Monday, June 29, 2015

The Emmys nominations come out July 16th. Below is not what I think will end up being the nominations exactly. No, this is my picks for each category. The following nominees for each category is who I think was the best from this tv season. Some shows are left out because they simply were not the best they could have been this year. Other shows were left out simply because there weren't enough slots in some really highly competitive categories. And I'll be honest, I didn't get to watch everything out there.  So here is my dream picks for the 2015 EMMYS!


The Americans
Orange is the New Black
Better Call Saul
The Flash
Mad Men

My Pick - The Americans

The Flash had a tremendous first season and it had terrific episode after terrific episode. Mad Men was inconsistent but had some strong episodes to end the series. Saul also had a great first season though a lull in the middle of the run is what did not lead me to pick it. The same for Empire which was carried for a bit by strong performances.

So it came down to me between Americans and Orange is the New Black. I picked The Americans as even though the character growth and storyline in OITNB is fantastic, each week I was stunned at how much emotion The Americans showed and they were able to change up what you expected with simple words and sometimes only in the actors's faces. You fear for Philip and Elizabeth but also you root for them as well not just as spies but as a married couple with a family as well.

The Americans - Tooth Pulling scene


Parks and Recreation
Brooklyn 99
You're the Worst
Jane the Virgin
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
New Girl
Broad City

My Pick - Jane the Virgin

Parks had one of it's finest season and went out with some of it's best episodes of the series. Brooklyn 99 showed heart and humor in it's sophomore season and showed that it will be on this list for quite awhile. You're the Worst had a strong first season and showed that you can change how a show and its characters are shown and still be terrific and funny. Kimmy Schmidt was labeled as the child of 30 Rock and it showed that it was that and more with it's off-the-wall humor and funny outrageous characters. New Girl rebounded from a okay season 3 with a superb season 4 and Broad City had a great season as it's two main characters were always proving funny moments and outrageous situations.

But Jane the Virgin is my pick because it's been a long long time since a show has had as flawless a first season as this one has. This is the rare show that can mix humor with emotional moments , even at the same time.  I love that the main focus of the show is a strong female and her family and I'm glad that they always remembered this.


Bob Odenkirk - Better Call Saul
Grant Gustin - The Flash
Jon Hamm - Mad Men
Matthew Rhys - The Americans
Dominic West- The Affair
Charlie Cox- Daredevil
Cillian Murphy - Peaky Blinders

My Pick - Bob Odenkirk

Grant was a revelation as Barry Allen as he showed so many aspects of his performance.  His nomination to me was deserved in the season finale episode. Hamm showed once again the pain and anguish that make up Don Draper as he tried to figure out what he wanted from his life.
Matthew played Philip as a man who wants to be loyal to country but always loyal to family first in one of the best performances of the year. He showed so many emotions by just the way he would look at someone. Dominic did a great job of showing a flawed man trying to do the right thing but always picking the wrong choices at the wrong time. Charlie brought Matt Murdock to life as he showed he could nail the emotional scenes as well as the action ones.

Bob is my pick as he at the start of the series was trying to fight out of the "Slippin Jimmy" role that everyone from his former bosses to his own brother had labeled him in. The emotional scene where he finds out his brother betrayed him is one of the best of the year as you can see Jimmy figuring out that all his efforts to be respectful don't mean a damn to people that have him judged and set as "Slippin Jimmy" for the rest of his life. We haven't seen him become Saul Goodman yet but we are seeing the origins and it is the best work of Odenkirk's career.


Taraji P. Henson - Empire
Keri Russell- The Americans
Elizabeth Moss - Mad Men
Tatiana Maslany - Orphan Black
Hayley Atwell - Agent Carter
Italia Ricca - Chasing Life
Eva Green - Penny Dreadful

My Pick - Keri Russell

Taraji's role as Cookie is one of the biggest reasons Empire has become the popular pop culture hit it is. She bring fire and passion to each scene Cookie is in. Elizabeth showed how much Peggy's character had evolved through the years as it could all be seen in one scene when Peggy powerwalks through her new job in complete control of her world. Tatiana showed once again how talented she is as she played not just 5 different characters but also add more this season. I just hope we don't take for granted how great a actress she is. Hayley Atwell brought her character Peggy Carter to the small screen and she was flawless. She was not only one of the best performers of the year but also brought up many discussions and showed that she knows her worth no matter what I or anyone else say.
I have loved Italia's performance as April on Chasing Life. She is flawless showing multiple sides of a woman who is diagnosed with cancer just as she is reaching her mid-20's and we get to see all the emotions she goes through as she decides to fight and continue living her life to her fullest. Eva Green's showed how underrated a actress she is in Penny Dreadful showing us Vanessa as a woman who is scared of what is inside her but will not let it rule her. Her scenes with Josh Hartnett also show how to have sexual chemistry through just actions and a few words.

I chose Keri this year because in season 3 of The Americans we saw not only her play Elizabeth as a spy who is realizing that she can't keep doing this very much longer, not only a daughter who wants to let her mother know she loves her and has not forgotten about her but also as a mother and wife. A wife who loves her husband but can't agree with him on the best way for their daughter's life and as a mother who sees her daughter as someone without cause in her life and wants to help her. All these things are closing in on her and Keri did a fantastic job this season of showing that she is not only the strongest member of the family but also showing how much she loves her family as she tries keep everything together for her mother country.


Peter Dinklage - Game of Thrones
Jonathan Banks - Better Call Saul
Michael McKean- Better Call Saul
Tom Cavanagh - The Flash
Vincent D'Onofrio - Daredevil
Kyle MacLachlin - Agents of SHIELD

My Pick - Vincent D'Onofrio

Peter once again had a great season as Tyrion who with as just one sentence or turn of a phrase can get people to love him , laugh with him/at him or hate him with a passion. One thing that you never do is ignore him though. McKean and Banks showed why they are such intricate parts of Better Call Saul, McKean's performance  having you showing sympathy and then hatred towards Chuck while Banks dominated the screen whenever Mike had a scene whether talking with Jimmy or visiting his old stomping grounds. Tom Cavanagh's portrayal of Harrison Wells was one of the best of the season as he played the perfect mix of father figure/ man with a secret. And oh boy what a big secret it was! Kyle was a blessing to Agents of Shield as his flamboyant performance always left you statsified and yet you never tired of see him on there.

Vincent though was the best and is my choice. He was able to show multiple sides of Wilson Fisk (Flawed, scared, vengeful, frightening, romantic and wounded.) D'Onofrio showed that villains can be flawed human beings like us as that is what he made Wilson Fisk. A flawed man who is as human and monstrous as any of us can be.


Amy Acker - Person of Interest
Laverne Cox - Orange is the New Black
Adrienne C. Moore - Orange is the New Black
Carrie Coon- The Leftovers
Taryn Manning - Orange is the New Black
Mae Whitman - Parenthood
Emily Bett Rickards - Arrow
Lea Delaria - Orange is the New Black

My Pick - (tie) Mae Whitman and Lea Delaria

Amy had always been fantastic but on Person of Interest she has raised her game to a whole new level as Root as we saw this cold, calculating woman get pushed more and more to the breaking point. Laverne and Danielle were tremendous in their storylines this season as Laverne's Sophia was bullied and attacked for being a transgender woman as she showed the pain and strength Sophia goes through everyday while Adrienne combined humor with some great serious moments in her journey to pretend to become Jewish to actually converting. Emily shined in what was a down year of Arrow and showed how she went from one off appearance character to the heart of the show. Carrie's performance as a woman who lost her entire family in the "Sudden Departure", she was brilliant showing how much it had scarred her and how hard it is for your life to go on after that.

Lea is one of my picks because the episode where we got to see Boo's backstory was excellent. Lea showed what made Boo into Boo as we found and saw the pain that she went through her entire life of being told to act nice or dress more like a girl should and her anger at these people who just would not let her be herself. Also her friendship with Pennsatucky was one of the highlights of season 3 as well as polar opposites became good friends.  

I also decided to pick Mae and this time because she had a great performance this year. Mae as she went through a unplanned pregnancy and dealing with the chance of losing her grandfather at perhaps the same time. She should you a woman who is scared and nervous  and yet strong enough to be brave.


Chris Geere - You're the Worst
Joel McHale - Community
Thomas Middleditch - Silicon Valley
Adam Scott- Parks and Recreation
Andy Samberg - Brooklyn 99
Jay Baruchel - Man Seeking Woman

My Pick - Andy Samberg

Chris's character on You're the Worst is not really a nice one and yet thanks to Chris's performance and charisma, you find yourself rooting for him even when he is at his worst. Joel showed in the final season of Community how much Jeff Winger has changed and showed through the fear of losing his study group to the outside world. Richard as head of Pied Piper screwed up so many ways and through it all Middleditch had you rooting for him to fix things or to reach home before the others got rid of Pied Piper. Adam Scott kept up the tremendous work he did as Ben Wyatt on Parks and Rec's final season whether standing by Leslie for her next step in her career or him and April search for the next Mayor of Pawnee. Adam always played a wonderful straight man to the wildness around him . Jay was able to make his everyman geekish quality working on his new show as he took every ridiculous thing that was happening and able to ground it into relatable things.

 I went with Andy because this season saw growth in the character of Jake Peralta. He realized his feelings for Amy had gotten even more real and that he wasn't afraid to let them known anymore. Also his father/son bond with Capt. Holt led to some great heartwarming moments between the two. Though he still showed he is a big kid, he has become a big kid with a heart that cares about others, friends he considers his family.


