It’s that time of year, folks! This Thursday, the Emmy nominees will be read out by former nominee Chandra Wilson and sure to a first time nominee Jim Parsons. It’ll make my five am wake up call somewhat bearable to have this on the TV.
Below is the list of nominees I suspect will happen and frankly, pretty much as it should be.
Best Supporting Actor- Drama
Jeremy Davies (Lost)
Walton Goggins ( The Shield)
Robert Sean Leonard ( House)
John Noble ( Fringe)
Aaron Paul ( Breaking Bad)
William Shatner ( Boston Legal)
I’m not a watcher of Lost, but everyone I know has been raving about Davies’ performance this season. I’m troubled more by the fact Goggins has NEVER BEEN NOMINATED. Tragic. Also quite tragic is Leonard, who also has NEVER BEEN NOMINATED. What the hell, Emmys? Goggins and Leonard both have been the heart of their respective shows, and Goggins’ character went down swinging in The Shields final season. Leonard still doesn’t have a lot to do on House, but there were moments toward the end of the season where you see how important he really is to the show’s mythology. Noble’s delightfully off kilter performance on Fringehas been the most consistent thing about the show. Aaron Paul goes toe to toe with the incomparable Bryan Cranston every week and survives. And lastly, William Shatner is William fucking Shatner. He’s James T. Kirk and you’re not. Suck it.
Dark horse pick- Zachary Quinto (Heroes)
The best thing about this show for the past two seasons is Quinto’s steady, ferocious turn as the psychopathic Sylar. Bad writing doesn’t detract from this singular performance.
Best Supporting Actress- Drama
Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights)
Rose Byrne (Damages)
Katherine Heigl (Grey’s Anatomy)
Christina Hendricks ( Mad Men)
Alison Pill ( In Treatment)
CCH Pounder (The Shield)
Again, Britton is on a show I don’t watch, but everyone keeps raving about her in particular. Byrne is on a show with a strong female lead and she holds her own beautifully. Heigl may be a brat, but she brought some soul back to GA after the ghost sex ( again, bad writing should not detract from a good performance). Hendricks is so stunning that it’s easy to forget her subtle work in Mad Men. Pill has been the only patient in the second season of In Treatmentthat I felt was compelling enough for me to turn into watch every week. And Pounder’s beleaguered Claudette remains one of the great female characters in the cannon of cop dramas.
Dark horse pick- Chandra Wilson (Grey’s Anatomy)
The true heart and soul of GA, she deserves it more than Heigl, but lacks the star power of the movie star, or the shock and awe storyline. But when I do sit and watch this show, she’s the real reason why.
Best Supporting Actor-Comedy
Adam Baldwin (Chuck)
Neil Patrick Harris ( How I Met Your Mother)
Simon Helberg ( The Big Bang Theory)
Tracy Morgan ( 30 Rock)
Jeremy Piven ( Entourage)
Jason Segel ( How I Met Your Mother)
I honestly think Baldwin’s Col. John Casey is Chuck‘s best acting shot- because even though he’s a closed off grunting hard ass, Baldwin never let’s us forget his humanity or his humor. The fact Harris has not won an Emmy is one of the great crimes. Helberg’s horny nerd from hell is surprisingly well drawn for a character that was originally an after thought. Piven still rocks the world on Entourage.Morgan’s dim witted comedian is now my favorite character on a show full of brilliant writing and acting. Segel has been so good for so long on HIMYM.He may get outshone by Harris’ flashier role, but it’s time to give Segel some lovin’, too.
dark horse pick: Jack McBrayer (30 Rock)
Oh. My. God. Naivete has never been so funny.
Best Supporting Actress- Comedy
Portia de Rossi ( Better Off Ted)
Jenna Fisher ( The Office)
Jane Krakowski (30 Rock)
Jean Smart (Samantha Who?)
Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother)
Vanessa L. Williams (Ugly Betty)
de Rossi has a habit of appearing on quirky comedies ( see: Ally McBeal, Arrested Development), but her ice queen boss takes the cake. Fisher still makes me care about the Jim-Pam story by being true to the moment. Krakowski’s over the top deluded diva had some brilliant moments this season ( in blackface, no less.) Smart won last year, and she still shines as Samantha’s over bearing mom. Smulders went from being the weak link on HIMYM to being it’s hidden gem, and I love the Canadianisms she clearly contributes to the writers for those awesome scripts. Betty may be fading fast, but Williams’ Wilhemina is still the grandest grande dame of them all.
Dark horse pick- Alyson Hannigan ( How I Met Your Mother)
It’s tough to leave Hannigan out, since she had a truly great season despite being pregnant for most of it ( and absent for four weeks). Her Lily, the beer guzzling, potty mouthed kindergarten teacher, is a bright light in my dreary life.
