Emmy watch: 7 surprises I’d like to see when nominees are unveiled Thursday

SHARE Emmy watch: 7 surprises I’d like to see when nominees are unveiled Thursday

Practice your indignant face and get ready for a tsunami of snark on Twitter: Nominees for the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards will be announced bright and early Thursday morning.

More so than in the past, plenty of award-worthy performances and programs — I’m looking at you, “Hannibal” — won’t make the cut.

Consider it a side effect of living in the Golden Age of Television. There simply isn’t room at the party for shows that might have been shoo-ins to take home the hardware in leaner times. (Remember the old days when cable TV had to have its own awards? R.I.P. CableACE. The last network series to snag an Emmy for best drama was Fox’s “24” in 2006.)

I don’t envy the 16,000-plus members of the TV Academy, who are casting their votes online for the first time in Emmy history. (Who you callin’ out of touch? Pretty soon we’ll be voting on The Facebook!) They have to consider an overwhelming amount of TV — some of which isn’t even on TV, thanks to the Netflixes, Amazons and Hulus of the world.

At least one part of the voters’ job is easy: Just check “yes” by anything that says “Breaking Bad,” the Heisenberg Blue of television.

While this year’s list of snubs is sure to be a long one, some pleasant surprises are bound to crop up among the carnage.

Here are seven scenarios I’d like to see — but don’t necessarily expect to see — when Mindy Kaling and Carson Daly rattle off the nominees in a live webcast starting at 7:40 a.m. Thursday at Emmys.com.

I’ll be watching along with my morning coffee. And my indignant face.

1. St. Nick

After six seasons of flawless deadpans as “Parks and Recreation’s” meat-loving, anti-government bureaucrat Ron Swanson, Nick Offerman has never been in the running for a gold statuette. I’m starting to think that if there were an Emmy for outstanding mustache, he’d still be shunned. With only one season left for this clever NBC comedy, it’s high time the Channahon native and former Chicago stage actor be nominated for best supporting actor in a comedy series.

2. Multiple choice

Hey, voters: Remember that unknown Canadian actress, Tatiana Maslany, that you first heard about this time last year? The one that critics and fans excoriated you for overlooking after her remarkable performance(s!) as a series of clones in the freshman season of BBC America’s sci-fi thriller, “Orphan Black?” Let’s not let history repeat itself.

3. Shameless plug

After three seasons of trying to crack into the crazy competitive drama category, Showtime’s irreverent series has taken a different tack this time around. The Chicago-set saga about the uber-dysfunctional Gallagher clan has made the shrewd move to comedy, where it finally stands a chance at getting some long overdue Emmy love. The category hopping also makes it more likely that stars Emmy Rossum and Chicago theater vet William H. Macy will be a part of the kudofest.

4. I spy

With all due respect to past winner Damian Lewis, the amount of time he was MIA in last season’s “Homeland” — he wasn’t even in half the episodes — shouldn’t qualify for lead actor, the category he entered.

Here’s hoping Lewis’ spot on the ballot goes to fellow Brit Matthew Rhys for his deft portrayal of an increasingly conflicted KGB sleeper agent in FX’s under-appreciated period thriller “The Americans.”5. Broad comedy

The bawdy Comedy Central gem “Broad City” made me belly laugh on multiple occasions thanks to the endearing chemistry and impeccable timing of its talented stars, Upright Citizens Brigade talent Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson. This web-to-TV series celebrating arrested development is probably too fringe for Emmy voters, who are more likely to use their Proof We’re Cool Vote to nominate “Girls.” And then give all the awards to “Modern Family.”

6. Lucky seven

A tweak in the TV Academy rules this year makes it possible to have a bigger ballot than usual for best drama and comedy series. As many as seven series could be in the running if the seventh candidate’s votes come within 2 percent of the cut off. The wider net would be especially welcome in the crowded category for outstanding drama series category, where HBO made a baller move and put “True Detective” there instead of in the miniseries camp, ahem, where it belongs.

7. Broadcast bounces back

Not a single network show has even been nominated for Outstanding Drama Series since 2011, the last time CBS’ “The Good Wife” crashed cable’s party. It’s time to invite this sophisticated legal drama back to the big kids’ table. Not because of its controversial “For Your Consideration” campaign, which basically argued that it’s a lot more difficult to make great TV when you have to churn out 22 episodes a season as opposed to half that on cable. The Olympics doesn’t hand out gold medals based on circumstances; it’s all about results. And “The Good Wife” delivered with its strongest season yet.

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