Earlier this year, “Psych” signed off after eight seasons. The USA Network comedy about a super-observant slacker who poses as a psychic to help solve cases for his local police department was a big hit but never got on Emmys radar.
The stand out in the show’s final season was Dule Hill, who played Burton “Gus” Guster, the lifelong best friend of protagonist Shawn Spencer (James Roday). He served as the (usually) more grounded counterpart to the goofy antics of Spencer and assists him in his escapades throughout Santa Barbara and it’s about time that he finally received an Emmy nomination for Comedy Supporting Actor.
Hill was always a reliable source of humor and a good counterpoint to Roday. And during the final season, he got a tremendous episode to showcase his strength as a performer. In “Cog Blocked,” Gus accompanies Shawn to the scene of an apparent suicide and discovers that the victim led an eerily similar life to his own. Determined to prove that his own life has meaning, Gus persuades Shawn to prove the death was actually a murder. Gus,, who is far outside of his comfort zone, takes the lead on a case rather than just being the reluctant sidekick.
Hill earned a Drama Supporting Actor nomination back in 2002 for his role as Charlie Young on Emmy favorite “The West Wing.” He lost to co-star John Spencer but established himself as a known actor on a popular drama. Now, on “Psych” he’s showing his range with his comedy chops.
Unfortunately, there are several obstacles that stand in the way of his Emmy chances this year.
The Comedy Supporting Actor field is very crowded. It looks like at least three, if not four, of the six slots will be taken by men from “Modern Family”: 2011 winner Ty Burrell, Ed O’Neil, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and a possible return of two-time winner Eric Stonestreet (2010 and 2012). Last year’s winner Tony Hale (“Veep”) is likely to be back as well while Adam Driver (“Girls”) will have to fight it out with, among others, Andre Braugher (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”) and the supporting players from “Veep,” “Parks and Recreation,” “The Big Bang Theory” and “Saturday Night Live.”
“Psych” has never been a big hit with Emmy voters with just two bids over seven years: Music Composition for a Series (Original Dramatic Score) in 2010 and Interactive Television Programming for “HashTag Killer” in 2012.
The show’s network, USA, has not fared well in recent years either when it comes to any of their series. Yes, “Monk” won Tony Shalhoub three trophies for Comedy Actor and also had two wins for Comedy Guest Actor. “Burn Notice” received only four total nominations including a Drama Supporting Actress bid by Emmy darling Sharon Gless. Other shows like “White Collar,” “Royal Pains,” “Suits” and “Covert Affairs” have been shut out entirely.
Hill has an Emmy track record as a previous nominee for “The West Wing.”
With most voters probably remembering him for his dramatic work, “Psych” gives him the opportunity to show comedic range.
Sharon Gless managed to pull a surprise nod for USA’s “Burn Notice.”
“Psych” ended back in March and has only been nominated twice for its first seven seasons.
Shows rarely score major bids for the first time in their final season.
USA Network has had a lackluster showing at the Emmys in recent years.
Do you think Dule Hill deserves an Emmy nomination? Make your Comedy Supporting Actor predictions below: