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68th Primetime Emmy Awards Nominations Predictions Part 3: Comedy   Leave a comment

After the reality and variety, plus TV movie and limited series, we continue our 2016 Emmy prediction series with the hilarious shows and performances from our comedy shows. Last year, Veep dominated winning Series, Actress, Supporting Actor, and Writing. Will they pull off the same feat again this year? Can Jim Parsons come back in the race? And will they finally give up on Modern Family?

comedy directing

OUTSTANDING DIRECTING IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• black-ish, “Any Given Saturday” (Gail Mancuso)
• Master of None, “Parents” (Aziz Ansari)
• Silicon Valley, “Founder Friendly” (Mike Judge)
• Transparent, “Man on the Land” (Jill Solloway)
• Veep, “Kissing Your Sister” (David Mandel)
• Veep, “Mother” (Dale Stern)

Seventh nominee: Silicon Valley, “Daily Active Users” (Alec Berg)

Let’s begin by me saying that I think black-ish would have a huge Emmy breakout this season. I mean, sure maybe Anthony Anderson’s surprise nod last year was maybe due to a tie, but whatever. The improved quality of the second season had the critics pushing for it. It’s also somehow of a statement show, and it says a lot that Emmy winner Gail Mancuso decided to submit for this show instead of 4x winner Modern Family here. I’ll also probably predict a lot of Master of None here, and maybe Aziz Ansari follows Lena Dunham and Louis C.K. to pick up nods for their directing and writing efforts too. Silicon Valley, Transparent, and Veep are mainstays here and it’s just a matter of choosing which show will pick up multiple nominations. Thus, bet on current Emmy champ Veep to be it.

comedy writing

OUTSTANDING WRITING IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• black-ish, “Hope” (Kenya Barris)
• Lady Dynamite, “Pilot” (Pam Brady & Mitch Hurwitz)
• Master of None, “Parents” (Aziz Ansari & Alan Yang)
• Silicon Valley, “The Uptick” (Alec Berg)
• Transparent, “Man on the Land” (Ali Liebegott)
• Veep, “Mother” (Alex Gregory & Peter Huyck)

Seventh nominee: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, “Kimmy Finds Her Mom!” (Tina Fey & Sam Means)

It’s unfortunate that Lady Dynamite didn’t have an explosion in terms of reception, but it’s the writers we’re talking about here, and they’re more reactive to quality as compared to the other branches; thus, a pilot written by multiple Emmy winner Mitch Hurwitz does stand a chance to get nominated. After that, we have the same five shows I’m predicting for Directing, though if there’s a spoiler here, maybe Tina Fey gets back in the race, her first since 30 Rock.

comedy guest actor

OUTSTANDING GUEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES:

• Fred Armisen, “Saturday Night Live
• Larry David, “Saturday Night Live”
• Peter MacNicol, “Veep”
• Tracy Morgan, “Saturday Night Live”
• Martin Mull, “Veep”
• Bradley Whitford, “Transparent”

Seventh nominee: Bob Newhart, “The Big Bang Theory”

Three SNL men have competed here in the past, so it’s not as if it’s something new. After all, they’re working on three entirely different narratives. Fred Armisen is a past SNL member, and we all know how much they love to nominate those previous members even in the past years alone (there’s Tina and Amy and Jimmy (winning twice) and Kirsten and Maya and Bill)! Tracy Morgan has a comeback narrative. I mean have you seen the reception to him when he presented at the Emmys last year? They LOVE him! As for Larry David, this is his first bid at an acting Emmy and him playing Bernie Sanders will help him further. Last year’s winner Bradley Whitford is back at it again, so you can pencil a nomination for him again. Then for the last two spots, I went with two Veep men: Martin Mull who played Bob Bradley, and previous Emmy nominee Peter MacNicol who I’d say is the non-SNL actor frontrunner in here.

comedy guest actress

OUTSTANDING GUEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• Christine Baranski, “The Big Bang Theory”
• Ellen Burstyn, “Mom”
• Claire Danes, ”Master of None”
• Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, “Saturday Night Live”
• Anjelica Huston, “Transparent”
• Melissa McCarthy, “Saturday Night Live”

Seventh nominee: Lisa Kudrow, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”

I have mixed reactions with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler competing as one especially since this is likely Amy Poehler’s first actual legit bid at an Emmy. But hey, if that’s what it’ll take for her to finally win, then let’s go for it. Joining her is Melissa McCarthy who got nominated for all the times she hosted SNL too, Christine Baranski who’s also a multi-guest nominee for this role. Then there’s Ellen Burstyn who’ll Allison Janney her way to both Guest Comedy and Drama nominations. Oscar winner Anjelica Huston had a much-buzzed stint on Transparent, so I think she’ll be in. Last spot is up for grabs, we have lots of contenders from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, that maybe we can get in a second Guest nod for a solo Tina Fey, or the much-buzzed Lisa Kudrow, but I’ll go on a limb and say that Claire Danes gets in for Master of None. It has that Louie guest stint vibes for me, though that show is infallible as well (Sarah fuckin Baker, everyone).

comedy supp actor

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• Tituss Burgess, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
• Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”
• Adam Driver, “Girls”
• Laurence Fishburne, “black-ish”
• Tony Hale, “Veep”
• Hugh Laurie, “Veep”

Seventh nominee: Andre Braugher, “Brooklyn Nine Nine”

Tony Hale is a given at this point, especially after winning twice for that role already. Congratulations Ty Burrell, you’re the last man standing from Modern Family, and I think he’s here to stay for the next few years. It would be such an Emmy thing to do to finally stop nominating Adam Driver since he finally made it big as a movie star, but if he can survive last year’s almost Girls shut-out, then maybe he can still squeeze in a nod or two. Tituss Burgess also seems like a possible consecutive nod. His is a role that this category loves if we’re to base it on the history of this. Andre Braugher can easily score another nod, but I think voters are already over Brooklyn Nine Nine by now, and while it is Andre Braugher we’re talking about, there’s a lot of other veterans they can nominate here… which leads me to Laurence Fishburne in black-ish. It’s a tad surprising that even after so many years, Hale has been the only Veep supporting actor nominated but maybe winning Series last year can finally score them an additional acting nod. Since there’s no consensus on who the second actor might be (Tim Simons is probably what critics will push, but Gary Cole is the only other male nominated performance from this show), so go the easy route and predict the most prominent one in the group; thus it’s Hugh Laurie.

