The Beans Talk About the 2014 Emmy Nominations

Alex and his wife Becky watch a lot of TV. Probably too much. But that means that they sort of know what they’re talking about when the annual Emmy nominations come out. For reference’s sake, Becky has seen 24 of the programs we talk about here. Alex has seen 12. He may be talking out of his ass a lot more.

Comedy Series

Should Win: Uh…we really, really like Louie and Orange is the New Black, but it’s a stretch to call this past season of the former a comedy and the latter is a drama through-and-through. Of the nominees, we vote for Louie, but the consensus choice for us this year was Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

Will Win: Modern Family has won four in a row, which is apparently the cap on a series winning consecutive awards at the Emmys. Plus, it’s remained pretty damn mediocre since…season one. Another win would be awful. So we think that Orange is the New Black will prevail. Huge buzz and fandom, groundbreaking gender and sexuality politics, and new blood in a stale category.

WTF?: Why is Silicon Valley here? Alex watched the pilot and Becky watched one other episode, but it seemed like…not much. Maybe we missed out, but this feels like it got nominated solely for being on HBO.

Image via.

Drama Series

Should Win: Mad Men. Different year, same choice from us. It’s an all-time great show and had a nicely resurgent half-season. A bit old hat at this point, but we love what we love. It never had a chance to be nominated since it’s on NBC, but Hannibal is probably our real winner here. A Grand Guginol masterpiece of a nightmare.

Will Win: Breaking Bad or True Detective. A coin-flip for us. The former had deafening buzz for its finale, had a huge audience see it off, and won this award last year. But True Detective had similarly huge buzz when it debuted, even if many found its eventual resolution a let-down. Also, HBO hasn’t won a series award since The Sopranos won for its final season seven years ago. They are gonna go all-in on this.

WTF?: Downton Abbey. WHY?! WHY IS THIS HERE!? This was an excellent mini-series three years ago and has since become a pretty putrid regular series. Alex didn’t watch past Season 2, but Becky has…and she hated it. Even the actors are jumping ship in droves. Awful. Lazy. Get it out of here.

Groovy, men. (Image via).

Lead Actress – Comedy

Should Win: Abbi Jacobson & Ilana Glazer for Broad City. No, they were not nominated and never stood a chance to be nominated. Doesn’t matter to us! They were amazing, moving, and actually hilarious (unlike lots of these nominees) from the word go and were leagues better than any of the nominees. This is what Girls should be.

Will Win: Julia Louis-Dreyfus for Veep. She’s as good as ever, but this feels pretty rote at this point. Love some JLD, but there is so little growth or depth to this role (and Veep generally) that another win feels cheap. But that’s the Emmys.

WTF: Edie Falco or Melissa McCarthy. Alex says the former; Becky the latter. We really like both of these actresses, but who cares about these shows or performances? Let them move on to better material already!

Fuck. Yes. (Image via)

Lead Actor – Comedy

WTF: Um…all of this? Love Louis C.K., and he’s great in Louie, but the performance and show were barely comedies this year. He should still win, though, because the rest of these performances are just complete WTF. Cheadle is on a show everyone hates. Gervais is bad on a show that no one cares about. LeBlanc is on a series that Alex doesn’t even think is real. Macy is on a drama masquerading as a comedy. Parsons is doing an awful caricature of a person with real mental health issues. He will win, though, because JESUS WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS CATEGORY? Alex bemoans the lack of Andy Daly. His work on Review was amazing.

Lead Actress – Drama

Should Win:  Lizzy Caplan for Masters of Sex. She’s one of the best parts of a pretty solid show. Caplan is magnetic and fiery without ever seeming out of place in the show’s mid-century setting.

Will Win: Robin Wright for House of Cards. Alex hasn’t seen Season Two, because it’s such a silly show, but the consensus (and Becky) think Wright will win for being Lady MacBeth. She’s got a baity tape where her character deals with a past sexual assault. So there we go.

WTF: Michelle Dockery for Downton Abbey. We’re going back to this well, because it keeps on giving. We like Dockery, she’s been the best part of this show before, but nothing on Downton deserves Emmy nominations anymore. Kerry Washington and Claire Danes are lazy nominations, too, says Becky.

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Lead Actor – Drama

Should Win: Jon Hamm for Mad Men. He’s never won for playing Don Draper, which feels like a cosmic joke. As great as always this year, and he will probably come in last place in the voting for all that. Ugh.

Will Win: Matthew McConaughey for True Detective. The McConaissance marches on and one more step in the EGOT Quest will fall. He’s got an incredibly showy role in the most buzzed new program of the year. Plus, he just collected an Oscar. Dude’s got this on lockdown.

