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2012 Emmy Predictions: Comedy & Variety

September 20, 2012

To follow up the Drama & Mini-Series predictions from yesterday, here are my Comedy predictions, along with my prediction for Best Variety, Music or Comedy Series.  As with yesterday, assume from here on there are spoilers, since I will be discussing the seasons of these shows.  Let’s get to it.

Best Variety, Music or Comedy Series Nominees

  • The Colbert Report
  • The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live!
  • Late Night with Jimmy Fallon
  • Real Time with Bill Maher
  • Saturday Night Live

Should Win: The Colbert Report

Stephen Colbert has yet to take home the big prize for his show, which is a shame.  He is devoted to this talking head caricature and often is able to make truth and absurdity one and the same.  Hopefully the Emmy voters reward his body of work this year.

Will Win: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Is this the year that The Daily Show fails to take home this award?  After nine consecutive wins, you might think the Emmy voters want to reward a different show.  However, until proven otherwise, you have to think they are going to take home the big prize.  Of course, given how consistently entertaining it is, it’s hard not to vote for it to win in this category.

Best Writing Nominees

  • Louis C.K. (Louie-“Pregnant”)
  • Lena Dunham (Girls-“Pilot”)
  • Chris McKenna (Community-“Remedial Chaos Theory”)
  • Amy Poehler (Parks & Recreation-“The Debate”)
  • Michael Schur (Parks & Recreation-“Win, Lose, or Draw”)

Should Win: Chris McKenna (“Remedial Chaos Theory”)

This is the only major nomination for Community and this was probably the best episode of the season.  This was a very creative episode, and it gave a fair bit of character development by seeing how the rest of the study group is affected by the absence of each various member of the group.  It’s tough to explain unless you’ve seen it, so let me just say, you need to watch this episode if you haven’t already seen it.  If you have, watch it again, because it’s great.

Will Win: Lena Dunham (“Pilot”)

Given how much buzz this show got & since it was “controversial” buzz, I can’t see it not winning something, and I believe it’s most likely to take home the writing award.  While I personally thought this was the weakest of the five nominees, I imagine the Emmy voters will reward it in this category.  On the chance that it doesn’t win, I think it will either go to Community or Parks & Recreation for “Win, Lose, or Draw.”

Best Directing Nominees

  • Louis C.K. (Louie-“Duckling”)
  • Lena Dunham (Girls-“She Did”)
  • Jake Kasdan (New Girl-“Pilot”)
  • Steven Levitan (Modern Family-“Baby on Board”)
  • Robert B. Weide (Curb Your Enthusiasm-“Palestinian Chicken”)
  • Jason Winer (Modern Family-“Virgin Territory”)

Should Win & Will Win: Louis C.K. (“Duckling”)

This was one of my favorite episodes of television during the past year.  It was so well executed, and it did a great job balancing humor and heart.  I think this category is the most likely win for multiple-nominee Louis C.K., but if writing goes to anything other than Girls, keep an eye out for Lena Dunham to steal this category.  Also, either Modern Family director could end up taking this as those were probably the two best episodes of that season.  Still, I think Louis is most likely to take this one home.

Best Supporting Actress Nominees

  • Mayim Bialik (The Big Bang Theory)
  • Julie Bowen (Modern Family)
  • Kathryn Joosten (Desperate Housewives)
  • Sofia Vergara (Modern Family)
  • Merritt Wever (Nurse Jackie)
  • Kristen Wiig (Saturday Night Live)

Should Win: Sofia Vergara

Sofia Vergara is the funniest woman on Modern Family in my opinion, but she lost this award last year to co-star Julie Bowen, which is a real possibility this year as well.  However, I think that she has a great shot to win this award in what is one of the more wide open races of the year, as you will see in my “will win” scenarios.

Will Win (Scenario 1): Kristen Wiig

Kristen Wiig has been a standout on Saturday Night Live for years, mainly due to the fact that she was given so much to do during each episode.  Now that she has left the show, I could see Emmy voters rewarding her for her lasting impact on one of television’s longest-lasting shows.

Will Win (Scenario 2): Kathryn Joosten

This was a surprise nomination, but many seem to think she could take this award posthumously due to voter sympathy.  I agree that is a possibility, but since she won two Emmys for this character when she was alive, I don’t see this as likely a possibility as scenarios 1 & 3.

Will Win (Scenario 3): Julie Bowen

While I can find Bowen’s character to be a bit grating and repetitive (I’m sure some of you will say the same about Vergara, and you wouldn’t be totally off base), she can do a lot with her dry delivery or even just a look at the camera.  One of the “saner” characters on Modern Family, she took home the award last year, and I think she could easily repeat in this category.

For the record, I think that the most likely scenario is scenario 3.  Modern Family has been bringing in awards big time, and I don’t expect that to change this year.  I think Bowen seems to have what the voters are looking for, so I think she is the more likely choice than Vergara.

Best Supporting Actor Nominees

  • Ty Burrell (Modern Family)
  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family)
  • Max Greenfield (New Girl)
  • Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live)
  • Ed O’Neill (Modern Family)
  • Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family)

Should Win: Nick Offerman (Parks & Recreation)

I know he wasn’t nominated, but that won’t stop me from saying he should win.  Another year, another snub.  Well, I guess I need a real “should win.”

