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New Nominating System, Same Old Emmy Nominations

And the Emmy nominations are... really quite pathetic.

In a year where many thought the Television Academy's new nomination system would buck the trend of recent years and showcase some critically acclaimed but criminally neglected series like Gilmore Girls or Battlestar Galactica, the nominations are painfully boring and middle-of-the-road.

Part of me was hoping that this would be the year that Lauren Graham would finally (finally!) be singled out for recognition or that series like Veronica Mars would get a nod, but the other, more jaded part of me knew that it would most likely be the same old, same old for the stodgy Academy. Still, I couldn't tell you how depressed the nominations made me this morning. (Talk about getting up at the crack of dawn for nothing.)

There were a few bright spots, like Lisa Kudrow getting a nom for her deliriously wacky performance as put-upon actress Valerie Cherish on HBO's sadly missed The Comeback (I think I was one of the only people actually watching it) or My Name is Earl's divine Jaime Pressly, whose Joy makes me howl with laughter on a weekly basis. And of course, I'm thrilled that Steve Carell, The Office, Scrubs, and Arrested Development were singled out.

That said, where are nominations for Veronica Mars, Gilmore Girls, Battlestar Galactica, or--hell--Lost? Other than a writing nomination and some technical categories, the drama behemoth was altogether shut out of all of the major races. No love for Terry O'Quinn or the other castaways?

Alfre Woodard for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy? Alfre Woodard? Don't get me wrong, I love Alfre to pieces, but was that even a comedic role? A woman locks her mentally disabled son in the basement? Not exactly the funniest thing I've heard all year. And it's become obvious that the once critical darling Desperate Housewives has lost its luster, even in the eyes of the Academy.

I've listed the major categories below as well as my thoughts on the nominations. But it's a dark day here in Hollywood and I can't say that I'm pleased by this "new and improved" nominating system, the outcome of which seems suspiciously similar to the old system...

Outstanding Comedy Series

Arrested Development -- FOX -- Imagine Television and The Hurwitz Company in association with 20th Century Fox Television

Curb Your Enthusiasm -- HBO -- HBO Entertainment

The Office -- NBC -- Deedle Dee Productions, Reveille, LLC in association with NBC Universal Television Studios

Scrubs -- NBC -- Touchstone Television

Two And A Half Men -- CBS -- Chuck Lorre Productions, Inc., The Tannenbaum Company in association with Warner Bros. Television Productions, a Division of WB Studio Enterprises Inc.

>>I'm actually pretty happy with the above, though I'd much rather have seen My Name is Earl get the nomination over CBS' Two and a Half Men, which I've yet to be able to sit through an episode of. If it HAD to be a CBS series, then why not Old Christine or How I Met Your Mother instead?

Outstanding Drama Series

Grey's Anatomy -- ABC -- Touchstone Television

House -- FOX -- Heel and Toe Productions, Shorez Productions and Bad Hat Harry Productions in association with Universal Television Studios

The Sopranos -- HBO -- Chase Films and Brad Grey Television in association with HBO Entertainment

24 -- FOX -- Imagine Entertainment and 20th Century Fox Television in association with Real Time Productions

The West Wing -- NBC -- John Wells Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television

>>Wow. Just really... wow. You mean to tell me that The Sopranos topped the nominations received by Lost?!? I can honestly say that I don't know a single person who has enjoyed watching this past season of The Sopranos and yet it somehow edged out Lost? My blood is boiling. No love for Veronica Mars, Rome, The 4400, Big Love, or Battlestar Galactica, obviously.

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Comedy Series

Curb Your Enthusiasm -- HBO -- HBO Entertainment
Larry David as Himself

The King Of Queens -- CBS -- Sony Pictures Television
Kevin James as Doug Heffernan

Monk -- USA -- NBC Universal Television Studios in association with Makeville Films and Touchstone Television
Tony Shalhoub as Adrian Monk

The Office -- NBC -- Deedle Dee Productions, Reveille, LLC in association with NBC Universal Television Studios
Steve Carell as Michael Scott

Two And A Half Men -- CBS -- Chuck Lorre Productions, Inc., The Tannenbaum Company in association with Warner Bros. Television Productions, a Division of WB Studio Enterprises Inc.
Charlie Sheen as Charlie Harper

>>Um, I love Larry David, but I'll definitely be routing for The Office's Steve Carell in this category. Kevin James for King of Queens? Are you people serious? Over Jason Lee or Jason Bateman??? Or John Krasinski?!?

