It’s a midsummer ritual: The Emmy Award nominations are announced and critics respond with a storm of snarling outrage over what we perceive to be outrageous snubs and flubs rendered by oh so clueless voters.
Of course, in this era of Peak TV — with more shows than ever — it’s near impossible to ace everything. We get that.
So, as we scan over this morning’s list of nominees, we’re going to accentuate the great calls made by the voters … before moving on to our moans and groans:
- Fresh blood is too often missing from the Emmy competition. So it was great to see excellent freshman series “GLOW” (Netflix) and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (Amazon) crack the Best Comedy category. Also, Rachel Brosnahan, the wonderful leading lady on “Mrs. Maisel,” earned a Best Actress nod.
- “The Americans,” which was too often ignored by Emmy over the years, was rightly honored for its exceptional final season. The FX spy saga scored nominations for Best Drama, Best Actor (Matthew Rhys) and Best Actress (Keri Russell).
- What a pleasant surprise to see Jesse Plemons land a nod in the Lead Actor, Limited Series or Movie category. We thought his darkly humorous turn in the “USS Callister” episode of “Black Mirror” might get overlooked.
- Ted Danson, a familiar face in a fresh show, earned his first nod for his divine performance in NBC’s “The Good Place.” He’s among the Best Lead Comedy Actor nominees.
- Berkeley socio-political comedian W. Kamau Bell, who scored his first Emmy last year, saw his CNN series “United Shades of America With W. Kamau Bell” pick up three nominations.
- “Glee” alum and Bay Area native Darren Criss received the recognition he richly deserved for his unnerving turn as the coldblooded killer in the FX limited series, “The Assassination of Gianni Versace.”
- Although we were happy to see Sandra Oh earn a best drama actress nomination for her mesmerizing work in “Killing Eve,” the suspenseful cat-and-mouse drama failed to claim a spot in the best drama race. Also, Jodie Comer, who played the scene-stealing quirky assassin in “Killing Eve,” didn’t make the cut.
- Likewise, we were pleased to see Issa Rae land a lead comedy actress nod for her standout performance in HBO’s “Insecure,” but the show should have been among the best comedy nominees.
- NBC’s emotionally wrenching drama “This Is Us” certainly received plenty of attention, but Mandy Moore was inexplicably missing from the lead drama actress category. Apparently, her poor widowed character just didn’t suffer enough.
- We expected HBO’s “Westworld” to draw some attention, but Emmy went overboard for a convoluted sci-fi drama that arguably lost its way in Season 2. Twenty nominations? Artificial intelligence, indeed.
- Cheers again to the voters for recognizing the women’s wrestling comedy “GLOW,” but jeers for ignoring standout lead actress Alison Brie. Someone needs to deliver a flying drop kick to the voters who dissed her.
- Broadcast television has received less and less Emmy love in recent years and much of that is justified. But we were still stunned to see Freddie Highmore get shut out in the best lead drama category. He delivered a breakout performance in ABC’s freshman medical drama “The Good Doctor.”
- Netflix’s inspiring revival of Norman Lear’s “One Day at a Time” has been lauded by critics, but the voters apparently weren’t listening. The show was MIA in all the major categories.
- Another broadcast diss: NBC’s timely revival of “Will & Grace” and its stellar cast was expected to receive plenty of attention among the major categories. It didn’t. Only Megan Mullally collected a supporting actress nod.
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