Is the ‘Married… with Children’ Emmy curse about to lift?

Ed O’Neill and Katey Sagal starred as the boorish Bundys on Fox’s crass sitcom “Married … with Children” for a decade beginning in 1987. Since that show signed off, they have each appeared in other hit TV series but have yet to be nominated for TV’s top honor. Are they the victims of an Emmy curse?

“Married … with Children” reigns as one of TV’s longest-running series to go without a single Emmy win. It never contended in any of the categories handed out on the primetime kudocast and lost all seven of its technical bids for costuming, editing and lighting. Only three shows ran longer without Emmy love: “Baywatch” (11 seasons),  “My Three Sons” (12 seasons) and “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet” (14 seasons).  

Since 1997, O’Neill and Sagal have guested on Emmy-winning series (“The West Wing” for O’Neill; “Lost” for Sagal) and tried their luck with well-received new shows. But no matter where they went on the TV landscape, Emmy refused to follow.

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This year, however, things could be different. Sagal is coming off her first major award win, having prevailed at the Golden Globes for playing motorcylcle matriarch Gemma Teller on “Sons of Anarchy.” Four of our editors predict she will contend for Best Drama Actress at the Emmys.

As for O’Neill, the freshman season of his laffer “Modern Family” won the top prize at last year’s Emmys. However, while all of his adult co-stars were nominated in the supporting categories — Eric Stonestreet went on to win — O’Neill was skunked. With so many critics and fans expressing outrage at this snub, Emmy voters are keenly aware of O’Neill’s plight. Once again, he has chosen to submit himself in the supporting category.


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