2010 Emmys: Which longshots deserve nods in the Supporting Actor/Actress categories?

bareikis-hopkins-sykesImage Credit: Mitchell Haaseth/NBC; Mitch Haddad/ABC; Michael Ansell/Warner Bros.The 2010 Primetime Emmy nominations will be announced Thursday morning in Los Angeles, and while newcomers like Glee, Modern Family, and The Good Wife are all considered front-runners in their respective categories, you know there’ll also be plenty of groan-inducing kudos for series and actors who’ve passed their prime — or maybe never reached it in the first place. After all, it’s the Emmys, and outrage over snubs is as an important part of the process as rooting for Vanessa L. Williams in the Supporting Actress in a Comedy division celebrating what voters got right.

With that in mind, we thought we could take some time this week to discuss our left-field picks for potential nominations across 10 major categories, starting right now with Best Supporting Actor and Actress in the Comedy and Drama divisions. I’ll get the party started, then you hit the comments section with your own longshot favorites. Be sure to explain your choices, too — we’ll pick your best-argued eventual snubs as nominees for EW.com’s third annual EWwy Awards later this summer.

* Wanda Sykes, New Adventures of Old Christine: She suffered not one, but two cancellations this past season (Old Christine as well as her titular Fox comedy show) but her laughs-per-line ratio as Christine’s BFF Barb was perhaps higher than any actor on television this season.

* Josh Hopkins, Cougar Town: In the course of one season, his smarmy cul-de-sac ladykiller became viable leading-man material…without ever fumbling a punch line.

* Martin Short, Damages: The more desperate his not-so-well-heeled attorney Leonard Winstone got, the more nuanced and delectable Short’s performance became.

* Arija Bareikis, Southland: Scored less buzz than some of her bigger-named ensemble castmates, but  Bareikis was brilliant as a beat cop who’d lost her nerve following an embarrassing YouTube debacle. Her redemption in the season finale was as affecting as it was thrilling.

* I’d also throw some love to: Busy Philipps in Cougar Town; Michael Urie in Ugly Betty (last call for Emmy love for his brilliantly funny, subtly moving work as Marc St. James); Katie Cassidy in Melrose Place (okay, preposterous, but somehow she managed to be awesome in a show that was consistently awful); and Jorge Garcia in Lost (never my favorite on this series, but he did some fantastic work in “Everybody Loves Hugo” this past season).

Your turn!

More Emmys:
EW’s 2010 Emmys Central
Jimmy Fallon to host 2010 Emmys
Conan O’Brien gets Emmy push from TBS
2009 Emmy nominations: Who got snubbed? And which nominees rock?

Comments (329 total) Add your comment
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  • Merideth

    Jennifer Carpenter for phenomenal work on a brilliant season of Dexter.

    • JC

      When is cursing like sailor considered brilliant, Julie Benz should be the one from Dexter to get a nom

      • Meeeeeeeee

        Benz sux!

    • JC

      When is cursing like sailor considered phenomenal, Julie Benz should be the one from Dexter to get a nom

      • Madd

        Disagree. Carpenter was fantastic this season, especially after Lundy’s death. I like Julie Benz but I’ve never really been a fan of her performance as Rita. Or maybe the fact that Rita annoyed me so much made me overlook Julie’s performance.

      • ciara00

        Agree. Carpenter is always overlooked but she is always excellent. Benz’s Rita was annoying.

      • Austin

        Deb should get an Emmy over Rita any day. Jennifer Carpenter is the unsung hero of that show.

      • Merideth

        Benz is beautiful and talented, but Carpenter’s Deb is one of the most complex and sadly overlooked female characters on TV right now. She is the emotional core of Dexter and like her brilliant costars Michael C. Hall and John Lithgow, deserves a nom.

      • Danny

        Merideth, I couldn’t agree more. Carpenter is constantly given challenging work and she rises to the occasion each and every time. Everything about Dexter hit new highs this season, including Carpenter.

    • Sara

      Carpenter is the WORST thing on that show. She’s not attractive, her voice is annoying and her acting is horrendous.

      • Just Me

        I agree. I hate her.

