July 21, 2013 at 6:22 pm #288710
Like the “Modern Family” cast does these days submitting all in the supporting acting categories, the cast of “Friends” did the same thing until 2001. Then they all submitted in the lead categories since 2002 until the end of the series. However I started to think that maybe they could have gotten more nominations if they have combined the submissions based in their work in a season.
For example in 2002 when Friends won Best Comedy Series I think they should have submitted this way in the acting categories:
Lead Actress Comedy: Jennifer
Lead Actor Comedy: Matt, David
Supporting Actress: Lisa, Courtney
Supporting Actor: Matthew
Lisa always was nominated when she submitted supporting but then she submitted lead and she stopped getting nominations. She probably would have gotten one nomination in 2002 over Wendie Malick if she had submitted supporting.
What do you think? Would they have gotten more nominations submitting this way?July 21, 2013 at 6:29 pm #288712
Basically, the way it should’ve worked is Seasons 1 – 4:
Lead Actress – Jennifer
Lead Actor – David
Supporting Actress – Courtney, Lisa
Supporting Actor – Matthew, Matt
Seasons 5 – 10:
Lead Actress – Courtney, Jennifer
Lead Actor – Matthew
Supporting Actress – Lisa
Supporting Actor – Matt, David
To my mind, Joey and Phoebe were always supporting roles no matter which series… The arc of the series shifted with regard to leading romantic relationships. In seasons 1 – 4, Ross and Rachel were the main romantic focus, whilst in seasons 5 – 10, Monica and Chandler were the central romantic couple. Although, I think Jennifer deserves to be considered the lead for any season of Friends, whether that’s down to her role or just plain ol’ screen presence.
It’s interesting to note that Courtney Cox never received one single Emmy nomination for Friends in all of its ten years… Everyone else received at least one nomination. Cox was quite bitter later on about this and you can see why especially when her two female co-stars were nominated together.
Lisa should definitely have stayed in supporting – she might even have won another Emmy if she hadn’t made the move to lead.
I’m wondering why Friends never really excelled at the Emmys overall – can anyone share any thoughts on this while we’re on the subject? It only won one Outstanding Comedy trophy, and Jennifer won only one gong for lead actress, in such an iconic role as Rachel you’d think she would’ve won more (hell, you’d think she would’ve been nominated more especially in the earlier seasons). She didn’t get her first nomination until 2000. Up to then it had always been Lisa. Modern Family these days dominates the Emmys in nominations, and in wins, having 3 consecutive best comedy trophies and always dominating the supporting categories. Why didn’t Friends do well initially? Did it take a while for it to get off the ground?July 21, 2013 at 6:30 pm #288713
They probably would, but I remember reading somewhere that the cast only accepted to compete in the lead race if all of them were submitted equally.July 21, 2013 at 6:37 pm #288714
It would have been more strategic to split them up in different categories, but I think it definitely would’ve caused a rift in the group…July 21, 2013 at 6:46 pm #288715
As for why Friends wasn’t totally embraced by the Emmys, I think it has a lot to do with the format of the show. It’s a bunch of beautiful 20-somethings living together.. back in the 90’s, the family or work-centered comedies were dominating. Sure, there’s Seinfeld, but there’s a different approach. Seinfeld are nihilist adults. Friends are in that age where they are figuring out stuff, it’s a very youth-oriented show. It wasn’t until the show took more adult directions, that they were recognized (the main couple having a baby, the other couple married).July 21, 2013 at 7:03 pm #288716
The Friends cast had that kind of solidarity in everything from contract negotiations to awards. They’re all sitting on piles of cash now so I doubt they’re lamenting that they don’t have Emmys (well, everyone but Kudrow and Aniston, although Kudrow could and should have won several and no nominations for Cox is absurd).July 21, 2013 at 7:32 pm #288717
I am a little surprised that the girls weren’t as successful in getting nominations throughout the ’90s, as Supporting Actress didn’t seem to have quite as many consistent nominees as Supporting Actor did (the latter generally being dominated by David Hyde Pierce and the guys from Seinfeld and The Larry Sanders Show). I could certainly see nahborghi’s explanation as a likely one for its limited success overall.
Really, the omissions that strikes me the most are probably Matthew Perry and Courteney Cox in 1999, given how prominent their relationship was throughout Season 5 and how positively viewers responded to it.July 21, 2013 at 7:40 pm #288718
I think that for the first few seasons the show should’ve separated them. The show was very specific about who were the two perfectly clear supporting actors (Kudrow, LeBlanc), the middle guy (Perry) and who were the leads (Cox, Aniston, Schwimmer). They might have had equal screentime in the majority of the episodes, but the storylines really moved in that way with Perry being the only one in the middle.
I think that for the first season Kudrow and Schwimmer rightfully earned their nods, submitted some good tapes and should have been the only nominees. Season 2 was the year that Aniston really took off on the show, she should have been a nominee easily but even Kudrow failed to be nominated.
Even 11 years after the category change, it still looks weird and it still makes you think. Was it really necessary? No. Did they have their best results (2 more actors nominated, 3 more nominations for Aniston) Yes!….BUT! Could the 9/11 bump (weird to use that day as an advantage for a tv show) and the critical acclaim still gotten Perry and LeBlanc in and maybe even Cox? Maybe…It certainly might have kept Kudrow in and Aniston would have still won, obviously. At the same time things were changing at the Emmys but one thing that never seemed to change was how crowded the supporting categories were, meanwhile the Lead categories always had the same exact people.
To me one of the weirdest things was how LeBlanc managed to get two extra nods after his first in love with Rachel year. After that he never had anything decent to submit. Perry deserved more than that one nod, one that came too late in the game, so much so that he didn’t even have a good tape to submit. Schwimmer deserved more, the Ross and Rachel storyline did enough for him and Aniston to deserve more nominations.
But when you look at the competition back then, it’s easy to undersdand what somebody already said, voters might have said rich pretty kids in hit shows don’t need Emmy nominations, let’s just give it to someone else. Some mighty big Emmy darlings like Frasier, Seinfeld and Larry Sanders taking lots of spots, 2 in most cases, so these guys were screwed. And then Raymond showed up.July 21, 2013 at 7:58 pm #288719
Of the four who could never win, Perry is the one member of the cast that I really wish had been given a proper chance to take home an Emmy. 1999 had some pretty decent nominees in the Supporting Actor, but I feel like that would have been a proper time for him to contend for the prize.July 21, 2013 at 9:27 pm #288720
Perry should of got nom for Season 5. He had TOW Everyone Finds out and the following episode should have a shot to win, through Lisa Summited TOW 100 and TOW Everyone Finds out should of been a winner and she lost.July 22, 2013 at 3:36 am #288721
But we must remember FRASIER was one of the ‘snootiest’ sitcoms around at the time – about upper class snobs all living out of each other’s pockets, two doctors, fancy apartments, etc., etc., the Emmys honored FRASIER ’til the cows came home – FRIENDS looks like it’s about poor bums compared to FRASIER… I just think FRIENDS came in at a bad time, it was swept up by the tidal wave of SANDERS, SEINFELD, FRASIER and then RAYMOND. No room for it really. FRASIER was the snob comedy, SEINFELD was the cooky apartment comedy and RAYMOND was the family sitcom, so really FRIENDS was always playing second fiddle to all of those shows…July 22, 2013 at 7:33 am #288722
But at the peak of its success Friends was absolutely huge, and I would say the biggest worldwide out of all those other shows. It’s so strange that Courteney Cox could never get a nomination in 10 years. Even if her performance wasn’t seen as worthy (which, obviously it was, i’m just playing devil’s advocate for a minute), one would think that she’d have been able to ride the coattails of the show’s overall success nevertheless. But no. To this day, I still don’t know why she was the only one neglected.July 22, 2013 at 7:59 am #288723
Splitting up, as has been said, obviously would have given them a better shot at noms in some cases, but I don’t know if the overall result would have been any different. To my mind, Aniston and Cox were really leads every season, and while Schwimmer was really a lead through probably the fifth season (and the denouement of his marital catastrophe with Emily), Perry really became a lead in the fifth season and for most of the seasons afterwards. Kudrow and LeBlanc always seemed supporting to me, maybe because their characters were just too extreme to feel like storylines could really revolve around them.
It still makes me so sad that Cox never got nominated for Friends while everyone else did.Marcus Snowden (The Artist Formerly Known as msnowden1)ParticipantJuly 22, 2013 at 8:05 am #288724
Even Schwimmer got nominated, and he was by far the weakest actor in the cast.July 22, 2013 at 8:10 am #288725
Yeah, Ross is only lead up to season four and the Emily arc. After that, the writers started to focus less on him, part of because apparently they didn’t really know how to handle him that well.
Aniston and Cox were the only true leads the show had, but I’m fine with only Aniston winning. Cox was really good in the first few seasons, in which Lead Actress was really competitive and I wouldn’t think she’d be able to be nominated or win either way. And after the wedding proposal finale, Cox and Monica became a shrill, annoying character. I’ll always say Cox, out of the group, was the one that pulled off dramatic moments the best along with Aniston. But her comic timing was never as great as the other two girls. Season five excepted, I can’t really think of years where she truly was one of the best performances on TV.