My boyfriend is in Los Angeles for work and he’s randomly going to an Emmy party hosted by a celebrity who shall remain awesome and nameless and all I get to do is stay home and make these predictions on winners while he’s rubbing elbows. But I’m actually super excited because I don’t need to be in L.A. to experience television stardom. All I need is my remote control, a bowl of cereal, and a dream.
Here are some educated guesses...
Outstanding Drama Series
Breaking Bad / Downtown Abbey / Game of Thrones / Homeland / House of Cards / Mad Men
Will Win: Breaking Bad
Could Win: House of Cards
Should Win: Breaking Bad
If you happened to catch this past Sunday’s episode of Breaking Bad, you might then understand why no other show in this category comes close to its falling-off-the-couch pyrotechnics. True, House of Cards and Mad Men were especially riveting this season, but when it comes to the ultimate battle of good vs. evil wrapped in gut-wrenching suspense that will undoubtedly go down in television history alongside The Sopranos and The Wire as one of the best shows of all time, Breaking Bad shines brighter than the rest.
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Bryan Cranston / Hugh Bonneville / Damian Lewis / Kevin Spacey / Jon Hamm / Jeff Daniels
Will Win: Bryan Cranston
Could Win: Kevin Spacey
Should Win: Bryan Cranston
The hype surrounding Kevin Spacey’s over-the-top performance as Francis Underwood is justified except for one thing: it’s super over-the-top. The razing of the fourth wall, the southern twang, the slight gayness, it’s just not enough. And Don Draper is the Erica Kane of the Emmys so perhaps one more year. Walter White is visceral and metamorphic, teetering on the brink of actual hell with each passing week. If the Emmys have any sense, they’ll give this to Bryan Cranston. And if they hand it to Spacey, well then, they best tread lightly.
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Vera Farmiga / Michelle Dockery / Claire Danes / Robin Wright / Elizabeth Moss / Connie Britton / Kerry Washington
Will Win: Kerry Washington
Could Win: Claire Danes
Should Win: Robin Wright
The Emmys love new darlings and Kerry Washington is just that. Although Scandal is entering its third season in just a couple weeks, it’s just recently that Kerry Washington has been tossed aboard the buzz train and will arrive first. Elizabeth Moss will win for Top of the Lake so I’m pretty sure the Emmy’s won’t go all Kate Winslet on her. And while Claire Danes’ schizo shtick is remarkable, it’s Robin Wright who wins my vote as the strong and stoic boo to Kevin Spacey. The scene(s) of her taking drags of a cigarette post-midnight is enough to light my fire.
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Bobby Cannevale / Jonathan Banks / Aaron Paul / Jim Carter / Peter Dinklage / Mandy Patinkin
Will Win: Mandy Patinkin
Could Win: Jonathan Banks
Should Win: Aaron Paul
Sympathy votes do exist. Many out there believe Patinkin was snubbed last year for his subtle and insightful Saul and may believe it’s time to give back. But what competition! The real race could be potentially between Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul and Jonathan Banks. In the show, one could argue Jonathan Bank’s character Mike plays the good father figure (vs. Walter White) to Aaron Paul’s Jesse Pinkman (similar to that of Patinkin and Danes). But I just don’t think his almost passive acting can compete with the likes of Patinkin or Paul. I’m going Patinkin for the win and Paul for the snub.
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Anna Gunn / Emilia Clarke / Christina Hendricks / Maggie Smith / Morena Baccarin / Christine Baranski
Will Win: Anna Gunn
Could Win: Christina Hendricks
Should Win: Anna Gunn
Each year, I damn Maggie Smith for stealing Christina Hendricks’ prize and each year she damns me back by not only winning but also never showing up to the show. This year, I feel my voodoo will work and Smith won’t have a chance. But wait, coming up slowly but surely around the bend for the past two years is Anna Gunn, whose Skyler White is nothing if not tortured brilliance. Christina know this: I adore you and Joan Holloway. You are a scene-stealer and you are radiant and even though Gunn will take home that gold statue this Sunday, you’ll always be a winner in my eyes.
