TV

Emmy Nominations 2013: My Quick Thoughts (THE FRICKIN’ BUTLER?!)

So the 2013 Emmy nominations were announced earlier today, bringing a period of speculation, campaigning, and “If  I had an Emmy ballot” wishlists to an end. And as expected, the nominations announced have brought with them plenty of commiserations, unexpected delights, and plentiful yawping from poor souls convinced that shows far down on the Emmy hierarchy, like Castle, were poised to clinch a nomination.

I plan on discussing the Emmy nominations in extensive detail pretty soon, but for now, I’ve compiled my (very) quick thoughts on several, but not all, of the categories for you to pour over. From the title of this post, you can probably guess one choice I am REALLY not happy about, but there were a few selections I am thrilled about.

OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES

The nominees:

  • Hugh Bonneville – Downton Abbey
  • Jon Hamm – Mad Men
  • Damien Lewis – Homeland
  • Jeff Daniels – The Newsroom
  • Bryan Cranston – Breaking Bad
  • Kevin Spacey – House of Cards

Hugh Bonneville: Really, Emmys? I would really love to know which scenes you considered Bonneville to be worthy of being nominated for two years in a row, because from what I saw, there were very few, if any. Useless nomination.

Jon Hamm: He won’t win, he’ll probably never win, but he still deserves his nomination nevertheless. I predicted his name in this list and I’m unsurprised to see him there.

Damien Lewis: Expected. He had some very strong material in Homeland‘s second season, even if the season overall was weaker, so I’m pleased to see his name again.

Jeff Daniels: He wouldn’t have been a personal choice of mine, but I predicted his name would be here because he seems, evidently rightly so, to be perfect bait for Academy members to vote for. I’m not completely displeased to see him nominated, but I think there would’ve been much stronger candidates to take his position.

Bryan Cranston: OMG I REALLY DIDN’T EXPE–

Kevin Spacey: Another of my predictions that came true. I suspected that House of Cards would make itself known in this year’s batch of Emmy nominees, and there would’ve been no way Spacey would’ve missed out on a nomination. Heck, he might even be this year’s ‘Damien Lewis’ and win the thing above somebody like Cranston, but that remains to be seen.

Notable snubs: Matthew Rhys (The Americans), Hugh Dancy (Hannibal), Andrew Lincoln (The Walking Dead), Michael C. Hall (Dexter). How could somebody nominate Hugh Bonneville over somebody as immensely talented as Matthew Rhys or Hugh Dancy? My mind is boggled.

Accuracy of my predictions: 5/6

OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES

The Nominees:

  • Connie Britton – Nashville
  • Claire Danes – Homeland
  • Michelle Dockery – Downton Abbey
  • Vera Farmiga – Bates Motel
  • Elisabeth Moss – Mad Men
  • Kerry Washington – Scandal
  • Robin Wright – House of Cards

Connie Britton: I was hesitant in predicting she would be nominated, but now that I think about it, I’m really not that surprised. The Academy absolutely ADORES her and would nominate her even if she was in something as interminably horrible as Hemlock Grove, so it’s no surprise that they’ve nominated her again. I suspect her nomination is mostly on the basis of popularity rather than how deserved it is, but that’s how a lot of these nominations ultimately work.

Claire Danes: The sky would probably have fallen and killed us all in our sleep if Danes hadn’t been nominated. Anybody that expected anything different really ought to watch her performances in Homeland‘s second season to see why it was never in any doubt.

Michelle Dockery: Yawn. Look, I don’t dislike Dockery by any means, but I feel it’s absurd handing her a nomination above much, much stronger actresses deserving of it. That being said, she’s probably the Downton-related nomination I’m the least unhappy about.

Vera Farmiga: I haven’t watched Bates Motel to be able to give an opinion on her performances, but I saw the almost universal praise for her and the heavy campaign to get her nominated, so it’s not completely unsurprising. But I still didn’t expect it.

Elisabeth Moss: Again, an unsurprising nominee who’s been nominated countless times for her work on Mad Men and hasn’t once won the category, and likely never will. Still, she was rock solid in the show’s sixth season and I’m glad she’s on this list, even if it is redundant.

Kerry Washington: YEEEES! I am so thrilled about Washington’s nomination that it’s hard to even put it into words. She was probably the one I was rooting for the most (out of the newcomers) to be nominated, and I had my doubts, but to see her name up there fills me with so much excitable joy.

Robin Wright: I strongly suspect that Wright’s nomination here is purely based off of her popularity among Academy members, because quite frankly, while I didn’t find her a bad actress in House of Cards‘ first season by any means, I also didn’t find her particularly remarkable, either. A disappointing nomination considering the stronger competition.

Notable snubs: TATIANA MASLANY (I’M SO ANGRY!!) (Orphan Black), Keri Russell (The Americans), Julianna Marguiles (The Good Wife) (how the hell can you snub Julianna Marguiles?! Outrageous), Katey Sagal (again) (Sons of Anarchy).

Accuracy of my predictions: 4/7

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES

The Nominees:

  • Bobby Cannavale – Boardwalk Empire
  • Aaron Paul – Breaking Bad
  • Jonathan Banks – Breaking Bad
  • Peter Dinklage – Game of Thrones
  • Mandy Patinkin – Homeland
  • Jim Carter – Downton  Abbey

Bobby Cannavale: I don’t watch the show, I’m not aware of anybody I talk about TV with that does, he won’t win, and that’s all that needs to be said.

