TLF Emmy Chat: Some Quick Thoughts on the 2014 Nominations

By Vivian Obarski and Keidra Chaney


VO: I think I’m gonna break this down bit by bit as I stare at the categories to keep this neater. Admittedly I haven’t seen all of these shows (like I said, I tend to come to the party fifteen minutes late), but I’ll confess to having opinions, like everyone on the Internet. Unlike everyone on the Internet, I’ll try and stick to what I know.

Best Comedy Series

VO: Is The Big Bang Theory like Two and A Half Men now? I’m just wondering. Also I’ll admit I am disappointed that the last season of Parks and Recreation didn’t get a nod — and not just because I’m a huge fan of Amy Poehler (so happy she got a nod, but odds are Julia Louis Dreyfus are going to get it and Amy will have a hilarious bit during the show, so I’m fine with this) and the show. I feel like the overall story arc of Leslie battling recall, losing her position and then debating about whether to stay in Pawnee or leave for a bigger job gave a certain urgency to match the heart of the show. Not to mention, Ann leaving was one of those heartbreaking things for me, given that Leslie and Ann (much like Cristina Yang and Meredith Grey) were the heart of Parks and Recreation.

Louie — don’t get me wrong, I love Louis CK’s stand-up, but is it just me or is everyone writing about his show?

Still happy to see Orange is the New Black get a nomination. It might lose to Veep (Emmy really doesn’t like change does it?), but I feel like it’s getting the attention it deserves for writing and the storylines. Not to mention, the cast is stellar.

KC: I am not a passionate follower of all things TV, but I do have some opinions about the noms. I always feel like the Emmys get it WRONG WRONG WRONG with comedies. They are so stuck in the sitcom format and don’t glom onto shows that utilize comedy in a different way until long after viewers catch on. (Yes I am still bitter about Arrested Development.) I don’t mind Parks and Rec not getting a nod, its glory days were about 2 seasons ago.

Outside of Orange … I am pretty meh about this list. Silicon Valley is OK, but nowhere close to be award worthy. I am done with people’s obsession with Louie. Just because he’s a white dude that doesn’t completely have his head in his ass about issues that don’t center around white dudes doesn’t make him a genius truth teller. And the show is not that funny. But also, I’ll admit that I’ve not been about comedies much these days anyway.

Lead Actor in a Drama Series

VO: This is where I’m confused — wasn’t True Detective supposed to be a miniseries? I didn’t watch it, but I thought it was, given the adverts.

KC: It’s all political. Technically, yes, I think it was a miniseries though. I can’t imagine Cranston won’t get this. He is pretty genius in that show, even if it’s not my thing.

Lead Actress in a Drama Series

VO: While I’m happy for Kerry, make no mistake about it, I feel like this season wasn’t the strongest for Olivia Pope. Maybe it’s because this season was about her falling apart thanks to her family (most involved scheming to create a breakup ever!), but it felt more like Olivia reacting to stuff instead of acting.

Also, I’m with everyone else regarding Tatiana Maslany and Orphan Black. Seriously, the woman is acting like a bunch of other people and on top of that, ACTING AS THE OTHER PEOPLE ACTING AS THE OTHER CLONES. THAT’S FUCKING TALENT FOLKS. Maybe as one Twitter put it — She couldn’t nominate herself because she was all the Emmy voters.

But I’m not surprised. If I show up 15 minutes late to shit with Starbucks, Emmy voters show up like two hours late and are eating stale chips and drinking whatever leftover booze is in the red party cups.

KC: Tatiana was robbed. But it’s a “genre” show and the Emmy voters probably only see there being room for one genre show and that’s Game of Thrones.

I’m actually not happy about Kerry Washington. She doesn’t deserve a nomination, full stop. She didn’t really deserve one last year, honestly. And I like her. But she’s never been the strongest actor in that group and it’s a shame that Bellamy Young and Jeff Perry were snubbed again so they can do that whole “history” song and dance again. This one needs to go to Robin Wright ot maybe even Juliana Margulies. Why was Michelle Dockery nominated? She didn’t even do anything this season of Downton!

Lead Actor in a Miniseries or A Movie

VO: This last season of Sherlock was kind of meh for me (I think that Moffat’s weakness is that he tries to be too clever at the expense of decent storytelling), but at least Benedict Cumberbatch got a nod for basically the strongest of the three episodes, unlike two years ago where I was wondering what they were smoking when they put up Scandal in Belgravia to be considered (my least favorite of that season). And there is nothing more satisfying than watching Martin Freeman get punched in the face in Fargo. For real. But I suspect it’ll be Mark Ruffalo for The Normal Heart (only prediction I’ll make), which is fine by me, because I think that he’s a fantastic actor.

Also at least they put His Last Vow up for writing instead of the other two. That was probably the best of the three in terms of cinematography, acting and writing. Amanda Abbington should’ve also gotten a nod for His Last Vow just because I think she brought it as much as the boys did. Her Mary Morstan is the Mary Morstan that lives in my head (minus the part of shooting Sherlock, but well, one can’t have everything).

