September 16, 2005
bRpp~Ir S U
. .. ........
AT LEAST IT'S NOT THE GRAMMYS
ARTS EDITORS DEBATE THIS YEAR'S EMMY NOMINEES
Even though no one asked for it - but
no one complained - Daily Arts edi-
ors Punit Mattoo and Adam Rottenberg
return to debate this weekend's gala awards
show: the Emmys. This imagination-free pro-
duction consistently rewards shows past their
creative prime and ignores the few bright spots
that might appear on the television landscape.
But maybe this year will be different, and newer
stars like "Entourage's" power-hungry agent
Ari Gold (Jeremy Piven) or imbecilic patriarch
George Bluth (Jeffrey Tambor) on "Arrested
Development" will receive accolades, rather
than safe standbys like the cast members of
"Will & Grace" or "The West Wing."
Best Comedy Series
"Arrested Development" (Fox)
"Desperate Housewives" (ABC)
"Everybody Loves Raymond" (CBS)
"Will & Grace" (NBC)
Punit Mattoo: First of all, how is "Desperate
Housewives" a comedy, let alone one of the best
on TV? I can't remember ever laughing dur-
ing that show except for every time I saw Teri
Hatcher's face - all that plastic surgery kind of
weirds me out. Give the award to the funniest
sitcom in recent memory, "Arrested Develop-
ment." With the best ensemble cast on televi-
sion, the show blows away "Everybody Loves
Raymond" (which my grandmother loves; not
a good sign), one-joke hit "Will & Grace" and
the winner for trying way too hard to be quirky,
Adam Rottenberg: You're right about "Des-
perate Housewives," but the problem is that
Emmy voters are too stupid to realize that
and are going to hand the comedy award to a
DRAMA. Even "Ally McBeal" had a better
case to be considered a comedy. "Raymond"
has that whole last season thing going for it,
too, and I, like your grandma, find the show
really entertaining. "Arrested" is the funniest
show on TV, but it pulled off its fluke win last
year. As for the last two, "Scrubs" is nomi- so far before the show that she was doing Radio Frances Conroy - "Six Feet Under"
nated two years too late and "Will & Grace" Shack commercials with Howie Long. Jennifer Gamer - "Alias" (ABC)
hasn't come close to being funny or relevant Mariska Hargitay - "Law & Order: Special Victims
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Jason Bateman - "Arrested Development"
Zach Braff - "Scrubs"
Eric McCormack - "Will & Grace"
Ray Romano - "Everybody Loves Raymond"
Tony Shalhoub - "Monk" (USA)
PM: In any other situation, an obsessive com-
pulsive detective would get annoying really fast,
but Tony Shalhoub's performance on "Monk"
makes the idea surprisingly funny. The other
nominees aren't even the best characters on their
respective shows: Ray Romano is boring, Eric
McCormack isn't outlandish like his castmates,
Zach Braff is whiny and Jason Bateman isn't
crazy enough. I like my leading characters
slightly off-kilter and that's why Tony Shalhoub
should win again.
AR: I think you said it all. Shalhoub is the best
of the bunch, but I wouldn't be surprised to see
Ray walk away with a trophy for his last season.
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Marcia Cross - "Desperate Housewives"
Teri Hatcher - "Desperate Housewives"
Patricia Heaton - "Everybody Loves Raymond" Felic-
ity Huffman - "Desperate Housewives"
Jane Kaczmarek - "Malcolm in the Middle" (Fox)
AR: How did Jane Kaczmarek get nominated?
Didn't "Malcolm in the Middle" jump the shark
like four seasons ago? Is it even still on the air?
Please, answer me. Maybe Emmy voters will
be wise enough to bestow the honor once again
to Heaton for her final season as Debra Barone,
but that's highly unlikely. Then there's the whole
"Desperate Housewives" crew. We've already
made it abundantly clear that the show is NOT a
comedy. Nevertheless, Teri Hatcher will win the
award over her more deserving castmates (espe-
cially Huffman) because her career had fallen
PM: Jane Kaczmarek's nomination only helps
confirm my suspicion that Emmy voters don't
actually watch older shows any more and just
keep nominating whoever's made it past their
fourth season. And is going from "Lois and
Clark" to Radio Shack ads really that big of a
fall for Hatcher? Either way, as much as I hate
to admit it, Hatcher did provide the majority of
"laughs" on "Housewives," and she'll likely win.