comedy supp actress

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• Anna Chlumsky, “Veep”
• Gaby Hoffmann, “Transparent”
• Allison Janney, “Mom”
• Jane Krakowski, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
• Judith Light, “Transparent”
• Kate McKinnon, “Saturday Night Live”

Seventh nominee: Julie Bowen, “Modern Family”

It’s hilarious that all eight(!) women from last year are still eligible to be nominated again this year, but since I don’t think we’re going eight here again, I’d say Mayim Bialik and Niecy Nash are the first to go. Allison Janney is definitely back and in contention for a third straight win here, and so is Anna Chlumsky. Jane Krakowski is someone they love to nominate (however, winning is a different story), so I think she’ll be back as well. And it’s safe to say that they won’t be cutting Kate McKinnon in an election season of all years, so there’s four. The last two slots are between 2x previous Emmy champ Julie Bowen of Modern Family and the two Transparent ladies — last year’s nominee Gaby Hoffmann and Judith Light. All three make sense as nominees, but I feel Modern Family is going on a decline here, thus cutting Bowen off in the process.

comedy lead actor

OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• Anthony Anderson, “black-ish”
• Aziz Ansari, “Master of None”
• Gael Garcia Bernal, “Mozart in the Jungle”
• Will Forte, “The Last Man on Earth”
• William H. Macy, “Shameless”
• Jeffrey Tambor, “Transparent”

Seventh nominee: Don Cheadle, “House of Lies”

Let’s begin with those that will surely be back. Of course, there’s no better way to start this than with Jeffrey Tambor who’ll even probably win this again (and deservedly so). After his surprise nod last year, I think Anthony Anderson will be back too, as well as perennial Emmy favorite William H. Macy. Will Forte scooped three major surprise nods last year, so I feel like in a relatively empty category like this one, he has the industry support and clout to pull off another one.Now this is where it gets tricky — sure Louis C.K. and Matt Leblanc aren’t eligible this time around so it’s opening up a free slot (since there are seven nominees last year). I’m currently predicting Aziz Anzari, as mentioned above already, to have his Louis C.K. (or Lena Dunham or Will Forte or whatever) moment, but I won’t be surprised if he gets Ellie Kemeper-ed in the end, meaning lead star of the nominated show snubbed. For now, I’d keep him in. As for that last slot, we can have a Jim Parsons come back again (yes as much as we’re sick of him and his show now) and Don Cheadle has been nominated all seasons his show was eligible (and this is the final season so there’s that), but I’mma go risky and put in Golden Globe winner Gael Garcia Bernal here only because I think Amazon’s really, really aggressive campaigning will at least bear one good result for them.

comedy lead actress

OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES:
• Lena Dunham, “Girls”
• Ellie Kemper, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
• Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”
• Gina Rodriguez, “Jane the Virgin”
• Tracee Ellis Ross, “black-ish”
• Lily Tomlin, “Grace and Frankie”

Seventh nominee: Amy Schumer, “Inside Amy Schumer”

The question here basically is who are the five other women Julia Louis Dreyfus is beating for that fifth consecutive Emmy? As for starters, there’s Lily Tomlin who got in last year for Grace and Frankie without her partner Jane Fonda. Maybe both of them gets nominated this year, who knows? Then there’s Ellie Kemper who missed last year, but then again, last year is the most competitive category of the race since whenever so maybe it’s safe to say she’s in this year (or is she?) To continue my black-ish breakout year narrative, there’s also Tracee Ellis Ross who’ll be the first black woman to be nominated since Phylicia Rashad exactly 30 years ago (talk about narrative)! With a clear resurgence in quality, I think Lena Dunham will also be back after a year of absence. This can be a way to reward her and her season since Girls feels like an afterthought already. Now I’m definitely crazy for excluding Amy Schumer out. Sure, she doesn’t have a breakthrough big year like last year because not all years can be like that, but the lukewarm reception of this Inside Amy Schumer season feels like it’s ripe for a possible miss. Think of the other one time-nominated performances here (Teri Hatcher and Marcia Cross in Desperate Housewives, Zooey Deschanel in New Girl, Laura Linney in The Big C, Sarah Silverman in The Sarah Silverman Program, Lea Michele in Glee, Taylor Schilling in Orange is the New Black) — all those in really huge breakout seasons that they snubbed after. After all, I think she can get her due in the Variety Sketch category. Now this is where it gets crazier — I’m removing Amy Schumer for a CW actress. The Emmys are so allergic of CW they don’t even nominate their guest actresses (not even when they’re as legendary as Rita Moreno). But I think that sooner or later they’ll cave in. This year, they have two in contention: Globe winner this year Rachel Bloom for Crazy Ex-girlfriend and Globe winner last year Gina Rodriguez for Jane the Virgin. Now I don’t think both are getting in, and while Bloom is the more current one, I’d say the Emmys will be y’know.. like the Emmys and be a year late in acknowledging Gina Rodriguez just like when they nominated Tatiana Maslany when no one’s predicting her anymore.

comedy series

OUTSTANDING COMEDY SERIES:
• black-ish (ABC)
• Master of None (Netflix)
• Modern Family (ABC)
• Silicon Valley (HBO)
• Transparent (Amazon)
• Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix)
• Veep (HBO)

Eighth nominee: Mozart in the Jungle (Amazon)

As for the Series categories, we have two slots freed up this year because of Louie having no season this year and Parks and Recreation‘s departure. While people are toying around with the idea of Modern Family missing already, I’m not sure that will happen yet for this year, at least. They probably have one or two years in them before they get dropped off. Meanwhile all the other four nominees are guaranteed to be back as well – current winner Veep, Transparent, Silicon Valley, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Considering that Netflix is really great when it comes to campaigning their own shows, I’d say Master of None gets in in a category with seven spots. And lastly, I began my mention of it and end with it too –Black-ish seems like its poised for an Emmy breakout. Not only will it be the remaining network representative (especially since Modern Family is on its way out), but it’s about family too, so expect it to be there.