      • Jen

        Totally agree! I thought I was the only one. Her character is one dimensional (not necessarily her fult, but good actors can create something from nothing) and her acting is seriously bad, boarding on embarassing.

      • Lynn

        Thank you. I completely agree, and also thought I was the only one who hates her character.

      • Matt

        I love that you start out with “she’s not attractive.” Oh, so that means she doesn’t deserve an Emmy nom? Come on Sara, be better than that! Also, I think she’s attractive, but I agree that she doesn’t deserve the nomination. Sure, this was her best season, but she still was only ok.

    • Carol

      I never understand why she is overlooked. She blends toughness and vulnerability better than anyone on TV.

    • kelly

      Agreed. The writing for Deb has improved making her more than a stock female cop character. She also knows something’s not entirely right with Dexter, a facet of the character that Carpenter conveys so well.

      Rita until S4 never evolved beyond the girlfriend role. Benz played her well, especially the ‘Rita making Dexter look more normal’ aspect, but the character was never fleshed out.

  • Taylor

    I would like to nominate Danny Pudi, who plays Abed on “Community.”

    • Rock Golf

      I can see that. He was blocks ahead of the rest of the cast.

      • Darrin

        If you’re trying to quote the show, the term would be ‘streets ahead’.

      • LP

        If you think it’s blocks ahead then you’re streets behind.

    • Summer

      I love that idea too. Abed really brought it in the first season of Community and I think a lot of people would have left the show without him. His pop culture trivia, fast-talking, movie-quoting role definitely upped the ante! My favorite was the campus wide paint ball match. Most shows could not have pulled that feat off, but with Abed weaving some movie references in each week, this ep was not a stretch. Love, love, love this show and am so glad we get an S2!

      • Rock Golf

        Some movie references?? The entire episode was a homage (an homage?) to Goodfellas!

      • Taylor

        Well spoken. I see your value now.

      • jrm

        Actually, the chicken fingers ep was the Goodfellas homage. The paint ball was every action movie ever.

      • Randi

        Abed was amazing!

    • Jessie

      In addition to Danny Pudi for his slightly off-kilter work as Abed, I’d nominate Alison Brie for “Community” as well. She deserves the nomination simply for spraying herself in the face with mace. Brilliant.

  • B-

    Supporting Actress Comedy: Sofia Vergara as “Gloria” on “Modern Family”. Jane Krakowski as “Jenna” on “30 Rock”. Supporting Actor Comedy: Eric Stonestreet as “Cameron” on “Modern Family. Tracy Morgan as “Tracy Jordan” on “30 Rock”. And I also loved Cassidy on “Melrose Place”. She alone made that wreck watchable. Hopefully she gets cast on something worthy of her talents.

    • pop

      eric stonestreet better not be a long shot! he’s constantly the best part of a show that is overall amazing.

    • jehbelly

      Katie Cassidy was cast to guest star on Gossip Girl. It’s on Ausiello files.

    • Cordy

      This is for longshots, and all of those besides the Melrose Place person are not longshots, and both Vergara and Steonestreet are basically locks. Modern Family is going to dominate the supporting categories.

      The Modern Family longshot i love those is Rico Rodriguez. He’s such an old soul, and his acting brings so many subtleties out of his character, especially when interacting with Luke or realizing he is the smartest or at least most aware person in the room.

    • Strepsi

      You know, everyone on Modern Family is brilliant but for some reason I really want:

      1) SOFGIA VERGARA: fully fleshing out a potentially one-note role, in a hilarious and unexpected way. Her “Ay, you got me” face in the airport when Homeland Security turns on her, or the same face when she crashes her car into the cupcake store… “It was the giant coop-cake”!

      2) JULIE BOWEN as Claire: who would have thought that the ‘hot blonde wife’ is the best physical comedian in the show? I hope they submitted the episode about Phil’s birthday: her sneaking out of the house behind the balloons, then losing a shoe, then getting carried out of the Mac Store lineup was brilliant and painfully funny.

      • Lindsey

        I’d be thrilled if any of the women got a nomination. I think at least one of the men will definitely be nominated, but the women are overlooked. I love both, but I especially love Sofia Vergara and agree that she made a potentially one note character into one of the best. I’d be thrilled if any/several of the cast was nominated because everyone is brilliant. There’s not a weak link in the whole cast.

    • Matt

      Eric Stonestreet absolutely deserves a nomination. He may not have the funniest lines, but he is amazing in his role. Fizbo the clown was hilarious!

  • Brett

    Gregory Itzin for his maniacal turn on “24.”

    • Kev

      Annie Wersching’s Renee Walker was the only thing worth watching in 24 this year. Lots of love for Alison Brie of Community, Rose Byrne from Damages (as well as Martin Short) and definitely John Noble from Fringe and Terry O’Quinn from Lost (how his performance would get ignored would be incomprehensible to me).

      • Dominic

        Agreed – some love for Wersching would be good – just the broken look in her eyes she managed to convey is worth a nom.

  • ChitoJoseph

    Jane Lynch as Sue Sylvester.
    John Noble as Walter Bishop.
    If they both win, that’s enough for me. ;)

    • kelly

      Lynch isn’t a longshot, she’s a frontrunner for the nomination and probably the win.

      Noble however is a longshot. He’s on a sci-fi show, which is one strike against him because the Emmys don’t reward genre shows with the exception of Alias and X-Files. Also, he’s in a very competitive category.

    • Mel

      I think anyone who has seen Fringe would agree the award belongs to John Noble. No question.

    • Strepsi

      1) John Noble for Walter Bishop. He is the best actor on TV this season, period. And there were a lot of great performances this season, but Walter Bishop — brilliant, childlike, good father, mad doctor — is a tour de force.

      2) The real long-shot for “GLEE” is MIKE O’MALLEY who plays Kurt’s dad, BURT HUMMEL. The main cast are sure things for some nominations, but the Kurt / Burt scenes are the heart and soul of Glee, and hius portrayal of a father who loves his son although he doesn’t quite get him, is the best dad on TV.

      • Kathy

        Totally agree about Mike O’Malley…and explained why perfectly!

      • Sarah

        I was also going to put in my vote for Mike O’Malley

        Also, Mandy Moore in as a guest actress in the Grey’s Finale? She was good.

      • Maia

        Have to 100% agree on Mike O’Malley. From the beginning of the season to the finale, Burt has shown such love and devotion to his son in some truly fantastic scenes. Nothing tops his scene against Finn during the Gaga episode…

    • Kate

      Absolutely agree with John Noble. He has been amazing and consistent throughout the entire series.

  • HH

    Has anyone heard of Jane Lynch? She’s really funny on this show called “Glee”.

    • Rock Golf

      I don’t think she’s considered a long shot for a nomination. More like a shoo-in to win.

    • Kristal

      She is considered a front-runner for a nomination.

    • Sarcastic Pr*ck

      I heard the Emmy committee is already preprinting her name in winner’s envelope before even bothering to count the votes.

    • Merideth

      This is an article about Emmy long shots. I love Jane Lynch, but she is far from a long shot.

    • HH

      To Mer, Sar, Kri, and, “Rock Golf”, it’s a joke. *sigh*

      • maryb889

        Really? More like it became a ‘joke’ when you realized you missed the point of the article and didn’t want to look like an idiot. *sigh*

      • Tekness

        I thought it was funny HH

      • David

        HH, I got it right away. I chuckled when I read your post, winced when I read the responses.

    • Barney

      Yeah, because Jane Lynch isn’t overexposed and becoming annoying at ALL. Groan.

      • Lindsey

        Glad I’m not the only one who thinks this. I think Jane Lynch is great, but in everything I’ve seen her in, she’s basically the same character. Yes, Sue is meaner than her other characters, but she plays them the same way. Still love her but overrated. Sue is on the verge of becoming a Barney Stinson – too much focus, which ruins a great character.

    • Michael

      I got the joke HH.

    • Sarcasm, you idiots

      That’s okay, HH. Most people can barely grasp simple fundamentals of the English language, let alone sarcasm.

      • aj

        Sarcasm is usually both clever and funny. That wasn’t particularly either.

  • Chelsea

    Will John Krasinksi EVER get friggin’ nominated for The Office? Rainn Wilson is great, I’ve been happy for him when he’s gotten recognition, but JK has been consistently awesome/funny/heartbreaking for six seasons now.

