dramas are winners too: AMC's "Mad Men" -- of which the committee said, "The way they were on Madison Avenue, in the Manhattan towers and the bedroom communities of New York, circa 1960, is recalled in rich detail and a haze of cigarette smoke in this exemplary period dramatic series" -- and Showtime's "Dexter," which was praised for "a premise that questions our fondness for avenging heroes -- a serial killer who channels his dark urges into police forensics and the killing of other sociopaths. This Showtime series is a masterful psychological thriller and a complex and ambiguous meditation on morality."

And Discovery Channel must be glad it made the investment in high-definition: Its 11-part "Planet Earth" series won for being "awesome, spectacular, humbling, exhilarating."
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