Nerdy Girl Predicts: The 2014 Emmy Awards

How many Emmys will the final season of Breaking Bad win?

How many Emmys will the final season of Breaking Bad win?

For as frustrated as I was with the 2014 Emmy nominations when they were announced, I’m still excited to see TV’s best (with some notable exceptions) celebrated on Monday night. Although I don’t watch a lot of what’s considered “critically acclaimed” television, I’m still going to attempt to predict the show’s big winners. I’m also going to offer my thoughts on who I wish would win in these categories, too.

I’m not including the miniseries or TV movie categories because I haven’t seen any of those nominees. However, if you have thoughts on who will/should win those categories (as well as any others I’ve left out), let me know in the comments. And I’ll be live tweeting the evening’s festivities (including any red carpet coverage I can watch after work—why are these awards on a Monday?) over on the NGN Twitter account.

Outstanding Drama Series
My Pick and My Wish: Breaking Bad
My Thoughts: I will preface this by saying I think Breaking Bad and True Detective are going to split the series and actor categories. So if Bryan Cranston wins for acting, I think True Detective will take home this award. Ultimately, it’s a very close race, but I think Breaking Bad’s final season will be recognized to honor the show’s part in TV history. Years from now, Breaking Bad will be known as one of the pillars of this new Golden Age of television, so I think the Emmys will take advantage of having one last chance to honor it.

Outstanding Comedy Series
My Pick and My Wish: Orange Is the New Black
My Thoughts: I know the Emmys are often afraid to break away from the familiar, but the impact Orange Is the New Black has had on the television landscape shouldn’t be denied. I think this will be Emmy voters’ chance to recognize Netflix as a platform since I don’t think House of Cards will take home any awards this year. Not only would this be a way for the Emmys to make a statement that they’re not stuck in the past, it would be a way to recognize a show that’s unlike anything else on television.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
My Pick and My Wish: Matthew McConaughey (True Detective)
My Thoughts: Step two on the quest for a McConaughey EGOT begins on Emmy night. I’m incredibly impressed with what he’s done with his career in both film and television, and I wouldn’t be disappointed at all to see his incredible year continue with an Emmy.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
My Pick: Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife)
My Wish: Lizzy Caplan (Masters of Sex)
My Thoughts: Let’s be honest; my real wish here is for Tatiana Maslany to win on as a write-in or something. However, I think a win for Caplan would be the next best thing. I would love if this category was one where the Emmys tried something new and rewarded an actress who made a career breakthrough in a universally beloved role. However, I think this is a category where they’ll end up sticking with what they know, which I can’t say I’ll be too upset about. I thought Margulies turned in the best work of her career this season on The Good Wife. She made the exhaustion of grief hit home in such a quietly powerful way, painting one of the most realistic portraits of mourning a senseless, unexpected death that I’ve ever seen.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Jim Parsons (The Big Band Theory)
My Wish: Louis C.K. (Louie)
My Thoughts: The Emmys love Jim Parsons. And I think he’s going to lose his miniseries category to Matt Bomer, so this will be their way of recognizing him for such a varied body of work this season.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep)
My Wish: Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation)
My Thoughts: I have a theory that Poehler could actually win this year because it wasn’t her show’s strongest season, and that seems to fit with the way the Emmys work. However, I still think she’ll take home the award next season because it will be her last chance to win for playing Leslie Knope. This year, I think this award is still JLD’s to lose. And as long as she keeps being as funny and charming at award shows as she always is, I won’t mind too much.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
My Pick: Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad)
My Wish: Josh Charles (The Good Wife)
My Thoughts: I would love to see Charles get some recognition for the power of a performance that made us all mourn Will Gardner, but it’s hard to deny Paul another Emmy for his fiercely emotional work in a role that has seemingly earned a place in the pantheon of great supporting characters in television drama.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
My Pick: Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad)
My Wish: Christine Baranski (The Good Wife)
My Thoughts: If you read my latest Fangirl Thursday post, you know how much believe Baranski deserves this Emmy for her masterful use of restraint and subtlety in her show’s most emotionally complex season yet. However, I don’t think anyone who watched (or even heard about ) “Ozymandias” can deny Gunn an Emmy for her work in that episode. The image of Gunn weeping in the street is one burned into our collective TV-watching consciousness because of the raw power she unleashed as Skyler White’s world fell apart.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Tony Hale (Veep)
My Wish: Andre Braugher (Brooklyn Nine-Nine)
My Thoughts: I really hope the Emmys prove me wrong on this one. My gut says they’ll go for a show and an actor they’ve recognized before, but I don’t think anyone in comedy deserves an Emmy more than Braugher does this year. His ability to find the humor in stoicism is so rare, and his line delivery was one of the best things about television as a whole this year.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
My Pick: Allison Janney (Mom)
My Wish: Kate McKinnon (Saturday Night Live)
My Thoughts: For as fantastic as I think McKinnon is (she was the glue that held a rocky SNL season together), I don’t think the Emmys can resist giving Janney all the awards they can give her. And as a devoted Janney fan for years, I can’t say I’ll be complaining if she wins.

