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Best Comedy Actor: Emmy Episode analysis

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  • Teproc
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    #356110

    While I’m a little dubious that tapes still matter, I do enjoy going through the process of watching the episodes and trying to anticipate how Emmy voters will respond to them, so there we go.

    Here’s my ranking based solely on tapes, nothing else.

    7) Matt LeBlanc, Episodes (Showtime) : ” Episode 405″

    I’ve stopped watching Episodes after season 2 so I don’t know what else he had available, but this is a very weak submission from LeBlanc, which is a shame as this field is very light on comedy and he could have stood apart, but no. He doesn’t have that much screentime, and what he does have is… ok, I guess ? There’s very little impact here, in fact the only impactful thing is a more dramatic beat towards the end of the episode when he’s watching his pre-Friends sextape and he sees how much younger he looked. But since the rest of the field is much more dramatic, what he needed was standout comedic moments, and there are none, just a few quips here and there. Very few of the laughs come from him in this episode, so this is easily the worst tape.

    6) William H. Macy, Shameless (Showtime) : “A Night to Remem-Wait What ?”

    Screentime is not that high, and the impact is surprisingly low for a storyline that could really have let him go big… but no. I don’t think I laughed or smiled a single time at his misadventures, and there are others in the field that have better dramatic tapes, so I don’t see how this would have a shot.

    5) Don Cheadle, House of Lies (Showtime) : “It’s a Box Inside a Box”

    Lots and lots of screentime, Cheadle gives a pretty charismatic performance, especially when he’s the background actually (thinking of the scenes with Ben Schwartz and the other guy trying to sell their app to Google especially). He has a lot of charm, but he’s not very funny and the subject matter is problematic in that it’s very hard to care for this guy. He does what he can, but he would have neede to be funnier to have a real shot.

    4) Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent (Amazon) : “The Letting Go”

    Having not watched Transparent (yet), I was very disappointed by the mediocrity of this tape (not in terms of actual quality, but as an Emmy episode I mean). He doesn’t have that much screentime, and though he has a lot of impact obviously, it’s not a very showy performance and again, he’s not funny for even a second. Keep in mind who won this category in the recent past : Parsons, Parsons, Cryer, Parsons, Parsons, Baldwin, Baldwin : all purely comedic performances. Going into this I was assuming Tambor was a lock, but his tape really is not that great.

    3) Louis C.K., Louie (FX) : “Bobby’s House”

    Beats everyone in screentime obviously, and if I were voting I’d put him at number 1, but it’s an almost entirely dramatic performance, none of the laughs come from him, aside from maybe a fe early on in his discussion with Bobby, and even then the biggest laugh comes from he light switching off, which is Louis C.K. as director/writer, but not as actor. Good performance, but like Tambor, not funny enough.

    2) Anthony Anderson, black-ish (ABC) : “Sex, Lies, and Vasectomies”

    Lots of screentime (+ voiceover), the episode is all about him getting scared that his wife might be pregnant because he lied about getting a vasectomy. Honestly, it’s not that great a performance, but it’s funnier by far than any of the other ones besides Forte. It’s nothing special, but we’ve seen in the past that Emmy voters care a lot about the fact that this is Lead Actor in a Comedy, so those who watch the tapes will probably rank Anderson pretty high for being the most straight-forwardly comedic performance in this group.

    1) Will Forte, The Last Man on Earth (Fox) : “Alive in Tucson”

    Screentime is obviously great, impact is very big, he’s funny throughout with enough range that those who value that will rank him high enough. This is by far the best tape in the field, and if the system hadn’t changed, I would pretty confidently be predicting Forte’s win.

