My Emmy 2011 Picks

By Kelly Harrass

Alright we’re back from a week off and jumping right into this!

The 2011 Emmy Awards are coming soon and I figured that I’d dispense my thoughts on the awards to you. Just keep in mind, I’m not making predictions, I’m picking who I would like to win. There’s a lot of ground to cover, so I’ll get right into it.

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie

Carlos • Sundance Channel

Edgar Ramirez as Carlos

The Kennedys • ReelzChannel

Greg Kinnear as John F. Kennedy

The Kennedys • ReelzChannel

Barry Pepper as Bobby Kennedy

Luther • BBC America

Idris Elba as John Luther

Thurgood • HBO

Laurence Fishburne as Thurgood Marshall

Too Big To Fail • HBO

William Hurt as Henry ‘Hank’ Paulson

I’ve only seen one of these miniseries/movies, but it was so fantastic that I have to talk about it a bit. Idris Elba should win this award. Luther is a well written show, but without Elba it wouldn’t work anywhere near as well. Elba brings the character to life better than any other actor could. If you haven’t seen Luther you need to, it’s unlike any other cop show on TV right now.

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series

Game Of Thrones • HBO

Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister

The Good Wife • CBS

Josh Charles as Will Gardner

The Good Wife • CBS

Alan Cumming as Eli Gold

Justified • FX Networks

Walton Goggins as Boyd Crowder

Mad Men • AMC

John Slattery as Roger Sterling

Men Of A Certain Age • TNT

Andre Braugher as Owen

Three of actors nominated here are some of my favorite characters in the show they are from. Walton Goggins does so much as Boyd Crowder with his subdued performance. John Slattery, on the other hand, gets some of the best lines on Mad Men. This past year Slattery did some of his best work on the show since the first season. As fantastic as both Goggins and Slattery are, I’d have to give the award to Peter Dinklage. Tyrion Lannister was my favorite character on Game of Thrones and Dinklage’s excellent performance was a huge part of that. He was one of the only reasons that I kept watching through the first couple of crappy episodes.

Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama Series

Boardwalk Empire • HBO

Kelly Macdonald as Margaret Schroeder

The Good Wife • CBS

Archie Panjabi as Kalinda Sharma

The Good Wife • CBS

Christine Baranski as Diane Lockhart

Justified • FX Networks

Margo Martindale as Mags Bennett

The Killing • AMC

Michelle Forbes as Mitch Larsen

Mad Men • AMC

Christina Hendricks as Joan Harris

This is an easy choice for me; Margo Martindale. She was amazing as the villain in this season of Justified, which would not have been anywhere near as good without her. Martindale’s performance kept tricking you into thinking that just maybe you could trust Mags, but every time you were proven wrong. An honorable mention goes to the always great Christina Hendricks.

Outstanding Guest Actor In A Drama Series

Big Love • HBO

Bruce Dern as Frank Harlow

Brothers & Sisters • ABC

Beau Bridges as Nick Brody

The Good Wife • CBS

Michael J. Fox as Louis Canning

Harry’s Law • NBC

Paul McCrane as Josh Peyton

Justified • FX Networks

Jeremy Davies as Dickie Bennett

Mad Men • AMC

Robert Morse as Bertram Cooper

As much as I want to give this one to Robert Morse, I think it has to go to Jeremy Davies. When Davies was in Lost I really didn’t think much of his performance. Now in Justified he managed to make his character into someone who was actually scary. Whether it was the way he spoke or his body language he always felt threatening in some way when he was on the screen.

Outstanding Guest Actress In A Drama Series

The Closer • TNT

Mary McDonnell as Capt. Sharon Raydor

Dexter • Showtime

Julia Stiles as Lumen Pierce

Grey’s Anatomy • ABC

Loretta Devine as Adele Webber

Mad Men • AMC

Randee Heller as Miss Blankenship

Mad Men • AMC

Cara Buono as Faye Miller

Shameless • Showtime

Joan Cusack as Sheila Jackson

True Blood • HBO

Alfre Woodard as Ruby Jean Reynolds

This choice is easy for me. Randee Heller as Miss Blankenship wins hands down. She was the funniest character in Mad Men’s four seasons of TV. She had so many amazing lines and was in one of the most surprising moments of the series.

Outstanding Lead Actress In A Comedy Series

The Big C • Showtime

Laura Linney as Cathy Jamison

Mike & Molly • CBS

Melissa McCarthy as Molly Flynn

Nurse Jackie • Showtime

Edie Falco as Jackie Peyton

Parks And Recreation • NBC

Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope

Raising Hope • FOX

Martha Plimpton as Virginia Chance

30 Rock • NBC

Tina Fey as Liz Lemon

I ran into the same problem last year when I made predictions. I only watch one of the shows that has a nominated actress. Tina Fey wins by default for me, but that’s not to take anything away from her performance. 30 Rock is a great show and she’s a huge part of making it what it is.

