Thursday, March 27, 2014

Primetime Emmy Predictions (March)

Credit: HBONow that the traditional award season is over I am jonesing, to predict or analyze some awards.  Might as well take my shot at the Emmy Awards.  Part of predicting these in March is hard because important contenders like Mad Men, Game of Thrones, and the new HBO series, Silicon Valley have not aired.  Part of predicting these now will be fun because there have been major category announcements in the last two weeks.

The first major shake-up was Netflix deciding to place Orange is the New Black in the Comedy categories.  While this may get them more nominations, possibly, the show is a drama with humorous elements.  I think this could backfire on them next year when the show takes on a much more serious tone.  Creator Jenji Kohan has stated the show gets even darker in season two.

The most minor, and biggest cheat goes to Shameless on Showtime, another drama with comedic elements.  Shameless has been campaigned as Drama the last three years, but this year its being changed to a comedy.  This may score Williams H. Macy a nomination in Lead Actor, or could confuse voters and have them wind up in nothing.  After all Joan Cusack has been nominated in Drama Guest Actress several times.

The biggest jaw dropping change is that True Detective will not cheat the system like American Horror Story, and will compete in the Drama Series category.  This could be more stupid than smart.  Detective would have been guaranteed more wins in the Movie/Mini categories, or this could be HBO making a play for getting back at AMC for dominating all these years.

Who will the nominees be now?  Here are my early thoughts:

Outstanding Drama Series
Breaking Bad (AMC)
Downton Abbey (PBS/BBC)
Game of Thrones (HBO)
Homeland (Showtime)
House of Cards (Netflix)
True Detective (HBO)

At the moment I have Mad Men out of the running, and the only reason is that the show has not aired.  Mad is only airing 7 episodes, and after a weak season last year, and two years in a row of being shut out of any wins I am skeptical.  Thrones has not aired, but there is more buzz on that show, hence its inclusion.  The other two nominees I am considering dropping are Downton Abbey, and Homeland.  I think like Dexter, Homeland gets one more nomination, unless the show turns around drastically.  Abbey had its most 'ho-hum' season beyond the rape of Anna, which seemed pointless in the grand scheme.  Watch out for The Good Wife here.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Bryan Cranston-Breaking Bad
Jeff Daniels-The Newsroom
John Hamm-Mad Men 
Woody Harrelson-True Detective
Matthew McConaughey-True Detective*
Kevin Spacey-House of Cards

I would like to see Michael Sheen from Masters of Sex in this group, but I have a feeling this performance is too quiet for Emmy voters, and does not ham it up enough.  Also never underestimate the power of James Spader from The Blacklist, but the 6 men above seem like sure things.  The one nominee I am least sure about is Daniels, but there are speeches a plenty, and he is last year's winner, so I do not think he will miss out.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Clare Danes-Homeland
Vera Farmiga-Bate's Motel
Julianna Margulies-The Good Wife
Elisabeth Moss-Mad Men 
Robin Wright-House of Cards
Kerry Washington-Scandal

This looks pretty solid, Margulies will return, and all is right with the world.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Jim Carter-Downton Abbey
Josh Charles-The Good Wife
Peter Dinklage-Game of Thrones
Dean Norris-Breaking Bad
Aaron Paul-Breaking Bad
Jeffrey Wright-Boardwalk Empire

There are two men on the cusp for me Jon Voight for Ray Donovan, and Mandy Patinkin for Homeland, but this is a competitive race.  If there was ever a nominee that should return from Downton this year its Jim Carter; he was the best part of the season.  Watch out for Jeff Perry from Scandal too.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Christine Baranski-The Good Wife
Emilia Clarke-Game of Thrones
Anna Gunn-Breaking Bad
Christina Hendricks-Mad Men 
Michelle Monaghan-True Detective 
Maggie Smith-Downton Abbey

Tough category to pick, there are few women that actually stand out in this group, but it will most likely be almost exactly the same as last year.

Outstanding Comedy Series 
The Big Bang Theory (CBS)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (FOX)
Louie (F/X)
Modern Family (ABC)
Silicon Valley (HBO)
Veep (HBO)

NBC has not missed out on a nomination in this category in 21 years, this may be the year, their only true contender is Parks and Recreation, which only gotten one nomination in this category, can it come back? You better work NBC.  Sadly comedy is a man's world, and Girls is the odd woman out, I have this odd hunch.  Without seeing Veep or Silicon Valley yet I still think they will best Girls.  I also have Orange is the New Black off the list, I think category confusion will hurt this show in the series race.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series 
Don Cheadle-House of Lies 
Johnny Galecki-The Big Bang Theory 
Louis C.K.-Louie 
Jim Parsons-The Big Bang Theory
Andy Samberg-Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Robin Williams-The Crazy Ones 

Galecki returns! Williams has gotten no love yet, surprisingly, and if the show is cancelled, he may miss out.  Samberg is the new blood, but he has gotten tons of Emmy love for writing his songs for SNL; he has one Emmy, and six nominations already.  Watch out for an actor from Silicon Valley.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series 
Julia Louis-Dreyfus-Veep
Lena Dunham-Girls 
Edie Falco-Nurse Jackie
Melissa McCarthy-Mike and Molly
Amy Poehler-Parks and Recreation
Taylor Schilling-Orange is the New Black

Mindy Kailing should be here, but they will play it safe, and kind of a weak category, weaker than it has been in years.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Andre Braugher-Brooklyn Nine-Nine 
Ty Burrell-Modern Family
Adam Driver-Girls 
Jesse Tyler Ferguson-Modern Family
Tony Hale-Veep 
Ed O'Neil-Modern Family

Modern Family has been great this year, but I think they will start slow down on the nominees I think Ferguson is weak 6th place for me, watch out for a spoiler.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series 
Julie Bowen-Modern Family
Mayim Bialik-The Big Bang Theory
Allison Janney-Mom
Margo Martindale-We're the Millers 
Sofia Vergara-Modern Family  
Merritt Wever-Nurse Jackie

Janney and Martindale are big names these days, watch out for these ladies, they are dynamite.  I would like to see Wever gone, but her speech will keep her around for another year, although they could bump her like Jon Cryer.

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