Reaction to this year’s Emmy Nominations: Part 1

For those of you who didn’t follow my blog at examiner.com, every year I would go into a routine. I would try to handicap the Emmys, using my limited resources to try and figure out which series were worthy of nominations. And every year, the Emmy voters would disappoint me by falling back into habits of nominating the same old, standard traditional shows. Every year, lather, rinse, repeat.

Until this year. Maybe it was the departure of ‘Mad Men’ and several other smaller series. Maybe the voters have just started to get younger and dare I say it, hipper. Whatever the reason, this year the Emmy voters have done a much better job of recognizing the series and actors that have been among the truly best of this year’s crop.

Admittedly, of course, there were the inevitable flaws. This time, they basically decided, with a few critical parts, to shut out ‘The Good Wife’ entirely. At this point, however, I’m no longer surprised. No matter how great the series was, and for the last three years it was simply spectacular, the Emmys seem to have reached the point that only streaming and cable dramas have the truly good stuff. This is something of a pity, considering that this series is probably going to be the truly last great broadcast drama. I understand the final episode probably insulted so many critics and fans, but that didn’t stop them from doing the same thing when ‘Lost’ aired its final episodes. (Was that only six years ago? My God.)

And of course, even though they seem willing to nominating Amazon and Hulu, the CW just doesn’t seem to cut it, which may be particularly galling to Rachel Bloom, the odds on favorite to win Best Actress in a Comedy until yesterday.

But mostly, I have a lot fewer complaints than I did last year, mainly because a lot of my predictions were recognized. I’ll even let the fascination with ‘Downton Abbey’ slide — after all, this was it’s last season. Who knows? Maybe that’ll be enough for them to let a Broadcast show in. Let’s go to the specifics.

BEST DRAMA

YES! They finally nominated ‘The Americans’! And considering it had been ignored for three straight seasons, I had already prepared to start my article with the words: “Once again, ‘The Americans’ was shut out”. But they nominated it, and in major categories this time.

They also nominated “Mr. Robot” Admittedly, my ignoring would’ve been my fault not there’s. ‘Homeland’, ‘Better Call Saul’ and ‘House of Cards’, more than deservedly filled their spots. They could’ve given a few more nods to ‘Homeland’, but still:

‘Downton Abbey’ — I’ll let it slide, considering that it was the last season. But I really wish someone would explain the fascination with ‘Game of Thrones’. 23 nominations? Seriously? All right, five out of seven isn’t bad.

BEST ACTOR, DRAMA

Rami Malek more than deserved to be up here, and he’s probably among the front runners. Matthew Rhys has been owed a spot for at least two years, so thank the lord they finally recognized him. Spacey, Chandler, and Odenkirk, I advocated for in this spot, so I can’t real argue that much.

Liev Schrieber, as I mentioned before, isn’t even the best actor on his own network. I’d complain more, but they basically got five out of my six preferences, so I’ll be quiet.

BEST ACTRESS, DRAMA

This one I can’t complain about at all. Five of the six nominees were actresses I predicted would get nominated, even though they were holdovers from at least last year. The sixth, Keri Russell, I would’ve included, but I figured she had no chance. I’m not wild that Juliana Margulies was shut out again, but considering the quality of her competition, I really can’t bitch that much.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR, DRAMA

This is a bit trickier. Jonathan Banks, glad he got nominated. Michael Kelly is one of my favorite actors on House of Cards, so glad that they did. Ben Mendelsohn was still good on ‘Bloodline’ so I won’t object that much. And I advocated for Kit Harington, so I really can’t complain that he took a spot from Alan Cumming.

But seriously. Jon Voight instead of Christian Slater. The Christian Slater who won a Golden Globe and a Critic’s Choice Award? Who was the odds on favorite to win until yesterday? Peter Dinklage I can understand after a fashion, but considering the caliber of other potential nominees — Michael McKean or David Tennant would’ve been better choices. This is arguably the biggest shock of the drama category, and I’m not sure there are enough Ray Donavan fans to justify it.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS, DRAMA

Basically, this comes down to a Game of Thrones category and everybody else. Lena Headey and Emilia Clarke were around last year, so I can’t really argue that much, though I wish that I could. Maisie Williams is a strange choice, but considering she’s grown up on the series, I slightly understand. Maura Tierney and Constance Zimmer I both pulled for, so I’m glad to see that they’re here. I’ll never understand why so many people are crazy about Maggie Smith, but considering that she had a very big fan base, that she’d won twice before, and this was her last season, I’ll let it go. I was hoping that they’d consider Christine Baranski one last time, but she was nominated in the comedy category, so at least it wasn’t a total loss.

Considering the virtual shutout of Orange is the New Black, along with former winner Uzo Aduba, the odds are good that someone new will finally win. I can live with that, at least.

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After years of laboring for love in my blog on TV, I have decided to expand my horizons by blogging about my great love to a new and hopefully wider field.

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