Friday, July 13, 2018

TV Pats Itself On The Back

It's hard to write about the Emmys, because there are too many.  Too many nominees, too many shows and people to nominate.  Who has time to see even half of them?

Here's a list of the main awards, as announced yesterday, each category followed by comments.

Drama Series
“The Handmaid’s Tale”
“Game of Thrones”
“This Is Us”
“The Crown”
“The Americans”
“Stranger Things”
No surprises here. Seven nominees, and every one expected.  There was no room for a surprise, like Counterpart or Ozark.  I'd have preferred they didn't nominate Westworld to show they're paying attention, but that wasn't going to happen.  The one I'm missing most here is the updated Twin Peaks, though that was probably too bizarre to make it.  And notice no Homeland--old regulars do fall out of favor.
Comedy Series
“Atlanta” (FX)
“Barry” (HBO)
“Black-ish” (ABC)
“Curb Your Enthusiasm” (HBO)
“GLOW” (Netflix)
“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (Amazon)
“Silicon Valley” (HBO)
“The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (Netflix)
Just as in drama, only one choice from the networks. It's a bit more noticeable here, with eight nominees and favorites like Modern Family and The Big Bang Theory missing.   For that matter, the reboots of Will & Grace and Roseanne aren't here (the latter was controversial, but I don't think either would have made it in any case). But Curb Your Enthusiasm is still around.  Some other snubs include Orange Is The New Black (which I stopped watching a couple seasons ago, so I guess I agree), the new Arrested Development and the newly controversial Transparent. It's good to see GLOW here, and I like Silicon Valley, even if it wasn't the strongest season.  Atlanta (which is odd enough it should be in its own category) was a certainty for the list.  Barry was an interesting choice, but the one show I miss most from this list is The Good Place.
Limited Series
“The Alienist”
“The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story”
“Genius: Picasso”
“Patrick Melrose”
How limited are these shows?  I didn't watch any.
Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Jason Bateman (“Ozark”)
Sterling K. Brown (“This Is Us”)
Ed Harris (“Westworld”)
Matthew Rhys (“The Americans”)
Milo Ventimiglia (“This Is Us”)
Jeffrey Wright (“Westworld”)
Same two guys from This Is Us as last year--guess there wasn't room for a third.  Bateman a bit of a surprise.  Harris and Wright are talented actors, but I don't think either should be here.  Some wanted Liev Schreiber.  Maybe the biggest surprise is no Kit Harrington (who I assume would be in the running for Lead Actor) considering Game Of Thrones has won so many Emmys.  Might also have expected one for J. K. Simmons since he's become an Oscar winner and Emmy voters love to reward movie stars. By far the biggest oversight was Kyle McLachlan's phenomenal performance(s) in Twin Peaks.
Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Claire Foy (“The Crown”)
Tatiana Maslany (“Orphan Black”)
Elisabeth Moss (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Sandra Oh (“Killing Eve”)
Keri Russell (“The Americans”)
Evan Rachel Wood (“Westworld”)
No big surprises, though I don't watch most of these shows.  Some snubs.  In particular, Mandy Moore in This Is Us who had a big scene when hee husband died.  And Chrissy Metz, too. Is the bloom already off the Us rose?  Also, no Emilia Clarke.  I guess relatives sleeping together (once again) on Game Of Thrones turned people off.
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Donald Glover (“Atlanta”)
Bill Hader (“Barry”)
Anthony Anderson (“Black-ish”)
William H. Macy (“Shameless”)
Larry David (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”)
Ted Danson (“The Good Place”)
Though a number of these don't excite me, still, pretty much the expected choices.  Both Glover and David produce and write their shows (and though David is memorable, is he much of an actor?).  Good to see Danson getting some attention.  Notice no one here who got caught in the MeToo movement.  And no one nominated playing a character named Sheldon.
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Pamela Adlon (“Better Things”)
Rachel Brosnahan (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)
Tracee Ellis Ross (“Black-ish”)
Allison Janney (“Mom”)
Lily Tomlin (“Grace and Frankie”)
Issa Rae (“Insecure”)
No big surprises here.  Based just on the pilot of the first season, I'd like to see Rachel Brosnahan win.  Biggest snub here is Alison Brie of GLOW--her series is nominated, why not her?
Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Antonio Banderas (“Genius: Picasso”)
Darren Criss (“The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story”)
Benedict Cumberbatch (“Patrick Melrose”)
Jeff Daniels (“The Looming Tower”)
John Legend (“Jesus Christ Superstar”)
Jesse Plemons (“USS Callister”)
Most of these I didn't see.  Intriguing that John Legend is nominated--is it because TV voters love stars of any kind?  Hey, couldn't they have nominted Al Pacino as Paterno--that's quite a snub.  It's be cool to see Jesse Plemons win--his imitation of Captain Kirk (and the basic creepiness behind much of Kirk) cracked me up.
Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Laura Dern (“The Tale”)
Jessica Biel (“The Sinner”)
Michelle Dockery (“Godless”)
Edie Falco (“The Menendez Murders”)
Regina King (“Seven Seconds”)
Sarah Paulson (“American Horror Story: Cult”)
Once again, didn't see most of these, though Dern was pretty good in The Tale.  (And if Jesse Plemons is nominated for "USS Callister," where's Cristin Milioti from same?)
Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (“Game of Thrones”)
Peter Dinklage (“Game of Thrones”)
Joseph Fiennes (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
David Harbour (“Stranger Things”)
Mandy Patinkin (“Homeland”)
Matt Smith (“The Crown”)
Finally some GOT names--the two most obvious, in fact (though they're leads, aren't they?).  Harbour is good, but how come the boys, who make Stranger Things what it is, get nothing?  Patinkin is always great as Berenson--isn't it time he won an Emmy for the role? 

