FX’s breakout series Reservation DogsHulu’s limited series Dopesick and socially impactful content from PBS, Netflix, NPR and Vice News are among the first winners of the 2022 Peabody Awards, which are being rolled out this week.
The Peabodys, in their 82nd year, honor the year’s most powerful content across the fields of entertainment, documentary, news, podcast/radio, arts, children’s and youth, and public service programming. This year’s awards are being bestowed daily through Thursday, with presenters including Melissa McCarthy, Morgan Freeman, John Legend, Kevin Bacon, HER, Ethan Hawke, Jon Stewart, Hasan Minhaj, Riz Ahmed, LeVar Burton, Jenny Slate, Malcolm Gladwell and Adam Scott announcing winners on Peabody’s social channels.
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A total of 30 winners will be announced via short videos on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook that will include the awards presenters and an acceptance speech. Newsman Dan Rather and Fresh Air‘s Terry Gross have already won this year’s Career Achievement Award and Institutional Award, respectively.
Reservation Dogs, created and Taika Waititi and Sterlin Harjo, centers on four Indigenous youth as they drift through life in Oklahoma. It has already scored WGA, Critics Choice and Golden Globe noms, and won an AFI Award, Gotham Award and a pair of Independent Spirit Awards.
Dopesickmeanwhile, which takes on the evolution of the opioid epidemic and was created by Danny Strong, won SAG and Critics Choice Best Actor nods for Michael Keaton, who stars alongside Rosario Dawson, Kaitlyn Dever, Peter Sarsgaard and Michael Stuhlbarg.
Other winners today include the documentaries High on the Hog from Netflix and PBS’ Mr SOUL!; Vice’s series Transnational which spotlights the stories of various trans communities around the world in the News category; and NPR’s podcast Throughline: Afghanistan: The Center of the World, presented by Malcolm Gladwell.
Check back with Deadline all week as more winners are revealed. In the meantime, below are the Peabodys’ descriptions of today’s honorees:
High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America
Building on the research of food historian Dr. Jessica B. Harris, High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America charts the evolution of Black foodways with both clarity and awe. Taking viewers across the Atlantic from Benin to South Carolina and up the eastern coast of the United States, High on the Hog serves as a corrective to histories that have excluded Black people’s contributions from this country’s culinary records.
A One Story Up Production and Pilgrim Media Group for Netflix (Netflix)
A joyful tribute to the local television program SOUL! and its creator, the impresario Ellis Haizlip, the documentary film Mr. SOUL! is a loving celebration of Black creative achievement and vitality in late twentieth-century America, capturing the majesty, confidence, and revolutionary force of Black artists, intellectuals, writers, and performers. The time between 1968 and 1972 was an extraordinary period in American broadcast television and cultural history, and Haizlip’s SOUL! was uncompromisingly and unapologetically Black, serving as a visual and sonic record of Black Americans at their most radical.
Shoes In The Bed Productions, ITVS, Black Public Media (BPM), WNET (PBS)
Dopesick brings to life the ongoing opioid epidemic in the United States, courtesy of the now-infamous Sackler family, owners of Purdue Pharma, the company responsible for the drug OxyContin. The Michael Keaton-starring limited series is truly a gut punch, forcing us to see, constantly and unwaveringly, how the choices the Sackler family and its company made directly led to the destruction of countless lives and families.
Hulu, Danny Strong Productions, John Goldwyn Productions, The Littlefield Company, 20th Television (Hulu)
Reservation Dogs follows the scrappy adventures of four indigenous youth—Elora, Bear, Cheese and Willie—as they drift through life in Oklahoma. Co-creators Taika Waititi and Sterlin Harjo, citizen of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, offer a long-overdue show that takes seriously the hopes, dreams, and electricity of its youthful native protagonists while tackling fatherless households, addiction, discrimination, and grief with aplomb. The series brims with surrealist imagination and deadpan humor that vividly captures a sense of defiant joy in the face of withering dislocation.
FX Productions (FX)
ABC15 Arizona’s reports on the arrests of street protesters and the very questionable tactics used against them by local police is a compelling series that warns us of the present-day erosion of our civil liberties. The investigation found that, in 2020, Phoenix police and county prosecutors routinely exaggerated and lied to grand juries to obtain felony charges against protesters. As a direct result of this series, 39 felony protest cases were dismissed, high-level officials resigned, the police chief was suspended, dozens of officers and prosecutors were reassigned, and the Department of Justice opened a sweeping pattern-of-practice investigation.
ABC15 Arizona (KNXV)
Vice’s series Transnational spotlights the stories of various trans communities around the world: from the ballroom scene in Detroit to a government-sponsored safe haven in Mexico City, with stops in the United Kingdom and Indonesia along the way. In grouping them together and cutting across them—building, as it were, a trans-national collective—Vice’s team pushes back against notions of the global trans community as being any kind of monolith, honoring collectivity in individuality, the many in the few.
Vice News (Vice News Tonight)
“’So They Know We Existed’: Palestinians Film War in Gaza”
In just a heart-wrenching 14 minutes, “So They Know We Existed” captures the devastation to daily civilian life during the 11-day war between Israel and Hamas in May 2021 in Gaza. Citizen cell phone footage from the attacks and interviews after the fact document a harrowing portrait of life amid warfare, from a 10-year-old girl to teenage sisters; a young man who lost his father his; a musician who lost his livelihood to an explosion, among others. The piece presents a range of civilian Palestinian perspectives and bears witness to the resilience of those who continue to survive the trauma of war long after ceasefire.
The New York Times (The New York Times)
Throughline: Afghanistan: The Center of the World
Throughline’s magisterial three-part miniseries on Afghanistan offers the long view of a country that Americans often treat as a threat, afterthought, or tragedy, particularly after the chaotic withdrawal of the US military in 2021. By centering the country in its own story and pulling back the frame to consider Afghanistan as a full “civilization,” the team restores a necessary sense of scale to what is often lost in our understanding of the region across the decades and centuries of countless western media reports.
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