Thursday, July 19, 2012

The mostly underwhelming Emmy Nominations 2012



The 2012 Emmy Nominations were announced this morning and, once again, its hard to not feel a sense of crushing disappointment topped off with a sprinkle of dread. Besides the fact that excellent programming like Community and Happy Endings was completely overlooked while Kathy Bates gets yet another nomination for a show no one watches (nor should), the Big Four have once again been completely shut out of the drama competitions which means broadcast television is one year closer to its grave. Hold on to Comedy, buddy!

But mostly, my disappointment comes from the utter predictability of the nominations. With the exception of the pleasant and well deserved nod to New Girl's M.V.P Max Greenfield (pictured above with the same expression I had this morning after reading the noms list) the major categories look like they nominators just recycled last year's ballots. Yes, EVERYONE in Modern Family is nominated, defeating any chance of lesser-known (and arguably more deserving considering MF's mediocre season) actors from the comedy genre to break into the pack. Jon Cryer inexplicably is included in the lead actor category (not because he isn't a lead, but because 2.5 Men is rubbish) and whatever is left goes to big bang theory...again. Even I admit that as wonderful as Tina Fey is, this season of 30 Rock was undeserving of awards attention.

And seriously, I love Don Cheadle but...house of lies? Dear voters, I have 3 words for you: JOEL F***ING MCHALE (not actually his middle name).

I suppose I should give credit where credit is due, the nominators were smart enough to include HBO's breakout "Girls" AND it's writer/director/creator/muse Lena Dunham. They also came to their sense and all but excluded "Glee" except for a guest-starring role which, frankly, who cares. The temptation is always there to include shows like Glee as an appeal to the Bieber crowd and I'm glad they were not swayed.

They resisted the temptation to give Hugh Laurie a send-off nomination for House, which is the right decision. I love Hugh Laurie and, at various points during its run, have loved House, but this last season was not one of those points. Laurie, and the show as a whole, looked tired and much like how the BCS SHOULD be, we're rewarding this year's season, not every season that came before it.

Community also scored a writing nom, and I submit that if it does not win we Burn This Mother Down!

Other things are just plain ridiculous. "Missing" as a miniseries? There was a little bit of an uproar last year when Downton went the mini-series route but, at the time, it had not been renewed for a second season and was intended as a one-off. Not so with Missing. The Ashley Judd thriller was fully intended to be a multiple-season before it got yanked off the air for failing to even remotely stir the attention of the audience and just failing in almost every measurably way. Apparently we're rewarding that sort of thing now.

The (for all intents and purposes) full list of nominees:

COMEDY SERIES

"The Big Bang Theory" (CBS)
"Curb Your Enthusiasm" (HBO)
"Girls" (HBO)
"Modern Family" (ABC)
"30 Rock" (NBC)
"Veep" (HBO)

COMEDY ACTOR

Jim Parsons as Sheldon Cooper in "The Big Bang Theory"
Larry David as Himself in "Curb Your Enthusiasm"
Don Cheadle as Marty Kaan in "House of Lies"
Louis C.K. as Louie in "Louie"
Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy in "30 Rock"
Jon Cryer as Alan Harper in "Two and a Half Men"

COMEDY ACTRESS

Lena Dunham as Hannah Horvath in "Girls"
Melissa McCarthy as Molly Flynn in "Mike & Molly"
Zooey Deschanel as Jess Day in "New Girl"
Edie Falco as Jackie Peyton in "Nurse Jackie"
Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope in "Parks and Recreation"
Tina Fey as Liz Lemon in "30 Rock"
Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selina Meyer in "Veep"

SUPPORTING COMEDY ACTOR

Ed O'Neill as Jay Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Jesse Tyler Ferguson as Mitchell Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Ty Burrell as Phil Dunphy in "Modern Family"
Eric Stonestreet as Cameron Tucker in "Modern Family"
Max Greenfield as Schmidt in "New Girl"
Bill Hader as various characters in "Saturday Night Live"

SUPPORTING COMEDY ACTRESS

Mayim Bialik as Amy Farrah Fowler in "The Big Bang Theory"
Kathryn Joosten as Karen McCluskey in "Desperate Housewives"
Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy in "Modern Family"
Sofia Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett in "Modern Family"
Merritt Wever as Zoey Barkow in "Nurse Jackie"
Kristen Wiig as various characters in "Saturday Night Live"

