The 2012 Emmy nominations offer big stars and lots of new Girls
Big winners from the past all showed well in their usual categories, but some notable newcomers, like HBO's Girls and Fox's New Girl, also received their share of mentions as well. Meanwhile, in the television movie categories, several Oscar nominees and winners were included.
Since we've done enough TV "research" to report back on all of these shows, we'll offer you our entirely unbiased opinions, so you'll know whether the awards hype is really worth it or not. (You're welcome!)
The biggest winners Thursday morning were quantifiably AMC's Mad Men, ABC's Modern Family and FX's American Horror Story. And, yes, all three of these shows are entirely legit for completely different reasons. Mad Men is sexy and dangerous and just unbelievable in its twists, especially last season, while maintaining an air of suffocating historical reality.
Meanwhile, the Pritchett-Dunphy clan from Modern Family demonstrates what can happen when a team of writers and actors maintain a perfect comedy ensemble balance. All six of the leads were nominated this year, and they will likely continue to just keep passing the win back and forth.
The nominations for the undeniable Jessica Lange and Frances Conroy are no surprise at all for their brilliant work on American Horror Story. I will admit I was happily surprised by Connie Britton's nomination, as I found myself wanting so much more for my beloved Tami Taylor in the second half of this pulpy miniseries. (Yes, she's still Coach Taylor's wife to me...)
A big shout out to Bob's Burgers and Futurama for their nominations in the Best Animated Program category. These are honestly two of the best comedies on television right now with stellar casts and phenomenal writing that should not be underestimated because of their medium. (I will go on record saying that Tina Belcher and Dr. Zoidberg are perhaps two of the most glorious characters ever created for television.)
Other happy surprises in the TV noms for us: Max Greenfield for his adorably nuanced, neurotic douchebag Schmidt in New Girl; Margaret Cho's jaw-dropping cameos as Kim Jong Il on 30 Rock; Kathy Bates for showing up as Charlie Sheen's ghost on Two and a Half Men and Louis CK for just being the most brilliant man making television right now on FX's Louie.
Lena Dunham, the new "it girl" from HBO's Girls, showed all the haters what's what with her nominations for Writing for a Comedy Series and Best Comedy Series. I personally love how realistically unlikable all of her characters are, and I'm willing to overlook the serious oversights of racial and socio-economical balances in the show to see where it continues next season.
Oscar winners are crowding in on the Emmy gold with a slew of nominations for big screen stars like Nicole Kidman, Clive Owen, Kevin Costner, Julianne Moore and Emma Thompson all receiving nods for TV movies.
I understand the desire for actors to fill out the notches on their EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony) belts, but I'm just hoping a television star like Sherlock's Benedict Cumberbatch can win out over dumb ol' Bill Paxton for Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie every time.
Finally, no television award show nominee list would be complete without mentioning the nominees in America's proud reality show competition categories. This year, The Voice joins the ranks of the nominees that also include Project Runway, Top Chef, The Amazing Race and, of cooooooourse, So You Think You Can Dance.
Let's just hope SYTYCD's host Cat Deeley can eke out another win against the irrepressible Betty White, who is also nominated for Best Host of a Reality Show for the surprising breakout hit, Betty White's Off Their Rockers. I think Betty White probably could kill a person in cold blood on live TV and still beat Barak Obama in the next Presidential election if she wanted.
There are so many more names and nominations to go over, but we're afraid that you'll realize that we watch way too much TV for any office full of young single people. You can, however, see the whole list for yourself and then post your further thoughts (or personal ads) in the comments section below.
The Primetime Emmy Awards will air on ABC on Sept. 23 (in case you also like to sit at home and watch TV as much as we do...).