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Alexis Bledel (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Millie Bobby Brown (“Stranger Things”)
Ann Dowd (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Lena Headey (“Game of Thrones”)
Vanessa Kirby (“The Crown”)
Thandie Newton (“Westworld”)
Yvonne Strahovski (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Lot of Handmaids here.  Too bad I don't get Hulu.  Millie Bobby Brown does a decent job, but while the show centers around her, does she give the most memorable performance in the series--how many times do we have to see her nose bleed?  (And I know she's a kid, but isn't she the lead?)  Good to see Lena Headey, even if her character has had better seasons--she still hasn't won an Emmy yet, and there won't be many more chances.  I would have liked to see Julia Garner from Ozark here.
Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Louie Anderson (“Baskets”)
Alec Baldwin (“Saturday Night Live”)
Tituss Burgess (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”)
Brian Tyree Henry (“Atlanta”)

Tony Shalhoub (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)
Kenan Thompson (“Saturday Night Live”)
Henry Winkler (“Barry”)

Good to see Winkler here--probably the most memorable performance in Barry (and he's never won an Emmy).  Thompson and (non-cast member) Baldwin from SNL--it's weird to see sketch performers against people playing regular roles in a series (though Baldwin only pays one role on the show these days).  The one I'd most like to see win is Brian Tyree Henry, who was even better in the second season of Atlanta than the first.  (And I'm sure some people are asking where's Lakeith Stanfield from the same show).  I guess John Goodman is a snub, though how much was Roseanne expecting?