Outstanding Variety Series
My Pick and My Wish: The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
My Thoughts: It’s hard not to love Jimmy Fallon, and I think that’s true for viewers as well as voters. His enthusiasm is infectious.

Outstanding Reality Competition Program
My Pick: The Amazing Race
My Wish: So You Think You Can Dance
My Thoughts: The Emmys can’t go more than one year without a win for The Amazing Race. It’s some sort of award show law. And since The Voice won last season, I’m expecting a return to normal for this category this year.

What are your Emmy night hopes and predictions?

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8 thoughts on “Nerdy Girl Predicts: The 2014 Emmy Awards

  1. I’m gonna copy your format, sorry in advance for the incredibly long comment 😡

    Outstanding Drama Series
    My Pick/My Wish: I completely agree with you on Breaking Bad. The final 8 episodes were just so strong and the show as a whole was so important to this era of television that I really want to see it rewarded one final time.

    Outstanding Comedy Series
    My Pick/My Wish: I think OINTB is the new shiny show that’s gonna get recognized in its first season and I couldn’t be happier about that. Season 3 of Veep was a good one and I think I liked this season of TBBT (though the fact that I can’t remember probably says that I didn’t love it) but OINTB had a truly great first season and I want the story to have all the awards.

    Lead Actor in a Drama
    My Pick: Matthew McConaughey
    My Wish: Bryan Cranston
    I think McConaughey did a fantastic job with True Detective and I won’t be upset at all when he wins but it seems like a shame for Bryan Cranston to not win after such a good season. I just re-read the BB chapter of The Revolution Was Televised so I’m feeling very nostalgic for the show at the moment but I was continuously impressed with Cranston in 5B from the moments of pure ego to the moments where he knew he lost everything he thought he was fighting to protect. And as a side note, I know he won’t win and I’m not even caught up yet, but can I just say how silly it is that Jon Hamm doesn’t have an Emmy for Mad Men?

    Lead Actress in a Drama
    My Pick: Robin Wright
    I don’t think the Emmys are quite done with House of Cards and this is my best guess for them to win an award
    My Wish: I wonder who this could be 😉 I will just be thrilled to pieces if Lizzy Caplan wins this. I want this show to have so much recognition from everyone possible and she did such good work that is so different from her usual roles.

    Lead Actor in a Comedy
    My Pick/My Wish: I have basically no opinion in this category so I’m just going with the actor from the show I watch who has a decent chance of winning – Jim Parsons. I’m sure Louie C.K. is great and I can see him winning as well, but Parsons had more things to do this year than just be the insufferable but funny know-it-all and he’s so precious that I’m perfectly fine with him winning again.

