All in the ‘Family’? Why ‘Modern Family’ needs to quit hogging the Best Supporting Actor category
Five actors who deserve some Emmy love
We love "Modern Family"; we really do. And clearly, Emmy voters do too, because they lavished ABC's hit comedy with another 14 nominations today, and handed four of the six Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy slots to the show's male leads: Ty Burrell, Eric Stonestreet (both previous winners), Jesse Tyler Ferguson, and Ed O'Neill. That's a full two-thirds of the category… and that's ridiculous.
No matter how fantastic you think "Modern Family" is, there's too much great TV on these days to devote the lion's share of any category to a single show. So we'd like to see some of the "MF" cast move into the lead category next year and allow some non-Dunphy-Pritchett blood back into the Emmy race. In fact, here are five worthy turns by supporting actors in a comedy that Emmy overlooked this year by keeping it all in the "Family."
Charlie Day, "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia"
Day is finally starting to get recognized for his fine comedic work in hit movies like "Horrible Bosses," but we've loved him for years as the rage-prone, illiterate Charlie on FX's inspired bar comedy. Despite developing a strong cult following over its seven-season run, "Sunny" has somehow never earned a single Emmy nomination -- not one! That needs to be remedied immediately, and honoring Day is a great place to start.
Adam Driver, "Girls"
It's not just girls on HBO's boundary-breaking new comedy, you know; there are some guys on the show worth mentioning as well. Specifically, we want to call out Driver, an acclaimed theater actor whose "Girls" character, douchebag-with-a-heart-of-gold Adam, is the early-20s guy you love to hate… and hate to love. Driver's nuanced, three-dimensional performance kept us guessing all season long; we're betting the academy catches up and recognizes him next time.
Jason Gann, "Wilfred"
FX's talking-dog sitcom is understandably a little weird for Emmy's taste. (Let us repeat: talking-dog sitcom.) But creator/star Gann definitely stands out as Wilfred, the dog that Elijah Wood's character sees as a foul-mouthed, pot-smoking Australian dude in a dog suit. Gann is wild and fearless as Wilfred, spouting off philosophical musings one minute and humping a cute girl's leg the next. Throw this dog a bone, Emmy voters; he deserves it.
Nick Offerman, "Parks and Recreation"
Ron Swanson and his mustache are glaring at the TV academy right now. Though it's been the best comedy on network TV for years now, NBC's "Parks and Rec" somehow still gets overlooked come Emmy time. It didn't get a Best Comedy Series nod this year (nonsense!), and Offerman's exemplary work as gruff parks manager Ron Swanson once again went unrecognized. We could go on and on about the Emmy worthiness of the "Parks" cast (Chris Pratt! Aubrey Plaza! Aziz Ansari!), but the continued omission of Offerman is just inexcusable.
Adam Pally, "Happy Endings"
We talked about him in our "Who Deserves an Emmy Nomination?" gallery… but apparently, no voters were listening, because ABC's fun, frothy sitcom got the big goose-egg today, nominations-wise. They must not watch the show, because if they did, there's no way they'd leave Pally off their list. As chubby gay slacker Max, Pally shines, even within one of TV's deepest comedic ensembles. And "Endings" even airs right after "Modern Family," which we know Emmy voters watch. Just leave the TV on, guys; you might find out that (surprise!) other shows have great comedy performances, too.