Friday, June 30, 2006

My Emmy Nominations

Back in March, I did a post with all my Oscar nominations,and now it's time to do the same for the Emmys. The actual nominations are out next week, but here's what I think they should be. Now, I'm a bit handicapped because I can only put down people who are on shows that I actually watch, but there's a pretty solid mix of shows. In some cases, I chose to combine comedy and drama, just because I don't watch that many shows and I wanted to put people down who actually have done good work. And, rather than doing seperate writing and directing catergories, I combined them into a Best Episode catergory. And one final note, the eligibility period was June 1, 2005 to May 31, 2006, which means that a couple of shows that are now gone are making the return here. On to the awards...

Supporting Actor (Comedy):
Will Arnette - 'Gob' on Arrested Development
Michael Cera - 'George Michael' on Arrested Development
David Cross - 'Tobias' on Arrested Development
Kevin Dillon - 'Johnny Drama' on Entourage
David Sutcliffe - 'Christopher' on Gilmore Girls

Arrested clearly had a lot of fantastic performances, but the most consistently funny one on the show is Michael Cera as George Michael. His bizarre relationship with Maebe in the final few episodes of the series gave him some of his best material and he managed to get huge laughs by underplaying the material.

Supporting Actress (Comedy):
Kelly Bishop - 'Emily' on Gilmore Girls
Alexis Bledel - 'Rory' on Gilmore Girls
Portia De Rossi - 'Lindsay' on Arrested Development
Alia Shawkat - 'Maebe' on Arrested Development
Jessica Walter - 'Lucille' on Arrested Development

Two of the people in this category are basically playing the same character, Kelly Bishop and Jessica Walter, the only difference is that one lives in a relatively real world and the other lives in a crazy cartoon world. However, I think the best performance here is by Portia de Rossi who went to such weird places in the final few episodes of the series.

Supporting Actor (Drama):
James Callis - 'Gaius Baltar' on Battlestar Galactica
Michael Imperioli - 'Christopher' on The Sopranos
Chris Messina - 'Ted' on Six Feet Under
Tony Sirico - 'Paulie' on The Sopranos
Jeremy Sisto - 'Billy' on Six Feet Under

This is a category with a ton of worthy people, you could easily get five from the cast of The Sopranos alone. However, the winner here is Michael Imperioli, who always remained emotionally intense even when the show started to drift towards the end of the season. His lingering issues about Adrianna's death and the direction of his life provided some of the season's best material.

Supporting Actress (Drama):
Tricia Helfer - 'Six' on Battlestar Galactica
Tina Holmes - 'Maggie' on Six Feet Under
Grace Park - 'Sharon' on Battlestar Galactica
Katie Sackhoff - 'Kara' on Battlestar Galactica
Grace Zabriskie - 'Lois' on Big Love

Another catergory with a surplus of great performances, however the best is Grace Park, who had to create two seperate, but very similar characters and pulled it off entirely. She provided the best moments in the weak run during the second half of the season and her work at the end of the year, particularly in Downloaded was fantastic. She's one of those people who makes every scene they're in great.

James Gandolfini - 'Tony' on The Sopranos
Michael C. Hall - 'David' on Six Feet Under
Peter Krause - 'Nate' on Six Feet Under
Julian McMahon - 'Christian' on Nip/Tuck
Kiefer Sutherland - 'Jack Bauer' on 24

For me, Peter Krause is Nate, I don't watch him and say "That's a great performance," I just see it as someone who exists and is living his life. While the Oscars usually reward stuff like Ray or Capote, where you're always aware of watching a 'great performance,' I think the best acting is like Krause's, where there is no apparent line between the character and the person. His angst during the early part of the season leads to the absolutely brutal breakup with Brenda on his death bed. He went through a lot this season, and I would consider Krause's work as Nate over the course of the series the greatest television performance of all time.

