Emmys 2016: Mayim Bialik, Lea Michele, Kate McKinnon, Niecy Nash top Comedy – Supporting Actress picks

Emmys -Today, we’re posting our final Emmy picks for the year when it comes to acting, and we’re doing so in a field that is especially strong this year: Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. We’ve got in here six incredible women who performed lights-out playing a variety of different characters. Many of them were silly, some of them were more serious, but we do think they all had common ground in humanity. You could relate to them, question them, or at times want to be friends with them and lend a helping hand.

In addition to sharing our picks below, be sure to also vote in our attached poll for who you’d like to see with the Emmy this year! We’ll announce the winners of our poll July 13, one day before the actual nominations are revealed.

Mayim Bialik, “The Big Bang Theory (CBS) – Mayim has been a recurring presence in these Emmy articles over the years, and there’s a simple reason why: Time and time again, she’s amazing as Amy Farrah Fowler. We know that she can do comedy, but what we find remarkable about her work on this season in particular is how much vulnerability she put into the part. We saw some victories (Amy and Sheldon slept together for the first time), but also heartache and great relatability. She may be one of the show’s most accessible characters, and she puts so many people before herself that you want to see her find all of the happiness in the world.

Gaby Hoffmann, “Transparent (Amazon) – It’s easy to understand why Jeffrey Tambor gets so much attention for this show, since he is amazing as an anchor to this world. Yet, we’re becoming increasingly pleased that Hoffmann’s work as Ali Pfefferman continues to be recognized in its own way by other folks in the media. Hoffman is exceptional at injecting pain and vulnerability into this role in a similar way that Bialik is; Ali is not always the nicest person, but she has moments and it is for that reason you root for her to turn things around. Then, it hurts that much worse when she has another lapse.

Jane Krakowski, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix) – Through the second season of almost any show, you want to see your characters grow and develop. It’s with that in mind that we are certainly thrilled regarding what happened with Jacqueline on the second season of the Netflix comedy. Krakowski kept all of the humor from season 1 in there, but got a chance to flesh out more of her character’s insecurities, fears, and precisely why she values and needs Kimmy in her life. She’s a strong enough character to anchor her own show, so we’re just grateful to have her in Kimmy’s world.

Kate McKinnon, “Saturday Night Live (NBC) – In our mind the strongest cast member of the past two seasons of “SNL,” McKinnon has become invaluable to Lorne Michaels as a gifted performer and a resource. She can do unique characters like Olya, or nuanced impressions like Hillary Clinton. She kills in live sketches, but is equally funny in commercial parodies or fake movie trailers. She’s someone who really can do everything, and does so in a way that makes you constantly want to smile and see more of her. She’s the true definition of a perfect “SNL” cast member: Magnetic, hilarious, and gracious to her other players.

Lea Michele, “Scream Queens (Fox) – “Scream Queens” remains to us one of the most underrated pieces of entertainment in all of 2015, and Michele’s work here rivals season 1 Rachel Berry on “Glee” in terms of “wow” factor and showing you how much she’s capable of. Hester went through a journey in season 1; at times you wanted to root for her because she was the obvious outsider; then, when you learned precisely what she had done and how she did it, you hated yourself for ever feeling that way. It’s a character full of a darkness that Rachel never had, so this had to be a thrill for Michele to play.

Niecy Nash, “Getting On (HBO) – This is a show that managed to do a lot with a little. There are fewer episodes of this series over three seasons than other shows tend to have in a single year, but the cast, especially Nash, perpetually shined. Didi was a remarkable character for her to play, a woman who needed and deserved many wins but wasn’t often handed them. We know Nash can play over-the-top characters really well, and she did that in “Scream Queens.” This show was a chance for her to also show wonderful restraint, and play someone who was human in all the ways we don’t often see on TV.

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