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Comedy Series

The Big Bang Theory • CBS

Jim Parsons as Sheldon Cooper

The Big Bang Theory • CBS

Johnny Galecki as Leonard Hofstadter

Episodes • Showtime

Matt LeBlanc as Matt LeBlanc

Louie • FX Networks

Louis C.K. as Louie

The Office • NBC

Steve Carell as Michael Scott

30 Rock • NBC

Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy

As much as I’d like to give this to Louis CK, the strength of Louie lies in his writing, not in his acting. Alec Baldwin is the most consistently good actor that was nominated, but I won’t give it to him either. This award should go to Steve Carell. His final episodes of The Office were some of his best. As long as nobody from The Big Bang Theory wins, I’ll be happy, but I’d like for it to go to Carell.

Outstanding Lead Actress In A Drama Series

Friday Night Lights • DirecTV

Connie Britton as Tami Taylor

The Good Wife • CBS

Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick

Harry’s Law • NBC

Kathy Bates as Harriet “Harry” Korn

The Killing • AMC

Mireille Enos as Sarah Linden

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit • NBC

Mariska Hargitay as Detective Olivia Benson

Mad Men • AMC

Elisabeth Moss as Peggy Olson

To me this is a battle between the two nominees from AMC. Elisabeth Moss turned in some of her best work as Peggy this season. As good as Moss was I think the award has to go to Mireille Enos. Her performance as Sarah Linden was one of the most real feeling performances on TV this past year.

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series

Boardwalk Empire • HBO

Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson

Dexter • Showtime

Michael C. Hall as Dexter Morgan

Friday Night Lights • DirecTV

Kyle Chandler as Coach Eric Taylor

House • FOX

Hugh Laurie as Dr. Gregory House

Justified • FX Networks

Timothy Olyphant as Raylan Givens

Mad Men • AMC

Jon Hamm as Don Draper

This is easy for me; Jon Hamm wins. There is no better actor on TV right now than Hamm. Timothy Olyphant and Steve Buscemi both turned in great work this year, but Hamm blew them both away. This year his character went through some changes and he rolled with the punches beautifully.

Outstanding Comedy Series

The Big Bang Theory • CBS

Glee • FOX

Modern Family • ABC

The Office • NBC

Parks And Recreation • NBC

30 Rock • NBC

First off I’d like to say that I refuse to recognize the official winner of this category no matter who it is because the two best comedies on TV were not recognized. In my and many other people’s opinions, both Community and Louie are much better shows than all six nominated shows. Louie and Community have some of the best writing of any series and are better all-around than anything else nominated. 

Now, onto the shows that are actually nominated. At this point it’s a given that Modern Family will win at the show, but I don’t watch it. Another show I don’t watch is Glee and every day I’m happy with my decision. The Big Bang Theory is a pile of garbage of a show and I’m amazed that it got a nomination over Community or Louie or, the often forgotten, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. This brings us to the three NBC comedies. I’ve only seen two episodes of Parks and Recreation, but I think if I had watched more it might have won this category for me. The two options left over are The Office and 30 Rock. The Office had a shaky season. Some episodes were pretty good, but many of them were forgettable. On the other hand 30 Rock managed to keep their episodes around the same level of quality, but none of them were really something remember. Between the two, I think that The Office had a better year and wins my pick for Outstanding Comedy Series. No… wait. No show makes me laugh more than Community, that is my pick.

Outstanding Drama Series

Boardwalk Empire • HBO

Dexter • Showtime

Friday Night Lights • DirecTV

Game Of Thrones • HBO

The Good Wife • CBS

Mad Men • AMC

Firstly I have to eliminate the shows I don’t watch; The Good Wife (I’d probably like it, but I never got around to watching it), Dexter (this show has been so built up, I don’t think I could ever watch it and not find it overrated to some extent. That being said, I’ve heard a lot of people call this past season weaker in quality than the others), and Friday Night Lights (a series about high school football? Me watching this is about as likely as my watching an actual football game).

That cuts the field down by half. Game of Thrones was a show that took me a while to get into. I thought the first four episodes were not very good, but after that the series picked up a lot. Boardwalk Empire was a show that I enjoyed a lot, but I would have liked to have seen Scorsese direct more of the episodes. For me Game of Thrones and Boardwalk Empire come in at third and second place, respectively. That leaves Mad Men as my choice as winner of Outstanding Drama Series. Mad Men’s fourth season was their best yet. The seventh episode, “The Suitcase,” was one of the best things I saw on TV in 2010. There’s no other choice for me, Mad Men is the best show on TV right now.

Well that’s all I’ve got. The Emmy’s aren’t for a couple of weeks, but now you’re ready for the show.

Agree with me? Disagree with me? Post about it in the comments.

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