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit -- NBC -- A Wolf Films production in association with NBC Universal Television
Christopher Meloni as Detective Elliot Stabler

Rescue Me -- FX Network -- Apostle, The Cloudland Company and Dreamworks Television in association with Sony Pictures Television
Denis Leary as Tommy Gavin

Six Feet Under -- HBO -- Actual Size and the Greenblatt/Janollari Studios in association with HBO Entertainment
Peter Krause as Nate Fisher

24 -- FOX - Imagine Entertainment and 20th Century Fox Television in association with Real Time Productions
Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer

The West Wing -- NBC -- John Wells Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television
Martin Sheen as President Josiah Bartlet

>>One word: predictable.

Outstanding Lead Actress In A Comedy Series

The Comeback -- HBO -- Working Class and Is Or Isn't Entertainment in association with HBO Entertainment
Lisa Kudrow as Valerie Cherish

Malcolm In The Middle -- FOX -- Regency Television in association with 20th Century Fox Television
Jane Kaczmarek as Lois

The New Adventures Of Old Christine -- CBS - Kari's Logo Here in association with Warner Bros. Television
Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Christine Campbell

Out Of Practice -- CBS -- CBS Paramount Network Television
Stockard Channing as Lydia Barnes

Will & Grace - NBC -- KoMut Entertainment in association with NBC Studios and Three Sisters Entertainment
Debra Messing as Grace

>>I'm thrilled to see Lisa Kudrow and Julia Louis-Dreyfus represented here for their work in The Comeback and Old Christine respectively, but Debra Messing again? And I loved Malcolm in the Middle waaay back in the day, but enough with Jane Kaczmarek already, please? Stockard Channing for Out of Practice? I had forgotten that the show had ever existed. Where are Lauren Graham or Jenna Fischer? Or Mary Louise Parker for Weeds?

Outstanding Lead Actress In A Drama Series

The Closer -- TNT -- Shephard/Robin Company in association with Warner Bros. Television
Kyra Sedgwick as Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson

Commander In Chief -- ABC -- Touchstone Television
Geena Davis as Mackenzie Allen

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit -- NBC -- A Wolf Films production in association with NBC Universal Television
Mariska Hargitay as Detective Olivia Benson

Six Feet Under -- HBO -- Actual Size and the Greenblatt/Janollari Studios in association with HBO Entertainment
Frances Conroy as Ruth Fisher

The West Wing -- NBC -- John Wells Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television
Allison Janney as C.J. Cregg

>>I could have predicted these nominations in my sleep. Talk about being unoriginal. These were the five best dramatic performances of the year? Um, did anyone actually see Mary McDonnell's performance in Battlestar Galactica? Anyone? Something is rotten in the state of Denmark...

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Comedy Series

Arrested Development -- FOX -- Imagine Television and The Hurwitz Company in association with 20th Century Fox Television
Will Arnett as Gob Bluth

Entourage -- HBO -- Leverage and Closest to the Hole Productions in association with HBO Entertainment
Jeremy Piven as Ari Gold

Malcolm In The Middle -- FOX -- Regency Television in association with 20th Century Fox Television
Bryan Cranston as Hal

Two And A Half Men - CBS -- Chuck Lorre Productions, Inc., The Tannenbaum Company in association with Warner Bros. Television Productions, a Division of WB Studio Enterprises Inc.
Jon Cryer as Alan Harper

Will & Grace -- NBC -- KoMut Entertainment in association with NBC Studios and Three Sisters Entertainment
Sean Hayes as Jack

>>I am deliriously happy that Arrested Development's Will Arnett got a nomination for his work as sleazy magician Gob Bluth and I definitely hope he walks away with a win. He's the only one of Arrested's immensely talented cast to get a nomination this year. My fingers are crossed so tightly that they're bleeding. Bryan Cranston? Hmmm. Didn't see that one coming, but there seems to be a trend shaping up here with some love being poured onto the recently departed Malcolm. (I am surprised though by his inclusion as I didn't see any of Cranston's annoying campaign ads in the trades this year.) And while Jeremy Piven is hilarious as Entourage's Ari Gold, does anyone else get the sense that he's sort of playing himself? Better question: where's Rainn Wilson?

