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Emmy wish list

Posted by Matthew Gilbert  July 6, 2010 12:07 PM

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On Thursday, the Emmy nominations will be announced, but today I’m indulging my druthers. Here’s my wish list of nominees for each category -- and you know it’s a wish list because it has “Friday Night Lights” all over it. 

Drama Series

  • -“Breaking Bad” (AMC)
  • -“True Blood” (HBO)
  • -“The Good Wife” (CBS)
  • -“Mad Men” (AMC)
  • -“Friday Night Lights” (NBC)
  • -“Treme” (HBO)

AMC has two original series, "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad," and they’re both knockouts -- concise writing, indelible performances, and extraordinary visual realizations. “Treme” and “Friday Night Lights” are tops when it comes to emotional power, but I don’t expect the Emmys to bother with either of them. “The Good Wife” is both a sharp procedural and a juicy, timely melodrama about a political wife on the verge of self-realization. And “True Blood” is expertly paced Southern Gothic fun. Why no “Lost,” that beloved landmark series? The final season was uneven and, at the end, profoundly disappointing.

Comedy Series

  • -“30 Rock” (NBC)
  • -“Modern Family” (ABC)
  • -“Nurse Jackie” (Showtime)
  • -“Parks and Recreation” (NBC)
  • -“Glee” (Fox)
  • -“Curb Your Enthusiasm” (HBO)

I have no doubt “Modern Family” will be on the list, and I’m hoping it will overshadow the over-hyped “Glee” when the statues are handed out in August. “Glee” lost momentum across the season, becoming a weekly teaching moment, but “Modern Family” went from good to better. “30 Rock” continued to pack an hour of material into 22 minutes, and “Curb” deserves notice for the “Seinfeld” reunion.

Lead Actor, Drama

  • -Hugh Laurie, “House”
  • -Michael C. Hall, “Dexter”
  • -Jon Hamm, “Mad Men”
  • -Timothy Olyphant, “Justified”
  • -Ray Romano, “Men of a Certain Age”
  • -Kyle Chandler, “Friday Night Lights”

I loved Olyphant in the Elmore Leonard adaptation, as a slow-moving marshal with a lightning-fast trigger finger. And I’m also hoping to see Romano on the list; he taught me not to pigeonhole sitcom actors.

Lead Actress, Drama

  • -Connie Britton, “Friday Night Lights”
  • -Anna Gunn, “Breaking Bad”
  • -Julianna Margulies, “The Good Wife”
  • -January Jones, “Mad Men”
  • -Anna Paquin, “True Blood”
  • -Kyra Sedgwick, “The Closer”

Anna Gunn. Please. All these women had a good year, but Gunn was far and away the best. Playing the newly aware wife of a meth dealer, she delivered a classic breakthrough performance brimming with tension, sorrow, and anger.

Lead Actor, Comedy

  • -Jim Parsons, “The Big Bang Theory”
  • -Jason Schwartzman, “Bored to Death”
  • -Alec Baldwin, “30 Rock”
  • -Stephen Colbert, “The Colbert Report”
  • -Matthew Morrison, “Glee”
  • - Joel McHale, “Community”

Yes, Colbert. Why not? It’s scripted comedy, and he is playing a character. And Parsons must get a nod. His creation both defines and defies geek stereotypes and delivers lines that would get stuck in most actors’ mouths.

Lead Actress, Comedy

  • -Edie Falco, “Nurse Jackie”
  • -Tina Fey, “30 Rock”
  • -Amy Poehler, “Parks and Recreation”
  • -Sarah Silverman, “The Sarah Silverman Program”
  • -Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “The New Adventures of Old Christine”
  • -Kaley Cuoco, “The Big Bang Theory”

I’m expecting to see Courteney Cox, Patricia Heaton, Mary-Louise Parker, and Toni Collette, but none of them moved me. Cuoco holds her own beautifully in the odd subculture of “Big Bang,” Silverman’s irony is seamless, and Falco is brilliantly unsentimental.

Supporting Actor, Drama

  • -Aaron Paul, “Breaking Bad”
  • -Steve Zahn, “Treme”
  • -Walton Goggins, “Justified”
  • -Taylor Kitsch, “Friday Night Lights”
  • -Zach Gilford, “Friday Night Lights”
  • -Vincent Kartheiser, “Mad Men”

Supporting Actor, Comedy

  • Ed O’Neill, “Modern Family”
  • -Aziz Ansari, “Parks and Recreation”
  • -Chris Colfer, “Glee”
  • -Keir Gilchrist, “United States of Tara”
  • -Eric Stonestreet, “Modern Family”
  • -Ty Burrell, “Modern Family”

Supporting Actress, Drama

  • -Archie Panjabi, “The Good Wife”
  • -Jennifer Carpenter, “Dexter”
  • -Lisa Edelstein, “House”
  • -Khandi Alexander, “Treme”
  • -Melissa Leo, “Treme”
  • -Christina Hendricks, “Mad Men”

 Supporting Actress, Comedy

  • -Eve Best, “Nurse Jackie”
  • -Merritt Wever, “Nurse Jackie”
  • -Susie Essman, “Curb Your Enthusiasm”
  • -Jane Lynch, “Glee”
  • -Jane Adams, “Hung”
  • -Sofia Vergara, “Modern Family”

 The awards telecast, hosted by Jimmy Fallon, will air on August 29.

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