KC: I saw a bit of Fargo, and I don’t get it. I was distracted by the BAD accents. I didn’t see any of Luther this year, so I dunno, but I would just like to give Idris an award so he shows up in a suit.

Outstanding Variety Series

VO: I am gonna go against everyone and root for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Everyone else is all right, but seriously, Fallon’s show offers variety from skits, to odd games with the guests, to musical impersonations. Not to mention The Roots — probably one of the best bands in the world as house band. But I’m prejudiced.

KC: Uh, I am pretty sure you’ll have support on this one. The industry loves Fallon. He appeals to young people and their parents. He saved NBC late night. I just wanna say, I actually enjoy Kimmel a lot. He is not loved enough by critics. His “Lie Witness News” segment makes me literally laugh out loud. His Scandal bits were on point and his interview with Kanye was must see TV, and he has the best musical guests.

VO: Naw. I think that they’ll go with either Colbert or Daily Show. Those two rule much like Julia Louis Dreyfus.

Supporting actress, drama

VO: BOO! DISHONOR ON YOUR HOUSE! DISHONOR ON YOUR COW FOR NOT NOMINATING BELLAMY YOUNG. I don’t know if it’s because Scandal has a reputation for being cray-cray or what, but Young killed it this season. She deserves a credit for “Everything’s Coming Up Mellie” and how that colored our view of the First Lady for the rest of the season.

At least Joe Morton and Kate Burton also got nods for their guests appearances on Scandal. Morton’s work as Papa Pope was dazzling as he spit speech after speech at the Fitz, called him “boy” and plotted in ways that made me so damn proud of him. Burton as Sally Langston also was frightening and terrifying, but you couldn’t stop watching her. I always praised their acting and I’m happy to see they get some recognition also.

KC: This one hurts. I was SO sure Bellamy would get a nod this year. She SO deserved it. But a lot of her greatest moments this year were subtler and quieter, not ideal for an Emmy reel. I do think that Scandal is damaged from the “soap” label. Along with Nashville; Hayden Panettiere deserved a nomination as well. Even in the heyday of nighttime soaps, they didn’t fare well during the Emmys, but since we’re on this “New Golden Age of TV” kick, I think sucks that critical snobbery is essentially what gets these performances shut out. Joe Morton deserved his nod, though by the end he was chewing a LOT of scenery, still he killed it, and Kate Burton was great too, but still, Jeff Perry. He’s a fucking work horse, show him love.

Guest Actress, Comedy

VO: This basically looks like a battle between Orange is the New Black and SNL. I suspect that the reason why Natasha Lyonne, Uzo Aduba and Laverne Cox were pushed in this category and not the supporting actress was because they weren’t listed as series regulars until Season Two (and I think the first season is only eligible this year). But I’m happy they got it. Personally, I’m also rooting for Uzo, but that’s because I feel like Suzanne’s story is interesting as hell — an African-American girl with (perhaps?) mental health issues that never got diagnosed. It’s tragic that her adoptive parents, while they love her deeply, clearly didn’t know how to get her the help she needed. And I think it’s an interesting side dig into the stories about mental health issues and how they’re diagnosed in the African-American community.

KC: This is for season 1 and since Laverne is barely in season 2 I think this category makes sense. Uzo Aduba is amazing, so I am glad to see her (and Laverne, and Natasha) nominated. I really, really wish there was an ensemble category. I have wanted that ever since Arrested Development. We’ll see, but I actually think next year they’ll bump Uzo to supporting and put Lorraine Toussaint in the guest category.

Some other random thoughts: Might they give Treme some love since it was the last season? I doubt it but you never know. Also, I would LOVE to see Cat Deely get an Emmy win one day for So You Think You Can Dance I know it’s corny but she really is the best reality show host out there right now, she’s warm and encouraging and her reactions to the performances and her interactions with the dancers really make the show what it is.

VO: I should add that I’m also pleased as punch that Cosmos got nominated. That show was just glorious for introducing my kid to science. And her love for Neil Degrasse Tyson.

KC: Yay for Cosmos and NDT and science!

Comments (3)

Keira, I’m so glad Bellamy Young didn’t receive an Emmy nomination, she didn’t deserve it. The rape storyline was put into play simply to gain sympathy for her character. Welp, it didn’t ‘t garner any sympathy from the Emmy voters. As for Kerry, she deserved a nod and she should have won last year. Scandal is nothing without Kerry Washington. There are some shows that can afford their lead actress to be absent from the show, not Scandal. That’s why season 3 was cut short because of Kerry ‘s pregnancy. Shonda knew the ratings would go down without her. Congrats to Kerry, Joe Morton and Kate Burton on their Emmy nominations.

I wasn’t crazy about the rape storyline but Bellamy as an actress was great. IMO Kerry didn’t have much to work with this season compared to others on the show but next year hopefully they will give her something meatier to chew on storyline wise. Olivia spent most of her time this season reacting to other characters. I miss S1 Olivia.

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