WTF: Jeff Daniels for Satan’s Butthole. Alex likes Jeff Daniels. He’s a fellow Michigander, is dedicated to local theater, and can be quite good as an actor in a variety of roles. That being said, The Newsroom is a fucking awful program and Daniels is fucking terrible on it. SO, OF COURSE HE WON LAST YEAR. Only yelling at shifty realty companies gets the Beans angrier.

Miniseries or Movie – All Categories

Will/Should Win: Fargo. Not even remotely a contest. Calling it a contest is an insult to the idea of contests. Fargo may have been the best damn thing on TV this year and nothing else in these categories belongs in the same breath. In particular, we want to see Allison Tolman win for playing Detective Molly Solverson. It’s category fraud that she is nominated in Supporting, but we don’t care. Team Tolman 4ever.

Just a darn-tootin’ masterpiece. (Image via).

Supporting Actor – Drama

Will/Should Win: Peter Dinklage for Game of Thrones. The show slipped a bit this season, but Dinklage has never been better. Despite spending most of the run in jail, he was magnetic, tortured, emotive, and hilarious. An astonishing performance.

WTF: Jon Voight for Ray Donovan. So lazy. Voight is a Hollywood legend, but he has become an asshole crank with no range in his old age. So let’s nominate him for a series that no one cares about! Guaranteed that most people who voted for him have never watched the show. Also, Jim Carter’s spot is wasted because Downton sucks ad infinitum.

Supporting Actress – Drama

Should Win: Alex says Anna Gunn and Becky says Christina Hendricks. Yes, she knows that Hendricks had barely anything to do on Mad Men this year, but it’s a makeup win for her (ridiculously) losing to Maggie Smith two years ago. Alex says Gunn because her scene on the telephone in “Ozymandias” is great enough to deserve another Emmy.

Will Win: Gunn? We’re not sure. She won last year and none of the other nominees really leap out as having a stronger claim. Watch it somehow go to Joanne Froggatt.

WTF: Smith and Frogatt. Downton. Boring and lazy. Becky says she will burn the house down if Maggie Smith wins a third Emmy for having a good “old bitchy face.”

Supporting Actor – Comedy

Should/Will Win: Andre Braugher for Brooklyn Nine-Nine (!!!) We love this performance. Braugher is a great actor with some exquisite deadpan timing and was consistently the best part of one of our favorite new comedies. That he is the program’s only major nomination is a crime. But the Emmys love him, so we think Braugher will win anyway.

WTF: Ty Burell and Jesse Tyler Ferguson for Modern Family. Will someone just bury this show already? Tell Emmy voters it’s off the air? Something? It’s schtick is so stale after five seasons that more awards just make us curse.

Simply the best. (Image via).

Supporting Actress – Comedy

Should Win: Of this group? Kate Mulgrew for Orange is the New Black. Again, it’s not much of a comedic performance, but she’s great on the program and has our affection for being the once and future Cpt. Janeway.

Will Win: We’re not sure? Becky thinks it’ll be Julie Bowen because the category is wide-open, which will make a repeat winner seem safe.  Alex leans towards Allson Janney for Mom, who is a past winner in a new category. Emmy voters like that sort of shit, too. In case it wasn’t clear, we have no faith in this voting body.

WTF: Becky says Janney, because Mom was a shitty show when we checked it out last fall. Alex says Kate McKinnon because SNL performers don’t belong in this category. She’s a very funny lady, but doesn’t do the same kind of work as the other five.

Guest Performances

We’ve got our fingers crossed for Laverne Cox and Allison Janney to prevail in their respective categories. Groundbreaking work from both actresses, which should be richly rewarded. Becky says she especially appreciates the vulnerability seen from both in their roles. Very different, but equally great. Alex also like to see Robert Morse win for his soft-shoe farewell on Mad Men. The best things in life are free, and an acting win for Mad Men would definitely qualify.

How we feel about the Emmys every year. (Image via).

Animated Series

Mentioning this because Alex loves him some cartoons. The Simpsons missed for the 1st time in 20 years in favor of his beloved Archer, but the real winner should be Bob’s Burgers, which is still one of the funniest and most heart-felt programs on TV. It is pure Bean Fodder in the best way.

Costume Design

Becky worships Janie Bryant as a goddess. Her work on Deadwood and Mad Men are peerless, but she has never won for the latter. Her ability to code character and motivation through the costume design is unlike anything else on television. Give her another Emmy already!

Alex Bean

A life-long Midwesterner, currently living and working in Chicago. Primarily writes here about television and film (which is what he accrued crushing debt to study in school), but will write about books, sports, video games, or whatever else strikes his fancy. He's the one who thinks baseball is really boring.

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