Tomorrow, to complete the list, the cream of the crop among the television dramas!

Talk to me about this one on Twitter: @nikowl

67th Primetime Emmys: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series   Leave a comment

comedy supp actor

We’ll now be doing the supporting categories, and this year, the funny men of comedy is the first one we’ll analyze. It’s mostly the same lineup from last year only that perennial nominee Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Fred Armisen were finally dropped as Tituss Burgess and Keegan Key enter the scene. Ty Burrell can score his third Emmy for the show, as he submits “Crying out Loud”  which plays the sentiment card like the one he won for last year, only this time no crossdressing which makes it a tad weaker than last year’s winning one. Meanwhile, Andre Braugher went with the same route too from last year as “The Mole” has him play the straight person dealing with Andy Samberg’s antics. For this category though, the loud and showy characters tend to prevail over the poker faced ones, but then again he’s a respected veteran who can score a win. In a sea of comedic performances lie Adam Driver‘s highly dramatic tape for Girls as he goes with Close-Up where he gets in a big argument with Gillian Jacobs’ character. This one stands out, but only because it’s heavily dramatic and that might not sit well in this category.

2013 winner Tony Hale can win again after a year of sitting out just like what happened to Ty Burrell last year. His tape in Veep uses the same antics he had with Julia Louis Dreyfus’ character as he tries to avoid her in “East Wing.” That and Veep‘s popularity within the Academy is in an upward trajectory. Keegan Michael Key joins the race as the representative from sketch shows, but just ask Bill Hader and Fred Armisen, who were both unsuccessful with their bids here. For what it’s worth though, his submission “Sex Detective” gave him lots of screentime and lots of characters to play. Ultimately, I think this one is Tituss Burgess to lose, Not only does he have a great tape with “Kimmy Goes to School!”, he also is the breakout actor of the season, does musical numbers in his tape, plays straight man shifting to his character, and it can be the reward to Best Comedy Series nominee Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Watch out for the veterans and past winners like Ty Burrell and Tonu Hale though, as the new voting system favors them.

Prediction: Tituss Burgess, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
Alternate: Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”

Full Rankings:
01. Tituss Burgess, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
02. Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”
03. Tony Hale, “Veep”
04. Andre Braugher, “Brooklyn Nine Nine
05. Adam Driver, “Girls
06. Keegan Key, “Key & Peele

Check my other 2015 Emmy prediction analysis here.

For more Emmy talk, you can also follow me on Twitter: @nikowl

67th Primetime Emmys: Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series   Leave a comment

comedy guest actress

After doing some of the program predictions, let’s shift to the acting categories this time around considering the Creative Emmy Awards ceremony is just around the corner. We’ll practice ladies first, so let’s do the funny ladies of Guest Actress in a Comedy Series. With no Orange is the New Black eligible this year, it freed up half of the slots from last year, though this year’s lineup is a combination of both old and new names.

Tina Fey has been a stable in this category the last few years, mostly for her hosting stint in Saturday Night Live. This time around, she’s finally nominated for a role in the series (albeit one she created) for her turn in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Her role as the incompetent prosecutor Marcia has been highlighted in her episode “Kimmy Goes to Court!” where we see her character mostly just reacting to the court scenes. This isn’t a bad episode per se, but more of an instant name checking considering the snubbed performances.

Gaby Hoffmann enters this year’s Emmys with a bang easily garnering two acting nominations in the comedy genre. One is for her role in the Comedy Series nominee Transparent, but her nomination here is for her role as Caroline Sackler. Submitting the season finale “Home Birth”, the title refers around Hoffmann’s character episode. When Caroline goes a month earlier into her labor, we see her scream in pain. It’s a pretty loud and showy performance — literally — considering that Hoffmann was nude in all scenes but one. Birth episodes have worked well in the past (once, even an easy way to win an Emmy), so the trend could continue with Hoffman.

Previously nominated for this role already, Emmy winner Christine Baranski got another nod for her role as Leonard’s mother, Dr. Beverly Hofstadfer. In her submitted episode “The Maternal Combustion”, she visits her son though this time we’ve seen her clashing with Sheldon’s religious mother. While this role has brought Baranski two previous nominations already, she has yet to win for this one. She’s lucky though that co-star Laurie Metcalfe was snubbed since it’s hard to play the straight role against the showy ones (which hurts her chances), but maybe her overdue factor can help her with the Emmy win.

While Pamela Adlon has an Emmy under her name, it’s her first time to be recognized for her acting in Louie. In her episode “Bobby’s House”, her character, bearing the same name as her, went into a cross dressing adventure with Louie leading to a sex scene until she addressed the state of their relationship. The performance ended on a dramatic note, but the general feel of the episode paints her as an aggressive sexual woman which, not surprisingly, can garner her more votes.

In the five seasons that it has been on air, Modern Family has guested big stars from Tyne Daly to Minnie Driver and Ellen Barkin to Carol Burnett. But none of them managed to receive a nod for their work on the show. History was rewritten this year when Elizabeth Banks finally got Modern Family its first Guest Actress nomination. As the couple Cam and Mitchell’s friend Sal, we see another side of Banks’ character be more responsible than the usual in her submission “Fight or Flight.” However, she’s really lacking on the screentime in this episode only appearing in the early minutes only to come back and wrap up her storyline in the last few. I think the success of Pitch Perfect 2 paved the way for this nomination, and add the fact that Banks is well liked in the community. But I don’t think a path to win is that clear.

Lastly, for her role as Sheila Jackson, Joan Cusack receives her fifth consecutive nomination (and her second in the Comedy field). In her episode this year, the season opener “Milk of the Gods”, we find Sheila finally living with now husband Frank. However, her attention is focused on Sammi and Chuckie. Her highlighted scene in this episode is her discovery that they had sex in the living room and picking up the dildo below the sofa. Cusack has loss for far better episodes before, but then again, there isn’t anyone close to a real frontrunner here so that might work in her favor.

