The Emmy nominations will be announced this upcoming Thursday, July 8, and as those of you who follow my blog and/or know me personally can attest, I follow a lot of TV shows. Therefore, unsurprisingly enough, I have some thoughts on how the Emmy nominations should turn out. This is not what I would call a “dream ballot,” because the Emmys are rather strange and not worth predicting or dreaming about. Among the choices for nominees are usually some legitimate contenders, some not-so-deserving contenders, and some out-of-left-field, I’m-not-really-sure-if-they-are-deserving contenders. Thus, I have no dreams that my choices could match those of the nominators. But I still feel strongly enough to share my thoughts. Today, I will start off with the comedy categories. Tomorrow, drama.
30 Rock has deservedly won the statue for best comedy the past three years, so I was shocked – shocked! – when I discovered that Parks and Recreation (a show I started watching mainly because I watched whatever was on NBC’s Thursday night comedy block) turned out to be the most consistently funny show of the year. Last year, Family Guy entered itself in the Comedy category instead of the Animation wing and was awarded with a nomination. I agreed with the move on principle but did not believe that the season was strong enough for a nomination; this season, however, was. Modern Family always makes its viewer feel good, mainly due to laughter, never due to schmaltz. And Community is just too idiosyncratic for any of the remaining contenders to beat it out for that final spot.
1. Parks and Recreation
2. 30 Rock
3. Family Guy
4. Modern Family
Last year, I actually thought that Jim Parsons should win over Alec Baldwin. This year, I think they were equal. I am sort of leaning towards Jim, since Alec already has 3 wins and Jim has 0 … how about a tie? Though The Office turned off some of its fans this year, Steve Carrell’s performance was as strong as ever. Because Joel McHale was surrounded by such a wild supporting cast, it took me a while to appreciate his work on Community, but he does deserve a spot. I would have picked Ty Burrell here, but the entire Modern Family cast entered in the supporting categories, so that leaves a spot for Matthew Morrison, who was funny enough to not be hampered by Glee’s status as a dramedy.
1. Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock/Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
3. Steve Carrell, The Office
4. Joel McHale, Community
5. Matthew Morrison, Glee
I wish I had more to say in this category, but there are only two sitcoms I watch with lead actresses. I would have put Julie Bowen here, but see the explanation about Ty Burrell above. Anyway, I do not need to be familiar with any other female-led comedies to know that this is Amy Poehler’s category all the way. Tina Fey was as iconic as ever as Liz Lemon, but she was upstaged by her former SNL cast mate.
1. Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation
2. Tina Fey, 30 Rock
This has easily been the most crowded Emmy category for the past several years, and it remains so, even though Arrested Development has been off the air for four years! There better be at least six nominees this year, and I would even recommend ten (and I am having trouble even sticking to that). Tracy Morgan must win this category at some point in his 30 Rock tenure, but this year belongs to Danny Pudi, who has crafted the role of a lifetime in Abed Nadir. Ty Burrell makes things even more crowded by entering as supporting instead of lead. Nick Offerman has a beautiful mustache as Ron Swanson. I hear that Chevy Chase is a jerk in real life; on TV, he is hilarious, jerk or no. Eric Stonestreet is the funniest gay family member ever. And Aziz Ansari can be somewhat annoying as a stand-up, but he has put together an enjoyably balanced performance as Tom Haverford.
1. Danny Pudi, Community
2. Tracy Morgan, 30 Rock
3. Ty Burrell, Modern Family
4. Nick Offerman, Parks and Recreation
5. Chevy Chase, Community
6. Eric Stonestreet, Modern Family
7. Aziz Ansari, Parks and Recreation
8. Neil Patrick Harris, How I Met Your Mother
9. Ed O’Neill, Modern Family
10. Jack McBrayer, 30 Rock
11. Rainn Wilson, The Office
I would be completely behind the absurdly idiosyncratically deadpan Aubrey Plaza winning here, if not for Jane Lynch, whose Sue Sylvester has already reached icon status and is obviously the best part of Glee. Aubrey is the strongest number 2 in any of the comedy categories. Alison Brie pulls off cute, prudish, earnest, annoying, endearing, guilt-inducing, and consoling – often in the same sentence – as Annie on Community. And in the category of “why not,” let’s go with Retta Sirleaf as Donna on Parks and Recreation, who transcends the stereotype of the “mm-hmm”-ing sassy black woman.
1. Jane Lynch, Glee
2. Aubrey Plaza, Parks and Recreation
3. Alison Brie, Community
4. Jane Krakowski, 30 Rock
5. Retta Sirleaf, Parks and Recreation
Guest Actor and Actress
This category has lately been dominated by SNL guests, so let’s go with the two best hosts of the season – Jon Hamm and Betty White. We can also go with current SNL cast members making appearances on other shows, such as Will Forte on 30 Rock. Then there is Judy Greer, who guest starred on at least three sitcoms this year (The Big Bang Theory, How I Met Your Mother, and Modern Family) and two of them (BBT and HIMYM) within two weeks of each other. Then we can mix it up and go with a non-big name guest star: Melissa Rauch as Bernadette, Wolowitz’s main squeeze on BBT. And though she only appeared in the last two minutes of the season, Mayim Bialik provided one of the most indelible moments on BBT as a maybe potential love interest for Sheldon.
1. Jon Hamm, Saturday Night Live
2. Zach Galifianakis, Saturday Night Live
3. Michael Sheen, 30 Rock
4. Will Forte, 30 Rock
5. John Oliver, Community
1. Betty White, Saturday Night Live
2. Judy Greer, Modern Family
3. Melissa Rauch, The Big Bang Theory
4. Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory
5. Christine Baranski, The Big Bang Theory