The Golden Globes are consistently more surprising than any other awards show — by the time the Oscars roll around, we mostly know what’s coming, and the SAG Awards carry a few shocks, but aren’t typically as risky with their picks as the HFPA. This year’s Globes were no different, as many unlikely nominees received phone calls at 5:30am PT, while other stalwart series got to sleep in.
1) Women Dominate the TV Nods
We’re not just talking about the all the wonderful actresses who heard their names read this morning. The TV race was taken over by shows about women, created by women and/or primarily watched by the fairer sex: Of the five nominees for Best Comedy Series, four were created by women (with Mike Judge’s “Silicon Valley” as the odd man out).
The drama side saw two shows co-created by women make the cut (“The Good Wife” and “The Affair”) with one more very much made for them (“Downton Abbey”). Only one nominee of the drama lot stands out as being particularly masculine (“Game of Thrones”), and that nod was the only one it received.
Even the miniseries category sported some notable feminist entries with “Olive Kitteridge” landing three nods on the day and Maggie Gyllenhaal for “The Honorable Woman” in the Best Actress in a Miniseries category. A few of the other surprises came from shows with strong female voices, including Alan Cumming’s Supporting Actor nod for “The Good Wife” and all the love for “Jane the Virgin.” Which brings us to…
2) “Jane the Virgin” Scores
The HFPA loves to reward first-timers, so really, more people (including us) should have seen this coming. The CW hadn’t broken into the Globes’ Best Comedy race since it was still UPN and “Everybody Hates Chris” snuck into the 2006 ceremony, and not only did the telenovela adaptation land a nomination, but star Gina Rodriguez landed a Best Actress in a TV Comedy spot as well. Considering the nearly-universal praise for the show, as well as its inclusion on a number of Top 10 lists for 2014, The CW — and its fans — will be downright giddy heading into the new year.
3) “Modern Family” Snubbed Across the Board
“Modern Family” may never have been the darling of the Globes the way it has been at the Emmys these past five years, but the ABC comedy had scored a nod for Best Comedy Series every year — until this one. Sofia Vergara, who has also been nominated four years in a row, was also ignored, as was three-time nominee Eric Stonestreet. With so much fresh blood this year, it seems the HFPA is ready to move into post-“Modern”-ism.
4) “Fargo” Outguns “True Detective”
If asked over the summer which of these two action-packed miniseries was hotter, just about anyone would have favored the Matthew McConaughey-led HBO drama, even though it had been off the air longer. And the build-up for Season 2 was still at peak fervor, with rumors about casting being thrown around wildly. Yet as the year progressed and we learned who would be the next true detectives, more and more backlash surfaced against HBO’s hit. This morning found “Fargo” leading all TV nominations with five nods, while “True Detective” was right behind them with four. Temperatures have changed (literally — it’s much colder now), but we’ll see which way the tide is rolling come January.
5) “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” Blanked
Last year’s surprise winner for Best Comedy Series and Best Actor in a Comedy (Andy Samberg) was completely rebuffed for its sophomore season. Again demonstrating the HFPA’s love for new shows, the FOX comedy couldn’t find its way back into the pack as “Jane the Virgin” and the newly-dubbed “comedy” “Orange is the New Black” took over (last year, Netflix submitted it as a drama). Speaking of switching…
6) “Shameless” Lands First Nod After Switching to Comedy
In the past, William H. Macy was competing against Jon Hamm, Jeff Daniels, Bryan Cranston, Steve Buscemi and more consistently heralded actors in the drama category. This year, though, Showtime decided to submit “Shameless” as a comedy and it’s paid off big time. Macy was nominated for Best Actor in a Comedy at the Emmys earlier in 2014, and now he’s pulled in the first-ever nomination for the show at the Globes. Apparently the HFPA doesn’t care if your show is an hour or 30 minutes; if it makes ’em laugh, it’s a comedy.
7) “Veep” Shut Out of Best Comedy Series…Again
While Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ hopes at securing the only major trophy she hasn’t won for her role as VP Selena Meyer remain intact, it may be harder to drum up support within the HFPA after it excluded the brilliant HBO comedy from the series race. After three years without a nomination for Series (and three years seeing a nod for Louis-Dreyfus), many thought this was the year HBO’s best comedy would break into the field. Instead, “Veep” was shut out of a very tight comedy race in favor of HBO’s new series, “Silicon Valley.”
