by Peter Knegt and Ben Travers
June 4, 2014 10:31 AM 2 Comments
Watch: 12 Comedy Supporting Actors We'd Love to See Get Emmy Nominations
Aubrey Plaza and Nick Offerman in "Parks and Recreation"Colleen Hayes/NBC
If we left it up to the networks and their campaign departments, almost no one worthy of an Emmy nomination would make the cut (stop nominating Jim Parsons!). So we here at Indiewire are hoping to start some grassroots campaigns of our own, pushing the best of the unlikely nominees to the forefront and hoping to receive some support from you, our wonderful readers. Below you'll find our picks for the comedy supporting actors we'd like to see honored by the television academy as well as video evidence of their talents. Next week, we'll pick drama supporting actors, then comedy leads, drama leads, series, and so on until we reach nominations day on July 10th. Online ballots are available June 9th, so let the Emmy push commence!
6) Lauren Weedman - "Looking"
Peter Knegt: Alright, so I'm kind of cheating here as I suspect given her screen time Lauren Weedman falls into the "guest actress" category, but she was in every one of the (too few) eight episodes of the first season of "Looking" and was kind of a definitive "supporting actress." The show's sole female role, Weedman's sharp-tongued, big-hearted Doris was a consistent treat and certainly the primary source of laughs from this very arguable "comedy" as she played BFF to its leading gay men. We're introduced to her when she calls one out for suggesting he should contact his emotionally abusive ex-boyfriend, and it was love at first sight. "We've come a long way for a couple of Modesto rednecks, all right," she spits at him. "You don't need to be taking career advice from a psychotic narcissist." This nomination probably won't happen, but given she's been upped to a series regular for next season, I'm just gonna offer my consideration a year in advance.
6) Chelsea Peretti - "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
Ben Travers: I don't think you're cheating at all, and not just because my No. 6 pick is a series regular whose screen time is less than or on par with Weedman's. Similar to your selection, I believe my choice elevated the show considerably in only a few scenes, sentences, or moments within each episode. Peretti, a writer and actress with an immense Twitter following, snuck in some surprises with impeccable timing while providing a nasal-y, know-it-all tone without being overbearing. She was the wild card of FOX's freshman cop comedy, and I do have a tendency to fall for show's wild card characters (as will be further illustrated on this list).
5) Hannibal Buress - "Broad City"
PK: No word of a lie, Peretti was my Lauren Weedman alternative, so I can't complain with that (and hope she gets in). Though for my No. 5, I went with only two folks on this list that aren't women (television truly is a remarkable place for comedic actresses these days) by picking a man from a show that is, well, pretty much all about its female leads: "Broad City." While the show's creators and lead actresses Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson largely make the web series turned Comedy Central cult hit, they were wise to cast comedian (and former "SNL" and "30 Rock" writer) Hannibal Buress as their second banana Lincoln, a dentist who Glazer's character sleeps with throughout the series' first season. His timing is basically perfect, and playing the straight man to Glazer and Jacobson's stoner comedy buddy thing they have going truly enhances the series altogether.
5) Charlie Day - "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia"
BT: Women really have taken over contemporary television. Despite my inclusion of mostly men here, my two favorite TV shows, "Parks and Recreation" and "Veep," feature strong female leads (both of whom should be nominated). Still, I would love to see one of the men from "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" finally land a nod for their meaner, nastier, drunker version of a Philly-set "Seinfeld." Charlie Day has always been the fan favorite, and while it was somewhat understandable for voters to avoid casting a ballot for an actor they only knew as the show's "wild card" (there it is again), now he's proven his versatility and charisma in "Horrible Bosses" and "Pacific Rim." It's about time he -- and the show -- get the respect their characters' do not deserve.
4) Natasha Lyonne - "Orange Is The New Black"
PK: This was actually the first season of "It's Always Sunny" I didn't watch, and now I feel like I need to binge it. Though I also feel like if the Emmys finally start showing them love now, it's a bit too little too late. But my No. 4 pick would be an example of the voters actually being with the times, which is rare. I went back and forth between which of the dozen or so women on "Orange Is The New Black" I wanted to vouch for -- I'd actually be all for a "Modern Family"-style sweep of the category by the "Orange" ladies. And while I wouldn't be surprised or unhappy if at least Kate Mulgrew or Laverne Cox got in, I'm pulling for Natasha Lyonne. Playing former drug addict Nicky, Lyonne's storyline clearly hit a bit close to home (she's been very open about her own struggles with drugs), but instead of just seeming like obvious casting, Lyonne created someone so real and surprising and funny in Nicky despite that process surely being a personal challenge for her.
4) Max Greenfield - "New Girl"
BT: Lyonne's come a long way since "American Pie," both in her personal life and as an actress. Leaning on the "life imitating art" parallels could prove a fruitful Emmys campaign strategy for a show I expect to get lots of love. One that won't, and really doesn't deserve much, is "New Girl," a passable and sporadically creative sitcom that hit a wall in season three despite adding the comic talents of Damon Wayans Jr. Still, the one mainstay is Max Greenfield who plays Schmidt with such contagious verve it's hard not to imitate his fast-talking diction post-viewing. He earned a nomination two years ago, and he deserves one again for the 2013-14 season, if only for thriving under the most ill-fated circumstances. He's the star of a show frustratingly determined to put him in the back seat.