One critic's final Emmy pick


This is a bittersweet moment: my last edition of the Deggys for the Tampa Bay Times. As you may already know, I’m leaving the newspaper in October to become NPR’s TV critic. And who knows if the home of Nina Totenberg and Carl Kasell would ever be crazy enough to present my pronouncements on who really should take home TV’s top honor: a.k.a., The Deggys.

The Emmy awards air 8 p.m. Sunday on CBS. With Netflix bringing quality, original TV series online, this year’s Emmycast will show if the industry nominated "House of Cards" and "Arrested Development" as consolation prizes or as evidence a new set of players are making an impact.

Best drama series: "Breaking Bad," "Downton Abbey," "Homeland," "Game of Thrones," "House of Cards," "Mad Men."

The Deggy goes to Š

"Breaking Bad." Not just for its currently amazing run of final episodes, but for its consistency. There is little doubt creator Vince Gilligan and his crew have created a show that never falters, season to season, right to its (presumably) bitter end.

Best drama actor: Hugh Bonneville, "Downton Abbey"; Bryan Cranston, "Breaking Bad"; Jeff Daniels, "The Newsroom"; Jon Hamm, "Mad Men"; Damian Lewis, "Homeland"; Kevin Spacey, "House of Cards."

The Deggy goes to Š

Jon Hamm. Always the bridesmaid, Hamm has been nominated in this category every year since 2008 without a win. And every year he seemingly comes back with another spellbinding performance to prove Emmy voters must not be watching the same episodes as the rest of us. This year, he pulled another layer back from Don Draper as the adman showed his kids exactly where daddy’s demons were born.

Best drama actress: Connie Britton, "Nashville"; Claire Danes, "Homeland"; Michelle Dockery, "Downton Abbey"; Vera Farmiga, "Bates Motel"; Elisabeth Moss, "Mad Men"; Kerry Washington, "Scandal"; Robin Wright, "House of Cards."

The Deggy goes to Š

Tatiana Maslany. Don’t bother looking. The star of "Orphan Black" isn’t nominated in a field of seven, even though she played seven different roles in BBC America’s mind-bending drama about clones living separate lives. But in my TV awards show, the Canadian actor gets her props.

Best comedy series: "The Big Bang Theory," "Girls," "Louie," "Modern Family," "30 Rock," "Veep."

The Deggy goes to ...

"The Big Bang Theory." I have tried so hard to resist this show, mostly because I hated the pilot. But these guys are now like "Everybody Loves Raymond" or "Friends," the last, best example of an old-school sitcom built on familiar characters and smart scripts.

Best comedy actor: Jason Bateman, "Arrested Development"; Louis C.K., "Louie"; Don Cheadle, "House of Lies"; Matt LeBlanc, "Episodes"; Jim Parsons, "Big Bang Theory"; Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock."

The Deggy goes to Š

Louis C.K. I said this last year, but it remains true; Louis C.K. does the most acting in his New York-set indie drama of any TV funnyman, coming off like a ginger-haired, tubby Woody Allen.

Best comedy actress: Lena Dunham, "Girls"; Laura Dern, "Enlightened"; Tina Fey, "30 Rock"; Amy Poehler, "Parks and Recreation"; Julia Louis-Dreyfus, "Veep"; Edie Falco, "Nurse Jackie."

The Deggy goes to Š

Tina Fey. This isn’t just for the last year of "30 Rock." It’s for serving as a pioneering example for everyone from Amy Poehler and Kristen Wiig to Mindy Kaling and Rebel Wilson.


If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.

Powered by Creative Circle Media Solutions