Garry Trudeau is just the right wily cowboy to ride that intriguing dark horse “Alpha House” in the Emmy derby. As the creator of “Doonesbury” newspaper cartoons since the 1970s, he proved to be a fearless creative spirit skewering Washington D.C. and now he’s doing it again in a program that rails against political lunacy while threatening traditional television in Hollywood.
But hold your horses, Derbyites: “Alpha House” is produced and streamed by Amazon. It may seem like he’s taking on impossible odds at TV’s top awards – jockeying against ABC’s “Modern Family,” CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” and HBO’s “Veep” – but last year Netflix proved that streaming media can compete by scoring 12 nominations and 2 wins for “House of Cards” and “Arrested Development.”
Encouraged by critical raves for “Alpha House” from major media like TV Guide, New York Times and Hollywood Reporter, Amazon is giving it a serious Emmy push. A veteran Emmy consultant has been hired to assist behind the scenes and a serious awards campaign is now under way in the industry.
What is Trudeau’s strategy to play? In our webcam chat we asked him which sample episodes he’s pushing for nominations.
“That’s a tough call,” he says. “But I whittled it down to ‘Prayer Brunch’ because all of the characters get such juicy things to do while sitting in a prayer circle. And I think episode 10, which is called ‘Show Girls,’ where Lou (portrayed by Matt Malloy) settles a strike in Las Vegas. That’s another favorite. I like it because Louis gets to win one for a change. Nothing ever goes right for Louis. He and the Wanda Sykes character solve all of the problems.”
Photo, left to right: Mark Consuelos, John Goodman, Clark Johnson, Matt Malloy as Republican U.S. Senators who share a house in Washington D.C.