Lauren Ambrose - 'Claire' on Six Feet Under
Kristen Bell - 'Veronica' on Veronica Mars
Edie Falco - 'Carmela' on The Sopranos
Lauren Graham - 'Lorelai' on Gilmore Girls
Rachel Griffiths - 'Brenda' on Six Feet Under

This is the best bunch of performances of any of the acting categories, and if you compare it to the best actress nominations at the Oscars, it's pretty clear that women are getting much more to do on TV. Falco and Graham did some of their best work this year, but no one can top Rachel Griffiths, and her work as Brenda. Take everything I said about Krause above and repeat it, because she does the same level of brilliant work. The thought of her going through this extended story about miscarriages and possible genetic disease while actually pregnant is crazy, but she takes it and does some of her best work. The one scene that stands out for me is the dream where she and Billy are about to have sex, it's such a creepy scene, but she handles it perfectly. Brilliant work.

Episode (Comedy):
Arrested Development – ‘Development Arrested’
Entourage – ‘I Love You Too’
Gilmore Girls – ‘I Get a Sidekick Out of You’
Gilmore Girls – ‘Partings’
Gilmore Girls – ‘The New and Improved Lorelai’

Obviously, Gilmore Girls had a lot of great stuff, but the best comedy episode of the season was the insanity of Development Arrested, which saw the series spin further into craziness then it had gone before. They knew they were cancelled, so Hurwitz and co. took this as the opportunity to break down all the taboos and go to a very odd place. It's very satisfying as a series finale, with the biggest highlight being the return of Anyong. It was a great way to go out.

Episode (Drama):
Battlestar Galactica – ‘Downloaded’
Six Feet Under – ‘Ecotone’
Six Feet Under – ‘Everyone’s Waiting’
The Sopranos – ‘Join the Club’
The Sopranos – Mr. and Mrs. Sacrimoni Request…’

The final five minutes of the series were its best, but the best episode of Six Feet Under's final season, and the best episode of the year, was Ecotone, one of the most intense and brutal episodes of any series. This went to a lot of the same territory as Buffy's The Body, but with its glimpse into a parallel universe and dream ending, it goes to a uniquely Six Feet Under place. Nate breaking up wtih Brenda and the dream were both highlights, but it was that final white screen that left me totally overwhelmed. Nate had quite a journey, and this was an incredible way to go out.

Series (Comedy):
Arrested Development
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Gilmore Girls

It's odd to give the best comedy award to Gilmore Girls, because this season went to a very dark place and stayed there, culminating in an all falls apart finale, but the show's in the comedy category, so content be damned, it shall win. This season saw the best work from Lauren Graham, taking Lorelai in a darker direction, first with the strain between Rory and Lorelai, then with the strain between Lorelai and Luke. This is a great example of a show staying fresh by exploring new territory, and even if the show loses something wtih the Palladinos, at least they went out on a high note.

Series (Drama):
Battlestar Galactica
Big Love
Six Feet Under
The Sopranos

For the final five minutes alone, Six Feet Under deserves this award. No show provided has ever provided as satisfying a conclusion as the jump into the future. But, the entire season took those kind of creative risks, Nate and Brenda's arc, Claire's time in the office, the chaos 'Static' and the sadness of 'Ecotone.' All fantastic stuff. When this was airing, Sunday night became the highlight of my week. It was the second strongest season of the show's run and a perfect conclusion for one of the greatest series of all time.

Total (Wins)
Six Feet Under - 10 (4)
Arrested Development - 8 (3)
Gilmore Girls - 7 (1)
The Sopranos - 7 (1)
Battlestar Galactica - 6 (1)
Entourage - 3
24 - 2
Big Love - 2
Nip/Tuck - 1
Veronica Mars - 1
Weeds - 1
Curb Your Enthusiasm - 1

Related Posts
My 2004 Oscar Nominations (1/26/2005)
My 2005 Oscar Nominations (1/31/2006)

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