Last week, nominations were announced for the 65th Primetime Emmy Awards, complete with the usual snubs and surprises (along with some well-earned nods).
One of the biggest surprises for me was that Downton Abbey has this year been upgraded to the Outstanding Drama category. Now, I love Downton as much as the next person but it seems a bit of a stretch for it to be included in the same list as the likes of Breaking Bad and Mad Men, when other great dramas like The Good Wife and The Walking Dead failed to get a mention. Not only that, but it also shakes things up in the acting categories, with both Hugh Bonneville and Michelle Dockery getting a surprise nomination (Maggie Smith’s name in a list of nominees is never a surprise).
I was thrilled to see Mandy Patinkin finally gain some recognition for the stellar work he’s been doing on Homeland though, and I am hard pressed to decide who to root for in the Best Supporting Actress category, with both Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) and Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) up for the award. Both have been consistently brilliant as Skyler and Joan respectively, but this past season Gunn has really had the chance to show that she is just as talented as her male counterparts, Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston, who have both been swamped with awards.
The biggest snub for me in the acting categories though, was Michelle Fairley (Game of Thrones). Catelyn Stark is an often thankless part to play, yet Fairley has been one of my favourites throughout the season and her performance in the Red Wedding was devastating – she reduced fans everywhere to tears with her heartbreaking final words. For a show like this with such a huge cast, there are always going to be some actors who get overlooked but I was really hoping she would merit a nod; that honour went instead to fan favourites Emilia Clarke and Peter Dinklage.
The comedy nominations were fairly uninspiring – both Modern Family and The Big Bang Theory continue to gain multiple nominations, despite stiff (and arguably better) competition. It was a shame that New Girl failed to get a mention though – its second season has been excellent and Max Greenfield continues to steal the show as Schmidt. It is nice however for Parks and Recreation to finally gain some recognition and it is very deserving of its Outstanding Comedy placing; could this also finally be Amy Poehler’s year for the Best Actress award? She’s more than earned it.
One of the bigger things to note in these nominations however is the inclusion of Netflix’s programmes House of Cards and Arrested Development. The fact that House of Cards has placed amongst some of the highest praised programmes on at the moment shows that the Emmys are trying to keep up with the changing landscape of television. Last year it was the cable networks who garnered headlines for dominating the nominations, now it seems that internet TV is starting to get in on the action. We’ll have to wait until September 22nd to see how it all plays out though.
Go to page two for a full list of the main nominees: