Cynopsis Media presents
Before the Ballots: Comedy
2012 Primetime Emmy® Award Pre-Nomination Special Report
by Daisy Whitney
Good morning. It's Monday, June 18, 2012, and this is the 4th of a five-part series predicting the nominees for this year's primetime Emmy® Awards. Today's installment looks at the potential nominees for Outstanding Comedy Series.
BEFORE THE BALLOTS: Outstanding Comedy Series
By Daisy Whitney
Betting against Modern Family for an Emmy three-peat would be foolish. The odds are stacked so high in the ABC comedy's favor to take home its third Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series that anyone placing money on another horse would win a ton if that longshot gamble came through.
But the top-rated sitcom will have to withstand fellow winner 30 Rock on NBC as it begins its swansong season, as well as the ratings juggernaut of CBS' Big Bang Theory. Critics say both of those shows could play spoiler in Modern Family's bid for a trio of trophies. The winner will be crowned Sept. 23 in the telecast, with nominations slated to be announced the morning of July 19.
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The Usual Suspects
For the most part, the ballot is likely to look like a duplicate of last year's which saw nods go to Modern Family, 30 Rock, Big Bang Theory, NBC's Parks and Recreation, Fox's Glee and NBC's The Office. But those last two shows Glee and The Office aren't likely to land nominations this year due, experts say.
"Modern Family, Parks and Rec, 30 Rock and Big Bang Theory get top billing, as always," said Lauren Swanson, SheKnows.com Senior Entertainment Editor. "But now that the bloom is officially off the rose with The Office and Glee, that leaves a couple extra spots for some newbies, like [Fox's] The New Girl, [FX's] Louie and HBO's Girls. [HBO's] Veep may also get a nod, though in my opinion, it still needs some time to grow."
Indeed, with Steve Carrell’s exodus from The Office, and with Glee's top-performing, but wobbly season, there's room for fresh blood on the ballot. "I'd like to see some more shows get into the mix and win," said Shari Anne Brill, President and CEO of media strategy consultancy Shari Anne Brill Media and author of the Primetime TV Insight Series report published by Baseline Intelligence.
New Girl and CBS' Two Broke Girls stand outside chances for a nomination, while Curb Your Enthusiasm, now back after a hiatus, and Louie could round out the crew, she said. Curb Your Enthusiasm has been nominated six times so far, and is always a critic's darling.
Other new entrants that could mix up the list include Enlightened and Up All Night, posits Entertainment Web site Indiewire.
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Best Chance for an Upset
The awards site Goldberby.com surveyed 10 leading TV critics who all picked Modern Family as the frontrunner to win the top comedy award. The strongest case for an upset could be made by Big Bang Theory. It's a monster ratings grabber, but has also started to come into its own critically with Emmy acting wins. Jim Parsons has nabbed the leading actor trophy two years and running. That puts the show in a strong position to land some votes for best comedy.
Then there's 30 Rock which won the trophy in its first three seasons and was nominated the past two years. By most accounts, it's had a rocky season this year. But the Academy still has a soft spot for the Tina Fey-led show especially since it announced this coming season would be its last. Parks and Recreation has been tapped once in this category, and will likely add a second nomination to its roster.
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A Fresh Start
There's some breathing room on the ballot for newcomers to at least get the attention of the Academy this year. Brill said she doesn't expect any first-time nominees to pose a serious threat to the likely returning nominees, but the wiggle room could mark the start of a new run of Emmy contenders.
Daisy Whitney for Cynopsis
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