Aaron Paul: You should already be aware of how much I ADORE Aaron Paul (and not just for his delectable face, either), but this nomination was completely expected, and deserved.

Jonathan Banks: Again, like Aaron Paul, Banks’ nomination comes as no surprise. This is the only time he’ll be able to be nominated for the show (you can blame Walter White for that, the bastard), so I’m pleased that he’s gotten the recognition he deserves.

Peter Dinklage: As above, Dinklage’s nomination was expected. While he is always a joy to watch, I would’ve much rather preferred to see co-star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau’s name here instead, because his material in Game of Thrones‘ third season was definitely stronger. But I’m still pleased nonetheless.

Mandy Patinkin: This is Patinkin’s first nomination for the show and one that isn’t at all surprising to see. His material in the show’s second season was more plentiful and allowed him to show off his talent even more, and giving him an Emmy nomination at the end of that was something that was always going to happen.

Jim Carter: THE GODDAMN BUTLER!! I was angry to see his name in the nominations last year because it’s so incredibly RIDICULOUS that it defies words, but to see it happen again is enough to finish me off. CARSON LITERALLY DOES NOTHING IN DOWNTON ABBEY! How on Earth the Academy can justify nominating him based on a small handful of scenes comprised of nothing but scowling and grumpiness is beyond me. I fully believe the Academy is living in the past when it comes to Downton Abbey, firmly in the belief that the show is still as good as it once was, but it just isn’t. Nominations like this prove how much they look at the show with heart-shaped glasses masking their vision.

Notable snubs: Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones), Michael Cudlitz (Southland), Corey Stoll (House  of Cards) (for all the love the show has gotten this year, I’m surprised they ignored one of its strongest performers), Noah Emmerich (The Americans).

Accuracy of my predictions: 4/6

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES

The Nominees:

  • Anna Gunn – Breaking Bad
  • Maggie Smith – Downton Abbey
  • Emilia Clarke – Game of Thrones
  • Christine Baranski – The Good Wife
  • Christina Hendricks – Mad Men
  • Morena Baccarin – Homeland

Anna Gunn: An expected nomination but still one that fills me with immense joy. I would really love this category to be hers this year, but I fear the unstoppable machine known as Maggie Smith will put an end to that hope once again.

Maggie Smith: I fear the Emmy awards would collapse on itself if Maggie Smith wasn’t nominated. I adore Smith, and I’ve said as much many times in the past, but her character is basically just a vessel for delivering fabulous one-liners repeatedly. And she’s excellent at it, too, but awarding her the Emmy time after time is getting tiresome considering the vastly superior competition she’s up against.

Emilia Clarke: This is probably the nomination I’m most surprised about because I honestly believed that nobody except for Peter Dinklage had a chance at being nominated from Game of Thrones. But regardless of that, I am OVERJOYED. I highly doubt she will win but to see her name up there is good enough for now.

Christine Baranski: I predicted that co-star Archie Panjabi would fail to be nominated this year and that Baranski would be the only one successful, and I was right. And it’s a good job, too, because were it not for Baranski’s nomination, The Good Wife would be absent from this year’s main categories entirely.

Christina Hendricks: If you’re an actor from Mad Men, you’ll be nominated countless times and, for some reason, never win. Hendricks knows this better than anyone.

Morena Baccarin: An unsurprising nomination and somebody I’m delighted to see nominated. I sometimes feel that the attention gets placed elsewhere regarding Homeland‘s cast, and that people mostly ignore Baccarin despite the fact she’s an excellent actress, so I’m delighted to see her recognized.

Notable snubs: Archie Panjabi (The Good Wife), Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter), Monica Potter (Parenthood), Bellamy Young (Scandal).

Accuracy of my predictions: 5/6

OUTSTANDING DRAMA SERIES

The Nominees:

  • Breaking Bad
  • Game of Thrones
  • Homeland
  • Downton Abbey
  • House of Cards
  • Mad Men

Breaking BadGiven how utterly fantastic season 5.1 was, its nomination here is absolutely deserved.

Game of ThronesA stronger, compelling third season means its third nomination in this category is more than welcome.

HomelandThe show’s nomination was deserved last year; it isn’t this time around. What was an utterly sublime show in 2011 became a messy shadow of itself in 2012, and although there was never any doubt that the Academy would nominate it, it really doesn’t deserve a place on this list.

Downton Abbey: In an ideal world, the Academy would wake up to the fact that Downton Abbey isn’t as good a show as they think it is. That’s even more true for the third season that even with some moments of brilliance, was mostly a dull, lifeless affair. But they love Downton, unfortunately, and that’s not likely to change any time soon.

House of CardsThis is the show that snatched away potential nominations for The Good WifeThe Americans and Orphan Black–and it HURTS. I didn’t dislike House of Cards by any means, but there were far more deserving candidates on this list whose absences make me resent its presence.

Mad Men: This is the only category where the show has ever stood a chance, and while that chance has dissipated into dust this year, I’m still glad it’s here where it belongs.

Notable snubs: Orphan BlackThe Good WifeBoardwalk EmpireThe AmericansScandal.

Accuracy of my predictions: 6/6 (GO ME!)

Because this post has gone on longer than I expected, I’ll leave out the comedy categories. But they will be mentioned when I discuss these nominations in more detail later on. In the meantime, please feel free to get involved in the comment box below and let me know your thoughts on this year’s Emmy nominations!

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