10/02/1989 at 01:00 AM EDT
As a string of Hollywood's post-Emmy parties proved, nothing salves the sting of loss like a good black-tie blowout. Fortunately there was a different raison d'etre for 20th Century-Fox Television's celebratory soiree at Spago. Two programs produced by Fox, L.A. Law
and The Tracey Ullman Show
, had just racked up a fistful of Emmys.
Winning was almost old hat for Larry Drake, who picked up his second consecutive Best Supporting Actor award for playing Law
's developmentally disabled Benny Stulwicz: "There's not all that nervous energy I had last year, not all that wondering, 'Will I trip on the steps?' stuff. Now I'm used to tuxedo gridlock."
veterans Michael Tucker and Jill Eikenberry voiced a little more enthusiasm, at least about the imminent birth of their long-awaited series baby this season. "It seems to be the most highly anticipated event since Lucy and Ricky had their baby," said Tucker, waxing just a bit hyperbolic. "Except that Jill's not really pregnant—at least as far as I know."
No way, said his on-and offscreen wife: "I'm looking forward to having our baby on the air, even if it only means I'll be giving birth to a pillow."
The Tracey Ullman Show
picked up four Emmys, including one for choreographer Paula Abdul
, who giddily called working on the show "one of the best experiences I've ever had!"
Sadly, after her third no-win nomination, Law
's slimmed-down Susan Ruttan had little to exult over. "The saying goes: 'Three times the charm,' " she said. "Well, I guess I was wrong."
Perhaps the best advice for also-rans came from young Neil Patrick Harris, 16, who plays the new season's underage M.D., Doogie Howser: "Take two aspirin," he prescribed, "and call me in the morning."