The only ones I don’t see winning here are Tina Fey and Elizabeth Banks. Both Joan Cusack and Christine Baranski might end up with the trophy if we’re talking about overdue in terms of nominated performances. However, I’m leaning to the two bolder performances – that of a crossdressing Pamela Adlon and a nude Gaby Hoffmann to dominate. While I won’t be surprised to see Adlon take the plum, Hoffmann’s one two punch of nominations this year is an indication of support that can lead to the win.

Prediction: Gaby Hoffmann, “Girls
Alternate: Pamela Adlon, “Louie

Full Rankings:
01. Gaby Hoffmann, “Girls
02. Pamela Adlon, “Louie
03. Joan Cusack, “Shameless”
04. Christine Baranski, “The Big Bang Theory”
05. Elizabeth Banks, “Modern Family
06. Tina Fey, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”

Check my other 2015 Emmy prediction analysis.

For more Emmy talk, you can also follow me on Twitter: @nikowl

66th Primetime Emmys: Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series   Leave a comment

Emmy Comedy Lead Actress

Hi there! We now approach the last comedy acting category for this year, as we save the best ladies for last. Today, I’ll be sharing my thoughts with regards to Julia Louis Dreyfus’ Emmy. Is she really a sure thing? Can Amy Poehler follow her Globe win with an Emmy? Is Taylor Schilling the next Orange acting Emmy winner? Or will Melisa McCarthy snoop it out of nowhere like in 2011?

I guess let’s begin with 5x nominee here and still Emmy empty Amy Poehler. For this year, she submitted “Recall Vote” where in everyone was shocked to see that Leslie will lose by a landslide. This caused much stress to her and led her to get drunk with Ben instead and consider of getting a couple tattoo with him. Through the help of best friend Ann, Leslie gets up to her senses and made the most out of her remaining 30 days in position. This is a good submission by Poehler seeing the contrast of fun and wacky Leslie to the responsible and ideal one. However, the bias against Greg Daniel shows’ lead characters (filed under Carell, Steve) is always present. It also doesn’t help that Poehler had literally submitted anything during her previous four bids to no avail. I think the time has passed already to win for this role, at least.

After missing out last year, Melissa McCarthy comes back for her third nomination for Mike and Molly. Her episode “Mind Over Molly” is a classic and traditional competitive Emmy submission as it plays the laughter and the emotion when she dealt with her deceased father over therapy. While her 2011 victory can be credited to her breakout soon to be Oscar nominated role in Bridesmaids, her summer film Tammy panned out this year which doesn’t help her chances. That said, this is really a great episode and she represents the traditional comedy sitcom in this line up that it’s hard to dismiss her.

It was good that Netflix was easy to switch genres even before campaigning (though they flubbed at the Globes) since Taylor Schilling has no chance in hell to win, let alone be nominated in the drama category. In comedy, however, she is really competitive. While I was expecting her to submit the show pilot since it makes sense for her character, she went with the broader comedic episode of The Chickening. While she managed to avoid the darker material of her character, she really wasn’t able to showcase the comedic ones as well. That said, Schilling is one of last season’s breakout stars that if there’s a really sudden surge of love for the show, she’s a fitting representative to be rewarded.

Edie Falco continues her reign of nomination here after her victory in 2010 for Nurse Jackie. Not only is she reaping Emmy nods, but she’s coming back again to be nominated at the Globes and SAG as well. As for this year, she went with “Super Greens” which has Jackie mixing her personal and work life as a mother, worker, friend, and wife in it. It’s a serious episode which had Falco resort again to her meds and see her sponsor again. It also doesn’t hurt that she’s front and center in her episode, though  this is more dramatic than her winning one four years ago.

Like her on-screen partner Adam Driver, Lena Dunham had a better tape this year with “Role-play” but decided to go somewhere else and submitted “Beach House” instead. I call this the Tina Fey syndrome. in 2007, Fey had a competitive tape via The C Word but went with her written episode Up All Night. Alas, it led to America Ferrera winning the Emmy. Lena is one of the three writers of Beach House, and to her credit, it’s probably up there in the best episodes the show has produced. However, it’s too much of an ensemble work and doesn’t give her plenty of moments to shine. I guess she’s counting on the overall strength of the episode to get her high rankings from the panel, but I don’t think it’ll be enough to take home the trophy.

But then again, most of these talks are moot since it’s Julia Louis Dreyfus’ world, and we’re all just living in it (and deservedly so). For her role as Vice President Selina Meyer in Veep, not only does Julia and her team know how to play the game, they’re even running the game at this point. Her submitted episode, Crate, showed a gamut of emotions when news is delivered to Selina about her presidency dreams. This happens after she was already down and lashed out to her team for being ineffective. It also doesn’t hurt that Veep is now in an upward trajectory at the Emmys garnering a writing nomination and a fourth acting one for the acting team. Julia’s domination the past few years is on an all level high, and this will definitely be one of the easier calls of the night.

At this point, I don’t know if “people sick of Julia” is existent. I mean Helen Hunt won 4 consecutive times and Candice Bergen won five times in a seven year span. Besides, after 12 different winners for 12 different years from 2001-2012, we’re bound for some repeat wins again here….at least for this year. What’s probably the most exciting thing about this more than the race is what Julia’s speech will be like this year. I mean the expectations are high after the speech mishap in 2012 and bringing Tony Hale with her last year no?

Prediction: Julia Louis Dreyfus, “Veep
Alternate: 
Melissa McCarthy, “Mike and Molly

Full Rankings:
01. Julia Louis Dreyfus, “Veep
02. Melissa McCarthy, “Mike and Molly
03. Taylor Schilling, “Orange is the New Black
04. Amy Poehler, “Parks and Recreation
05. Lena Dunham, “Girls
06. Edie Falco, “Nurse Jackie

Check my other 2014 Emmy prediction analysis here.

For more Emmy talk, you can also follow me on Twitter: @nikowl

 

66th Primetime Emmys: Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series   Leave a comment

Emmy Comedy Supp Actor

And now to complete the quartet of the supporting acting categories for regular series, let’s do the supporting actor category with another less Modern Family guy in contention but another Andre Braugher nominated performance.

