Friday, September 9, 2011

IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS: 2011 Emmy Award Predictions - Part II: Drama

And now, it is time for more 2011 Emmy Predictions.  Today, let's comb through the Drama categories!

Boardwalk Empire (HBO), Dexter (Showtime), Friday Night Lights (NBC/DirecTV), Game of Thrones (HBO), The Good Wife (CBS), Mad Men (AMC)
Quick Overview: Three-time winner Mad Men is trying for a fourth consecutive win (only Hill Street Blues and The West Wing have had four consecutive* Best Drama Series wins!); Showtime's Dexter had a less-than-stellar fourth season, but is still loved by audiences; Critical favorite Friday Night Lights ended it's rocky five-year run (on cable's DirecTV before being rerun on NBC!) and finally garnered one of the top nods; HBO's newcomers Boardwalk Empire and Game of Thrones hit it off with both critics and fans, so Emmy voters took notice; And CBS' legal drama The Good Wife wowed people with an emotionally charged second season and represents the broadcast networks among the wealth of cable favorites.
Will Win: Mad Men had a very well-received fourth season (and is pulling out all the stops in its ad campaigns!), so it is very likely to join Hill Street BluesThe West Wing and L.A. Law in the pantheon of Emmy's Best Dramas.
Should Win: I have said this before I believe, so I'll say it again: The Good Wife is the best show on Television currently and deserves every award in can receive.
Dark Horse: HBO wooed Martin Scorsese into directing (and producing!) the buzzworthy pilot of Boardwalk Empire, so they will do all they can to stop Mad Men's winning streak. They already won the Golden Globe earlier this year!
*=L.A. Law also had four Best Drama Series wins, but not consecutively.  Interestingly enough, all three shows (Hill Street Blues, L.A. Law and The West Wing) were broadcast on NBC!

Kathy Bates, Harry's Law (NBC); Connie Britton, Friday Night Lights (NBC/DirecTV); Mireille Enos, The Killing (AMC); Mariska Hargitay, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (NBC); Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife (CBS); Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men (AMC)
Quick Overview: Last year's winner Kyra Sedgwick beat out presumed front-runner Julianna Margulies, and Margulies again is near the top of every pundits' list to take the award this year; Elisabeth Moss was bumped up to Lead Actress from last year with stirring episodes and storylines; Connie Britton enjoyed her first nod last year and the critics would love to see her rewarded for the show's emotional last season; Oscar-winner Kathy Bates was a shoo-in to get nominated, despite her show garnering mixed reviews from critics and audiences; Character actress Mireille Enos gives a quiet yet resonant performance as a detective investigating a murder on AMC's The Killing; And Mariska Hargitay (who won this award back in 2006!) has become the category's perennial nominee (quite possibly over more deserving candidates, but I digress!).
Will AND Should Win: I've already stated my love for The Good Wife and Julianna Margulies has picked an emotionally packed episode to submit to Emmy voters. Victory shall be hers!
Dark Horse: Elisabeth Moss also is submitting a critically acclaimed (and emotionally powerful!) episode of Mad Men, and she could very well keep Margulies from the winner's podium (just like Kyra Sedgwick did last year!).

Steve Buscemi, Boardwalk Empire (HBO); Kyle Chandler, Friday Night Lights (NBC/DirecTV); Michael C. Hall, Dexter (Showtime); John Hamm, Mad Men (AMC); Hugh Laurie, House M.D. (FOX); Timothy Olyphant, Justified (F/X)
Quick Overview: With three-time previous winner Bryan Cranston ineligible this year, four of last years nominees are vying for this prize along with two category newcomers: John Hamm has picked a stellar episode (the same episode Elisabeth Moss picked!) to submit to Emmy voters; Kyle Chandler is banking on his show's emotional series finale to win it for him; Both Hugh Laurie and Michael C. Hall may play unlikable or morally polarizing characters, but they picked jaw-dropping episodes that could gain (or lose!) them support; Timothy Olyphant picked his show's second season finale on his first nomination for his complex role of a Southern lawman; And Golden Globe winner Steve Buscemi has name recognition and the full support of HBO behind him for this extremely tough category.
Will AND Should Win: It is said John Hamm has waited three long years to be rewarded for playing the snake-like ad man Don Draper and with Cranston ineligible, this may be Hamm's time to finally reap some praise.
Dark Horse: Steve Buscemi won both the Golden Globe and the SAG Award for his work as tough gangster Nucky Johnston, and Emmy voters may use those award precursors as signs from above.

Christine Baranski, The Good Wife (CBS); Michelle Forbes, The Killing (AMC); Christina Hendricks, Mad Men (AMC); Kelly MacDonald, Boardwalk Empire (HBO); Margo Martindale, Justified (F/X); Archie Panjabi, The Good Wife (CBS)
Quick Overview: Pundits have stated that this is the category that stumps them every year! Last year's winner Archie Panjabi was a pleasant surprise and The Good Wife's writers stepped up her game for the show's second season; Her co-star Christine Baranski is always an Emmy favorite no matter what she does; Christina Hendricks is still extremely well-liked among Mad Men's Sterling-Cooper Ad Agency; Character actress Margo Martindale played the villain perfectly on F/X's Justified; Longtime TV actress Michelle Forbes (Star Trek: The Next Generation, True Blood) has finally received an Emmy nod for her work as the murder victim's distraught mother on The Killing; And previous Emmy-winner Kelly MacDonald (for the TV Movie The Girl In the Cafe) is the best reviewed actor/actress on HBO's new hit.
Will Win: Emmys love to reward character actors in truly over-the-top performances (see Jane Lynch or Doris Roberts), so Margo Martindale may ride her character's villainy all the way to an Emmy win.
Should Win: Archie Panjabi may have surprised people last year with her win, but her emotionally understated performance as the law firm's in-house investigator went to new levels this year.
Dark Horse: If Mad Men is indeed going to take the top prize (and quite possibly, Best Actor!), Emmy voters may want to reward Boardwalk Empire with something (besides director!) and so Kelly MacDonald (who was also part of the last Harry Potter movie this summer!) may receive the show's consolation prize.