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Zazie Beetz (“Atlanta”)
Alex Borstein (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)
Aidy Bryant (“Saturday Night Live”)
Betty Gilpin (“GLOW”)
Leslie Jones (“Saturday Night Live”)
Kate McKinnon (“Saturday Night Live”)
Laurie Metcalf (“Roseanne”)
Megan Mullally (“Will & Grace”)

Three gals from SNL (including Jones, who's a presence, but has a history of screwing up her lines more than anyone).  Roseanne finally gets a nomination (though Metcalf has done better stuff, including her previous work on the show).  Will & Grace also gets some notice.  And, with the Brie Snub, it's good to see Gilpin from GLOW getting some notice--it was almost as much her season as Brie's (and her story was more consistent).  Though no Sarah Goldberg from Barry.  Not famous enough?  Some thought Jessica Walter would get a nomination for Arrested Development because Jeffrey Tambor shouted at her.
Guest Actor in a Drama Series
F. Murray Abraham (“Homeland”)
Cameron Britton (“Mindhunter”)
Matthew Goode (“The Crown”)
Ron Cephas Jones (“This Is Us”)
Gerald McRaney (“This Is Us”)
Jimmi Simpson (“Westworld”)
Guest Actress in a Drama Series
Viola Davis (“Scandal”)
Kelly Jenrette (The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Cherry Jones (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Diana Rigg (“Game of Thrones”)
Cicely Tyson (“How to Get Away With Murder”)
Samira Wiley (“The Handmaid’s Tale”)
Guest Actor in a Comedy Series
Sterling K. Brown (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”)
Bryan Cranston (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”)
Donald Glover (“Saturday Night Live”)
Bill Hader (“Saturday Night Live”)
Lin-Manuel Miranda (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”)
Katt Williams (“Atlanta”)
Guest Actress in a Comedy Series 
Tina Fey (“Saturday Night Live”)
Tiffany Haddish (“Saturday Night Live”)
Jane Lynch (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)
Maya Rudolph (“The Good Place”)
Molly Shannon (“Will & Grace”)
Wanda Sykes (“Black-ish”)
Not going to comment on all the guest appearance nominees except to note it's a chance for names who have won awards elsewhere to pick up an easy Emmy.  Also, hey look, yet another nomination this year for Donald Glover, Bill Hader and Sterling K. Brown.
Reality Competition
“The Amazing Race”
“American Ninja Warrior”
“Project Runway”
“RuPaul’s Drag Race”
“Top Chef”
“The Voice”
My life is so much better since I stopped watching Reality Shows.
Variety Sketch Series
“Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
“Portlandia” (IFC)
“Drunk History” (Comedy Central)
“Tracey Ullman’s Show” (HBO)
“At Home with Amy Sedaris” (TruTV)
“I Love You, America” (Hulu)
SNL is more famous than the rest of these shows put together.
Variety Talk Series
“The Daily Show With Trevor Noah”
“Full Frontal With Samantha Bee”
“Jimmy Kimmel Live”
“Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”
“Late Late Show with James Corden
“Late Show with Stephen Colbert”
Notice anything about these six shows?  They're all anti-Trump-all-the-time. What a startling lack of diversity.  And there wasn't even room to include Late Night With Seth Meyers and (major snub) Real Time With Bill Maher.
Television Movie
Fahrenheit 451” (HBO)
“Flint” (Lifetime)
“Paterno” (HBO)
“The Tale” (HBO)
“Black Mirror: USS Callister” (Netflix)
An episode of Black Mirror is considered a TV movie. Probably makes it easier to get nominations, so they must be happy.  By the way, I liked "Callister" a lot, but my favorite of the season was probably "Metalhead"--it interests me that this episode seems to be rated the worst of the season by fans.
Structured Reality Program
“Antiques Roadshow” (PBS)
“Fixer Upper” (HGTV)
“Lip Sync Battle” (Paramount)
“Queer Eye” (Netflix)
“Shark Tank” (ABC)
“Who Do You Think You Are?” (TLC)
Unstructured Reality Program
“Born This Way” (A&E)
“Deadliest Catch” (Discovery)
“Intervention” (A&E)
“Naked and Afraid” (Discovery Channel)
“RuPaul’s Drag Race: Untucked” (VH1)
“United Shades of America With W. Kamau Bell” (CNN)
There are so many reality shows out there they now have different categories for them.  But aren't those nominated for "Unstructured" kind of insulted?

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