So we begin with Andre Braugher who is one of the few things the Emmys liked about Brooklyn Nine Nine. While it was expected that he’ll submit the event episode for this year, he only got half of that right as he had Christmas as his submission. In it, his character Ray Holt received death threats and thus, he was assisted by Jake Peralta for protection. That means he was with Andy Samberg the whole of his episode submission. On one hand, it’s great since he was in full character of his strict uptight character, but on the other, it was Samberg who was doing most of the comedic scenes in it. While I don’t think he’s completely out, things would have been more different had he submitted The Party or Full Boyle.

While Bill Hader moves out of the race after his Saturday Night Live departure last year, it was a co-SNL actor who replaces him only that it’s not for the same show. Fred Armisen gets in this year as the lead character in his own produced show Portlandia, where he went on to submit Pull Out King. Unlike SNL. this show runs for only 21 minutes and Armisen si the lead of this show so he doesn’t get overshadowed in it. Only that he actually was by co-star Carrie Brownstein. Even the title of the episode refers to her impersonation, and while Armisen does some great improvs in it, the bias against variety performers to win here is pretty much present and can always be taken against him. I don’t know if this will be the performance that will end such, though I’m leaning to no.

After his surprise nomination last year, Adam Driver picks up a consecutive one despite the almost Girls shutout this year. And while he has a winning submission in Role-play, he opted to go with the season finale which was Two Plane Rides. This begs the question again of submitting the better episode or the better showcase. While Rides was an altogether better episode than Role-play, the latter was the better acting showcase for him. In the finale, he only appeared in three speaking scenes and he even came across as unlikable in them. That said, Driver is one of the current TV it boys nowadays that his involvement in large film projects can probably get some votes his way.

Last year, he pulled off an upset win, but the question is can Tony Hale pull off a repeat? It’s quite odd that this performance is in the running for a 2x Emmy winning one since this isn’t really like one, but with his submission Crate, the odds are actually on his favor. There’s a scene in the episode when Selina Meyer confessed to Hale’s Gary that she will officially be the next president, and Hale displayed a range of emotions in just a single scene. That is clearly the highlight of the episode and Hale was unstoppable there. That said, there’s quite a feeling of a been there done that with his role and since he was already rewarded last year, there’s also a chance they might look somewhere.

And that somewhere might just be 2011 champ Ty Burrell. After being the only person to dethrone Alec Baldwin at the SAG earlier this year, Burrell aims for a second win this year with his episode Spring a Fling Ding where he hosted the annual realtors’ Oscars. This included him donning up a female get up and performing a song number to the audience. The con of this episode is that he wasn’t much featured outside it even if his storyline closes with an “aww” moment. He also benefits in Ferguson’s episode where he thought Claire was pregnant again though that also provided more “aww” and less “haha” for him.

Now who would have thought that among six cast members of Modern FamilyJesse Tyler Ferguson would be one of the three remaining adult cast to get nominated every season by far? And even if  he hasn’t won any yet, the fact that he keeps on getting nominated means he has the support from the TV Academy. This year, he submits one of the most lauded episodes of the season via Message Received when he had an argument with his dad regarding their impending wedding and how it was difficult for Jay to still accept his sexuality. It’s really a heartbreaking episode and one that has lots of impact. And on Burrell’s episode, he goes on the classic first day at work storyline and how he’s dealing with someone who’s not the friendliest of them bosses.

This is really a tricky category to be honest. I had Tony Hale in front but he’s vulnerable at most. After all, he really doesn’t strike me as a 2x winner for this role nor a really far and away frontrunner. While he is not totally out, there’s a lot of ifs that need to happen for Andre Braugher to win here, and had he only submitted a stronger tape, he can easily be the frontrunner status. It’s really not wise to dismiss both Modern Family  here. I mean sure it lost acting nominees here, but the show is still every inch competitive and Burrell is the type I can see winning multiple Emmys so he can easily win in a weak year like this. And in his five years of getting nominated, this is the first time Jesse Tyler Ferguson came close to winning. I never bought his chances in the past, but him continuing to get in plus competitive tapes makes him in the upper tier easily. I guess in the event of an unknown race like this, there’s only two paths it can head: stay with the current winner or get an out of the box win. Let’s just say I’m gonna go the safe road and predict #2 for Tony Hale instead.

Prediction: Tony Hale, “Veep
Alternate: Jesse Tyler Ferguson, “Modern Family

Full Rankings:
01. Tony Hale, “Veep
02. Jesse Tyler Ferguson, “Modern Family
03. Ty Burrell, “Modern Family
04. Andre Braugher, “Brooklyn Nine Nine
05. Adam Driver, “Girls
06. Fred Armisen, “Portlandia

Check my other 2014 Emmy prediction analysis here.

For more Emmy talk, you can also follow me on Twitter: @nikowl

66th Primetime Emmy Awards Nominations Predictions Part 3: Comedy   Leave a comment

Hi guys! We’re now past halfway the Emmy week over at Tit for Tat, and after discussing the possible nominees and my predictions for Reality and Variety, and TV Movie and Miniseries, it’s time to continue the prognosticating before Mindy Kaling and Carson Daly announce the nominees on Thursday morning. For this part, our focus will be on the laughter source for the past TV season: COMEDY!

OUTSTANDING DIRECTING IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Directing

• Brooklyn Nine Nine, Pilot (Phil Lord, Chris Miller)
• Girls, Two Plane Rides (Lena Duham)
• Louie, Elevator Part 6 (Louis CK)
• Modern Family, Las Vegas (Gail Mancuso)
• Orange is the New Black, Lesbian Request Denied (Jodie Foster)

Sixth nominee: Silicon Valley, Minimum Viable Product (Mike Judge)

Okay let’s begin with current champ Modern Family. This show has been dominating this category winning the past three years, and a fourpeat is indeed very possible. This Las Vegas episode is one of their more buzzed ones this season, and it’s a very obvious possibility to win as well. Then of course there’s Jodie Foster. Sure she’s no Fincher or Scorsese, but Lesbian Request Denied is a top episode for OITNB’s first season and with the deafening buzz it has, it’s likely she’ll get in here. I’m also predicting the pair of writer/creator/director Louis CK and Lena Dunham. Both have been nominated here for the past two seasons of their shows though I have to say Louis CK is probably the more assured contender here as compared to Dunham. But this semi-sort of creative resurgence for Girls can give her a nod here. As for the last spot, I’m giving it to the duo of Phil Lord and Chris Miller simply because they love pilots in here and it’s the most logical pilot in contention, and second, the duo comes from a hit summer film and a great 2014 year so far.