Andre Braugher, Men of a Certain Age (TNT); Josh Charles, The Good Wife (CBS); Alan Cumming, The Good Wife (CBS); Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones (HBO); Walton Goggins, Justified (F/X); John Slattery, Mad Men (AMC)
Quick Overview: Two of the men from The Good Wife (Josh Charles and Alan Cumming) submitted great episodes and their characters are indeed central to the show's biggest storylines; John Slattery now has his fourth nomination and has picked an episode that could get him the elusive prize; Andre Braugher was, as far as the critics were concerned, the best part of TNT's now-defunct Men of a Certain Age; And category newcomers (and well-respected character actors!) Peter Dinklage and Walton Goggins are riding their respective shows' critical acclaim to possible Emmy glory.
Will Win: Like his co-star John Hamm, this may very well finally be John Slattery's chance to call himself an Emmy winner.
Should Win: Peter Dinklage gave one of the finest performances on HBO's fantasy hit and his particular episode features one of his most touching and stirring monologues.
Dark Horse: The love for F/X's Justified may just stretch beyond Margo Martindale and onto Walton Goggins' reserved and understated performance (the same style he used on another F/X Emmy favorite: The Shield).

Cara Buono, Mad Men (AMC); Joan Cusack, Shameless (Showtime); Loretta Devine, Grey's Anatomy (ABC); Randee Heller, Mad Men (AMC); Mary McDonnell, The Closer (TNT); Julia Stiles, Dexter (Showtime); Alfre Woodard, True Blood (HBO)
Quick Overview: Yes, there are 7 nominees in this category AND all 7 actresses not only guested on one episode of their respective Dramas, they were all recurring roles on each show! But because of Emmy rules, they each picked one episode that best shows their roles during the season: Julia Stiles had a much-hyped and critically dynamic role as serial killer Dexter's assistant (who also was a former victim of the killer he was facing!); Joan Cusack played the agoraphobic love interest to William H. Macy's drunken single father; Mad Men's Cara Buono and Randee Heller were two of the Sterling-Cooper many secretaries that kept the office running; Mary McDonnell played an Internal Affairs Captain investigating the possible misconduct of star Kyra Sedgwick's character; Loretta Devine returned to Seattle Grace as the wife of the Chief of Surgery, this time struggling with early-onset Alzheimer's Disease; And awards favorite Alfre Woodard played the mother of the gay-psychic cook on the fan favorite True Blood.
Will Win: Though this category has usually gone to older actresses in the past (Ann-Margaret, Leslie Caron and Ellen Burstyn are among the more recent winners!), Julia Stiles has the buzz surrounding her (and a Golden Globe nod!) that puts her in the front-runner position in this category.
Should Win: True Blood is a "true" fan favorite and has never received any kind of Emmy love (beyond technical awards!), so Alfre Woodard has the kind of Emmy cache that would give Emmy voters an excuse to give the vampire series a major Emmy.
Dark Horse: Joan Cusack is also an awards favorite (two Oscar nods under her belt!) and her submitted episode is very critically acclaimed, so she could be the name called at the Creative Arts Emmys on Saturday, September 10 (where the Guest Actor/Actress awards are given out!).

Beau Bridges, Brothers & Sisters (ABC); Jeremy Davies, Justified (F/X); Bruce Dern, Big Love (HBO); Michael J. Fox, The Good Wife (CBS); Paul McCrane, Harry's Law (NBC); Robert Morse, Mad Men (AMC)
Quick Overview: Four awards veterans face-off with two well-liked character actors in this interesting category: Michael J. Fox gave a dynamic performance in the recurring role of a lawyer who keeps Julianna Margulies' character guessing; Veteran actors Bruce Dern, Beau Bridges and Robert Morse each played small recurring roles on their respective shows well enough to put them in this Emmy race; Paul McCrane plays the recurring role of prosecutor to Kathy Bates' outspoken defense attorney; And Jeremy Davies played the unlikable criminal lawman Timothy Olyphant dragged out into the woods in the F/X show's second season finale.
Will AND Should Win: Though I liked him better on the first episode he was on, Michael J. Fox chose the second episode on which he appeared and we found out more about his character's backstory and home life. Emmy voters may very well pick him because Michael J. Fox has proven he can play vulnerable extremely well (just watch an episode of Family Ties!).
Dark Horse: There are actually two potential spoilers! Paul McCrane chose an episode in which his character had a virtual meltdown in court followed by an emotional scene he shared with Oscar-winner Kathy Bates. Sometimes proximity to an awards pro rubs off (that, and the show was created by David E. Kelley who as written more Emmy-winning characters than any other writer!). Also, Jeremy Davies had an staggeringly powerful scene in which his slightly villainous character is getting tortured by star Timothy Olyphant. Emmy voters may want to reward an unlikable character who shows his terrified vulnerability.

Part III: The Miniseries & Variety Categories!

No comments:

Post a Comment