Ty Burrell earned his sixth consecutive Emmy bid for Best Comedy Supporting Actor this year for playing goofy, sweet-natured Phil Dunphy on “Modern Family,” and could very well win his third trophy. He’s currently ranked third in Gold Derby’s predictions with 13/2 odds to win, behind newcomer Tituss Burgess for “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (odds of 9/10) and previous winner Tony Hale for “Veep” (odds of 7/2). This time around Burrell submitted the penultimate season five episode, “Crying Out Loud,” for Emmy consideration.
It’s Senior Ditch Day, but Alex (Ariel Winter) wants to spend her free time at the library choosing her eventual college roommate. Phil, Luke (Nolan Gould) and Haley (Sarah Hyland) decide to “kidnap” her and take her out for a good time. The gang gets sidetracked when Phil sees an old movie theater he helped build closed for demolition. It’s the same theater where Haley and Alex saw their first movie, and behind the screen is a slab of cement with their childhood footprints.
As father and son attempt to remove the cement to no avail, Alex and Haley argue. Phil needs the slab as a memento of the one thing he helped build, yet upon seeing his daughters reconcile, he takes pride in having created them. Will this emotional episode of “Modern Family” win Burrell Emmy number-three? Let’s weigh the pros and cons:
This episode showcases the very best of what Burrell can do. The slapstick of trying to remove the cement displays his gifts for physical comedy, while the ending brings out the emotional plight of his character: he just wants to spend more time with his kids.
Burrell won this category for the second and fifth seasons, so he’s clearly an actor the voters aren’t afraid of rewarding multiple times.
For the first time, Burrell doesn’t have to compete against any of his “Modern Family” co-stars. A win for him here could serve as a win for the show.
While “Crying Out Loud” got raves from critics, some would argue that the season finale, “American Skyper,” which saw Phil employing an elaborate iPad setup in order to attend Alex’s graduation party from out-of-town, was a greater showcase for the actor.
His two previous wins could also work against him if voters decide to spread the love to a newcomer.
With only six nominations, “Modern Family” had its weakest showing at the Emmys thus far, leading many to wonder if some of the luster has faded from the once mighty champion.
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Photo Credit: ABC