2013 Emmy preview: ‘Happy Endings,’ ‘Parks and Recreation,’ ‘New Girl’ lead comedies

EmmysThis was a rather strange year when it comes to comedy. There was not a breakout show on any of the major networks, all new comedies with the exception of “The Mindy Project” fell off the map, and while “The Big Bang Theory” found yet another way to trounce the other shows in the ratings, “Modern Family” fell in ratings and both it and “Girls” (once critical darlings) started to lose some of their luster.

So what we’re really getting at here, if we’re being completely honest, is that this was not the greatest year for the genre. Even “Community,” our longtime favorite, fell by the wayside with a weak five or six episodes without Dan Harmon on board. The nominees below are what we feel are the rare shows that really rose to the top, and deserve some love from the Primetime Emmy Awards. Of course, we do want to hear your thoughts in the poll below, and you can view all of our Emmy coverage by heading on over to the link here.

“Girls” (HBO) – We run about the opposite of most other critics on “Girls” season 2. We loved it. Some critics and fans hated it, whereas they loved the first season … which we felt was a hipster “Sex and the City” ripoff. We liked the show when it was more original, and appreciated greatly how many risks Lena Dunham took with the characters. Rather than going down the easy road, she pushed herself and didn’t make it so necessary to feature all of her characters in a given week.

“Happy Endings” (ABC) – There was a part us that wanted to celebrate “The Office’s” final season by including it here … but given that there were several weak episodes, it would have been disingenuous. Instead, we’ve got a different show here in “Happy Endings” that may be packing its bags, but is clearly deserving of some love before it does. It’s the funny, character-driven series on ABC that never could find the right place this year.

“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” (FX) – Why hasn’t this show ever gotten any sort of attention? Maybe it’s too obscene, but if a show like “Girls” makes it given what Adam Driver did to Shiri Appleby, this should, too. The point of comedies is to be funny, and the adventures of a group friends at Paddy’s Pub are always that and then some. We recognize that the Emmys are probably too snobby to ever recognize it, but they should.

“New Girl” (Fox) – We love that the awards-show folks are finally taking notice of what we knew all of last year: Jake Johnson is amazing, and is really the driving force behind “New Girl’s” success even more so than Zooey Deschanel. With him being bumped up to lead this year alongside Zooey, this show shined with funny episodes, heartfelt moments, and some good writing despite having to make a daunting 25 half-hours in one year.

“Parks and Recreation” (NBC) – Probably a show hurt by its own consistency in a way, so everyone just expects it to be good and don’t often vote for it. However, this is by all intensive purposes a classic series, one featuring incredibly memorable characters and great storytelling. Even if it’s not properly recognized now, it will be someday.

“Veep” (HBO) – “Veep” is doing almost the same thing as “Girls” this season: Getting better every step of the way. This season has been ridiculously funny, especially when it comes to the way in which it has shown us more aspects of Selina Meyer’s life without getting too preachy. Everyone in politics is awful on this show, which is probably why it is so embarrassingly realistic.

Who do you want to see the Emmys recognize in comedy this year?  Leave us a comment below with your favorites.

Photo: HBO




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