    • Chelsea


    • Mari

      I agree- he definitely deserves some recognition!

  • Rock Golf

    Anna Gunn or Giancarlo Esposito on Breaking Bad. I still can’t get my neck hair to sit down again.

    • Merideth

      Anna Gunn was fantastic this season.

    • Cordy

      Giancarlo Esposito would be a great surprise, but he probably has no shot in supporting actor this year. That’s a tough category

    • Kev

      Aaron Paul should be a no-brainer nominee from that show.

      • orville

        All three absolutely deserve a nomination for their work this year. But they might just be the definition of longshot, unfortunately. Which shouldn’t be the case since Bryan Cranston has won the past two years.

    • iamtrue2bill

      I would like everyone on BB to win: Cranston, Gunn, Esposito, Paul, as well as the “hit man”, and the brother-in-law, whose names escape me right now. What a cast!
      If I had to pick one long shot, I guess I’s pick Paul.

  • NSF

    Doris Roberts and Brad Garrett will win for Raymond.

    • 1994

      Ah! There you are! I’ve been looking all over for you. You need to come back now.

    • Strepsi

      +100 for nailing the TV Academy speed and hipness factors

  • Chris

    Zach Gilford or Taylor Kitsch in Friday Night Lights. Zach was amazing in “The Son” and, without spoiling anything, Taylor had a really solid scene in the season 4 finale.

    • Sara

      Gilford is running in guest star category and there is a facebook campaign to get him a nomination

    • julie

      yes, i second taylor kitsch. i agree gilford needs a nom but no one is talking about kitsch. i think i know what scene you are referring to and he should be recognized for it. this was an amazing season for gilford and kitsch.

    • Cat

      I’d be thrilled to see anyone from FNL actually get an acting nomination this year, especially Gifford, who really was superb this season.

  • Tab

    Busy Phillips, “Cougar Town”
    Archie Panjabi, “The Good Wife”
    Nick Offerman, “Parks & Recreation”
    Matt Ross, “Big Love”
    Bryan Batt, “Mad Men”
    Khandi Alexander, “Treme”
    Eden Sher, “The Middle”

    • Madd

      YES YES YES to Bryan Batt! I’m going to miss Sal so much this season!

      • maryb889

        And while we’re talking MAD MEN how about some love for Christina Hendricks???

    • Cordy

      I really hope Nick Offerman gets in, but I don’t consider him a longshot after the TV Critics’ association nom

      • Cat

        Nick Offerman is hilarious! It would be great to see his mustache get some Emmy love.

      • gah

        f yeah ron swanson!

    • Strepsi

      long-shot for “BIG BANG THEORY” because Jim Parsons is sure-shot brilliant, but SIMON HELBERG as HOWARD WOLOWITZ is my favorite on the show. He slays every single punchline, and even puts great funny twists on his non-punchline lines. Hilarious.

    • Strepsi

      Yes for EDEN SHER for the role of SUE in THE MIDDLE! I have not seen a female actor be so flat out goofy on prime time for a long time. I wasn’t going to watch the show, but one of her overexcited, overeager line readings made me truly laugh out loud, and I was hooked.

      • Sarah

        I think all the kid actors doa great job on this show!

  • Ryan

    Jane Krakowski is consistantly awesome on 30 Rock, she deserves a nom.

  • Chris

    OH And I would like to echo Tab’s suggestions of Archie Panjabi and Nick Offerman. And when it comes to Modern Family, I think I’m most rooting for Sofia Vergara. However, they’re all pretty great.

  • Rock Golf

    Rico Rodriguez (Gloria’s son Manny) on Modern Family. Yeah, he’s a kid, but he’s brings more depth, humanity and most important laughs to his role than most of the recent Supporting Actor winners. (Yeah, I’m looking at you, Jon Cryer.)

    • veronica

      Word on Rico – amazing!

  • Chris

    Ok, one more! I don’t quite know if this counts as supporting or lead, but I would absolutely die happy if Portia de Rossi was nominated for Better Off Ted.

    • Viv

      She’s so good! I wish ABC would air the remaining episodes.

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