OUTSTANDING WRITING IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Writing

• Episodes, Episode 305 (David Crane, Jeffrey Clark)
• Louie, Pamela Part 3 (Louis CK, Pamela Adlon)
• Louie, So Did the Fat Lady (Louis CK)
• Orange is the New Black, I Wasn’t Ready (Pilot) (Liz Friedman, Jenji Kohan)
• Veep, The Special Relationship (Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche)

Sixth nominee: Girls, Beach House (Lena Dunham, Jenni Korner, Judd Apatow)

As much as it does not make sense, Episodes is 2/2 so far when it comes to getting a nomination, so it’s really hard to bet against it. Thus, I guess I’m going with it for my first slot here. Then the writing/directing categories is a haven of some sort for pilot episodes, and I think that will put I Wasn’t Ready in a good position for a nomination as well. Louis CK has won in this category two years ago and has three nods under her belt, so a nod is assured. So Did the Fat Lady is his best contender this year, and I won’t be surprised if it goes on and win all the way. The risk I’m doing though is to predict two Louie nominations here, though I guess I’m putting a lot of faith with the writers and they have delivered before. As for Veep, they finally did the right thing of submitting only one episode for consideration, so it’s really easy to rally up at this point, though I won’t be surprised if it misses simply because it’s not even their best episode of the season (Debate anyone?) and that this sort of “submitting only one episode” has backfired in the past (last year’s Arrested Development as for starters).

OUTSTANDING GUEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Guest Actor

• Louis CK, “Saturday Night Live
• Jimmy Fallon, “Saturday Night Live
• James Earl Jones, “The Big Bang Theory
• Nathan Lane, “Modern Family
• Bob Newhart, “The Big Bang Theory
• Jeremy Renner, “Louie

Seventh nominee: Andy Samberg, “Saturday Night Live

Right now, two previous winners are in the running this year: Jimmy Fallon for SNL and current champ Bob Newhart for The Big Bang Theory, and I think it will be an easy repeat of nomination for the both of them. Then there’s Louis CK coming back for a consecutive nod for SNL as well. Louis CK is one the Emmys love to nominate and he has been beating his own record the past few years already, so another nod here isn’t surprising at all. I think James Earl Jones will get nommed as well since Big Bang managed to pull of a win for an overdue veteran last year, so they know how to headline their vets to get awards traction. As for Nathan Lane, it’s really hard to argue against him especially if he managed to get in for a cameo-like performance last year. And he even had meatier role this year. The last spot I reserve for that “dramatic” performance that usually gets in every year (Eli Wallach and Bobby Cannavale for Nurse Jackie, and Idris Elba for The Big C the past four years), and this year I think Louie is the show getting that slot, and my bet is on 2x Oscar nominee Jeremy Renner. His performance is very dramatic and no comedy element to it at all, but his sheer star power can and Oscar pedigree can give him an Emmy nod as well.

OUTSTANDING GUEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Guest Actress

• Sarah Baker, “Louie
• Laverne Cox, “Orange is the New Black
• Joan Cusack, “Shameless
• Tina Fey, “Saturday Night Live
• Melissa McCarthy, “Saturday Night Live
• June Squibb, “Girls

Seventh nominee: Ellen Burstyn, “Louie

Despite her SNL guesting going mediocre over the years, it’s hard to bet against Melissa McCarthy getting in once again so that’s one slot. The same can be said for Tina Fey who got in the last three years she was eligible here. In a fair world, none of them are getting nominated. And with Shameless shifting to the Comedy categories , it’s easier to get confident with Joan Cusack’s chances. If she can get in every single year in a more competitive Drama, this one is an easier path to a repeat nomination. And then we have Oscar nominee June Squibb. La Squibb is in contention for three different performances in this category: Girls, Glee, and Getting On. My bet is on Girls though since it’s her baitiest one (she’s on the brink of death, voters!!!). Then as for the last two spots, I have reserved one for an Orange is the New Black. My bet is on Laverne Cox since it’s more of a statement of some sort for someone like her to get awards recognition and her episode submission is basically where her character is the focus of it. But then again, I really wouldn’t be surprised if she missed instead for co-star Uzo Aduba. Aduba has been the viewer favorite character all along, and she’s been working the circuit the past few months. And then the last slot I’m giving to a Louie lady. I went with Sarah Baker with the same reasoning of why I went with Laverne Cox: her episode is the more buzzed Louie one. But then again, she’s up against Oscar winner and Emmy semi-fave Ellen Burstyn. Last year, the Emmy went with the popular Oscar winning actress (Melissa Leo) over the online favorite (Parker Posey), and I won’t be surprised if they follow the same format this year with Burstyn getting in over Baker.

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Supp Actor

• Andre Braugher, “Brooklyn Nine Nine
• Ty Burrell, “Modern Family
• Adam Driver, “Girls
• Jesse Tyler Ferguson, “Modern Family
• Tony Hale, “Veep
• Eric Stonestreet, “Modern Family

Seventh nominee: Ed O’Neill, “Modern Family

So will Modern Family get four actors again? I won’t be quick to say that again. Last year, Stonestreet missed a year after winning, so I won’t be too easy in thinking they’d get all of them in as well. Let’s get with the easy ones: Ty Burrell is making it in. I think he’s the last standing survivor when the Emmys start to drop it. And for some reason, they have a hard on for Jesse Tyler Ferguson. He’s the only other guy aside from Burrell to get in the past four seasons, so I think he has the other advantage as well. And then of course we have current champ Tony Hale from Veep who probably has a huge chance of repeating that win. I’m also predicting Andre Braugher. I mean if he can get two nods out of Men of a Certain Age, they won’t let the opportunity of nominating him for a comedic role pass by. And of course he’s good in it. I’m going back and forth with Girls’ Adam Driver since he seems like a one time thing, and I’m expecting a decline of nods for the show in general, but between his film projects and his recent Star Wars casting, he’s slowly building the clout to have a strong résumé. The last spot I’m reserving for the two Modern Family men. Ed O’Neill can easily go on for his fourth consecutive nod here, but my hunch is that like Jane Lynch’s comeback last year, Eric Stonestreet will have his this year especially since it’s a crucial season for his character.

