Thursday, July 17, 2008

2008 Emmy Nominations

I gotta start with the writing categories... Actor and Show categories are below.

Outstanding Writing For A Comedy Series
30 Rock • Rosemary's Baby • NBC • Broadway Video, Little Stranger Inc., in association with Universal Media Studios
Jack Burditt, Written By

30 Rock • Cooter • NBC • Broadway Video, Little Stranger Inc., in association with Universal Media Studios
Tina Fey, Written By

Flight Of The Conchords • Yoko • HBO • Dakota Pictures and Comedy Arts in association with HBO Entertainment
James Bobin, Written By
Jemaine Clement, Written By
Bret McKenzie, Written By

Pushing Daisies • Pie-Lette • ABC • Living Dead Guy Productions, The Jinks/Cohen Company in association with Warner Bros. Television
Bryan Fuller, Written By

The Office • Dinner Party • NBC • Deedle Dee Productions, Reveille LLC, Universal Media Studios
Lee Eisenberg, Written By
Gene Stupnitsky, Written By

Wow--What a strong category!

Two absolutely brilliant episodes of "30 Rock" -- "Rosemary's Baby" guest-starred Carrie Fisher as an old-time comedy writer naively idolized by Liz Lemon. "Cooter" was a wickedly funny satire of Bush-era patronage appointments to vital Federal agencies guest starring Matthew Broderick.

The "Dinner Party" episode of "The Office" was their take on "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf" (with Michael and Jan as George and Martha) -- IMO, far and away their best episode last season. When the strike hit, showrunner Greg Daniels announced that they'd just had the table read for this ep, and called it "the best script we've ever done," which may be exaggeration -- though maybe not.

Flight of the Conchords' "Yoko" guest-starred the brililant NY musical theater star Sutton Foster as Coco, who comes between the bandmates. Cool, off-beat show--Great ep.

And Bryan Fuller's Pushing Daisies pilot -- sorry, "Pie-lette" -- was, of course, pure joy from beginning to end... though I'm not sure putting it in the comedy category does it justice.

My pick... So hard to choose, but I'll have to say Tina Fey's "Cooter." The actual winner? Equally hard to say. Flight of the Conchords is probably out -- but the other four are all pretty strong contenders.

Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series
Battlestar Galactica • Six Of One • Sci Fi Channel • Universal Media Studios in association with R & D TV
Michael Angeli, Written By

Damages • Pilot • FX Networks • FX Productions and Sony Pictures Television
Todd A. Kessler, Written By
Glenn Kessler, Written By
Daniel Zelman, Written By

Mad Men • Smoke Gets In Your Eyes (Pilot) • AMC • Lionsgate Television
Matthew Weiner, Written By

Mad Men • The Wheel • AMC • Lionsgate Television
Matthew Weiner, Written By
Robin Veith, Written By

The Wire • 30 • HBO • Blown Deadline Productions in association with HBO Entertainment
David Simon, Teleplay By/Story By
Ed Burns, Story By

Another really strong category. Two brilliant episodes of Mad Men, the best new show of last year. Battlestar again cracks the genre stigma in this category --Ron Moore's fantastic "Occupation/Precipice" was nominated last year -- with one of the strongest episodes of this season. The Wire's series finale was excellent, even to someone who's only seen a handful of episodes. And though I didn't see Damages, the pilot was highly regarded.

My pick? The Mad Men pilot. The winner--Ditto. Mad Men got more nominations than any other show, and there's a reason why. HBO must be kicking itself for so arrogantly passing on this show.

Outstanding Writing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Dramatic Special

Bernard And Doris • HBO • Trigger Street Independent Productions in association with Little Bird and Chicago Films and HBO Films
Hugh Costello, Written By

Cranford (Masterpiece Theatre) • PBS • A BBC and WGBH/Boston co-production
Heidi Thomas, Written By

Extras: The Extra Special Series Finale • HBO • BBC and HBO Entertainment
Ricky Gervais, Written By
Stephen Merchant, Written By

John Adams • Independence • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Kirk Ellis, Written By

Recount • HBO • Spring Creek/Mirage Productions in association with Trigger Street Productions, Everyman Pictures and HBO Films
Danny Strong, Written By

I only saw three of the five here, and though Buffy actor Danny Strong's Recount script is a good effort, it doesn't belong here. The "Independence" episode of John Adams was strong, but not as strong as the premiere -- which was the high-point of the series. It was all downhill from there.

