Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Emmy Wishlists: Limited Series/TV Movie

Once again, the Emmy nominations are tomorrow. I already posted my wishlists (Comedy and Drama) of favorite shows and performances which I wish would be nominated tomorrow. Below are similar lists for the Limited Series and TV Movie categories.

I usually leave these categories alone, but I saw quite a number of them so just wanted to give some their dues.

Big Little Lies
Feud: Bette and Joan
The Night Of
The Young Pope

Black Mirror: San Junipero
Looking: The Movie
Sherlock: The Lying Detective

Riz Ahmed, The Night Of
Jonathan Groff, Looking: The Movie
Jude Law, The Young Pope
Ewan McGregor, Fargo
John Turturro, The Night Of

Carrie Coon, Fargo
Lauren Graham, Gilmore Girls
Nicole Kidman, Big Little Lies
Jessica Lange, Feud: Bette and Joan
Reese Witherspoon, Big Little Lies

Bill Camp, The Night Of
Raúl Castillo, Looking: The Movie
Silvio Orland, The Young Pope
Adam Scott, Big Little Lies
Alexander Skarsgård, Big Little Lies

Kelly Bishop, Gilmore Girls
Mackenzie Davis, Black Mirror: San Junipero
Laura Dern, Big Little Lies
Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Black Mirror: San Junipero
Alison Wright, FEUD: Bette and Joan

Emmy Wishlists: Drama Categories

Before you read about my personal picks for the drama categories, check out my comedy picks here. As for drama, Peak TV means there's WAY TOO MUCH TV out there and most of them are good, so this was really tough.

Like the comedies, I've picked 10 shows and performers per category. In a few categories, I could've easily listed another 10 (or 20) names. Onwards...

The Americans
Better Call Saul
The Exorcist
The Leftovers
Orange is the New Black
Queen Sugar
Stranger Things

Apparently while all the best comedies are on network TV, all the best dramas are not. With the exception of The Exorcist, one of the more pleasant surprises of the past TV season for me, all my picks are off network. I am saddened that 3 of my picks (Sense8, Underground, The Leftovers) are ending or were cancelled, but you should still check them out. Shout out to the audacious shows I respected more than love like Legion, Mr. Robot, Westworld, Into the Badlands, and Preacher plus the much improved Doctor Who and Agents of SHIELD.

Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us
Dominic Cooper, Preacher
Alfonso Herrera, The Exorcist
Aldis Hodge, Underground
Rami Malek, Mr. Robot
Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
Matthew Rhys, The Americans
Dan Stevens, Legion
Justin Theroux, The Leftovers
Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us

As I was making my shortlist, I definitely noticed all the names of guys I may or may not have a crush on. I'd like to think I chose impartially based on acting alone, but who knows? That said, I sincerely think all of these men did a stupendous job this past TV year with special FYC on Sterling K. Brown and Justin Theroux. Shout out to two hotties that missed my shortlist, Aidan Turner and Daniel Wu. Consolation hug?

Carrie Coon, The Leftovers
Geena Davis, The Exorcist
Rose McIver, iZombie
Ruth Negga, Preacher
Keri Russell, The Americans
Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Underground
Rutina Wesley, Queen Sugar
Eleanor Tomlinson, Poldark
Evan Rachel Wood, Westworld
Robin Wright, House of Cards

Carrie Coon was in two award-worthy shows doing award-worthy acting in both of them this year so I hope she gets nominated for both (the other for Fargo). With Game of Thrones out of commission this season, I hope the Academy doesn't forget to look at genre shows specifically the shows starring Geena Davis, Rose McIver, and Ruth Negga. Shout out to Ellen Barkin, Viola Davis, and Taraji P. Henson giving performances that outsizes their respective shows as well as Kylie Bunbury who was a promising talent in a too-soon cancelled show.