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Supp Actress

• Mayim Bialik, “The Big Bang Theory
• Julie Bowen, “Modern Family
• Anna Chlumsky, “Veep
• Allison Janney, “Mom
• Kate Mulgrew, “Orange is the New Black
• Sofia Vergara, “Modern Family

Seventh nominee: Merrett Wever, “Nurse Jackie

Unlike the men of Modern Family, the women have an easier time getting in annually just because there are only two of them in this category. Thus, it’s easy to say that both Julia Bowen and Sofia Vergara will be back as nominees again. And the same can be said for The Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik who even got an individual SAG mention earlier this year which pretty much indicates that there’s a level of support for her performance. If only for the reason that she’s in Veep, and I’m sensing an upward trajectory in terms of its overhaul nod, I’m predicting Anna Chlumsky this year too. She doesn’t have a winning season or a winning tape, but I don’t see her being a one time deal here (even if she makes sense as one). And since her last nomination eight years ago, it’s nice to finally see Allison Janney back in the race, even doing some sort of the record Edie Falco had (by winning a Lead Drama and Comedy Actress Emmy) only this time, she’ll do the Supporting one for her role in Mom. This has been some sort of a banner year for Janney in TV if her double wins at the Critics Choice Awards is too looked at. And lastly, we have current champ Merritt Wever versus Kate Mulgrew. It’s quite odd that Wever isn’t a shoo-in when she beat those four ladies I’m predicting as “sure bets” in this category, but it’s the Emmys we’re talking about here, and a surprise of some sort usually happens. The reason I predicted Kate Mulgrew over here there though is that because Mulgrew is a respected veteran who hasn’t been nominated for any Emmy yet, and she seems poised as the most logical supporting actress from Orange to make some sort of impact in this race.

OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES: 

Comedy Actor

• Don Cheadle, “House of Lies
• Louis C.K, “Louie
• Matt LeBlanc, “Episodes
• William H. Macy, “Shameless
• Jim Parsons, “The Big Bang Theory
• Andy Samberg, “Brooklyn Nine Nine

Seventh nominee: Robin Williams, “The Crazy Ones

TALK. ABOUT. BARREN. Oh god this category can’t even get any more lively after Alec Baldwin’s exit last year. Well let’s begin with Jim Parsons, as surely he’s one of the two I’m 100% confident in. The other is definitely Louis CK. While his is not the type of performance they usually reward here, a nomination is another thing. So whatever happens in this category (may it be a revamp or the same old line up), those two would manage to be in the final line up. We also have Golden Globe winner Andy Samberg who benefits from a  weak line up. If we still have the Carells and the Baldwins here, I’m sure he would be struggling to get a nomination to be honest. And that’s coming from someone who LOVE him in Brooklyn Nine Nine. Just like his show, Matt LeBlanc seems to have his fans in the voting Academy that I won’t be surprised if he gets in again. I mean I had him as an alternate last year and look at what happened. You also get to predict Don Cheadle at this point even if his show stopped making sense a long time ago simply because we have to fill in the six slots here. Oh my god that was very boring to type. And in a certain surprising turn of events, Shameless suddenly decided to shift genres this time, and if there’s one benefit I see happening from that, it’s that William H. Macy can take advantage of this line up to finally get himself a Lead Acting nom. I mean if not him, who else is there? Thomas Middleditch in a show no one cared about? Jonathan Groff in a show everyone cared about… to trash? Canceled sitcom stars Robin Williams and Michael J. Fox? This is so barren that Macy can consider himself lucky. Sadly the same can’t be said about his co-star Emmy Rossum.

OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Actress

• Lena Dunham, “Girls
• Edie Falco, “Nurse Jackie
• Anna Faris, “Mom
• Julia Louis Dreyfus, “Veep
• Amy Poehler, “Parks and Recreation
• Taylor Schilling, “Orange is the New Black

Seventh nominee: Mindy Kaling, “The Mindy Project

I mean at this point who even cares? Let’s just send the Emmy to Julia Louis Dreyfus’ home and we’ll be done with this. Or not. Maybe because she’ll give an extremely awesome speech the way she did the last two years. But yes, Julia’s winning this easily so let’s just see the five other clappers in this category. First we have Edie Falco. Nurse Jackie‘s sort of semi-comeback among awards show contenders means only two things: 1. the show is having some creative resurgence or 2. the field is so empty. I guess I’ll leave the answer to you then. Then we have Lena Dunham in possibly the best season she had as an actress of the show. I think that if the field continues to be this weak here, Dunham can manage to survive one to two more Best Actress nods under her belt regardless of the show’s reception. And then there’s forever the bridesmaid Amy Poehler. At this point, Poehler had done everything to win the Emmy, but voters aren’t really responding to these type of Michael Schur characters (I mean hello Steve fucking Carell). In the past, she already submitted a two parter, achieved a nod when her show is a Series nominee, got Writing and Acting nod the same year and yet none of those still worked. So I guess a nomination would suffice again this year. Then this year’s newbie is filled by Taylor Schilling as the core character from the huge ensemble of Orange is the New Black. That last spot I can see can go to Mindy Kaling (who’s a past nominee for Writing) and her announcing the Emmy nods might be an obvious indicator of that, but I guess I wouldn’t just underestimate Chuck Lorre at this point so I’m going with Mom‘s Anna Faris for the last slot.

