With the quality of television reaching a historic high (or low, in the case of reality based programing), it has become apparent that the Emmys are taking a very myopic look at the TV landscape.
Picking five nominees for best drama is an impossible task. Where’s the recognition for the coolest show? The funniest badass? Who is going to recognize the role of drugs in cable dramas? Not the Emmys, that’s for damn sure.
So it falls to us to make the big decisions. Look elsewhere for “Best Actress in a Mini-Series.” We’ve got the awards that matter.
Unfortunately, this was a very competitive category this season. Ensemble shows have their fair share of badass characters, but for every two great ones, there’s a character that brings the show to a screeching halt with whining, hating, and irrelevant problems.
Over the past few years, no one has garnered more hate for being a complete and total wet blanket than Skyler White, whose problems always seemed about 15 miles away from the rest of the characters on Breaking Bad. Playing the wife of the protagonist is a pretty thankless job. Carmela Soprano and Betty Draper also endured boundless criticism, but their characters seem more complex than Skyler, who lacks the interesting qualities that these other wives had.
Runners Up: Kenneth Purcell, Deb Morgan, Betty Draper
Justified isn’t held in quite the same esteem as the AMC shows, or HBO’s. But for a show with more conventional appeal (more procedural elements, more action), it has raised the bar, thanks in large part to Timothy Olyphant’s portrayal of a seething lawman who is cool as a cucumber on the surface.
Givens brings new meaning to the phrase “unflappable,” standing sure in front of a loaded gun, as he seems to be almost every week. He might not be as mean as some of the runners up, but he’s every bit as dangerous.
Runners Up: Khal Drogo Dexter, Mike (Breaking Bad), Sally Draper
This was perhaps the most competitive category of 2011, as many ensemble shows had characters that, while not heavily-featured, managed to steal the show every time they were onscreen. Chalky White (played by The Wire’s Omar, Michael Kenneth Williams) is perhaps the transcendent character on the show, a powerful black gangster who remains tiers below his white criminal counterparts.
Basically, just imagine Omar from The Wire except he’s always dressed up like Andre 3000 from Outkast and he’s not banging dudes. When you think of it that way, the choice becomes a no-brainer. Here’s hoping Chalky gets a little more depth and back story in season 2.
Runners-up: Saul Goodman, Andy Dwyer, Peter Dinklage, Tracy Jordan, Tyrion Lannister