Category most in need of a blood transfusion: Original score, won by Alan Menken and Jack Feldman for "Newsies." (There are occasions when the Tonys should follow the Pulitzer Prize lead and offer no award in an anemic area.)
Saddest irony: What many consider to be the season's worst musicals — "Ghost the Musical," "Godspell"— no doubt sold tons of tickets while the better (but less televisual) shows probably didn't entice all that many people to whip out their credit cards.
Best performance rendered grotesque by the small screen: Tracie Bennett as Judy Garland in "End of the Rainbow." It was so over-the-top, I feared cameras might shatter.
Most shameless plug: The live broadcast fromRoyal Caribbean International'sOasis of the Seas' performance of "Hairspray."
Most moving acceptance speech: McDonald telling her daughter that, though this night is special, it doesn't compare to the day she was born.
Stagiest conjugal love-fest: Hugh Jackman being presented with an honorary award by his wife Deborra-Lee Furness, in prime time. No matter how sincere, the moment read like a desperate ratings ploy. Oh, well, whatever it takes, CBS, to keep the show on the air.
TONY AWARDS: Red carpet | Winners | Best & worst
TRANSCRIPT: Theater critic Charles McNulty's chat with readers