Wednesday, July 17, 2013

My hypothetical 2013 Emmy ballot

With the Emmy nominations just a day away, it's time for me to once again submit a fake Emmy ballot. I had fun doing this last year when I watched far fewer shows, and though it was a bit trickier this time to weed out some very good performances and such, I think I'm happy with my choices. Of course, none of this matters because tomorrow the Television Academy will give a lot of nominations to "The Big Bang Theory" and "The Newsroom". Sorry, but it wouldn't be Emmy season without outrage and cynicism! If you're wondering what sort of ridiculousness you're in for after the break, you can take a look at my picks from last year, in which I just completely forgot to make picks in the Drama Lead Actor category. I suck.

After the break: Watch as I pad the miniseries categories by giving a lot of nominations to "American Horror Story" actors solely for their participation in the ridiculous but awesome "Name Game" scene. Plus, I only cheated twice!

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Will Arnett for playing George Oscar "G.O.B." Bluth on Arrested Development (Netflix)
Max Greenfield for playing Schmidt on New Girl (Fox)
Nick Offerman for playing Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation (NBC)
Chris Pratt for playing Andy Dwyer on Parks and Recreation (NBC)
Damon Wayans Jr. for playing Brad Williams on Happy Endings (ABC)
Mike White for playing Tyler on Enlightened (HBO)

My winner: God damn, I want them all to win. You know what? Will Arnett needs an Emmy, and preferably a non-Devon Banks Emmy. This has been an excellent performance for a decade now, and the two Gob episodes are definite highlights of the new Netflix season. Also, let's acknowledge again how crazy it is that "Arrested Development" is back up for awards.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Eliza Coupe for playing Jane Kerkovich-Williams on Happy Endings (ABC)
Diane Ladd for playing Helen Jellicoe on Enlightened (HBO)
Kaitlin Olson for playing Dee Reynolds on It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (FX)
Alia Shawkat for playing Maeby Funke on Arrested Development (Netflix)
Eden Sher for playing Sue Heck on The Middle (ABC)
Julie White for playing Anne on Go On (NBC)

My winner: I'm going for Diane Ladd, solely on that one, five-second shot in the finale where she reads Amy's story in the newspaper. She was great even in a slightly reduced capacity (and in a season where she didn't get an episode like "Consider Helen"), but that alone would have been enough.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Adelaide Clemens for playing Tawney Talbot on Rectify (Sundance Channel)
Anna Gunn for playing Skyler White on Breaking Bad (AMC)
Christina Hendricks for playing Joan Holloway on Mad Men (AMC)
Monica Potter for playing Kristina Braverman on Parenthood (NBC)
Kiernan Shipka for playing Sally Draper on Mad Men (AMC)
Bellamy Young for playing First Lady Mellie Grant on Scandal (ABC)

My winner: Oh boy. It feels criminal how many episodes the "Parenthood" writers spent wasting Monica Potter on just being the nagging mom after seeing the journey Kristina went on this season. I think she will actually get a nomination, and I'd love to see her win.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Jonathan Banks for playing Mike Ehrmantraut on Breaking Bad (AMC)
Noah Emmerich for playing Stan Beeman on The Americans (FX)
Vincent Kartheiser for playing Pete Campbell on Mad Men (AMC)
Mads Mikkelsen for playing Dr. Hannibal Lecter on Hannibal (NBC)
Mandy Patinkin for playing Saul "The Bear" Berenson on Homeland (Showtime)
Aaron Paul for playing Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad (AMC)
Corey Stoll for playing Peter Russo on House of Cards (Netflix)

My winner: Yeah, I'm cheating. I added another slot. But come on, this category is so tough to crack. Logic should dictate that as Giancarlo Esposito slides out, Jonathan Banks can slide right in. And if he doesn't, it will be one more grievance of mine against the Television Academy.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Bryan Cranston for playing Walter White on Breaking Bad (AMC)
Hugh Dancy for playing Will Graham on Hannibal (NBC)
Jon Hamm for playing Don Draper on Mad Men (AMC)
Damian Lewis for playing Nicholas Brody on Homeland (Showtime)
Matthew Rhys for playing Phillip Jennings on The Americans (FX)
Aden Young for playing Daniel Holden on Rectify (Sundance Channel)

My winner: In theory, I think Damian Lewis is the most deserving of the six because he has "Q&A". But Jon Hamm really needs an Emmy, especially after the season he just had. Also want to mention that Peter Krause of "Parenthood" is in my seventh slot, and it kinda pains me to leave him off. (Can't cheat on every category, I suppose).

