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Friday, July 25, 2014

Predicting The 2014 Emmy Winners: Best Guest Actor



* Beau Bridges (Masters of Sex)
* Dylan Baker (The Good Wife)
* Joe Morton (Scandal)
* Paul Giamatti (Downton Abbey)
* Reg E. Cathy (House of Cards)
* Robert Morse (Mad Men)


SHOULD BE NOMINATED: Robert Forster (Breaking Bad)

Although, for some reason, Forster and/or Breaking Bad didn't make the actor eligible to be nominated in this category, so I'll change my answer to Pedro Pascal (Game of Thrones)


* Mad Men actors have had horrific luck at the Emmy's. Despite the show itself winning 4 straight Outstanding Drama Series awards, no actor who was nominated for their work on Mad Men has ever won their category. That does not bode well for Robert Morse, even though his singing and dancing will be the highlight of his highlight reel. I actually preferred the natural leader Morse was throughout the first 99% of "Waterloo" but I guess you can't cast the star of How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying without having at least one musical number.

* While Morse made a strong case to break the Mad Men curse, I think the man who has to be the leader in the clubhouse is Beau Bridges. Not only is Bridges an Emmy darling- boasting 13 Primetime Emmy nominations and 3 wins- but he's great as the closeted homosexual Provost of Washington University during the 1950's. While Masters of Sex will always focus on Bill Masters' sex study, the most interesting parts of the show were always the stuff dealing with Bridges and his on-screen wife Allison Janney about how America actually dealt with sex during this time period. Bridges' character helped personify the best parts of this Showtime drama.

* Reg E. Cathy is probably best known for his work on The Wire (and for me for his work with Pablo Schreiber on the great but short lived FX boxing drama Lights Out), so I was very excited to see him randomly pop up as Freddy, the owner for Frank Underwood's favorite BBQ joint, during Season 1 of House of Cards. Freddy had a lot more to do in Season 2, and he even got his own mini-arc. He first rose becoming a personal caterer to the POTUS and VPOTUS and then was tragically disgraced thanks to the actions of his son. I may be upset that House of Cards received even more nominations this year than last year despite the quality of the show dropping, but I can't disagree with Cathy's nomination.

* The Good Wife has always filled this category in the past thanks to Nathan Lane, Michael J. Fox, and Alan Cumming, but it's perennial nominee Dylan Baker that becomes The Good Wife's sole representative in 2014 in this category. While I personally would have chosen Judge Jeffrey Tambor or Nathan Lane here, Baker's Colin Sweeney is a fan favorite that can't be ignored or hated.

As a side note, I really wished The Good Wife made Matthew Goode eligible in this category. He was great in his role as ASA Finn Polmar, and considering how prominent he was during the second half of the season, it was an extremely odd decision. As a sidenote to the sidenote, Goode played the superhero Ozymandias in Zach Snyder's Watchmen, and you will hear Breaking Bad's "Ozymandias" come up several times throughout these posts.

* While I strongly dislike Downton Abbey to my core thanks to the undeserved Primetime Emmy nominations it constantly receives, I'd bet you dollars to donuts that Paul Giamatti's nomination was well deserved. Giamatti is a fantastic character actor earning an Oscar nomination for his work on Sideways Cinderella Man and an Emmy nominee for his work on the HBO mini-series John Adams. He was probably pretty good on the PBS drama as well.

* I have seen the first season of Scandal on Netflix, and I refuse to watch any more. I don't care how many Emmy nominations the show receives, I refuse to watch it. Therefore, I refuse to comment on Joe Morton's performance. I will say that he was very good in Terminator 2: Judgment Day... so, there's that.

WHO WILL WIN: Beau Bridges (Masters of Sex)

WHO SHOULD WIN (ACTUAL NOMINEES): Beau Bridges (Masters of Sex)

WHO SHOULD WIN (ENTIRE ELIGIBLE FIELD): Pedro Pascal (Game of Thrones)



* Bob Newhart (The Big Bang Theory)
* Gary Cole (Veep)
* Jimmy Fallon (Saturday Night Live)
* Louis C.K. (Saturday Night Live)
* Nathan Lane (Modern Family)
* Steve Buscemi (Portlandia)


SHOULD BE NOMINATED: Pablo Schreiber (Orange Is The New Black)

Considering the vast amount of nominations Orange Is The New Black received, it's obvious Emmy voters have seen and love the show as much as the rest of us. So how in the hell can you ignore the greatness that is Pornstache?! I understand that Schreiber's Mendez was the most broad and cliche character on the show, but the over-the-top nature of Schreiber's acting was perfect for this particular part. I thought Pablo Schreiber was so good that the show should have taken a risk and submitted Schreiber in the crowded Outstanding Supporting Actor category, so the fact that he was snubbed in this "inferior category" is ludicrous.


* SPOILER ALERT: I am going to belittle the acting of Louis C.K. soon in another post, but I can't deny the greatness that was Louis C.K.'s job hosting Saturday Night Live for a second time. From the best monologue any host has ever done in a decade to Black Jeopardy, the stand up comedian did an incredible thing- he made SNL funny again. The other SNL host in this category is Jimmy Fallon (not Justin Timberlake playing Jimmy Fallon). While I actually would have given the nomination to Timberlake as opposed to Fallon, the latter has the #1 late night show on television and is dominating the zeitgeist. Of course he was going to earn the nomination. Plus, it's always an event every time one of the greatest impersonators SNL has ever had comes back to host.

* I feel that Steve Buscemi is best known as a serious dramatic actor considering his roles in Boardwalk Empire, Fargo, and The Sopranos. But one of Hollywood's best kept secrets is that he's really, really funny. Adam Sandler has known this for years considering Buscemi's roles in The Wedding Singer, Big Daddy, and Mr. Deeds. It shouldn't be a surprise that Buscemi is great at doing comedy, as comedy is hard and you need to be a good actor to pull it off well. While I strongly dislike Portlandia, I was able to check out Buscemi's Emmy submission episode "Celery" on YouTube. It should be no surprise that it is great and hilarious.

* Nathan Lane has made a career out of playing flamboyant and over-the-top characters. While I probably prefer his toned down work more (i.e. his work on The Good Wife), Pepper Saltzman is great. The biggest story line of Modern Family this past season was Mitch and Cam's wedding, and Pepper played a huge part in that.

* Gary Cole is probably the greatest comedic character actor of our time. He's best known for playing Lumbergh in Office Space, but he's had memorable bit parts in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Tammy, and Pineapple Express as well as memorable roles in television shows like The Good Wife, Archer, Suits, and of course Veep. This category is tailor made for Cole.

* Bob Newhart is the reigning champion of this category and is a living legend. He also has one of the best deliveries in the history of comedy. While I can't stand The Big Bang Theory, Bob Newhart is really funny during his handful of appearances on the CBS sitcom. His Emmy submission episode "The Proton Transmogrification" deals with the death of his character, TV host Professor Proton. It's sort of an odd nomination considering characters talk about Bob Newhart's character more than we actually see him, but Professor Proton helps Sheldon (in dream sequences) deal with some deeper emotional issues which is always great Emmy bait- albeit better Emmy bait for Jim Parsons rather than Bob Newhart. 

WHO WILL WIN: Jimmy Fallon (Saturday Night Live)

WHO SHOULD WIN (ACTUAL NOMINEES): Louis C.K. (Saturday Night Live)

WHO SHOULD WIN (ENTIRE ELIGIBLE FIELD): Pablo Schreiber (Orange Is The New Black)



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