Gabriel Byrne (In Treatment)
Michael Chiklis (The Shield)
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad)
Jon Hamm (Mad Men)
Hugh Laurie (House)
Denis Leary ( Rescue Me)
Byrne’s detailed performance as a shrink in need of help of his own is one of the finest wrought of the year. Chiklis ( former winner for this role) went down and was brilliant in the way he portrayed his character’s twisted logic and decaying worldview. Cranston is nearly unstoppable as the teacher with nothing to lose. Hamm’s suave, subdued performance seems to be almost forgotten with the bright lights of the women this season, but he was darkly brilliant. Laurie is a perennial nominee and will be till his show ends or he wins one of these goddamnedthings. He’s so singularly brilliant he deserves every accolade. And even though Rescue Me had an off season, Leary just keeps getting better.
dark horse pick- Kyle Chandler (Friday Night Lights)
Because it’s a tough category, I don’t know if he’ll squeeze in. But from what I have heard, Chandler’s performance is one of the best on TV.
Glenn Close ( Damages)
Mariska Hargitay ( Law and Order: Special Victims Unit)
January Jones ( Mad Men)
Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men)
Anna Paquin ( True Blood)
Kyra Sedgwick (The Closer)
Close won last year. Her ferocious turn this year is even better. Hargitay is another perennial nominee who delivers solid performances year in, year out. Jones and Moss both shined on a show that saw their character grow from meek women used by the men in their lives to fiercely independent minded pre feminist heroines. Paquin’s accent may be distracting, but her slightly slatterly, tempermental Sookie is a gem. And Sedgwickis just so good I had to include her.
dark horse pick- Mary McDonnell ( Battlestar Galactica)
Another show I never quite got around to watching, another performance I have heard nothing but praise for, another show leaving the air, last shot for the gold.
Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)
Kyle Bornheimer (Worst Week)
Steve Carrell ( The Office)
Lee Pace ( Pushing Daisies)
Jim Parsons ( The Big Bang Theory)
Charlie Sheen ( Two And A Half Men)
We have a couple of clueless bosses ( Baldwin’s Machiavellian Jack Donaghy, Carrell’s hapless Michael Scott). We have a smooth talking womanizer on a show i personally hate but kind of like him on it despite myself ( Sheen’s jingle writer Charlie Harper). We have a newcomer on a show that was cancelled just as it began to find it’s footing ( Bornheimer), playing a spazz to end all spazzes. We have a charming pie maker who can raise the dead on a single touch, making it really hard to make out with his girlfriend ( Pace’s melancholic Ned). And then we have a genius comic creation, a genius who is both OCD and clueless ( Parson’s hilarious Sheldon Cooper).
dark horse pick- Zachary Levi (Chuck)
My favorite performance by any comedic actor this year was in Chuck season two finale, at turns sad, charming, and thrilling. The show would not work without him. I hope Emmy voters notice.
Best Actress- Comedy
Christina Applegate (Samantha Who?)
Toni Colette ( The United States of Tara)
America Ferrera ( Ugly Betty)
Tina Fey (30 Rock)
Julia Louis Dreyfus (The New Adventures of Old Christine)
Mary Louise Parker (Weeds)
Applegate is well liked in the industry and I liked her on her show. Colette has a really tough road to hold and does it admirably well. Ferrera still sparkles through the dreariness that is Ugly Betty. Fey is my hero and I want to be like her when I grow up. Louis Dreyfus is on a much improved show that she was always good on ( now, she’s pretty fantabulous). Parker handles the more dramatic moments of her drug dramedy as effectively as the high comedy moments.
dark horse pick- Kaley Cuoco ( The Big Bang Theory)
It’s easy to dismiss her as another blonde starlet on a TV show, but she is so much more than that. She grounds the four male leads in a snese of reality, she’s the every(wo)man we need to handle the world of these four geniuses. Her role is harder than it looks and she does it better than I ever thought she would. Her growth as an actor this past season is welcomed.
It honestly will come down to the two AMC dramas, but as much as I love Mad Men, I think Breaking Bad is even more ground breaking, earth shattering, and ultimately, a better show.
Dark horse pick- Friday Night Lights
Critics love this show to the point of column over saturation. Give it an Emmy nod.
The Big Bang Theory
How I Met Your Mother
Two And A Half Men
The United States Of Tara
If anything beats 30 Rock, I’ll be surprised.
Dark Horse pick- Better Off Ted
It’s original! It’s fresh! It’s new! It actually is really good. And it was a mid season replacement. I would not be adverse with Emmy handing some love over to this show.