    But this is not last year, so here are my predictions accounting for the fact that, say, a third of the voters might watch the tapes :

    1) Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent (Amazon)
    2) Will Forte, The Last Man on Earth (Fox)
    3) Anthony Anderson, black-ish (ABC)
    4) Louis C.K., Louie (FX)
    5) William H. Macy, Shameless (Showtime)
    6) Don Cheadle, House of Lies (Showtime)
    7) Matt LeBlanc, Episodes (Showtime)

    I think it’s mostly between Tambor and Forte, though Anderson has an outside shot. His show can feel somewhat important, as it’s been a while since we’ve had a succesful comedy about an African-American family on a major network, and his tape is pretty good. Tambor obviously has huge buzz, goodwill and of course his performance feels very important. Transgenderness (is that the word ?) was a big subject this year, both in real life and in pop culture, so I fully expect this larger panel to go with the flow and award Tambor. If we see Forte win, it will be because by some miracle they did watch the tapes, but even then I wouldn’t count him out completely, as his show obviously has support among writers and directors at least. The other four basically have no shot, I don’t think there’s any urgency to awarding C.K. so I don’t see why it would happen now.

    Reply
    Gabriel
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    #356112

    I just don’t know what to make of Tambor. Everyone thinks he’s going to win due to his performance, but as we saw with Laura Dern having the best performance doesn’t matter if it’s not traditionally funny. i thought we were never going to see a dramatic performance win in comedy ever again, and If it weren’t for the new voting system, I just don’t see how he could possibly win.

    Is it crazy to think Louis CK still has a shot to win? I mean, i do agree that there’s no urgency to award him in the acting category, but he is pretty popular (e.g. he always gets name-checked for his SNL hosting), and that has to be taken into consideration now. And his performance in his submitted episode is excellent.

    Forte has such an unusual performance and episode, which I think works in his favor. If it was based solely on tape, i think he would win.

    If Macy were the only veteran here, i think he could win, but he’s overshadowed by Tambor, so I don’t think he has a chance despite having a good submission.

    Ultimately I am predicting Tambor, but ONLY because of the voting change.

    1. Tambor
    2. Forte
    3. CK
    4. Macy
    5. Anderson
    6. LeBlanc
    7. Cheadle

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    forwardswill
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    #356113

    I think you have been very harsh on Le Blanc’s tape. It isn’t a great episode for him but it is still a good,funny performance and a decent submission in my opinion. Your comment about his screentime baffles me as even if the episode is shared between the characters he still has more screentime than anyone else.

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    Teproc
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    #356114

    I think you have been very harsh on Le Blanc’s tape. It isn’t a great episode for him but it is still a good,funny performance and a decent submission in my opinion. Your comment about his screentime baffles me as even if the episode is shared between the characters he still has more screentime than anyone else.

    He probably has sightly more screentime than Mangan/Greig, but barely. This is a lead category. I’m pretty sure he has less screentime than anyone else in the category, except maybe Tambor ?  

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    Deniz Sisman
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    #356115

    Just imagine the fuss from media if tape system were still valid and Tambor would lose to Anderson or Forte. Ow. I think even the winner would have been hesitant about whether he should be happy or upset. Maybe that was one of the reasons why this system was retired after so many years. Cultural impacts had barely an affect for the winner with the past system.(That was sometimes a good and sometimes a bad thing.) And I think that was the thing that have pushed the TV Academy at the edge this year.

    Tambor’s screentime in this episode is very limited and even though he has some joyful and lively scenes in it, this is definitely definitely definitely not a comedic submission that usually wins in this category. They haven’t even had any tolerance for any black comedy which Louis C.K produces.
    But then again, they definitely love transformative roles and the role itself is already a showy one even if Tambor wouldn’t do anything and just sit on the chair. I also don’t how many actors have played transgender roles on TV and how Emmys embraced them, so it wouldn’t have been completely unlikely either if you also think about his name recognition and also his past nominations.

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    DamianWayne
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    #356116

    Rankings:

    1. Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent
    2. Will Forte, The Last Man on Earth
    3. Anthony Anderson, Black-ish
    4. William H Macy, Shameless
    5. Don Cheadle, House of Lies
    6. Matt LeBlanc, Episodes
    7. Louis CK, Louie

    Tambor and Forte are able to pull off what the others don’t. Forte has more laughs, which could help in the end. Anderson’s submission made me laugh so at least he has that in his favor. The other 4, I found completely dull, especially from CK. I don’t know how Cheadle and LeBlanc keep making it year after year. Their shows are straight up terrible.