Best Drama Series
"Six Feet Under" (HBO)
"The West Wing" (NBC)
AR: Last year's winner, "The Sopranos," is
notably absent - that's what happens when
you don't air new episodes for more than a year.
This year, there's no clear favorite. "Lost" is the
best of the bunch and its innovation should be
rewarded. But if "24" or "Deadwood" win, it
wouldn't be a bad thing at all. Emmy voters are
notoriously lazy and will probably reward the
undeserving, morose and all-in-all boring "Six
Feet Under." The smug, self-righteous series will
go out with one more Emmy win. As long as it's
not "The West Wing"...
PM: I don't see why you don't think "Lost"
is the favorite. It's one of the few shows to
actually accumulate critical praise as well as
viewers, while pretty much everyone agreed
that "Six Feet Under" lived up to its name,
getting buried under negative reviews all year.
You're right about "The West Wing," though.
The show hasn't been the same ever since my
favorite 'shroom enthusiast, Aaron Sorkin,
Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Patrica Arquette - "Medium" (NBC)
Glenn Close - "The Shield" (FX)
PM: Honestly, this one's too easy. A bunch of
nobodies and the former wife of Nicholas "I
married my 19-year-old waitress" Cage versus
one of the best film actresses of our time? The
only thing stopping from Glenn Close from
winning the award she so richly deserves for
her amazing stint on "The Shield" is some
sort of voter influence by the 300 million
"Law & Order" fans. And judging by some
people's obsession with that show, I wouldn't
put it past them.
AR: Can I just get it in here that I hate "Six Feet
Under?" Now that that's off my chest, Close is
the obvious choice. She stole every scene she
was in on "The Shield," which is no easy feat.
It's a shame about Jennifer Garner, though; this
was her last chance to win the award before her
show gets cancelled after this season because of
ABC's boneheaded scheduling.
Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Hank Azaria - "Huff" (Showtime)
James Spader - "Boston Legal" (ABC)
Hugh Laurie - "House" (Fox)
Kiefer Sutherland - "24"
Ian McShane - "Deadwood"
AR: What a weird crop of actors. Hank Azaria
gets nominated for a show no one has watched
or liked. James Spader, last year's winner,
simply chews the scenery for 44 minutes every
week on "Boston Legal:" If the award were for
the most utterances of the word "cocksucker,"
McShane would have it locked down. His acer-
bic tongue may end up swaying Emmy voters,
but not me. The real race should be between
Fox's two representatives, with the edge going to
Kiefer Sutherland's gritty super agent Jack Bauer
- he can't be stopped.
PM: I honestly hadn't heard of "Huff" until
the nominations came out, and because of mis-
guided logic, I'm going to assume it's because
it's a horrible show that was never worth
watching anyway. As a result, you gotta ask
how the hell enough people voted for him. As
far as McShane goes, he might actually have
some competition for the "cocksucker" utter-
ance award from one of those HBO series that
air late Saturday nights, but I don't see any of
those shows being nominated for Emmys in the
near future. With an edge unseen on any other
dramas, I'm going with the upset special of
"The Amazing Race" (CBS)
"American Idol" (Fox)
"The Apprentice" (NBC)
"Project Runway" (Bravo)
AR: There's no sense in talking about "Project
Runway"; it has no chance. So let's focus on
the real competition. "The Apprentice" looks
about as good as the Donald's hairpiece. Sorry,
too easy. "Survivor" could win, but it may be
voted off the Emmy island. Fox's juggernaut of
a karaoke night may swoop in and steal away
some votes, but Simon shouldn't start walking
up to the podium in his tight black T just yet. On
Emmy night, this year's winner, "The Amazing
Race," will likely run away with the award. Too
PM: Not enough puns, Adam, not enough.
How about saying that "The Amazing Race"
will be waiting for the others at the finish line?
Or "American Idol" won't hit the right note with
voters? Ooh, how about "Project Runway" is no
longer in style?
- Join in on the Emmyfun by watching the
show live this Sunday night at 8:00 on CBS. Look
to see if these two idiots know what they're talking
about. If you don't e-mail them, they will assume
that you actually enjoyed reading this. Reach them
at firstname.lastname@example.org or arotten @umich.edu.
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