Tuesday Wake-Up Call: Netflix and HBO win at the Emmys. Plus, a shuffle at Wieden & Kennedy

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Colin Jost and Michael Che at the Emmy Awards in Los Angeles
Colin Jost and Michael Che at the Emmy Awards in Los Angeles Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Welcome to Ad Age's Wake-Up Call, our daily roundup of advertising, marketing, media and digital news. You can get an audio version of this briefing on your Alexa device. Search for "Ad Age" under "Skills" in the Alexa app. What people are talking about today: Netflix and HBO tied for the most Emmys, with both taking 23 prizes. It was yet another reminder of the amount of high-quality content airing ad-free on premium cable and streaming services. The hosts, Colin Jost and Michael Che of NBC's "Saturday Night Live," cracked jokes about the troubles of traditional TV, with Che noting that NBC had the most nominations of any broadcast network. "Which is kind of like being the sexiest person on life support," he said. "It's not great."
And Jost made a joke about the number of Netflix nominations: "If you're a network executive, that's the scariest thing you could possibly hear. Except maybe: 'Sir, Ronan Farrow is on line 1.'"
What won: HBO's "Game of Thrones" won Outstanding Drama Series, while Amazon's "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" was named Outstanding Comedy Series. Check out the full list on Variety.
The tie: While HBO has claimed the most Emmys for 16 years in a row, Netflix joined it this year at the top. The New York Times notes: "Netflix spent handsomely on Emmy campaigning this year, opening a space in Hollywood to showcase its fare and advertising on billboards along the Sunset Strip."
Nike on the red carpet: Jenifer Lewis of "Black-ish" wore a Nike sweatshirt to the Emmys. "I am wearing Nike to applaud them for supporting Colin Kaepernick and his protest against racial injustice and police brutality," she told Variety.

Spiked with cannabis
Beverages infused with cannabis are suddenly all the rage. And even Coca-Cola is thinking about getting into the business. Bloomberg News writes,

"Coca-Cola Co. says it's monitoring the nascent industry and is interested in drinks infused with CBD—the non-psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that treats pain but doesn't get you high."

BNN Bloomberg Television says the world's biggest beverage company is in talks with Canada's Aurora Cannabis to make drinks that would ease inflammation, pain and cramping.
What's interesting is how fast this sector is developing; it doesn't seem far-fetched at this point for Coke to be interested. Corona's parent company, Constellation Brands, is taking a stake in a Canadian marijuana producer. Molson Coors is starting a joint venture to develop cannabis drinks in Canada. And Heineken's Lagunitas already has a non-alcoholic beverage spiked with THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis. (Question: If it's non-alcoholic but laced with weed, do you still say "cheers?")

Amazon strikes back
Taken literally, Amazon's new ad is about a Michigan shopkeeper who sells her soaps and wares on Amazon Storefronts, a new online section devoted to small businesses. But there's more going on below the surface, and "it seems like a response to the U.S. politicians who have been blasting the company," Ad Age's Garett Sloane writes. The subtext of the ad, from London agency Lucky Generals, is that Amazon isn't the badly behaved behemoth that politicians make it out to be, since it champions small businesses in the Heartland. As Sloane writes, Amazon

"has absorbed blistering attacks from both President Trump and Senator Bernie Sanders. Trump has threatened Amazon with tougher regulatory scrutiny and makes CEO Jeff Bezos a regular target, partly because Bezos also owns The Washington Post. Sanders has called for a tax on businesses like Amazon if they pay workers so little that they still qualify for federal welfare programs."

Watch the spot here; the classic track on the soundtrack is "Let's Work Together" by Canned Heat.

Wieden & Kennedy is getting a leadership shuffle. Chief Creative Officer Colleen DeCourcy will run the Portland-based independent shop with Tom Blessington, who's returning to the agency after leaving for Google's YouTube just a year ago. Ad Age's E.J. Schultz reports that they both take over for Dave Luhr, who had been president since 2013. He's now taking on the title of chair, as is Susan Hoffman, who had been co-chief creative officer alongside DeCourcy. As Schultz reports,

"The shuffling essentially means that the agency is shrinking its day-to-day management team from four to two people in an attempt to streamline decision-making and become more nimble."

Wieden's "Dream Crazy" ad for Nike featuring Colin Kaepernick has been a national conversation piece since its release early this month. (See: Jenifer Lewis wearing Nike to the Emmys, above.)

Just briefly:
The $1.5 million Supreme Court seat:
"A conservative group plans to launch a new ad campaign to defend Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh from allegations that he sexually assaulted a woman while in high school," The Hill reports. The Judicial Crisis Network reportedly plans to spend $1.5 million on TV ads.

Leaving: Julie Chen is departing from CBS show "The Talk," CNNMoney reports. A week ago, Chen's husband Les Moonves resigned as CEO of the network amid sexual misconduct claims. Chen will remain host of "Big Brother," CNN says.

Bye: "Less than a week after parting ways with Chief Marketing Officer Seth Farbman, Spotify is saying goodbye to another top marketing executive: Jackie Jantos, who had been VP for brand creative," Ad Age's Ann-Christine Diaz writes.

Loss: "Interpublic's Deutsch has lost the Volkswagen creative account in the U.S. as the automaker nears the end of its global agency review," Ad Age's E.J. Schultz reports.

Instagram envy: TripAdvisor wants to be more social. And soon, "users will have profile pages and the ability to gain followers and follow others," Ad Age's Adrianne Pasquarelli writes.

Meanwhile in the U.K.: "According to research by divorceonline.co.uk, 200 divorces since January 2018 mentioned addiction to Fortnite and other online games as one of the reasons for the relationship breakdown," The BBC reports.

Mascot of the day: KFC has a new character that's a cross between Colonel Sanders and a bear-shaped bottle of honey (you know, those plastic squeeze bottles that are always sticky). Read more by Ad Age's Jessica Wohl.

Ad of the day: Nike's latest installment in its "Just Do It" series spotlights Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge, who just set a new world marathon record in Berlin by clocking in at 2:01:39. As Ad Age's I-Hsien Sherwood writes, "that's a 4:38 mile, 26 times in a row without a break." Check out Nike's homage here.

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