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    Riley
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    #356117

    5) Don Cheadle, House of Lies (Showtime) : “It’s a Box Inside a Box”

    Boomer has been using this abbreviated title I think out of embarrassment, but just so everyone knows, the title of the episode is “It’s a Box Inside a Box Inside a Box, Dipshit”.  Oh, that show.

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    Lance
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    #356118

    1.Will Forte, “The Last Man on Earth” – episode “Alive in Tucson”

    2. Anthony Anderson, “Black-ish” – episode “Sex, Lies and Vasectomies”
    3. Louis C.K., “Louie” – episode “Bobby’s House”
    4. Jeffrey Tambor, “Transparent” – episode “The Letting Go”

    5. Don Cheadle, “House of Lies” – episode “It’s a Box Inside a Box”

    6. Matt LeBlanc, “Episodes” – episode “Episode 405”
    7. William H. Macy, “Shameless” – episode “A Night to Remem – Wait, What?”

    This is how I would rank them in order of quality of performance.  The last three don’t make a dent here in the competition for me. 

    Tambor has one of the best moments in the beginning of his episode but there’s not a lot after that and then there’s that argument about whether this is more of a dramatic performance and how will the voter react to this.  If Tambor wins, it’s because of the buzz around the show and its subject matter, not his episode.

    Louis C.K. basically give us Jodie Foster in “The Accused” so he’s a contender but he’s still so low key he’ll have to win with some help from those popularity votes, which judging from the emmy love over the years, is plentiful for him! 

    Anthony Anderson is great in his submission and could easily win if the voters watch this episode.  It’s also the sort of broad over the top comedy that often wins this category.

    Will Forte is the best though as he is almost driven to madness and suicide as The Last Man on Earth.  He’s got the material and he’s wonderful.  He’s also definetely benefited from popularity or name checking in the past (The year he was nominated for like 30 seconds on 30 Rock). 

    So with a combination of it all I think Tambor, Forte or C.K. will come out on top.  If I had too I might give the slight edge to Louis C.K.

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    Lance
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    #356119

    With this new system, I think you have to look at any actors in the category who are divisive.  In this category, I think It’s Louis C.K. – well at least that’s the impression I get from most people I talk to.  Who ever this person is, there will be a lot of voters that are just ranking them on popularity that will put that person last – there are just certain incredibly popular actors who rub a lot of people the wrong way.  All those “7’s” being added to their scores will really hurt, so I think divisive actors/shows are hurt by this new system the most with the way they vote.

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    Os
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    #356120

    How many voters will rank Tambor out of the top 3? 

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    Teproc
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    #356121

    How many voters will rank Tambor out of the top 3? 

    Even the voters who prefer comedic performances don’t have that many others to choose from here, the only really comedic performers here are Forte, Anderson and LeBlanc. He might get some 4th places, but not much below that, if only because he’s a veteran and this is a sympathetic role that he’s good in. His only real problem is a lack of screentim in his episode, but that won’t matter too much this year. 

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    mikeboy898
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    #356122

    Forte could very well win based on his tape. He’s also SO funny throughout the rest of the show. A true comedic performance.

    Although, a Tambor win would mean a hell of a lot more and I fully support it.

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    Riley
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    #356123

    This would have been an extremely easy race to call for Anthony Anderson if the tape system were still in place.

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    AMG
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    #356124

    I laughed more during Tambor’s episode than I did during Forte’s. The opening scene for Tambor is actually really funny, and then it moves onto a more emotional performance as the episode rolls on. Forte was ok, mainly with the balls and the mannequin, but nothing noteworthy enough for me to say he’s got a real shot against Tambor.

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    Freddie Deane
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    #356125

    Submission rankings:            Predictions:
    1. Will Forte                           1. Jeffrey Tambor

    2. Louis C.K                           2.Will Forte
    3. Jeffrey Tambor                  3. Louis C.K

    4. William H Macey                4. William H Macey
    5. Anthony Anderson             5. Matt LeBlanc

    6. Don Cheadle                      6. Anthony Anderson
    7. Matt LeBlanc                      7. Don Cheadle

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