If the ceremony at Los Angeles' Shrine Auditorium ran a single minute past three hours, "Bob Newhart dies," O'Brien deadpanned.
Although Newhart was actually released from the glass case to present an award 11 minutes before the deadline, the show finished right on schedule.
The awards themselves produced few surprises.
Kiefer Sutherland won his first award for Fox TV's "24," which also took the top drama Emmy while NBC's "The Office," which has enjoyed critical rather than ratings success, won the prize for best comedy.
Celebrity Families of 2014 [PHOTOS]