The nominations for the 2014 Emmy Awards were announced this morning. It’s impossible to make everyone happy, but Emmy voters sure seem to be able to piss people off with machine-like precision.
You can check out the full list of nominees here, and I have some complaints and observations.
My biggest quibble with this year’s list is the snub of Dean Norris for Outstanding Supporting Actor for Breaking Bad. Norris gave his finest work as Hank Schrader in the show’s final season, especially in episodes "Blood Money" and "Ozymandias". He certainly deserved the nomination over castmate Aaron Paul, who had very little to do as Jesse. But, the easiest way to get an Emmy nomination is to have been nominated before, and Paul’s won two of the suckers.
I can let the Paul nomination slide — he’s still excellent in the role — but the one that really bugs me is Jon Voight for Ray Donovan. The show isn’t very good in itself, and Voight chews scenery nearly as much as Kevin Spacey in House of Cards. Emmy voters love movie actors, and this just cements it.
Somehow, Downton Abbey landed a spot in the Outstanding Drama category. What makes that nomination especially heinous is that The Americans got bumped. It’s bad enough that both Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell were snubbed in the acting categories, but the show is one of the top three dramas on television, period. It could have easily replaced House of Cards, whose second season was a pile of pretty looking garbage.
Let’s move on to things I’m actually pleased about.
Silicon Valley and Orange Is The New Black received nominations for Outstanding Comedy Series, much to my delight. I expected OITNB would get a nomination based on both the quality of the show and the positive buzz it received last year. Silicon Valley, created by Mike Judge and with very little star power, didn’t seem to be the type of show voters would recognize, but I’m happy to be wrong.
As excited as I was that Adam Driver was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series last year for Girls, I’m doubly excited that Andre Braugher got a nomination for Brooklyn Nine-Nine this year. I thought the two-time Emmy winner, almost entirely known for his dramatic work, would be wasted as the Captain on a goofy cop show starring Andy Samberg. Instead, Braugher plays the straight man to hilarious perfection, stealing the spotlight in every scene he’s in.
FX’s excellent Fargo picked up 18 nominations and will almost assuredly take home at least one in the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie category where Billy Bob Thornton and Martin Freeman are both competing. Allison Tolman stole the show as officer Molly Solverson and was rightly nominated in the Outstanding Actress in a Miniseries or Movie category, but will have a tough time beating out America’s darling, Julia Roberts.