Aya Cash- You're the Worst
Zooey Deschanel - New Girl
Julie Louis- Dreyfus - Veep
Ellie Kemper - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Amy Schumer - Inside Amy Schumer
Gina Rodriquez - Jane the Virgin
Amy Poehler - Parks and Recreation

My Pick - Gina Rodriquez

This is such a strong category. Gretchen is simply a terrible person on You're the Worst. Does everything possible to hate her and thanks to Aya's performance and charm you end up falling for as hard as Jimmy did from episode 1. Zooey was the leading force in New Girl's comeback season as she continued to evolve Jessica Day into even more of a rounded out character with quirks and flaws but damn proud to have them. JLD continued the consistent greatness she always does on Veep as Selina dealt with the presidency, collegues leaving and telling her the hard truth and a vice-president more popular than her with the same grace she has always done, you fucking nutbags. Ellie Kemper played Kimmy Schmidt as a woman seeing the world for the first time in a long time for laughs but also never to be laughed at and I am so glad for that. She showed that Kimmy may not knowing everything but she is not letting that keep her down. Schumer on her show shows off great comedic timing in such classics like "Last Fuckable Day" Poehler once again showed how Leslie Knope will be one of the most iconic tv characters in history. Amy's performance with Nick Offerman in Leslie and Ron is one of the best in a very long time not counting her speech to the Male Men in "Pie-Mary"

My choice is Gina though because in her first starring role on in what could have been a goofy show , she made Jane become one of the best characters in tv. Her scenes with her mom and grandmother were some of the most emotional ones this season especially tell her grandmother she was scared of being a single mom. Also though Gina can nail the humor scenes such as imagining talking with her future daughter or envisioning telenovela scenes in her head of her and her ex-boyfriend Rafael though also she can deliver in scenes like the one below where her and Rafael break-up.


Andre Braugher - Brooklyn 99
Tituss Burgess - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Jim Rash - Community
Jaime Camil - Jane the Virgin
Hugh Laurie - Veep
Nick Offerman - Parks and Recreation
Chris Pratt - Parks and Recreation

My Pick - Jaime Camil

Andre continues to crush it as Capt. Holt with his deadpan deliveries of the funniest lines and then getting us to laugh when he either says "HOT DAMN!" or is in a awkward conversation with Rosa. Tituss stole scenes and gave us laugh after laugh on Unbreakable as Kimmy's best friend Titus and that's not even mentioning the song that everyone hasn't stopped singing."PEENNNO NOIRRRR CAVIAR." Jim Rash continued his great run as the Dean on Community giving us such great laugh-out-loud moments just from a look on his face or a one-liner like "AND JESUS WEPT!" Hugh Laurie fit seamlessly in to the big cast of Veep and added his spark to the show as Senator Tom James as a perfect ally/ foil to Selina's presidental campaign. Nick and Chris had a great final season on Parks and shined when they were given their own episodes. Nick and Amy's "Leslie and Ron" episode which was a showcase of his talent and ability to show many sides of Ron Swanson. Chris had his shining moment in the Johnny Karate episode which was the funniest half-hour of tv in a long while anchored by Chris's Andy Dwyer.

But I will pick Jaime Camil's performance as Rogelio de la Vega on Jane the Virgin. As a slightly..ok really self-obsessed actor who wants to get to know his daughter, it has been a pleasure seeing Jaime steal every scene he has been involved in. Every scene that has Rogelio is always guaranteed to have a laugh in it. Also when it comes time for the emotional scenes, He absoultely nails it like this scene where Jane calls him "Dad" for the first time. You can feel the pride in his voice and the emotion hit his voice.


Stephanie Beatriz - Brooklyn 99
Anna Chlumsky - Veep
Melissa Fumero - Brooklyn 99
Yael Grobglas - Jane the Virgin
Kate McKinnon - Saturday Night Live
Andrea Navedo - Jane the Virgin
Aubrey Plaza - Parks and Recreation

My Pick- Kate McKinnon

Stephanie and Melissa are two of the strongest and yet funniest characters on network tv right now as Rosa Diaz and Amy Santiago of the 99. They are so in touch with the characters they play that even slight movements cause joyish laughter. (Also Rosa's impersonation of Amy is so so good.) Amy's tell-off of Selina was one of the best scenes on television this year and shows how good Anna has become over the years at playing that character. Yael and Andrea were two more shining reasons to watch Jane the Virgin as Petra, Rafael's ex-wife who is always scheming but wanting to be a good person and Xo, Jane's mom who always shows that she is many things but always proudest to be a mother first.

Kate is my choice for the award simply because without her, SNL would be terrible. She is the bedrock of that show. She is almost always the MVP and can always produce laughs even with the most terrible segment. Then, when the segment is written good, she makes it even more memorable. She is a master impersonist and is great at creating her own characters that never overstay their welcome. Simply put, Saturday Night Live better count their blessings every time Kate McKinnon is on screen.

Best Variety Show - My Pick - Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Watch any episode of John Oliver's show and you will see why it deserves the award. Seriously, ANY EPISODE.


Best Writing - Inside Amy Schumer - 12 Angry Men
                    Parks and Recreation - Ron and Leslie
                    It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia - Charlie Work
                    Community - Emotional Consequences of Broadcast Television

My Pick - Emotional Consequences of Broadcast Television

This one I could be picking with my heart but this was a perfect ending to six seasons of Community. It was the perfect blend of the wildness of Community but also hit the emotional moments, especially the final scene of Jeff and Annie at the Study Room. This was what a lot of people will point to in the future when they want to see how good Community could be.


Tell me your emmy thoughts on here or on Twitter!! (@cdulaney85)

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