It’s that time of year again. I feel like it really snuck up on me. Anyone else feel like that? Maybe it’s because Friday Night Lights isn’t on the air anymore, and thus unable to be nominated and so my eternal, TV-award season clock isn’t ticking as loudly. But you know what is on the air, and what did get nominated? Downton Abbey.
Downton Abbey, no longer a miniseries, received an astonishing 16 nominations. 16! 16 for an arguably weak sophomore season. I feel like the Academy jumped on the North American love affair with Downton Abbey and just nominated the heck out of it, even though the BAFTAs snubbed the series in its second year.
But hey, you know what? I love Downton Abbey, so I’m cool with it. Definitely thrilled to see Michelle Dockery (Lady Mary), Joanne Froggatt (Anna) and Jim Carter (Mr. Carson!!) get lead and supporting acting nods and really, it’s nice to see new, British blood infiltrate the regular characters who grace the categories, which should at the very least make for an exciting red carpet in the fall.
Aside from the Downton domination, the top shows to receive nominations were Mad Men (surprise, surprise) and American Horror Story (surprise).
American Horror Story is featured in the miniseries category, which to me, is confusing. I always felt like a miniseries was 4-6 episodes, usually a one-shot season … not 12 episodes with a second season set to premiere in October. I mean, if Downton Abbey is considered an actual series, how is American Horror Story not? Anyone?
I suppose the upside to this confusion is that Connie Britton scored a nomination as lead actress in a miniseries, whereas I’m not convinced she would have broken into the lead actress, drama series race. Unfortunately, I won’t waste exclamation marks on Britton’s nomination, because that category was locked up the minute the world saw a picture of Julianne Moore as Sarah Palin.
Mad Men locking up 17 nominations is no surprise. What was surprising for me was seeing Jared Harris included in the group of supporting actors. Not that he wasn’t phenomenal this season, but because I didn’t think he’d be included. Joining him is last year’s winner Peter Dinklage, Mr. Carson, Brendan Coyle, Aaron Paul and Giancarlo Esposito. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Harris win, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Dinklage pick up a second trophy, so this category will be interesting to watch as we head into September.
It’s also been mentioned how all the drama series nominations are cable series. Boardwalk Empire, Breaking Bad, Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones, Mad Men and Homeland. I’d love to know what the other series who were 7th and 8th in line were – perhaps The Good Wife, and maybe a wildcard, like the popular Once Upon a Time. I can’t argue that there are excellent cable series, and I’m not at all annoyed by the network shutout. A great show is a great show, regardless of where it airs, and great shows deserve to be nominated.
Moving over the comedy – the biggest eyebrow raise I have is in the lead actress category. There are 7 ladies nominated here. 7. While every other category has a maximum of 6. So why the exception? Was the Academy worried about leaving Melissa McCarthy out and so made an extra slot for her?
Leading actor is nothing new, except Don Cheadle for House of Lies. I can’t believe Jon Cryer is still being nominated for Two and a Half Men. He’s the new Tony Shalhoub, except he doesn’t always win (thank goodness).
The supporting categories are filled with Modern Family, Modern Family and more Modern Family. All adult actors received nominations, and while they’re all totally deserving, I wouldn’t mind seeing Max Greenfield upset and take home the gold.
Overall, a great slew of nominations … a bit of the old, and some new, exciting faces which will make for a very exciting ceremony, and I can’t wait.