Sunday, September 6, 2015

Emmy Winner Predictions: Best Guest Actress in a Comedy Series

Nominees are listed in alphabetical order. Submitted episode titles are in parentheses. Beware of minor spoilers for listed episodes.

Pamela Adlon as Pamela, Louie (Bobby’s House)
I’m surprised it took Adlon this long to be nominated after years of standout work on “Californication” and this show. While I thought she might have chosen a different episode this year, laughing at Louie for getting beat up by a woman and then using the opportunity to try something new is a pretty great example of why Adlon is such a skilled actress who is almost always the best part of the show she’s in.

Elizabeth Banks as Sal, Modern Family (Fight or Flight)
Banks is back as a nominee for her role on this show after being recognized in 2011 and 2012. Banks is popular right now, and it makes sense that she’d be honored for this episode in which it seems like she is abandoning her baby and leaving him with her gay friends. It’s funny but not the best that Banks has done, and so I don’t it will prove to be a winner.

Christine Baranski as Dr. Beverly Hofstadter (The Maternal Combustion)
Baranski has been nominated twice before for this role, in 2008 and 2009, and is also recognized again this year for her performance on “The Good Wife.” Baranski’s performance as Leonard’s disapproving mother in her submitted episode this year is especially fun because she gets to spar with Sheldon’s much more supportive mother. It’s very funny and Baranski is great – she might win this year.

Joan Cusack as Sheila Jackson, Shameless (Milk of the Gods)
This is Cusack’s fifth consecutive nomination as nearly the only representative of her show. In the season premiere, she actually delivers a great comedy performance as Sheila, who finally loses it with Frank’s family living in her house and using her sex toys. Maybe this will be the year that she finally wins for an underrated show.

Tina Fey as Marcia, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Kimmy Goes to Court!)
Fey is an Emmy favorite, with four previous nominations in this category for hosting SNL and a handful of nominations for starring on “30 Rock.” Now, she’s here for guest-starring as a magnificently incompetent lawyer on her show, an extremely funny performance that fits fully with the style of her show. She’s won before and it wouldn’t be a surprise if she won again.

Gaby Hoffmann as Caroline Sackler, Girls (Home Birth)
Hoffmann is a double Emmy nominee this year, also recognized for her supporting role on “Transparent.” In her submitted episode, Caroline is prepared to give birth at home and undergoes a few unexpected complications. Hoffmann is a superb and individualistic actress, and this episode lets her run with that energy and succeed wildly. Will she win? I doubt it.

Who should win (based on entire season): N/A
Who should win (based on individual episodes): Baranski, Cusack, Fey, or Hoffmann
Who will win: I think it will be Cusack over Baranski with no obvious frontrunner this year.

Next up: Best Directing for a Drama Series

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