2014 Primetime Emmy Nominations: Comedy

emmyOne of the distinct advantages of the Primetime Emmy Awards is that nominated television series are divided into two categories:  drama and comedy. This same divide is fairly common in television awards shows, but only exists for movies at the Golden Globes. I have often wondered how the Academy Awards would differ if they followed suit and awarded Oscars for best comedy and best drama. It would certainly give talented comedic actors a chance to shine, something that rarely happens now. (Melissa McCarthy’s supporting actress nomination for Bridesmaids was so astonishing partly because it was for a popular comedy.)

Alternatively, what would the Emmys be like if they did not split nominations between the genres? There is already so much competition within the categories that it is difficult to know how the votes would fall. Would fan favorites like Game of Thrones find themselves ousted from the list in favor of critically acclaimed, non-genre shows like Veep or Louie? Would network dramas and comedies, which already have a difficult time breaking into the nominations, disappear completely? Would the nominations be as stagnant from year to year as they are now in drama, or would there be more variety, like there is in comedy, as new shows premiere and old shows have a slightly less stellar season? It seems unlikely that the Emmys would ever move away from the dual category system, but it’s fun to speculate how the nominations would fall.

This year, there seems to be more change in the comedy nominations than the drama nominations. Finally eligible for Emmy consideration, the Netflix series Orange is the New Black makes an appearance in a big way, as does, to a lesser extent, HBO’s Silicon Valley. However, another newcomer this season, Brooklyn Nine-Nine received one lone nomination, despite winning both Best Comedy and Best Actor at the Golden Globes. This year, after constantly being passed over as a drama, Showtime’s Shameless, submitted as a comedy. Although the show is definitely more of a drama than a comedy, this move did finally garner star William H. Macy a nomination.

The comedy categories are packed with talent this year and the race seems close. It will be interesting to see if stalwarts like The Big Bang Theory, Modern Family and Veep can hold out against newcomers like Orange is the New Black. Will Jim Parsons win his fourth Emmy for playing Sheldon Cooper, or will the award go the cable route? Will Andre Braugher’s deadpan delivery in Brooklyn Nine-Nine earn him an Emmy, or will Tony Hale go home with back-to-back awards? Anything seems possible on the night of the awards show!

Below, I have listed all the nominees in the Comedy categories. Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Outstanding Comedy Series:

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series:

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards air Monday, August 25 at 7pm on NBC. Keep your fingers crossed for your favorites!

Flickr CC: Emmy graphic Photo by: Alan Light