“Real” Should Win & Will Win: Ty Burrell

Ty Burrell is the most consistently funny character on Modern Family, and he is a standout in the large ensemble cast, as evidenced by the six acting nominations (and four in this category).  I could see the voters wanting to honor a different cast member (Ed O’Neill being the most likely), or giving it to Bill Hader in a surprise vote, but I will be stunned if Modern Family doesn’t win, and Burrell in particular.

Best Actress Nominees

  • Zooey Deschanel (New Girl)
  • Lena Dunham (Girls)
  • Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie)
  • Tina Fey (30 Rock)
  • Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep)
  • Melissa McCarthy (Mike & Molly)
  • Amy Poehler (Parks & Recreation)

Should Win & Will Win: Amy Poehler

First of all, every nominee except Poehler, Dunham and Deschanel have won in this category previously.  Of those three, Poehler is the only one to be nominated more than once (and yes, I realize that Girls & New Girl each only have one season so far, but it stands to reason they will both be back in this category.  Plus, Dunham is up for three other categories, so she has a better shot to not go home empty-handed).  Secondly, Poehler turned in her best work to date as Leslie Knope while the character ran for city council.  I sincerely hope that she wins this award as a way of rewarding the entire show, which was criminally underrepresented this year.  Nothing against the other nominees, who I generally enjoy, but in my opinion, Poehler had the best season of any of them.

Best Actor Nominees

  • Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)
  • Louis C.K. (Louie)
  • Don Cheadle (House of Lies)
  • Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men)
  • Larry David (Curb Your Enthusiasm)
  • Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory)

Should Win: Louis C.K.

Louis C.K. consistently delivers one of the best shows on television by mixing comedy and emotion in a magnificent way.  He has such an amazing comedic world view and he puts himself into every episode of the show.  He is making something that I feel like I have never seen on television before, and I would absolutely love for him to be recognized for his work.  If not in this category, I hope he wins directing or writing, because if this show goes away empty handed, that would be a shame.

Will Win (Scenario 1): Larry David

As a loose version of himself, Larry David has created one of the more memorable television characters of all time…..twice.  The first go-round, the Emmys failed to recognize Jason Alexander’s work as George Costanza on Seinfeld. As of yet, Larry David hasn’t won for his portrayal of himself on Curb Your Enthusiasm despite his multiple nominations.  Considering this could be the last time they nominate him, I could see the Emmy voters finally rewarding David for some of the greatest moments in television comedy in the past 20 years.  That would be pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good.

Will Win (Scenario 2): Jim Parsons

At the risk of alienating whatever readers of this blog that I have, I would like to go on record as saying I don’t want this scenario to happen.  I have tried to watch The Big Bang Theory on multiple occasions, and each time I think to myself, “What am I supposed to be laughing at?”  The writing on the show is mediocre at best, and I don’t think that this show understands the nerd culture it wants you to believe that it embraces but instead uses nerds as a source of mockery.  The making fun of nerds doesn’t particularly bother me, but don’t do it and then try to say “Oh, I’m really one of you, though.”  With all that said, Emmy voters have given Jim Parsons two of these things for this character.  I don’t particularly begrudge him, because hey, a paycheck is a paycheck, and a steady job on television is way better than being a waiter talking about what could have been.  I think he himself is capable of being funny and I enjoyed his cameo in The Muppets, but I can’t root for him to win because I can’t stand the show he is on.

For the record, I think scenario 2 is the most likely.  I would say scenario 1 because of the tried and true “Well, this person’s been around, let’s throw them a bone, sort of a collective trophy,” but last year when they should have rewarded Steve Carell for his time as Michael Scott on The Office, they instead gave the Emmy to Parsons.  I could easily see the same thing happening this time.

On a quick side-note, since The Office is ending this year, I can only imagine that Michael Scott will come to Scranton for at least one episode.  Wouldn’t it be crazy if Steve Carell gets nominated for Guest Actor next year and that is how he finally wins an Emmy for Michael Scott?  Just a thought.

Best Series Nominees

  • 30 Rock
  • The Big Bang Theory
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm
  • Girls
  • Modern Family
  • Veep

Should Win: Curb Your Enthusiasm

One of the best seasons that this show has ever had, and considering the speculation that it was the final season, I really would like to see this one win.  It had the best season of the three HBO nominees, and I didn’t feel like this last season of Modern Family or 30 Rock were as good as some of their previous seasons, although both had flashes of greatness.  As you may have already ascertained, I dislike The Big Bang Theory, so I’m not rooting for a win there.  Since Parks & Recreation, Louie and Community are not nominated, I’m hoping that Curb takes this one home.

Will Win: Modern Family

This one seems to be the Emmy darling for the moment, and I can’t imagine anything else taking home the big prize.  I have said this season wasn’t the strongest of the series so far, and while I really like it, I do not think it was the best season of comedy that television had to offer this year, but I think it has this in the bag.  30 Rock may have a shot again next year since this is their last season, and Girls & Veep both have yet to hit their strides, so I think Modern Family will be the big winners on Sunday.

So, there you have it: the second part of my Emmy predictions.  It will be interesting to see how it all plays out, and I will have a post either Monday or Tuesday about the outcomes.

Hope you liked this post and I hope you like what else I have to say.

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