My pick? The Extras Christmas Special. The winner? Ditto. Emmy loves Gervais and Merchant -- with good reason.

Boston Legal," ABC
"Damages," FX
"Dexter," Showtime
"House," Fox
"Lost," ABC
"Mad Men," AMC

My pick? Mad Men. The winner? Mad Men. (re: Boston Legal--What IS it with Emmy and David E Kelly shows?)

"Curb Your Enthusiasm," HBO
"Entourage," HBO
"The Office," NBC
"30 Rock," NBC
"Two and a Half Men," CBS

My pick? 30 Rock. The winner? 30 Rock. It was the best comedy of the year, hands down. IMO.

Gabriel Byrne, "In Treatment"
Bryan Cranston, "Breaking Bad"
Michael C. Hall, "Dexter"
Jon Hamm, "Mad Men"
Hugh Laurie, "House"
James Spader, "Boston Legal"

Jon Hamm.

Glenn Close, "Damages"
Sally Field, "Brothers and Sisters"
Mariska Hargitay, "Law and Order: Special Victims Unit"
Holly Hunter, "Saving Grace"
Kyra Sedgwick, "The Closer"

Glenn Close probably has it all sewn up, but I don't have a horse in this race. Too bad Mary McDonnell didn't make the cut -- best she does next year.

Christina Applegate, "Samantha Who?"
America Ferrera, "Ugly Betty"
Tina Fey, "30 Rock"
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, "New Adventures of Old Christine"
Mary-Louise Parker, "Weeds"

Tina Fey--Hands down.

Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock"
Steve Carell, "The Office"
Lee Pace, "Pushing Daisies"
Tony Shalhoub, "Monk"
Charlie Sheen, "Two and a Half Men"

Alec Baldwin. He's doing the best work of his career on this show.

Jon Cryer, "Two and a Half Men"
Kevin Dillon, "Entourage"
Neil Patrick Harris, "How I Met Your Mother"
Jeremy Piven, "Entourage"
Rainn Wilson, "The Office"

All really strong actors. I'd have to pick Rainn Wilson... No idea who will win, though.

Ted Danson, "Damages"
Michael Emerson, "Lost"
Zeljko Ivanek, "Damages"
William Shatner, "Boston Legal"
John Slattery, "Mad Men"

Again--Incredible actors. Zelijko Ivanek blows me away in everything he does (he was the one good thing about the last Broadway production of Mutiny on the Bounty). John Slattery was a revelation in Mad Men.

But I gotta give it to Michael Emerson, and I hope he actually wins it. He sure as hell deserves it--It was a tour de force year for Ben.

Candice Bergen, "Boston Legal"
Rachel Griffiths, "Brothers and Sisters"
Sandra Oh, "Grey's Anatomy"
Dianne Wiest, "In Treatment"
Chandra Wilson, "Grey's Anatomy"

Rachel Griffiths and Dianne Wiest are my favorites in this category, mostly based on their past work -- though I *did* see quite a few episodes of In Treatment, and Wiest was fantastic.


Kristin Chenoweth, "Pushing Daisies"
Amy Poehler, "Saturday Night Live"
Jean Smart, "Samantha Who?
Holland Taylor, "Two and a Half Men"
Vanessa Williams, "Ugly Betty"

Amy Poehler is nominated for SNL?! Wow. She deserves it -- She *more* than deserves it.

Then agian, so does the brilliant Kristin Chenoweth for Pushing Daisies... but I gotta route for Poehler.

What are everyone else's picks?

The 60th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards will air live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday, September 21 on ABC.


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