Saturday, August 20, 2016

Emmy Episodes: The Big Bang Theory

It’s always my policy to watch every Emmy-nominated episode each year, which leads me to sample a handful of shows that I don’t tune in to on a regular basis. This year, I’m making a special effort to spotlight each of those installments to offer my perspective on shows that I don’t review each week.

The Big Bang Theory: Season 9, Episode 24 “The Convergence Convergence” (B+)
Nominated for Best Guest Actress in a Comedy Series (Christine Baranski and Laurie Metcalf)

The second of the nominated “Big Bang Theory” episodes from this year is notable for a number of reasons. First, it’s the season finale, leading into a tenth season that apparently might end up being the last one, but I don’t think its fate is sealed just yet. It’s also a submission for two different nominated actresses, something that actually happens more than you might think. Two years ago, Uzo Aduba defeated Laverne Cox when they both submitted the same episode of “Orange is the New Black.” The two actresses nominated for this episode, both of whom play mothers to the main characters, are Emmy legends. This is Baranski’s fifteenth career Emmy nomination and her fourth for this role. She won once on her first try way back in 1995. Metcalf, who has appeared in a handful of “Big Bang Theory” episodes, marks her first nomination for this part but earns her tenth overall nomination. She won three times in a row for “Roseanne” and has been nominated for four other comedy guest spots in the past twenty years. More impressively, she collected three individual acting nominations this year, the other two of which will be profiled again in this series when I watch them. This is hardly the meatiest showcase for Baranski and especially for Metcalf, both of whom are a handful of snappy one-liners mostly directed at each other. I think Baranski has had better appearances, and Metcalf wouldn’t quite rank in my list, though she’s obviously beloved by Emmy voters. I don’t see either of them winning for a generally fun episode that represents the consistent humor that this show is all about. I imagine it will be nominated again next year, especially if it’s the swan song, and I look forward to returning to it then.

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