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series

Boston Legal -- ABC -- David E. Kelley Productions in association with 20th Century Fox Television Studios
William Shatner as Denny Crane

Huff -- Showtime -- Showtime Presents in association with Sony Pictures Television, A Bob Lowry Television Show Production, A 50 Cannon Entertainment Production
Oliver Platt as Russell Tupper

The Sopranos -- HBO -- Chase Films and Brad Grey Television in association with HBO Entertainment
Michael Imperioli as Christopher Moltisanti

24 -- FOX -- Imagine Entertainment and 20th Century Fox Television in association with Real Time Productions
Gregory Itzin as President Charles Logan

The West Wing -- NBC -- John Wells Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television
Alan Alda as Arnold Vinick

>>A lot of people I know will be thrilled by Itzin's nomination, but I was really hoping to see Edward James Olmos or Jamie Bamber up here. (Hell, continuing the BSG love, where's James Callis?)

Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Comedy Series

Curb Your Enthusiasm -- HBO -- HBO Entertainment
Cheryl Hines as Cheryl David

Desperate Housewives -- ABC -- Touchstone Television
Alfre Woodard as Betty Applewhite

My Name Is Earl -- NBC -- An Amigos de Garcia production in association with 20th Century Fox Television
Jaime Pressly as Joy

Weeds -- Showtime -- Showtime Presents in association with Lions Gate Television and Tilted Productions
Elizabeth Perkins as Celia Hodes

Will & Grace -- NBC -- KoMut Entertainment in association with NBC Studios and Three Sisters Entertainment
Megan Mullally as Karen

>>J'aime Jaime Pressly. If she doesn't win this, I'll eat my hat. I've made my feelings about Alfre Woodard's nomination abundantly clear already, but I am pleased to see Curb's Cheryl Hines get a nomination as Larry's poor put-upon wife. Still, I am all about Jamie Pressly.

Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama Series

Boston Legal -- ABC -- David E. Kelley Productions in association with 20th Century Fox Television Studios
Candice Bergen as Shirley Schmidt

Grey's Anatomy -- ABC -- Touchstone Television
Sandra Oh as Cristina Yang

Grey's Anatomy -- ABC -- Touchstone Television
Chandra Wilson as Dr. Bailey

Huff -- Showtime -- Showtime Presents in association with Sony Pictures Television, A Bob Lowry Television Show Production, A 50 Cannon Entertainment Production
Blythe Danner as Izzy Huffstodt

24 -- FOX -- Imagine Entertainment and 20th Century Fox Television in association with Real Time Productions
Jean Smart as First Lady Martha Logan

>>Unless there's an upset, I'll give the win to Sandra Oh. Sadly, it's not a category I'm remotely invested in.

Outstanding Writing For A Comedy Series

Arrested Development -- "Development Arrested" -- FOX -- Imagine Television and The Hurwitz Company in association with 20th Century Fox Television
Chuck Tatham, Teleplay by
Jim Vallely, Teleplay by
Richard Day, Story by
Mitchell Hurwitz, Story by

Entourage -- "Exodus" -- HBO -- Leverage and Closest to the Hole Productions in association with HBO Entertainment
Doug Ellin, Written by

Extras -- "Kate Winslet" -- HBO -- BBC and HBO Entertainment
Ricky Gervais, Written by
Stephen Merchant, Written by

My Name Is Earl -- "Pilot" -- NBC -- An Amigos de Garcia production in association with 20th Century Fox Television
Greg Garcia, Written by

The Office -- "Christmas Party" -- NBC -- Deedle Dee Productions, Reveille, LLC in association with NBC Universal Television Studios
Michael Schur, Written by

>>I'm actually quite happy with these nominations and pleasantly surprised by the inclusion of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant's Extras (though wish it would have been Scrubs instead). Five of my very favorite comedies and not a King of Queens or Two and a Half Men in the bunch. I'm always happy when AD gets some recognition. Still, I'm definitely routing for The Office's Michael Schur to win this. I bloody love that episode.

Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series

Grey's Anatomy -- "It's the End Of The World, As We Know It (Part 1 & 2)" -- ABC -- Touchstone Television
Shonda Rhimes, Written by

Grey's Anatomy -- "Into You Like A Train" -- ABC -- Touchstone Television
Krista Vernoff, Written by

Lost -- "The 23rd Psalm" -- ABC -- Grass Skirt Productions, LLC in association with Touchstone Television
Carlton Cuse, Written by
Damon Lindelof, Written by

Six Feet Under -- "Everyone's Waiting" -- HBO -- Actual Size and the Greenblatt/Janollari Studios in association with HBO Entertainment
Alan Ball, Written by

The Sopranos -- "Members Only" -- HBO -- Chase Films and Brad Grey Television in association with HBO Entertainment
Terence Winter, Written by

>>For me, it's all about showing some love to Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof for their breathtaking work on Lost this season. If the show can't even get a nomination for Best Drama, the least the Academy can do is to reward the series' toiling architects.

What did you think of the nominations? Which actors and series deserved their nominations? And which ones were wrongfully left in the cold? (Ahem, Kristen Bell.)

What's On Tonight

8 pm: Big Brother 7: All-Stars (CBS); My Name is Earl/The Office (NBC); Smallville (WB); Master of Champions (ABC); That '70s Show/That '70s Show (FOX); Everybody Hates Chris/Love, Inc. (UPN)

9 pm: Rock Star: Supernova (CBS); The Office/The Office (NBC); Supernatural (WB); Grey's Anatomy (ABC); So You Think You Can Dance (FOX); Eve/Cuts (UPN)

10 pm: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (CBS); Windfall (NBC); Grey's Anatomy (ABC)

What I'll Be Watching

8-9 pm: My Name is Earl/The Office.

On tonight's repeat episode ("Broke Joy's Fancy Figurine"), Earl attempts to make up for destroying Joy's beauty pageant figurine by helping Joy's former nemesis and her daughter win a beauty competition. Afterwards, it's a special re-airing of the pilot of The Office ("Pilot"), which is hands down my least favorite episode (too much similarity to the UK original for my taste).

9-10 pm: The Office/The Office.

Lucky me: three back-to-back episodes of The Office tonight. On tonight's second repeat episode of The Office ("Conflict Resolution"), Michael tries to take responsibility of Dunder-Mifflin's conflict resolution away from Human Resources, causing all sorts of chaos. And then a half an hour later, it's the second season finale of The Office ("Casino Night"). You know, the one where Jim and Pam get all smoochy and I pretend I'm not crying.

Comments

Anonymous said…
ugh and double ugh.

Yes, the AD noms were great. Love that they were there. But all the KOQ and 2 1/2 Men noms? I just don't get it. Like you said - even on that net HIMYM and Old Christine are far better.

Alfre is such a puzzler. Not only was her character completely underdeveloped and underused, but I think her story was one of the contributing factors to the shows decline. And she wasn't at all funny. Now, I understand the lack of love for DH, but the acting was still top notch, and Marcia Cross should definitely have been there over the tired Stockard.

Allison Janney? Again? Really? Not surprised, per se, just really wish it was different.

Very happy about Scrubs.

Not happy about the GG shutout, or VM shutout.

Chris deserved more, too. Mama should have been nominated. Stockard should be hiding in a corner somewhere. Ashamed.
Anonymous said…
I was really hoping the Emmy Nominations would recognize some new (and more deserving ) talent this year. But, once again, I have been let down.

While I'm glad that "The Office" and "Arrested" got some attention I cannot believe the lack of love for "Earl," "Veronica Mars," "Lost," "Everybody Hates Chris," and "Gilmore's" Lauren Graham.

While shows like "Malcom," "Will and Grace," and "Sopranos" may have been good seasons ago, I cannot believe they are still getting kudos. All of them have long since grown stale.

Guess the new nomination system is a bust.
Vance said…
Worst Nominations EVER and the irony is that they built this year up as the year Emmy's will change and be different and new. PULEEZE...

with the few exceptions that you listed,(AD, Jaime Presly, Scrubs, Steve Carell, Jean Smart, Lisa Kudrow), everything else is pretty horrible this year.
ticknart said…
I'd really like to see Bryan Cranston win the Emmy. I know, Malcolm hasn't been very good for years, but he should have won the award years ago. Of course, if Will Arnett takes the statue, I'll be just as happy.

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