2012 Emmy preview: ‘Modern Family,’ ‘Community’ in Supporting Actress field

Nominees will be announced next month.

Supporting fields for the Primetime Emmy Awards are always pretty crowded, but you add to that the sheer level of talent that there is this year, it feels almost like a game of sardines.

When thinking up our potential Emmy nominees (especially in the category of Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series), we chose to look at the field based on one question — who’s continuing to do exciting work on their show? This is what we based our own personal list around, though we anticipate a few major surprises come July when the nominees are actually announced.

 

Don't trust Annie...

Most deserving nominees

Sofia Vergara, “Modern Family” (ABC) – While both Sofia and Julie Bowen do a great job on this show, we give the edge to Sofia here only in that Gloria may be the most deceptively difficult character to play on the entire show. She constantly has to teeter the line of being funny with being overbearing, and Vergara finds a way to make it work while staying both likable and believable in the process.

Mayim Bialik, “The Big Bang Theory” (CBS) – If there is anyone from “Big Bang” as deserving as Jim Parsons, it’s Mayim Bialik. Amy Farrah Fowler may actually be the most roll-on-the-floor funny character on the entire show, and her chemistry with Kaley Cuoco and Melissa Rauch has brought a new dimension to a show that was getting a little one-note beforehand.

Alison Brie, “Community” (NBC) – There’s enough tough choice here. Do you go with Gillian Jacobs or Alison Brie when both play such great characters? What makes us side with Brie is that she manages to keep Annie Edison superficially cherubic, while also reminding us occasionally that there is a tiny bit of darkness within her that constantly makes her dangerous to pretty much everyone around her.

Eliza Coupe, “Happy Endings” (ABC) – In talking about underrated comedic talents, we’re not sure there is anyone as perpetually ignored as Eliza Coupe. She was one of the shining lights in the final years of “Scrubs,” though like with that show we have a feeling both she and “Happy Endings” are going to end up mostly uninvited to the party.

Kaitlin Olson, “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” (FX) – Sweet Dee Reynolds may be one of the most disgusting characters to ever appear on a television show. With that in mind, she’s incredibly captivating. Playing someone so unflinchingly unlikable deserves some sort of recognition in itself, in particular when you have someone in Olson who is consistently funny in doing so.

Kristen Wiig, “Saturday Night Live” (NBC) – Can you really have this category without Kristen in it this year? With it being her final season on the show, she may be the favorite at the moment — and while we never liked Gilly and she was at times overused, it’s still hard to deny her impact on the show as a whole.

Honorable mentions: Julie Bowen (“Modern Family”), Gillian Jacobs (“Community”), Anna Chlumsky (“Veep”), Heather Morris (“Glee”), Kristin Chenoweth (“GCB”).

 

Julie Bowen is the reigning champ.

Most likely nominees

Sofia Vergara, “Modern Family” (ABC) – She’s been nominated for each of the first two years, and there’s no reason to believe that this will change.

Julie Bowen, “Modern Family” (ABC) – Not only does Julie do a great job in the role of Claire, but she is the reigning champ.

Cloris Leachman, “Raising Hope” (FOX) – While we personally feel that Martha Plimpton turns in the best performance on the show as a lead actress, Cloris probably has the best odds of anyone in the cast at actually taking home Emmy gold. Voters love living legends, and she fits the bill in every way.

Betty White, “Hot in Cleveland” (TV Land) – See the words “living legend” above, and apply it to Betty. Did she bring anything new to the role versus this time last year? We don’t really think so, which is why she is not a part of our dream nominee list.

Jane Lynch, “Glee” (FOX) – By the same token, we really didn’t see anything new (or particular exciting) out of Sue Sylvester this year. The problem with her character is that midway through season 2, Ryan Murphy didn’t know what to do with her — therefore, she’s been since floating along with political campaigns and pregnancies that feel more like distractions than anything interesting.

Kristen Wiig, “Saturday Night Live” (NBC) – As we said above, Kristen is a favorite — and her departure only serves to amplify that.

Likely to receive votes: Jane Krakowski (“30 Rock”), Alison Brie (“Community”), Maya Rudolph (“Up All Night”), Mayim Bialik (“The Big Bang Theory”).

Who do you want to see take home the Emmy here? Be sure to both comment and share in the poll below!

Photo: Academy of Television Arts & Sciences

 

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