2010 Emmy Award Predictions: Supporting Acting in a Comedy

Supporting Acting in a Comedy

August 24th, 2010

When it comes to the supporting acting awards in comedy, it’s an interesting microcosm of the larger comedy race: while 30 Rock is unrepresented in a competitive fashion, both races boil down to a showdown between the freshman contenders, Modern Family and Glee.

The problem is that what works from a series perspective won’t work from an acting perspective: the overwhelming positivity of Glee, or Modern Family’s rekindling of the family sitcom tradition, won’t be as evident in acting submissions. However, it will be a part of the process when Jane Lynch’s position as frontrunner is tested, and where we see whether the men of Modern Family can deal with vote-splitting.

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

  • Julie Bowen (Modern Family)
  • Jane Lynch (Glee)
  • Kristen Wiig (Saturday Night Live)
  • Holland Taylor (Two and a Half Men)
  • Jane Krakowski (30 Rock)
  • Sofia Vergara (Modern Family)

With Supporting Actress, Lynch has been the frontrunner from the beginning despite the fact that she’s yet to win anything: with SAG not recognizing supporting players, and with the Golden Globes lumping her in with far more substantial roles like Chloe Sevigny’s, she has yet to found a platform where her comic role could be recognized. It’s a broad, juicy comic role, which makes it an ideal fit in this category. While Glee as a series could prove divisive, everyone seems on the same page that Lynch’s scenery-chewing is some really strong work, and any problems people have with the role are regarding how the writers use her as opposed to Lynch’s performance.

Her competition, however, is a very different sort of comic role: while Julie Bowen’s performance in her submitted episode (“Valentine’s Day”) relies on some sharp physical comedy, she’s playing the straight woman, which offers a nice contrast should some voters find Lynch too showy. There’s some good talent in this category (Vergara and Krakowski, for example), but it’s broad talent, which Lynch has covered this time around. With Taylor and Wiig little but also-rans, this leads to a showdown between the two hit series, one which Lynch remains in a position to win: while Bowen is well-respected and remains a contender, Lynch has all the hype, all the buzz, and all of the love (especially since she was also nominated for guest actress).

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

  • Chris Colfer (Glee)
  • Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother)
  • Ty Burrell (Modern Family)
  • Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family)
  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family)
  • Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men)

On the actor side of things, the race is a bit more complex: with three Modern Family men in the race, and none of them Ed O’Neill (who would’ve been a frontrunner as the Emmys would have tried to fix their error of never nominating him for Married…with Children), there’s a very decent chance that one of the other contenders like Neil Patrick Harris could sneak into the winner’s circle (especially since NPH already won two Emmys at the Creative Arts ceremony). While Stonestreet remains a decent contender, I think vote-splitting will kill his co-stars, and will certainly open up the door to the other actors in the category.

While Cryer won last year, and NPH has deserved an Emmy for a couple of years now, my gut is saying Chris Colfer: with a full hour to showcase his skills as both an actor and a performer, Colfer has a showstopping tape which captures the heart which keeps Glee from becoming unglued. Stonestreet is probably my choice to win the award, and I’d love for NPH to grab it, but Colfer’s great tape combined with his young age make him the sort of feelgood competitor who Emmy voters will be quite comfortable getting behind.

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Predicted Winner: Jane Lynch (Glee)

Biggest Threat: Julie Bowen (Modern Family)

Personal Choice: Jane Lynch (Glee)

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Predicted Winner: Chris Colfer (Glee)

Biggest Threat: Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother)

Personal Choice: Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family)



Filed under Emmy Awards

3 responses to “2010 Emmy Award Predictions: Supporting Acting in a Comedy

  1. Along with Lead Drama Actor, Supporting Comedy Actor is probably the hardest category to accurately predict. All of the nominees, except Jesse Tyler Ferguson, have a very real chance of victory:

    – Jon Cryer won last year, suggesting that he’s at least reasonably well-liked within the Academy.
    – NPH is seen as overdue in some quarters, and his recent double-win at the Creative Arts may be foreshadowing an awards threesome.
    – Stonestreet probably has the funniest tape, and Burrell is consistently funny on Modern Family, although vote splitting may hurt both their chances.
    – Colfer certainly offers the most catharsis, if everyone watches the tapes only. The fact that nominators also gave O’Malley a shot at Emmy glory means they have respect for Colfer’s main story arc as well.

    If I were to hazard even a guess, I’d say Colfer takes it in a whisker, pipping Stonestreet and NPH. I don’t think Glee is going to do brilliantly: with Colfer and Lynch, voters may feel like they’re adequately rewarding the show while still giving big awards like writing, directing and the series award itself to Modern Family.

    As for Supporting Comedy Actress, if Lynch doesn’t win this, I’ll eat a shoe.

  2. katie

    To be honest, one of the biggest reasons I want Lynch to win has absolutely nothing to do with Glee – it’s to give her a deserved Emmy for her work in Party Down back in season 1.

    And as much as I love NPH, his work last year on HIMYM really wasn’t the best, so I’m more ok with Colfer winning it (as he is one of the few parts in Glee I actually like).

    Reading these nominations, I’m reminded of how annoyed I was with them in the first place (for especially omitting anyone from P&R, Community, and Party Down – especially with the female noms, since it wasn’t as if there were a lot of competition from older shows). Sigh.

  3. Pingback: 2010 Emmy Award Predictions: Outstanding Drama & Comedy Series « Cultural Learnings

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