Mahershala Ali, Luke Cage
Ben Daniels, The Exorcist
Joseph Gilgun, Preacher
Alex Høgh Andersen, Vikings
Ron Cephas Jones, This Is Us
John Lithgow, The Crown
Gaten Matarazzo, Stranger Things
Michael McKean, Better Call Saul
Alano Miller, Underground
Miguel Angel Silvestre, Sense8

The general theme of this category seems to be villains or at least not so good guys and you know what I LOVE that. They're definitely the flashier kinds of roles and it's a special kind of actor that can chew just the right amount of scenery without it feeling too much. But I have some sweet characters on the list as well and perhaps my FYC picks in Ron Cephas Jones and Miguel Angel Silvestre. The latter especially stands out in an uniformly excellent ensemble. Shout out to some of the men in Better Call Saul, Westworld, and Sense8 that almost made my list.

Doona Bae, Sense8
Millie Bobby Brown, Stranger Things
Aisha Hinds, Underground
Mallory Jansen, Agents of SHIELD
Hannah Kasulka, The Exorcist
Pearl Mackie, Doctor Who
Thandie Newton, Westworld
Aubrey Plaza, Legion
Rhea Seehorn, Better Call Saul
Samira Wiley, Orange is the New Black

Fun Fact: Only one person here is a repeat personal nominee from last year (Rhea Seehorn). It just shows you how deep the talent pool is, especially with the women. It's also the category I can't find myself singling out just 1-2 names because ALL OF THEM did such excellent jobs this past season. With that said, Aisha Hinds was in probably the best episode of TV last season so she might have a slight leg up. Suffice to say, I could've named A LOT more Orange is the New Black and Sense8 ladies. Tough category!

Colman Domingo, Timeless
Nelsan Ellis, Elementary
Ron Cephas Jones, The Get Down
Hamish Linklater, Legion
Mark Margolis, Better Call Saul
Gerald McRaney, This Is Us
Jermel Makia, This Is Us
Denis O'Hare, This Is Us
Clive Standen, Vikings
BD Wong, Mr. Robot

So apparently This Is Us has some good guest spots, huh? Other than that, not much to really say about this category. And I think if the Academy buys in This Is Us, I think Gerald McRaney might just win. RIP Nelsan Ellis.

Laverne Cox, Orange is the New Black
Anne Dowd, The Leftovers
Calista Flockhart, Supergirl
Nia Long, Empire
Carrie-Anne Moss, Iron Fist
Sharon Gless, The Exorcist
Shannon Purser, Stranger Things
Phylicia Rashad, Empire
Cicely Tyson, How to Get Away with Murder
Alison Wright, The Americans

Justice for Barb? Perhaps or not. I think my FYC favorites here would be Phylicia Rashad who was just as fierce as I expected and Alison Wright whose brief presence this season was a true highlight. Sharon Gless' character appearance though was such a game changer for her show so I don't know!

You can check out my Comedy post here and my Movie/Miniseries post a bit later.

Emmy Wishlists: Comedy Categories

In times of absolute turmoil in the world, TV, especially comedy shows keep me just a little bit sane. So with Emmy nominations set to be announced tomorrow, I just wanted to highlight the shows and performers that I think deserved to be nominated.

First up are the comedy categories and as I said above, they keep me the most sane and I'm glad there's a plethora of choices out there. For all categories, I'll be picking my top 10 picks out of all eligible shows and actors.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Dear White People
The Good Place
Jane the Virgin
Master of None
The Real O'Neals
Trial & Error
You're the Worst

People seem to think comedy is dying on network TV especially with the relative boom of edgier comedies found on cable, premium, and streaming channels. So the fact that 7 of my 10 picks are network shows (4 from NBC alone!) caught me by surprise. Suffice to say, you should seek out all of these shows immediately and binge the hell out of them. Shout out to the quirky People of Earth, the poignant and hilarious Insecure and outstanding Speechless which just missed my shortlist.

Aziz Ansari, Master of None
Wyatt Cenac, People of Earth
Nicolas D'Agosto, Trial & Error
Ted Danson, The Good Place
Jay R. Ferguson, The Real O'Neals
Chris Geere, You're the Worst
Donald Glover, Atlanta
Thomas Middledtich, Silicon Valley
Randall Park, Fresh Off the Boat
Andy Samberg, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

This is always the easiest category to narrow down simply because there just isn't that many to choose from. With that said, if any of these people actually get nominated I will be very happy. My biggest FYC would be Ted Danson since his character just worked on so many levels, but I won't lie that I'm excited to see if the TV Academy honors Aziz Ansari (again) and Donald Glover with nominations.

