Let’s complete the guest acting categories for this year by discussing the Guest Actor Comedy Series Emmy. All the six men nominated this year are no strangers to the Emmys considering they have collectively combined dozens and dozens of nominations under their belt. But with no clear frontrunner such as Bob Newhart or Jimmy Fallon this year, the race really seems up in the air.
Previously nominated thrice already in this category, still Emmyless actor Jon Hamm gets his first nod outside of his work in 30 Rock. However, it’s for another Tina Fey produced show — the Comedy Series nominee Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. In the season finale entitled “Kimmy Makes Waffles”, a tape was revealed where Reverand Richard Wayne Gary Wayne was seen doing some different activities disproving his earlier claims. This ends with a court room scene where he was pleaded as guilty. It’s a very competitive tape, though one can argue that his best scenes are in the beginning and his court scenes pale in comparison to that.
It’s one of those easier name checking instances, as veteran Mel Brooks gets in for the one-season canceled show The Comedians. In his episode “Celebrity Guest”. Billy Crystal attempts to invite Mel as a celebrity guest. It’s a pretty short appearance considering there were many storylines in that episode, and his wasn’t even the main one. I doubt he’ll be winning for this one, though one should never underestimate name checking.
Paul Giamatti targets Emmy win number 2, this time for his performance as Juror #10 in Inside Amy Schumer‘s “12 Angry Men Inside Amy Schumer” episode. Considered as one of the top comedic episodes of the past seasons, I can see a scenario where voters will go for it because of their love for the episode, regardless of Paul Giamatti’s performance in it. That said, his turn here is quite exquisite. Sure, John Hawkes upstaged him, but Giamatti stayed with his character that even in the most hilarious lines, you’d see him with a straight face. Hawkes’ snub clearly helps Paul though as now he’s the only chance to reward someone for this episode.
On the outside, physical transformation is what sets Bradley Whitford apart from his co-nominees for his turn as Marcy May in Transparent. Donning a blonde wig, the closet transvestite spends a day with confidante Maura in his submitted episode “Best New Girl.” It’s a pretty subtle performance, if ever there’s one in this lineup and can garner some votes in his way. However, it lacks the scenery chewing scene this category loves. Let’s see how it fares up with the rest of the pack, though he’s definitely in contention.
In four of the last six years, ever since Saturday Night Live hosts were submitted here, the guest actor category has been a place to reward the acting in the said sketch series. However, two of those are for Justin Timberlake hosted episodes while the other two are for Jimmy Fallon’s. This year, neither are nominated but we have two who have gained multiple nominations already. First up is Louis C.K. earning his third consecutive nomination as an SNL host. In the 40th season finale, his submitted episode, he kicked it off with a seven-minute monologue which is equally hilarious as it is controversial. That said, this is weaker than his previous stints, so if he can’t win during those times, maybe this one won’t be it as well.
Lastly, there’s SNL alum Bill Hader who was previously nominated in the Supporting Actor category. In his first bid as a guest host, Hader revisited all his prominent previous iconic SNL turns especially Stefon. While this is no slam dunk, this benefits him (as compared back in Supporting) because he appears in most of the sketches. He’s also helped by another Emmy favorite Kristen Wiig). Hader has since accumulated greater goodwill since the last time he was nominated appearing in critically lauded films such as The Skeleton Twins and in the great summer blockbuster Trainwreck. In a field as open as this one, a Hader victory situation isn’t far-fetched; thus I’m predicting him for the win.
Prediction: Bill Hader, “Saturday Night Live”
Alternate: Bradley Whitford, “Transparent”
01. Bill Hader, “Saturday Night Live”
02. Bradley Whitford, “Transparent”
03. Paul Giamatti, “Inside Amy Schumer
04. Jon Hamm, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
05. Mel Brooks “The Comedians”
06. Louis CK, “Saturday Night Live”
You can check my other 2015 Emmy prediction analysis here.
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