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Claire Danes for playing Carrie Mathison on Homeland (Showtime)
Tatiana Maslany for playing Sarah Manning and her clones on Orphan Black (Space/BBC America)
Elisabeth Moss for playing Peggy Olson on Mad Men (AMC)
Keri Russell for playing Elizabeth Jennings on The Americans (FX)
Kerry Washington for playing Olivia Pope on Scandal (ABC)
Robin Wright for playing Claire Underwood on House of Cards (Netflix)

My winner: I will be shocked if she even gets a nomination, but Tatiana Maslany is playing about six characters on "Orphan Black" and she knocks each one of 'em out of the park.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Laura Dern for playing Amy Jellicoe on Enlightened (HBO)
Zooey Deschanel for playing Jess Day on New Girl (Fox)
Lena Dunham for playing Hannah Horvath on Girls (HBO)
Tina Fey for playing Liz Lemon on 30 Rock (NBC)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus for playing Vice President Selina Meyer on Veep (HBO)
Amy Poehler for playing Leslie Knope on Parks and Recreation (NBC)

My winner: Laura Dern. Please.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Alec Baldwin for playing Jack Donaghy on 30 Rock (NBC)
Jason Bateman for playing Michael Bluth on Arrested Development (Netflix)
Louis C.K. for playing Louis C.K. on Louie (FX)
Jake Johnson for playing Nick Miller on New Girl (Fox)
Matthew Perry for playing Ryan King on Go On (NBC)
Adam Scott for playing Ben Wyatt on Parks and Recreation (NBC)

My winner: The incredible Jake Johnson. He gave me cookie, I get him cookie.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or Movie

Jessica Lange for playing Sister Jude Martin on American Horror Story: Asylum (FX)
Sienna Miller for playing Tippi Hedren in The Girl (HBO)
Helen Mirren for playing Linda Kenney-Baden in Phil Spector (HBO)
Elisabeth Moss for playing Robin Griffin on Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)
Sigourney Weaver for playing Elaine Barrish Hammond on Political Animals (USA)

My winner: Give Elisabeth Moss her freakin' Emmy already.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie

Benedict Cumberbatch for playing Christopher Tietjens on Parade's End (HBO)
Matt Damon for playing Scott Thorson in Behind the Candelabra (HBO)
Michael Douglas for playing Liberace in Behind the Candelabra (HBO)
Al Pacino for playing Phil Spector in Phil Spector (HBO)
Dominic West for playing Hector Madden on The Hour (BBC America)

My winner: Michael Douglas, who will spend a fun 10 months or so collecting the Emmy, Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild Award, and various other accolades thrown at him.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie

Rob Lowe for playing Dr. Jack Startz in Behind the Candelabra (HBO)
Peter Mullan for playing Matt Mitcham on Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)
Evan Peters for playing Kit Walker on American Horror Story: Asylum (FX)
Jeffrey Tambor for playing Bruce Cutler in Phil Spector (HBO)
David Wenham for playing Detective Al Parker on Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)

My winner: Peter Mullan is incredible and might only be the third or fourth best thing about "Top of the Lake".

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie

Holly Hunter for playing G.J. on Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)
Janet McTeer for playing Mrs. Satterthwaite on Parade's End (HBO)
Sarah Paulson for playing Lana Winters on American Horror Story: Asylum (FX)
Miranda Richardson for playing Mrs. Wannop on Parade's End (HBO)
Imelda Staunton for playing Alma Hitchcock in The Girl (HBO)

My winner: Holly Hunter all the way.

Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series

F. Murray Abraham for playing Uncle Excelsior on Louie (FX)
Dave Foley for playing Dr. Fulton on The Middle (ABC)
Ron Howard for playing Ron Howard on Arrested Development (Netflix)
David Lynch for playing Jack Dall on Louie (FX)
Chris Parnell for playing Dr. Leo Spaceman on 30 Rock (NBC)
Patrick Wilson for playing Joshua on Girls (HBO)

My winner: It is a violation of federal law not to vote for David Lynch when he is nominated for an award.

Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series

Dan Bucatinsky for playing James Novack on Scandal (ABC)
Rupert Friend for playing Peter Quinn on Homeland (Showtime)
Harry Hamlin for playing Jim Cutler on Mad Men (AMC)
Robert Morse for playing Bert Cooper on Mad Men (AMC)
Michael O'Neill for playing State Senator Roland Foulkes on Rectify (Sundance Channel)
Dallas Roberts for playing Milton Mamet on The Walking Dead (AMC)

My winner: "Homeland" season 2 was iffy, but Rupert Friend was consistently great.

Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series

Hadley Delany for playing Lilly on Louie (FX)
Judy Greer for playing Kitty Sanchez on Arrested Development (Netflix)
Melissa Leo for playing Laurie on Louie (FX)
Ursula Parker for playing Jane on Louie (FX)
Molly Shannon for playing Eileen Foliente on Enlightened (HBO)
Mae Whitman for playing Ann Veal on Arrested Development (Netflix)

My winner: Yeah, I nominated both the daughters from "Louie," and you can suck it, because that cold open with Louie and the girls telling knock knock jokes was better than the sum of entire sitcoms last season. Anyway, my winner is a different "Louie" guest star, the shocking, crude, but hilarious performance by Melissa Leo.

Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series

Alison Brie for playing Trudy Campbell on Mad Men (AMC)
Shirley MacLaine for playing Martha Levinson on Downton Abbey (PBS)
Margo Martindale for playing Claudia on The Americans (FX)
Julia Ormond for playing Marie Calvet on Mad Men (AMC)
Diana Rigg for playing Olena Tyrell on Game of Thrones (HBO)
Gina Torres for playing Bella Crawford on Hannibal (NBC)

My winner: Don't leave, Margo Martindale, don't leave!

Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series

Tina Fey and Tracey Wigfield for the "Last Lunch" episode of 30 Rock (NBC)
Mike White for "The Ghost is Seen" episode of Enlightened (HBO)
Louis C.K. for the "Daddy's Girlfriend: Part 1" episode of Louie (FX)
Kay Cannon for the "Eggs" episode of New Girl (Fox)
Michael Schur for the "Halloween Surprise" episode of Parks and Recreation (NBC)

My winner: Random aside - Louis C.K. makes a weird ass submission choice for the second year in a row. He probably won't even get nominated, but I'd vote for Mike White.

Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series

Sam Catlin for the "Fifty-One" episode of Breaking Bad (AMC)
Bryan Fuller for the "Aperitif" episode of Hannibal (NBC)
Henry Bromell for the "Q&A" episode of Homeland (Showtime)
Maria Jacquemetton and Andre Jacquemetton for "The Quality of Mercy" episode of Mad Men (AMC)
Ray McKinnon for the "Always There" episode of Rectify (Sundance Channel)

My winner: This is such a no brainer. If the Emmys miss an opportunity to recognize one of 2012's best written hours and simultaneously pay tribute to the late Henry Bromell, there's really no reason for the awards to exist.

Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries or Movie Made for Television

Richard LaGravenese for Behind the Candelabra (HBO)
Abi Morgan for The Hour (BBC America)
Tom Stoppard for Parade's End (HBO)
David Mamet for Phil Spector (HBO)
Jane Campion and Gerard Lee for Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)

My winner: Campion and Lee. Man, "Behind the Candelabra" is gonna steamroll through these categories and "Top of the Lake" is going to go really unnoticed.

Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries or Movie Made for Television

Michael Lehmann for "The Name Game" episode of American Horror Story: Asylum (FX)
Steven Soderbergh for Behind the Candelabra (HBO)
Susanna White for Parade's End (HBO)
David Mamet for Phil Spector (HBO)
Jane Campion and Garth Davis for "Part 5" of Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)

My winner: Again, I would spread as much love as I could to "Top of the Lake", so I'm going for Campion and Davis. I don't see how Soderbergh won't actually end up winning this one.

Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series

Gavin O'Connor for the "Pilot" episode of The Americans (FX)
George Mastras for the "Dead Freight" episode of Breaking Bad (AMC)
Michelle MacLaren for the "Gliding Over All" episode of Breaking Bad (AMC)
David Slade for the "Aperitif" episode of Hannibal (NBC)
Lesli Linka Glatter for the "Q&A" episode of Homeland (Showtime)
Matthew Weiner for the "In Care Of" episode of Mad Men (AMC)

My winner: Again, I'm cheating here. I couldn't narrow six down to five so I'm including a hypothetical tie in my hypothetical awards category. Also, had he submitted "Man with a Plan," I would have happily put John Slattery in this category for "Mad Men". But he submitted "A Tale of Two Cities," so he just narrowly misses out. Anyway, my winner: you know what's crazy about "Gliding Over All"? It contains two separate montages that are just flawless. Fantastic work by Michelle MacLaren.

Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series

Jeff Richmond for the "A Goon's Deed in a Weary World' episode of 30 Rock (NBC)
James Bobin for "The Ghost is Seen" episode of Enlightened (HBO)
Louis C.K. for the "New Year's Eve" episode of Louie (FX)
Jake Kasdan for the "Chicago" episode of New Girl (Fox)
Amy Poehler for the "Article Two" episode of Parks and Recreation (NBC)

My winner: Louis C.K. for a transcendent episode of "Louie".

Outstanding Miniseries or Movie Made for Television

Behind the Candelabra (HBO)
The Girl (HBO)
Parade's End (HBO)
Phil Spector (HBO)
Top of the Lake (Sundance Channel)

My winner: Hmm...kind of torn between two. Gonna go with Top of the Lake just to not be obvious.

Outstanding Drama Series

The Americans (FX)
Breaking Bad (AMC)
Game of Thrones (HBO)
Hannibal (NBC)
Mad Men (AMC)
Rectify (Sundance Channel)

My winner: It might be my least favourite of the six, but I think based on technical achievements and storytelling, the time for Game of Thrones is now.

Outstanding Comedy Series

30 Rock (NBC)
Arrested Development (Netflix)
Enlightened (HBO)
Louie (FX)
New Girl (Fox)
Parks and Recreation (NBC)

My winner: Hugely tough call. This might be the last chance for Arrested Development, even if that show already has an award in this category for a better season. It's also the last year for 30 Rock, although that show already has three awards in this category. And it was a hell of a sophomore year for New Girl. But something like Enlightened comes along once in a generation. (Remember the time I said I was done writing about that show? HA.)

The Emmy nominations will be announced tomorrow at approximately 8:30am ET. Tune in to see an almost entirely different roster of nominees!