DRAMA SERIES

"Boardwalk Empire" (HBO)
"Breaking Bad" (AMC)
"Downton Abbey" (PBS)
"Game of Thrones" (HBO)
"Homeland" (Showtime)
"Mad Men" (AMC)

DRAMA ACTRESS

Glenn Close as Patty Hewes in "Damages"
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in "Downton Abbey"
Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick in "The Good Wife"
Kathy Bates as Harriet Korn in "Harry's Law"
Claire Danes as Carrie Mathison in "Homeland"
Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olson in "Mad Men"

DRAMA ACTOR

Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson in "Boardwalk Empire"
Bryan Cranston as Walter White in "Breaking Bad"
Michael C. Hall as Dexter Morgan in "Dexter"
Hugh Bonneville as Robert, Earl of Grantham in "Downton Abbey"
Damian Lewis as Nicholas Brody in "Homeland"
Jon Hamm as Don Draper in "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING DRAMA ACTRESS

Anna Gunn as Skyler White in "Breaking Bad"
Maggie Smith as Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham in "Downton Abbey"
Joanne Froggatt as Anna in "Downton Abbey"
Archie Panjabi as Kalinda Sharma in "The Good Wife"
Christine Baranski as Diane Lockhart in "The Good Wife"
Christina Hendricks as Joan Holloway Harris in "Mad Men"

SUPPORTING DRAMA ACTOR

Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman in "Breaking Bad"
Giancarlo Esposito as Gustavo 'Gus' Fring "Breaking Bad"
Brendan Coyle as John Bates in "Downton Abbey"
Jim Carter as Mr. Carson in "Downton Abbey"
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in "Game of Thrones"
Jared Harris as Lane Pryce "Mad Men"

MINISERIES OR TV MOVIE

"American Horror Story" (FX)
"Game Change" (HBO)
"Hatfields & McCoys" (History)
"Hemingway & Gellhorn" (HBO)
"Luther" (BBC America)
"Sherlock: A Scandal In Belgravia" (PBS)

LEAD ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Connie Britton as Vivien Harmon in "American Horror Story"
Julianne Moore as Sarah Palin in "Game Change"
Nicole Kidman as Martha Gellhorn in "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Ashley Judd as Rebecca Winstone in "Missing"
Emma Thompson as She in "The Song of Lunch"

LEAD ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Woody Harrelson as Steve Schmidt in "Game Change"
Kevin Costner as 'Devil' Anse Hatfield in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Bill Paxton as Randall McCoy in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Clive Owen as Ernest Hemingway in "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Idris Elba as John Luther in "Luther"
Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes in "Sherlock: A Scandal In Belgravia"

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Frances Conroy as Moira in "American Horror Story"
Jessica Lange as Constance Langdon in "American Horror Story"
Sarah Paulson as Nicolle Wallace "Game Change"
Mare Winningham as Sally McCoy in "Hatfields & McCoys"
Judy Davis as Jill Tankard in "Page Eight"

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE

Denis O'Hare as Larry Harvey in "American Horror Story"
Ed Harris as John McCain in "Game Change"
Tom Berenger as Jim Vance in "Hatfields & McCoys"
David Strathairn as John Dos Passos in "Hemingway & Gellhorn"
Martin Freeman as Dr. John Watson in "Sherlock: A Scandal In Belgravia"

VARIETY SERIES

"The Colbert Report" (Comedy Central)
"The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" (Comedy Central)
"Jimmy Kimmel Live" (ABC)
"Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (NBC)
"Real Time With Bill Maher" (HBO)
"Saturday Night Live" (NBC)

REALITY PROGRAM

"Antiques Roadshow" (PBS)
"Jamie Oliver's Food" (ABC)
"MythBusters" (Discovery Channel)
"Shark Tank" (ABC)
"Undercover Boss" (CBS)
"Who Do You Think You Are?" (NBC)

REALITY-COMPETITION PROGRAM

"The Amazing Race" (CBS)
"Dancing With The Stars" (ABC)
"Project Runway" (Lifetime)
"So You Think You Can Dance" )FOX)
"Top Chef" (Bravo)
"The Voice" (NBC)

HOST FOR A REALITY OR REALITY-COMPETITION PROGRAM

Phil Keoghan, "The Amazing Race"
Ryan Seacrest, "American Idol"
Betty White, "Betty White's Off Their Rockers"
Tom Bergeron, "Dancing With The Stars"
Cat Deeley, "So You Think You Can Dance"