Kristen Bell, The Good Place
Rachel Bloom, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Logan Browning, Dear White People
Minnie Driver, Speechless
America Ferrera, Superstore
Leighton Meester, Making History
Martha Plimpton, The Real O'Neals
Issa Rae, Insecure
Gina Rodriguez, Jane the Virgin
Constance Wu, Fresh Off the Boat

I thought with Broad City not eligible this year would make this easier, but there's just SO MANY great comedic female talents year in, year out. Half of my picks come from freshman shows which gives me joy since it means there are new shows and actresses to love. I think the surprise pick here might be Leighton Meester, but if you watch her crazy (sadly cancelled) show, you know she's the HIGHlarious heart of it all. Shout out to Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Ellie Kemper, and Tracee Ellis Ross still doing amazing work on their respective shows as well as Lena Dunham who probably had a career-best in her show's final season.

Alec Baldwin, Saturday Night Live
Desmin Borges, You're the Worst
Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Brett Dier, Jane the Virgin
Micah Fowler, Speechless
Noah Galvin, The Real O'Neals
William Jackson Harper, The Good Place
John Lithgow, Trial & Error
Timothy Simons, Veep
Zach Woods, Silicon Valley

Loathe am I to honor anything alluding to our current president, but everyone has to admit the masterful job Alec Baldwin did this year. He'll surely be nominated and likely win, but hope people don't sleep on the rest especially the beloved John Lithgow who also plays a bubbling idiot, except in a more charming way. Shout out to Titus Burgess, Jaime Camil, and Tony Hale whose schticks haven't gotten old yet.

Zazie Beetz, Atlanta
D'Arcy Carden, The Good Place
Donna Lynne Champlin, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Yael Groblas, Jane the Virgin
Jameela Jamil, The Good Place
Jayma Mays, Trial & Error
Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live
Rita Moreno, One Day At A Time
Chelsea Peretti, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Lena Waithe, Master of None

This category is always impossible to narrow down, but after some tough choices, these were the 10 that rose up. Baldwin's counterpart Kate McKinnon of course makes it in since she's a national treasure. However, if I was putting money on FYC campaigns I'd support D'Arcy Carden and Lena Waithe since they made me howl and smile respectively in strong episodes which I hoped they submitted. Shout out to the non-Rita Moreno ladies of the wonderful One Day At A time and the non-Yael Groblas ladies of the still perfect Jane the Virgin.

Riz Ahmed, Girls
Shoukath Ansari, Master of None
Josh Charles, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Daveed Diggs, black-ish
Santino Fontana, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Tom Hanks, Saturday Night Live
Hugh Laurie, Veep
Lin-Manuel Miranda, Saturday Night Live
Matthew Rhys, Girls
Jimmy Smits, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Guest categories are always fun to navigate because it has such a mix of names and talents. I do particularly love that I've picked two Hamilton alums in Daveed Diggs and Lin-Manuel Miranda and do we think they'll be nominated due to Hollywood's obsession with that show? But could anyone defeat David S. Pumpkins?

Becky Anna Baker, Girls
Angela Bassett, Master of None
Laura Dern, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Tovah Feldshuh, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Rashida Jones, black-ish
Melissa McCarthy, Saturday Night Live
Aubrey Plaza, Drunk History
Alia Shawkat, Drunk History
Kristen Stewart, Saturday Night Live
Samira Wiley, You're the Worst

There's a Hamilton connection here as well with Aubrey Plaza and Alia Shawkat playing Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton respectively and I do hope they get nominated just for the laughs. The biggest surprises here for me are Rashida Jones in a kind of role I've NEVER seen her in and Kristen Stewart who delivered a truly excellent hosting job. Sean "Spicey" Spicer will probably win.

I'll post my thoughts on Drama and Movie/Limited Series categories later tonight.Emmy Wishlist