8) “The Big Bang Theory” was a Big Bust
Most snubs are upsetting, but this one should have many TV fans jumping for joy. Each of the last four years, “The Big Bang Theory” squirmed its way into the Golden Globes race, including a win for Jim Parsons in 2011 and a nomination for both acting and the show last year. This year, they were both bumped out, in favor of four new comedy nominees, and we couldn’t be happier.
9) “Girls” is the Only Repeat Comedy Series Nominee
Speaking of new nominees, most prognosticators didn’t expect to see “Girls” back in the race this year. The show lost considerable buzz in its uneven third season, and it had already won Best Comedy Series and Actress (Lena Dunham) in its freshman year. Usually that means you’re going to get the boot, and “Girls” was on pace to do just that after it only landed a series nomination last year. But not only did “Girls” remain a contender for Best Comedy Series, but Lena Dunham also got back in the race after sitting out in 2014.
10) Amy Poehler (and “Parks and Recreation”) Snubbed
Another winner from last year got the boot in 2015, as Amy Poehler was shut out of the Best Actress field. Her show, which starts its final season the Tuesday after the Golden Globes ceremony (January 13), also failed to collect any nominations, a bit of a surprise after “Parks and Recreation” landed its first nod for Best Comedy Series at the 2014 Globes. Poehler will still be on hand to host the ceremony with Tina Fey, and you better believe she’ll have something to say about her exclusion from the race itself.
11) AMC & FOX Get Zero Nominations
Many saw a “Mad Men” snub coming after the four-time winner failed to land a Best Drama Series nomination for the first time last year. But this year, AMC as a network was completely shut out, thanks to “Mad Men” getting nada, the end of “Breaking Bad” and nobody in the HFPA caring about “The Walking Dead.” Next year the network will undoubtedly be betting heavy on the last episodes of “Mad Men,” but might have better luck landing spots for the freshman series “Better Call Saul” given Globes’ preference for “Breaking Bad” and new series in general. FOX, meanwhile, failed to garner any support for “New Girl” or “Gotham,” the network’s top contenders. Though NBC and ABC only scored one nod apiece, FOX is the only network in the Big Four to be blanked.
12) “Transparent” Nabs Prime Nods
Though we’ve seen this coming since “Transparent” first debuted, it’s still somewhat surprising that a show that only exists online — and not made by Netflix — can land such prominent nominations. After being snubbed by the SAG Awards yesterday, Amazon’s best original program to date secured Best Comedy Series and Best Actor in a Comedy nods at the Globes. With a smaller voting body, it’s likely “Transparent” was easier to screen for the HFPA, whereas the SAG Awards are always slow to recognize new, lesser-viewed shows.
13) Julia Roberts Snubbed for “The Normal Heart”
Has Julia Roberts lost her star power? The Oscar-winner and Hollywood darling was considered a strong candidate, if not the frontrunner, for Best Supporting Actress because a) she landed an Emmy nod for her fierce turn already, and b) the HFPA loves to have famous faces at their awards dinner. Yet instead of Roberts, they chose to honor Michelle Monaghan for “True Detective,” Joanne Froggatt for “Downton Abbey,” and Uzo Aduba for “Orange is the New Black.”
14) Alan Cumming!
Many thought Josh Charles would get another Globes nod for his last season on “The Good Wife,” but instead it was his previously nomination-less co-star Alan Cumming who won over the HFPA this year. Cumming, who was nominated in the very competitive Best Supporting Actor field (made up of dramas, comedies, and miniseries), has received two Emmy nods, but those were back in 2010 and 2011. Though he’ll be facing off against tough competition — Matt Bomer is surely hoping to take home the Globe after being shockingly snubbed at the Emmys — “The Good Wife” made a strong showing today, landing three nominations.
15) No Love for “Masters of Sex”
After breaking into the drama races last year for series and actor (Michael Sheen), Showtime’s sophomore drama lost ground to the network’s new freshman drama, “The Affair.” The Globes love new shows, and never was that more evident than this year. Even after what many thought was an improved second season, “Masters of Sex” couldn’t keep the spark alive with the HFPA.