ANIMATED PROGRAM

"American Dad!" (FOX)
"Bob's Burgers" (FOX)
"Futurama" (Comedy Central)
"The Penguins Of Madagascar: The Return Of The Revenge Of Dr. Blowhole" (Nickelodeon)
"The Simpsons" (Fox)

SHORT-FORMAT ANIMATED PROGRAM

"Adventure Time" (Cartoon Network)
"Phineas and Ferb" (Disney Channel)
"MAD" (Cartoon Network)
"Regular Show" (Cartoon Network)
"Robot Chicken" (Cartoon Network)

CHILDREN'S PROGRAM

"Degrassi" (TeenNick)
"Good Luck Charlie" (Disney Channel)
"iCarly" (Nickelodeon)
"Victorious" (Nickelodeon)
"Wizards of Waverly Place" (Disney Channel

CHILDREN'S NONFICTION, REALITY OR REALITY-COMPETITION PROGRAM

"It Gets Better" (MTV)
"Sesame Street: Growing Hope Against Hunger" (PBS)
"The Weight of the Nation for Kids: The Great Cafeteria Takeover" (HBO)

GUEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES

Dot-Marie Jones as Coach Shannon Beiste in "Glee"
Maya Rudolph, host in "Saturday Night Live"
Melissa McCarthy, host in "Saturday Night Live"
Elizabeth Banks as Avery Jessup in "30 Rock"
Margaret Cho as Kim Jong-il in "30 Rock"
Kathy Bates as Charlie Harper in "Two and a Half Men"

GUEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES

Michael J. Fox as himself in "Curb Your Enthusiasm"
Greg Kinnear as Tad in "Modern Family"
Bobby Cannavale as Dr. Mike Cruz in "Nurse Jackie"
Jimmy Fallon, host in "Saturday Night Live"
Will Arnett as Devon Banks in "30 Rock"
Will Arnett as Devon Banks in "30 Rock"

GUEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES

Martha Plimpton as Patti Nyholm in "The Good Wife"
Loretta Devine as Adele Webber in "Grey's Anatomy"
Jean Smart as D.A. Roseanna Remmick in "Harry's Law"
Julia Ormond as Marie Calvet in "Mad Men"
Joan Cusack as Sheila Jackson in "Shameless"
Uma Thurman as Rebecca Duvall in "Smash"

GUEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES

Mark Margolis as Tio Salamanca in "Breaking Bad"
Dylan Baker as Colin Sweeney in "The Good Wife"
Michael J. Fox as Louis Canning in "The Good Wife"
Jeremy Davies as Dickie Bennett in "Justified"
Ben Feldman as Michael Ginsberg in "Mad Men"
Jason Ritter as Mark Cyr in "Parenthood"

VOICE-OVER PERFORMANCE

Brenda Strong as Mary-Alice Young in "Desperate Housewives"
Dan Povenmire as Doctor Doofenshmirtz in "Phineas and Ferb"
Rob Riggle as Noel in "Disney Prep & Landing: Naughty Vs. Nice"
Maurice LaMarche as Clamps, Donbot, Hyperchicken, Calculon, Hedonismbot, Morbo in "Futurama"
Kristen Wiig as Lola in "The Looney Tunes Show"
Hank Azaria as Moe Szyslak, Duffman, Mexican Duffman, Carl, Comic Book Guy, Chief Wiggum in "The Simpsons"

DIRECTING FOR A COMEDY SERIES

Robert B. Weide, "Curb Your Enthusiasm "
Lena Dunham, "Girls"
Louis C.K., "Duckling"
Jason Winer, "Modern Family"
Steven Levitan, "Modern Family"
Jake Kasdan, "New Girl"

WRITING FOR A COMEDY SERIES

Chris McKenna, "Community"
Lena Dunham, "Girls"
Louis C.K., "Louie"
Amy Poehler, "Parks and Recreation"
Michael Schure, "Parks and Recreation"

DIRECTING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

Tim Van Patten, "Boardwalk Empire"
Vince Gilligan, "Breaking Bad"
Brian Percival, "Downton Abbey"
Michael Cuesta, "Homeland"
Phil Abraham, "Mad Men"

WRITING FOR A DRAMA SERIES

Julian Fellowes, "Downton Abbey"
Alex Gansa, Howard Gordon & Gideon Raff, "Homeland"
Semi Chellas & Matthew Weiner, "Mad Men"
Andre Jacquemetton & Maria Jacquemetton, "Mad Men"
Erin Levy & Matthew Weiner, "Mad Men"

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