Tuesday, September 4, 2012

2012 Primetime Emmy Award Predictions: Supporting Actress in a Comedy 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 ladies chose. The nominees are...

Mayim Bialik in "The Big Bang Theory" (CBS)
Mayim Bialik's Amy Farrah Fowler started as a guest role in this show's third season finale and has now not only become a regular, but one of the best parts of the show. Right when the show was started to feel exhausting and too repetitive, enter Bialik, who invigorated the show's dynamic by giving Sheldon a female contrapart. 
Episode Submission: "The Shiny Trinket Maneuver"
In this episode Amy gets mad as Sheldon, who feels guilty and decides to give her a tiara. The scene in which Bialik receives this present might be one of the character's funniest. This dynamite scene could win her the award, except she doesn't appear much in the rest of the episode, which will probably end up hurting her. 

Kathryn Joosten in "Desperate Housewives" (ABC)
Kathryn Joosten has won two times already for this role, albeit when she competed in the "guest actress" category. When she competed for supporting actress in the past, she didn't get nominated, but this time, sentimentality for her departure probably helped her to posthumously appear here. Joosten was not only a fine performer, but also an active member of the television academy, which could earn her a sympathy vote that could help her win. 
Episode Submission: "Give Me the Blame/Finishing the Hat"
If there is any sentimentality for her passing, then the episode submission will only make it greater. In the 'Desperate Housewives' two-hour series finale (yes, I had forgotten that show was on the air too), her character, Mrs. McCluskey tragically dies of lung cancer mirroring Joosten's real life departure. It's a very dramatic role, which could hurt someone in a category labeled as "comedy actress", but it hasn't stopped performers like Edie Falco and co-star Felicity Huffman from winning in the past. What could actually hurt her is little screen-time. I do believe the sentimentality of the matter could be enough to make her win.

Julie Bowen in "Modern Family" (ABC)
Bowen's win last year was a bit of a surprise. This year, however, she enters the race as the favorite. 'Modern Family' doesn't seem to have lost popularity with voters and she seems to have gained much more notoriety and presence in the hollywood scene since she won last year. Everything is theoretically in order for her to repeat. 
Episode Submission: "Go Bullfrogs!"
Claire Dunphy is a tricky character, who comes off as shrill in many of the shows' episodes. But Bowen, rather brightly, has chosen to submit an episode in which her character gets away from her kids on a night of partying. She has some funny moments as she gets too comfortable with her supposedly gay party companion. So far so good, except voters will get a glimpse of Claire's manic side in co-star Sofia Vergara's tape. Hopefully for Bowen, it won't be enough to irritate them as much as, say, I get irritated by her character.   

Sofia Vergara in "Modern Family" (ABC)
Back when the show premiered and became a sensation, the biggest breakthrough performer in its cast must've probably been Sofia Vergara. An attractive and funny woman in the most popular comedy on the air, plus, in the flashy, big, divalicious role that wins Emmys (think of Megan Mullally or Christine Baranski). Appearing in Diet Pepsi commercials and being nominated for the Golden Globes and SAG awards, by this point Sofia should have easily won an Emmy. So, what happened?
Episode Submission: "Tableau Vivant"

In the past two years, Sofia Vergara has made a little of a reputation as a terrible episode submitter. Last year, her episode was so bad it was a better showcase of Julie Bowen's talents than herself and was probably one of the reasons Julie ended up winning the Emmy. This time around, Sofia has made her best decision yet as far as submissions are concerned, but even then, she isn't all that spectacular and pails in comparison to Bowen's tape. 

Merrit Weaver in "Nurse Jackie" (Showtime)
One of the biggest surprised of nominations morning was Merrit Weaver's inclusion for the fourth season of 'Nurse Jackie' after being snubbed for the previous three seasons in which the show (and herself) had much more buzz. Anyway, it is a deserving recognition for a performance that has been the shows' bright spot throughout its best and worst moments. 
Episode Submission: "One-Armed Jacks"
She gets an amusing dance sequence, but the nomination itself feels so bizarre to me I just can't see her winning. She is very deserving of her nomination and should be proud of herself, though. 

Kristen Wiig in "Saturday Night Live" (NBC)
For four years she has been nominated in this category and for even more time she has been doing some terrific work in 'Saturday Night Live'. For many seasons she has been the stand-out performer and by far the funniest person on SNL's cast. Now, she has established herself as a big-screen presence after the enormous success of 'Bridesmaids', so this was her last season on SNL, and thus, her last nomination in this category (at least for now). 
Episode Submission: "Host: Mick Jagger"
Wiig has decided to submit her last ever episode as an SNL cast-member, which is a good decision on the basis of the sentimental factor that could persuade voters to mark her in their ballots. The episode itself, even with a very sentimental goodbye for her in the last part, isn't exactly an all-out showcase of her talents. She could still get by with a sentimental good-bye win, but let's remember it didn't work for another movie star like Steve Carell last year and that sentimentality could be stronger in Kathryn Joosten's case. 

Will Win: Like I said before, everything's in place for Bowen to repeat, but I can't help to feel like they could give this to Kathryn Joosten. I'm still going to say Julie Bowen, but wouldn't be surprised by an upset. 

Should Win: I would like to see Kristen Wiig be recognized for her many years in SNL. I would also think it sweet to have a Kathryn Joosten win as a thank you for her work with the Academy. And don't even get me started on the possibility of a crazy win by Merrit Weaver. But if I had a ballot, I would probably vote for Mayim Bialik, whom I think has been a huge asset to her show and is, strictly speaking, the best performance in my mind. 

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