Friday, September 7, 2012

2010 Emmy Award Predictions: Lead Actor in a Drama Series


Award Shows, my one weakness. Even if they're meaningless, I can't resist them and so, here is my annual attempt at predicting which actors and shows will become winners. These are predictions for the 64th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards which will be broadcast live on Sunday September 23 on ABC.

To win the Emmy, every actor nominated must submit an episode representative of their best work each season. The episodes submitted are then viewed by a panel that votes for what they deem best. Each actor and his/her publicity team pick which episode to submit. Great submissions can help an underdog, bad ones could prevent a favorite from winning. Let's take a look at what these gentlemen chose. The nominees are...

Hugh Bonneville in "Downton Abbey" (PBS)
Another sign that these Emmy voters just love 'Downton'. Bonneville gets nominated as lead for playing the Earl of Grantham, a role that in my humble opinion isn't much of a lead. Or, at least, doesn't get much to do except fall in love with the servants and give a few inspirational speeches now and then. 
Submission: "Episode 7/Christmas"
In this christmas episode he gets a key scene in which he must testify to defend unfairly accused Mr. Bates. He is fine in that scene, I guess, but doesn't get much to do in the rest of the episode. Come think about it, these 'Downton Abbey' installments focus on so many characters that it may be hard for the show to win acting awards (think of 'Mad Men'). 

Steve Buscemi in "Boardwalk Empire" (HBO)
I just heard that '90s song by Blessed Union of Sould, you that one about hanging with Leonardo DiCaprio and the guy who played in Fargo, I think his name was Steve. I'm just saying, that song sucks and I bring it up because I don't have much to say about Steve Buscemi. He may have won a Globe and two SAGs for this role, but 'Boardwalk Empire' feels more like a default nominee based on the show's pedrigree than a show with any real passionate buzz. 
Submission: "Two Boats and a Lifeguard"
Look, I'll be honest with you, I watched most of the season of 'Boardwalk Empire'. I do not know if I watched this episode and I haven't make the effort to watch it in preparation for this piece. I haven't even made the effort to look up a plot synopsis. I guess Buscemi is fine in this, but unless this episode is a full-on Buscemi intense-fest (which I'm sure it isn't), he won't win. 

Bryan Cranston in "Breaking Bad" (AMC)
On the one hand, Bryan Cranston has won for the first three seasons of the show and has never lost when nominated for this role. On the other hand, he has won for the first three seasons of the show, winning a fourth Emmy isn't that easy. I can only think of Dennis Franz and Doris Roberts. 
Submission: "Crawl Space"
He definitely has the tape to win, 'Crawl Space' shows his character confronting Giancarlo Esposito and later Aaron Paul in two great scenes and then, at the end of the episode we see his character cackling like a crazy person losing it at his house's crawl space. It's pretty intense stuff, something Cranston's submissions tend to have. 

Michael C. Hall in "Dexter" (Showtime)
Now here's the thing about 'Dexter', I'm of the mind the show was never as good as it was on its brilliant first season. Season two and four sure had their good parts, but they never achieved the heights of the first season, partially because they usually aren't any stakes, we know Dexter won't get caught. Now, entering its seventh season, the show has gotten so ridiculous I don't see another reason for it to continue except for good ratings. 
Submission: "Nebraska"
Like with Buscemi, I didn't really watched this and I'm pretty sure he won't win. Now that might seem unprofessional, but it's not like I'm evaluating someone for a credit loan or something like that, I'm just predicting award shows. 

Jon Hamm in "Mad Men" (AMC)
Oh, Jon Hamm. So great and so handsome and so funny and so brilliant, and yet, he just couldn't win a statue to decorate his mantel. You see, his performance is very nuanced and not necessarily the showy stuff award shows tend to reward. But then, last year, when Bryan Cranston wasn't there to automatically win this category, and he had one of the greatest submissions ever in 'The Suitcase' he still lost! (I did like that Kyle Chandler won, though, he is a great actor and was great in Friday Night Lights).  
Submission: "The Other Woman"
He gets one of the very bets Don Draper pitch-speeches in the history of the show in this category and, as usual, he really delivers. If he didn't win last year though, I don't know when he will. 

Damien Lewis in "Homeland" (Showtime)
A newcomer to the category, Lewis is really good as US soldier turned terrorist Brody. A couple of months ago, before we knew about emmy-voters' unapologetic love for 'Downton Abbey', 'Homeland' was the hottest new show of the season and the one in the best position to stop 'Mad Men's endless dominane of the Drama Series category. So, a couple of wins here and there for the show are certainly probable and Lewis might just be one of them.
Submission: "Marine One"
Lewis may be the one to take on Cranston for the win just because his submission is so brilliant. Here, his character struggles with being a terrorist as he puts on a detonating vest and goes out to kill the vice-president of the united states just as he receives a call from his daughter that makes him get maybe the coldest feet in the history of terrorism. Believe me, this is very intense stuff that could easily make him the winner. 

Will Win: In my opinion, this really is a toss-up between Cranston and Lewis. I could see any one winning, I think I'll go with Bryan Cranston, but at this point it is fair to ask ourselves how long he could keep winning these.

Should Win: Bryan Cranston has already won three times, which I could argue is enough. He is, however, amazing in this role and he may end up winning Emmys for every single season. If we want to spread the wealth a little bit, though, Damian Lewis is fantastic and it is a crime that Jon Hamm could end his run on 'Mad Men' Emmyless.

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