Outstanding Comedy Series
30 Rock / Girls / Louie / Modern Family / The Big Bang Theory / Veep
Will Win: Louie
Could Win: 30 Rock
Should Win: 30 Rock
Comedy is intended to make an audience laugh, a very simple concept. Can we not then assume that whichever the comedy or whomever the comedian garnering the most jokes is the best? With this logic, I jump into the comedy category and a pattern will emerge. Louie often builds to awkward and riotous scenes which has and will win the hearts of Emmy voters, but it’s 30 Rock where the jokes don’t stop. I laugh perhaps 60 times per episode which is twice per minute and that’s including the residual laughs during commercials. Joke after quip after pun and it went out with a bang. Perhaps this mathematical logic is skewed, but I’m ready for the controversy. As Kenneth would say: “This mess is gonna get raw like sushi. So haters to the left.”
Note: Enlightened should have been nominated perhaps not in the comedy or drama categories but simply “Outstanding 30-Minute Series.” If that were the case, it would walk away triumphant.
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Louis CK / Alec Baldwin / Jim Parsons / Jason Bateman / Don Cheadle / Matt LeBlanc
Will Win: Louie CK
Could Win: Jim Parsons
Should Win: Alec Baldwin
Louie CK is by far the funniest comedian on this list, but is he the best actor? Last I checked the category wasn’t Outstanding Lead Comedian in a Comedy Series. Alec Baldwin not only has the chops it takes to make you laugh, but his acting is spot-on. Louie has but one of the two credentials and apparently that will be enough to sway Emmy voters. But my heart lies with Baldwin’s Jack Donaghy who invented the phrase “I need a vacation from this vacation.”
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Amy Poehler / Laura Dern / Julia Louis-Dreyfus / Tina Fey / Lena Dunham / Edie Falco
Will Win: Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Could Win: Amy Poehler
Should Win: Laura Dern
Another very touchy category for me. All the women nominated have worked extremely hard to get where they are (okay, okay, Lena Dunham was spoon-fed privilege and is still super young) and all are in their own right deserving. I agree almost wholeheartedly with the Emmy voters if Julia Louis-Dreyfus wins. But is it not time for Amy Poehler to be recognized? Must she host Golden Globes a second time to show she can command an audience? And now for my heroine: the dazzling Laura Dern and her volcanic portrayal of Amy Jellicoe in Enlightened. After my super failed attempt at starting a Twitter campaign to save the show, I decided to let it become a part of history. Amy Jellicoe is one of the strongest characters to hit television and if Emmy voters decide to hand it to this woman, it would be not only wise, but luminous.
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Adam Driver / Jesse Tyler Ferguson / Ed O’Neill / Ty Burrell / Bill Hader / Tony Hale
Will Win: Tony Hale
Could Win: Adam Driver
Should Win: Ed O’Neill
I can safely say this is my least favorite category, mostly because I don’t particularly like the nominees. And I’ve read a lot about each one of them and, if one more critic believes Adam Driver should win this award, I’m going to tie cinder blocks to my feet and take it to the Golden Gate. Driver is too obnoxious and unfortunately probably just being his silly Brooklyn self. A safe bet is with veteran Ed O’Neill whose Jay Pritchett elicits humanity, understanding, and effort in an otherwise chaotic family environment. But I’m going to go ahead and say Tony Hale because maybe the Emmy voters will recognize that he did two fantastic shows this year, played two decidedly different characters, and give him the award because of his great life choices.
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Will Win: Jane Krakowski
Could Win: Julie Bowen
Should Win: Jane Krakowski
Mayim Bialik / Jane Lynch / Sofia Vergara / Julie Bowen / Merritt Wever / Jane Krakowski / Anna Chlumsky
Is it me or is Julie Bowen a one-trick pony? Her neurosis is hammed up and her pity parties play the worst music. And don’t get me started on Sofia Vergara whose character Gloria just screams Jaaaaaaaaay! and gets attention. It is an (to use an awardsy term) outrage that Jane Krawkowski has yet to nab one of these little gold dudes. She attended the Royal Tampa Academy of Dramatic Tricks for god’s sake! It’s 30 Rock’s final season and I think Emmy voters will open their eyes to this amazing talent and finally hand it to Krakowski. She’ll then be only two awards shy of an EGOT!