We’re wrapping up the Comedy portion of our Golden Globes Preview Series today by focusing on the actress category, and we’ll skip over the platitudes, because we are sure you know that this is an amazing field this year. What impresses us the most about it this time around is the fusion of new and familiar faces. We’ve spoken much of the past few days about how new comedies are starting to take over, and there are a couple of first-year shows that are making their way into our CarterMatt staff picks for nominees — we’re not HFPA members, mind you, but if our team of writers could vote, this is who we’d go with.
With that being said, we have more actresses from returning shows here than we did actors in that comedy category, mostly because there are still some performers out there who continue to do amazing work here year after year. When you’ve heard a joke before, or start to understand its delivery and cadence, it does become so much harder to routinely get nominations and be recognized. That’s why we’ll always respect some of the people who remain funny on their shows and worthy of some love year after year as they keep the laughs fresh.
In addition to our personal picks, be sure to vote for your favorite nominee below! We’ll keep this poll up until November 30 at noon Pacific time; the results will be announced the following day at the same time, less than two weeks before the Globes officially announce their nominations on December 12. (The full ceremony airs on NBC Sunday, January 8.)
Actress in a Comedy Series
Kristen Bell, “The Good Place” (NBC) – Going into “The Good Place,” we obviously had lofty expectations just because of the pedigree of it with executive producer Mike Schur, plus also Ted Danson joining Bell in the cast. What’s so great about Bell’s skill set is that she’s so good at playing characters who divert expectations — and you even had some of that in the pilot when you first met Eleanor with the notion that she was some sort of kind, wonderful hero to humanity before learning that the opposite was the case. She’s got a little bit of that fire on this show that you saw over on “House of Lies,” but there’s also a great deal of heart, sensitivity, and just the right amount of snark.
Rachel Bloom, “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” (The CW) – She sings, she dances, she does broad comedy, she wears her heart on her sleeve, and she’s uproariously funny. We have no idea what more you could want in a character on a show in any genre. Bloom’s performance as Rebecca Bunch is endlessly entertaining, and there’s a reason why she is the reigning champion here — kudos to the Globes the past two years for continuing to give CW shows love. What season 2 to date has done so well is dive deeper into her character, giving us more of the highs and lows — and a few incredibly-crazy things to boot. (Hey, it’s in the show’s title!)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep” (HBO) – She’s probably going to be a favorite at every single awards show that she ever goes to for this role, and here’s the honest truth: We have a natural proclivity at this point to want to see fresh faces win some of these awards. After all, it spreads the love around, and we think seeing someone win an award for the first time is a wonderful TV moment. With that said, we’d be completely kidding ourselves if we were to sit here and say that Louis-Dreyfus is anything short of brilliant and deserving for playing Selina Meyer. She may be by and large unlikable as a character, but she’s magnetic, determined, and there’s nobody quite like her.
Issa Rae, “Insecure” (HBO) – There are probably more comedies on TV than ever that are looking to create more of a realistic snapshot of a world than creating some sort of heightened larger-than-life universe, and that does cause many of them to blend together. That doesn’t happen with “Insecure.” It’s a grounded-in-reality show that allows the Issa character to be quirky, insecure, passionate, angry, happy, and above all, real. It doesn’t hold anything back, and she is one of the most relatable characters out there. Rae’s commitment to both this part and her work behind the scenes on this show is second to none. Also, she absolutely hilarious!
Gina Rodriguez, “Jane the Virgin” (The CW) – While it’s far too early in the game to call “Jane the Virgin” a stalwart, but this is its third year, and somehow both it and Rodriguez’s performance continue to get better and better. The episode earlier this year with Jane and Michael being together for the first time was all sorts of magic, and that’s just one prime example of what this show does best: Giving you really funny character moments, and then transitioning over to something sweet and tender. As Jane Rodriguez brings in this amazing quality where you want to be drawn into her world as a viewer. It’s welcoming, and in a time where much of the world can be depressing, this show marks a perfect getaway.
Honorable mention – Ellie Kemper, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (Netflix), Tracee Ellis Ross, “black-ish” (ABC), Pamela Adlon, “Better Things” (FX), Constance Wu, “Freak Off the Boat” (ABC), Jamie Lee Curtis, “Scream Queens” (Fox).
Now, we turn this over to you! Be sure to vote in the poll below for your favorite and if they aren’t on the list then tell us in the comments section below. While you’re at it, be sure to check out the other articles in our Golden Globes Preview Series. (Photo: Golden Globes.)