OUTSTANDING COMEDY SERIES:

Comedy Series

• The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
• Brooklyn Nine Nine (NBC)
• Louie (FX)
• Modern Family (ABC)
• Orange is the New Black (Netflix)
• Veep (HBO)

Seventh nominee: Girls (HBO)

And we’re here at the final stretch. Okay let’s get the obvious ones out of the way. Modern Family is soooo getting in so there’s Slot 1. Veep is easily making it for Round 3 so there’s Slot 2. Orange is the new Black is too big to ignore that if there’s only one room for a newbie here, that would be it. So there goes Slot 3. Louie’s msot recent season has been more dramatic than comedic, but it has the critics rallying up behind it that it’s gonna be surprising if it suddenly missed after finally penetrating last year’s line up. And then there’s the fourth slot. The Big Bang Theory hasn’t achieved the same critical and commercial buzz it had last year (and yet it was used to no avail since they did not win Series), so even if their chances somehow weakened, a series nod is still manageable. Now there’s five slots already.  As for that sixth slot, it starts to get tricky. On one hand, there’s Brooklyn Nine Nine a.k.a Fox’s only contender in this category. On its side, it’s a freshman show who has some sort of buzz, it’s Fox’s #1 priority here, and it’s a traditional comedy from a broadcast network. However, it’s ratings aren’t something to write home about, it doesn’t have a Tina Fey or an Alec Baldwin in its side, and that Orange is the more buzzed freshman show. Then on the other, there’s Girls. On its hit stride, voters can easily just vote the recurring nominees from last year’s batch and it can easily make it, it’s still getting awards and mentions, and its third season has been some sort of a creative resurgence from critics and fans alike. But then again, it’s not HBO’s priority, and all its buzz has dwindled so fast it’s not even the watercooler show of the season nor of this line up. Of course with the new 2% rule, there’s a possibility that we might get seven nominees in the end, but let’s stick to the current six line up. Now who do I think gets in that coveted last slot. I guess I’m going with Brooklyn Nine Nine by a hair over Girls. I think there’s more buzz for the former and traditional comedy shows still has their hold in this category despite the slow HBO dominance the past few years. Plus, the shelf life for female-led/centric shows are just two seasons and they easily drop them off. Sure Sex and the City is an exception, but Ally McBeal and Glee were lucky enough to get two nods while the likes of Desperate Housewives and ugly Betty have to settle for their only pilot season series nods. So yeah, i’m going with Brooklyn in this one.

Now there you have it. Do you think Allison Janney is finally making that Emmy comeback? Will Shameless shamelessly moving to the comedy category finally catch another acting nod aside from Joan Cusack? And how many Modern Family actors can survive this season? Tomorrow, the last part as we tackle the drama categories! Thanks for reading!

As always, you can follow me on Twitter: @nikowl

65th Primetime Emmys: Outstanding Comedy Series   Leave a comment

comedy series

PAST PREDICTIONS:

2005: Desperate Housewives[WRONG]
2006:
The Office”[CORRECT]
2007:
The Office[WRONG]
2008:
30 Rock[CORRECT]
2009:
30 Rock[CORRECT]
2010:
Modern Family[CORRECT]
2011:
Modern Family[CORRECT]
2012:
Modern Family[CORRECT]

We’re down to the last two categories of this year’s Emmy awards, and we’ll begin with the highest honor in Comedy. With no Curb Your Enthusiasm eligible this season, one slot was available and critical darlign Louie made it in over 3x nominee and 2004 Arrested Development and a lauded sophomore season of New Girl. 

The two HBO comedies managed to hold on their spots for a consecutive year now though Veep over performed with two more acting nominations despite no directing and writing nods under its belt. Girls, on the other hand, underperformed with no writing nod now, though it managed to add one more acting nom for Adam Driver and another directing nomination. Sadly for them, they’re also the two weakest nominees in this category.

Speaking of no directing and writing nods, The Big Bang Theory is enjoying an all time high of Emmy love for a critically and commercially well received sixth season. Winning from the Critics Choice and the TCAs this year, the show is doing very well and has been the landmark of network comedies in the midst of a struggling rating natures. With that said, its lack of directing and writing nods will hurt, as only one show managed to pull off that feat in 2002 and that was NBC’s Friends. Now one can claim that both depended on the huge ratings factor under their name,  but Friends was on an all time pop culture status at the time it won the award. I don’t think Big Bang can survive the lack of directing and writing nods to pull off the win.

This year’s most critically lauded show, Louie, is also FX’s first time in this category. There’s no doubt that Louis CK is a god among Emmy voters, and that he is the it thing now. But I’m not yet confident that they’ll hand it the top prize. Maybe in the next few years, but this one is a triumph of acknowledging the show for the top category instead of giving it the win already. Let’s see how the show will be received on Sunday to gauge its future chances (though it’s off to a good start with Melissa Leo’s win earlier this week).

As for the last two contenders here, both Modern Family and  30 Rock are contending for a fourth Emmy win. 30 Rock has the advantage of going with its last season, and it is the last time to reward one of Emmy’s most loved shows of the aughts. But if history is any indication, only one show in the last decade has won for its final season (Everybody Loves Raymond in 2005). 30 Rock has been winning nothing for the last two three years, so I’m having my reservations if they’d go reward it again all of a sudden. I think they’ll give its due some category else and not here.

Given all that conditions, I’d say that in the end, Modern Family will skate in for a fourth consecutive win. This might have been their most vulnerable win if ever, but let’s gauge if there will be a fatigue of the show already. I’m not bothered with their lackluster submissions since it has been a habit for the show to do that, and I’m also not bothered with their lack of Creative Emmys win since that also happened in Season 2 yet they swept all their nominated televised awards. The thing is, if one needs to unseat MF from this category, we need one strong viable alternate, and not multiple semi-strong ones, as its tendency is that the anti-MF votes will scatter all over the place. So yes, for this year, I’m predicting a Modern Family fourpeat.

Prediction: Modern Family
Runner-Up: 30 Rock

Full Rankings:
1. “Modern Family
2. “30 Rock
3. “Louie
4. “The Big Bang Theory”
5. “Veep
6. “Girls

You can see my other Emmy predictions here.

Meanwhile, you can also follow me on Twitter: @nikowl