It’s time once again for the Emmys — TV’s greatest night, we’re continually told, when some stars graciously accept awards and thank everyone from their personal groomer to their fifth-grade teacher, and others in the audience try very, very hard not to look disappointed that they’re going home empty-handed. Like many of you, we’ll be glued to our set and/or laptop this Sunday evening at 8pm EST (5pm PST), watching folks vamp down the red carpet, listening to host Jimmy Kimmel make fun of Hollywood pretensions and political buffoons, and rooting for our favorites (The Americans, Mr. Robot, the genius that is Laurie Metcalf — seriously, that Horace and Pete monologue is fucking incredible) to grab the gold. And, like many of you, we’ll have a bottle of the hard stuff on hand. Because the Emmys, people.
As we’ve said before, Rolling Stone does not condone binge-drinking — but surely, there are some things that are too long, painful and to endure while sober. So we’ve put together the Official Emmys 2016 Drinking Game (TM), a handy guide for how to enjoy the broadcast the way God and Ben Sherwood intended. Rules are below; please watch the award show responsibly, America. We’ll be tipping our sifters and longnecks right beside you.
Drink THE FIRST TIME:
1. Someone compares the presidential election to Veep or House of Cards.
2. Someone compares the presidential election to Mr. Robot.
2. Someone compares the presidential election to Game of Thrones.
3. Someone compares Hilary Clinton to GoT‘s Khaleesi and/or Cersei.
4. Someone compares Donald Trump to any GoT characters, with a bonus shot if it’s the Night King.
5. Someone compares Donald Trump to one of GoT‘s dragons.
6. Someone compares the diversity of the Emmys to the, shall we say, somewhat paler complexion of this year’s Oscars.
7. Two presenters share an awkward moment.
8. There’s a “Carpool Karaoke” parody.
Drink EVERY time:
9. Someone makes a reference to the eternal-nominee status of Modern Family.
10. Host Jimmy Kimmel makes a reference to Sofia Vergara’s breasts. (Editor’s note: Please stop drinking once that number gets to 10.)
11. Someone makes an O.J. Simpson joke. (Editor’s note: Please stop drinking once that number gets to 20.)
12. Someone makes a reference to Trump’s hair. (Editor’s note: Please stop drinking once that number gets to 100.)
13. Jon Hamm says something genuinely funny, and looks so, so handsome doing it.
14. Someone makes a reference to Matt Lauer’s toothless interview of Donald Trump.
15. Someone makes a reference to Jimmy Fallon’s toothless interview of Donald Trump.
16. Someone says so-and-so couldn’t be here tonight because they have Hillary’s pneumonia.
17. There’s a standing ovation that lasts longer than 25 seconds. Take a bonus drink if the camera cuts to Oprah, and another bonus drink if she’s crying.
18. The phrase “binge-watching” is uttered.
19. The phrase “Peak TV” is uttered (especially if it’s in reference to Rule No. 10).
20. Someone makes a joke about Rami Malek’s eyes.
21. A winner praises the creative freedom at HBO/Netflix/Amazon/Crackle/YouTube/some other outlet you didn’t realize was even making scripted TV now.
22. Someone jokes about traditional networks gasping for life like lumbering woolly mammoths stuck in a tar pit.
23. Someone makes an ultra-safe eggshell-walking Transparent joke.
24. Someone makes a Putin reference in regards to The Americans.
25. Keegan Michael-Key, Jordan Peele, and/or Amy Schumer plays someone besides themselves.
26. If Kevin Spacey appears in character as House of Cards’ Frank Underwood. Bonus drink if he somehow works his Christopher Walken impersonation in there as well.
27. If Tatiana Maslany does a comedy bit where she plays multiple characters.
28. If the the Best Variety Talk Series winner makes a self-deprecating joke about how white/male/nerdy his writing staff is.
BONUS ROUND: TAKE A SHOT OF A RARE $100 BOTTLE OF MEZCAL WHENEVER:
29. Someone makes a Beyoncé joke. Bonus shot if it’s a “Becky with the good hair” reference.
30. What we’re calling “the unicorn”: If Jeffrey Tambor wins and does not thanks the trans community.
31. Selina Meyer endorses Hillary Rodham Clinton.
32. If the real Hillary Rodham Clinton appears in some kind of meant-to-be image-boosting sketch with nominee Kate McKinnon.