Rob Licuria: Good, bad and ugly of SAG TV nominations
This year's Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations saw the same old same old faces anointed by voters, while some deserving contenders were inexplicably shut out.
Welcome to 2012, SAG voters. You're a little late to the "Homeland" party, but we're really glad you made it, just in time, to join almost every other TV award-bestowing group by including the Showtime CIA drama and its two leads Claire Danes and Damian Lewis, all embarrassingly snubbed by SAG last time.
Edie Falco just might be the queen of the SAG Awards. Falco just racked up her 18th and 19th nominations today, a tie with David Hyde Pierce. The welcome inclusion of the "Nurse Jackie" ensemble and it's star is because that show bounced back with a strong showing last season, and deserved to be remembered, even though it may no longer be seen as cool or fresh.
Speaking of cool and fresh, SAG voters once again showed how completely out of the loop they are sometimes. Like the unforgettable "Homeland" snub last year, this year they avoided Emmy darling Julia Louis-Dreyfus and "Veep" and current "it" girl Lena Dunham and "Girls". Thankfully Louis CK finally made the cut, which softens the harsh sting of these inexplicable snubs.
No need to elaborate here, just somebody please decide once and for all - is "American Horror Story" a series or a miniseries? Can we please get some consistency?
Along with the usual SAG amnesia, we also saw a bit of the usual "same old same old" from voters, who just can't get enough of Alec Baldwin, Betty White and "Boardwalk Empire" even though its arguable that these nominees could have made way for other names and shows (hello, "The Newsroom" ensemble, anybody?) However, it's always hard to criticize SAG for ignoring the new while re-nominating the old without sounding contradictory, so this is just "bad" rather than "ugly".
Which brings me to the drumroll of the ugliest of the year. There are only five slots in highly competitive TV drama and comedy acting races, so many deserving people are going to miss out.
But that still doesn't mean we can't complain when actors who delivered indelible, unforgettable performances this past year, especially in supporting roles by character actors or seasoned TV vets, are skunked in favor of bigger names. Anna Gunn ("Breaking Bad")? Nope. Christina Hendricks ("Mad Men")? Forget it. Neal McDonough ("Justified")? Not invited. Mandy Patinkin ("Homeland")? Not today. The list goes on. You get the picture.