    Lead Actress in a Comedy:
    My Pick: Julia Louis-Dreyfus
    I caught up with Veep last week and thoroughly enjoyed her performance, as I know many others do so I’d be happy with a win here.
    My Wish: Amy Poehler
    How does she not have an Emmy yet? I have this terrible feeling that she’s gonna be Jon Hamm and never win for such a well-loved role but I’ll continue to hold out hope.

    Supporting Actor in a Drama:
    My Pick: Peter Dinklage
    This season was such a big one for Tyrion and Peter Dinklage sold the hell out of his scenes that I think he has a legitimate shot at winning.
    My Wish: Josh Charles
    For all the reasons mentioned in the comments of your Fangirl Thursday post. Everything about his scenes in Hitting the Fan and The Decision Tree were outstanding and it’d be a nice way to honor his character

    Supporting Actress in a Drama
    My Pick: Anna Gunn
    My Wish: Christine Baranski
    I’m gonna be happy when Anna Gunn wins but I need some awards for Christine Baranski.

    Supporting Actor in a Comedy:
    My Pick/My Wish: Andre Braugher
    I think he has a really good shot at winning and I want that really badly. He’s so fantastic in Brooklyn Nine-Nine and was probably the actor who cracked me up the most this past year.

    Supporting Actress in a Comedy:
    My Pick: Allison Janney
    I’d love for her to win two Emmys this year in two very different roles. If I watched Mom, she’d probably be my wish as well.
    My Wish: Kate Mulgrew
    What a great role played by a great actress. Her flashback episode was incredible and made her the first character I really became connected to on OINTB.

    I also have little opinion on the movies/miniseries categories except to say that Allison Tolman needs to win Supporting Actress, even if it is a silly place to put her. She was outstanding in Fargo.

    • I loved reading all of your picks! I hope you’re right about Andre Braugher, and I would be very excited if you were right about Peter Dinklage, too. He did outstanding work this season with a great storyline, and I’ve believed for a while that if he were to win another Emmy for this role, it would be for this season’s arc.

      I also have to share in your confusion about Jon Hamm. I know he’s always up against outstanding actors, but Don Draper is one of the most iconic characters of this Golden Age of TV. How has he not been recognized for that yet? (I have a feeling he’ll get a “body of work” Emmy for the second half of the final season, just like I hope Poehler will get one next year, too.)

      • OK, I forgot to weigh in on Hamm. I am afraid that his ship has sailed. I think his strongest work was in the first three seasons of the show and his bright light in the blight that has been the show in its latter years won’t put him over the edge. Unlike Kyle Chandler in Friday Night Lights, unless Mad Men has a final season that blows people away, I think Hamm will exit the experience empty handed. The fact is the show shot itself in the foot. It has taken them 8 years to give us less than 100 episodes of television and 5 of those years to cover 3 seasons. That has hurt Hamm in the long run and even with Cranston gone, next year he will have to compete against a new slate, Justified’s final season and I believe the academy will have woken up to Michael Sheehan’s performance in Masters of Sex along with hopefully the performances of both leads in The Americans.

  2. Keeping your format I will weigh in quickly. Some overall thoughts however is the category shopping is hugely problematic and bothers me to no end, especially when you look at American Horror Story (not a mini series/movie it’s in its 3rd season), Orange is the New Black (not a comedy) and True Detective (not a series, a event because it was finite. None of the elements in this 8 episodes will return). That said here are my predictions.

    Outstanding Drama Series — My Pick and My Wish: Breaking Bad

    My Thoughts: I don’t have the love affair most people have with Breaking Bad. I appreciate it in the way I appreciate Modern Family. However, it’s closing season was a thunder bolt and a road map to how to end a series well. I think with the absence of The Good Wife, this is the deserving accolade.

    Outstanding Comedy Series
    My Pick and My Wish: I opt out because I don’t watch a ton of comedies and because the likely winner I don’t think is an actual comedy.

    Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

    My Pick and My Wish: Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson

    My Thoughts: I think the McConaughissance is in full effect, however now that I’ve watched, I think Harrelson is actually the stronger performance and that the Emmy voters just can’t abandon the Cheers character from long ago. So it will go to his partner with a slight chance they split the vote and Cranston takes it home yet again. YAWN.

    Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
    My Pick and My Wish: Robin Wright
    My Thoughts: Like others before, two key actresses are missing from this category Keri Russell and Tatiana Maslany. That said I think Wright is gloriously evil in this role and her Clare gives me chills like few characters on television ever.

    Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series — I concur with Katie. I think Louie CK is doing wonderful things, but the Parsons love affair is long and lazy.

    Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series — Ditto for Julia Louis Dryfuss as with Parsons. Long and lazy love affair.

    Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
    My Pick: Mandy Patinkin and My Wish: Josh Charles
    My Thoughts: My love of Charles and this performance is well documented. That said, I think Patinkin might pull this out. He’s been a stand out on Homeland and remains the only thing that is consistently strong in an epic fail of a season.

    Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series – Again I completely co-sign onto your assessment of this.

    Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
    My Pick and My Wish: Andre Braugher (Brooklyn Nine-Nine)
    My Thoughts: I think this is Braugher’s to lose. He’s beloved by the academy and this role is a complete departure for him that I think voters will gravitate towards.

    Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
    My Pick: Allison Janney and My Wish: Kate Mulgrew
    My Thoughts: I think she’s easily a double winner. I think Mulgrew is the better pick and a stand out in a sea of really strong performances in OITNB. However, Janney is the glue that makes Mom watchable.

    Now as for the mini-series/movie whatever they are calling it now I offer the following:

    Lead Actress – I think Cicely Tyson should win this hands down. Her performance is poignant and glorious. However, I think the academy is itching to award Jessica Lange for American Horror Story and that makes me sad. This is a TV series and Lange is among the few holdovers all three seasons. She’s in the wrong category.

    Lead Actor – I think Mark Ruffalo will win for The Normal Heart, but I hope against all hopes I am wrong and that Martin Freeman will win for Fargo. Speaking of Fargo, it will either sweep or go home empty handed. If the latter happens that will be a shame because the dark, macabre work that was accomplished on this show was simply spectacular. It managed to capture the pieces and essence of what I loved about the film and extend it into something new and interesting. There wasn’t a bad performance in the bunch.

    Supporting Actress — Which is why my money is on Allison Tolman’s performance in this category. Yes, Sarah Paulson might take it for Horror Story, but I don’t think so. I think Tolman was the glue that grounded Fargo and people took notice.

    Supporting Actor — This is Matt Bomer’s to lose for The Normal Heart. As someone who saw the play when it was originally produced, I feel like the play is dated. And felt that way when I watched the movie. However, that did not diminish the power of Bomer’s beautiful performance. I wouldn’t cry if he took it, but part of me really wants Colin Hanks to get recognized for Fargo.

    Movie/Mini Series — I think The Normal Heart will win because the academy is lazy and it’s the easy pick. But the fact remains that Fargo was the biggest and most interesting risk on TV this past season. That it worked was terrific and I hope it gets honored for that.

    Now excuse me while I prepare to be emotionally destroyed by the Robin Williams tribute.

    • Thanks so much for sharing your predictions because you and Heather have much more well-informed thoughts on these categories than I do. That’s especially true for the miniseries category. I really hope both you and Heather are right about Andre Braugher. I think my jaded opinion of the Emmys is keeping me from being hopeful about any of my favorites winning this year, so I’d be pleasantly surprised to see him take home the award.

      I also echo your thoughts on the problems with the categories themselves. What began as an issue with American Horror Story has now become an epidemic. There needs to be a major overhaul in the way shows are placed into their categories, and it needs to happen soon.

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