Let me review for you my pony analogy. When I was a little girl, I wanted a pony and every Christmas I truly believed this would be the year I would walk downstairs and see Casey (yes I had named my imaginary pony) calmly hanging out in the living room eating the carrots I left out for him.
Every year, even though my parents explained that a pony wasn't in my future and that Santa Claus was on board with this decision, I thought this year would be different.
That's kind of how it is with the Emmy nominations. Every year I think this is the year things will be different. What's that saying? Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. I wonder what happens when you've been fooled over 20 times. Because, once again, quite naively, I thought perhaps, just perhaps, the new voting system would make room for Lauren Graham, Kristen Bell and "Veronica Mars," and "Everybody Hates Chris."
As I've always said, The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences giveth and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences taketh away.
Well, of course, I'm positively thrilled that "Arrested Development," "Scrubs" and "The Office" were nominated for best comedy. And my secret husband Will Arnett (remember you promised not to tell Amy Poehler) received a well-deserved nomination for his brilliant work on "Arrested Development." It was great to see Stockard Channing recognized for her work on "Out of Practice," a series that deserved a second season and -- memo to CBS -- is about one trillion times more hilarious than the lame sitcom "The Class" that replaces it next season. And Gregory Itzin and Jean Smart for "24," Jaime Pressly for "My Name is Earl," "Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D List," Dennis Leary for "Rescue Me," Steve Carell for "The Office" -- these are a few of my favorite things.
Also, I've got to say, "Desperate Housewives" got the comeuppance it so deserved. Finally it seems like once critically acclaimed shows can coast into nominations each year. Ditto for "The Sopranos."
I really can't understand the shut out of "Lost," one of television's best and most innovative dramas. The only acting nomination the show received was Henry Ian Cusick as Desmond. And, yes, he was great, brother. But what about Daniel Dae Kim, Harold Perrineau, Yujin Kim or Terry O'Quinn. Dude, what a let down.
Also ,the fact that John C. McGinley of "Scrubs" and Lauren Graham of "Gilmore Girls" continue to be ignored makes me what to go on a long rant that somehow involves Hugh Jackman. And, alas, it does look like "Veronica Mars" will be ignored just like "Buffy" was. All together now -- boooooooooo.
The Downright Perplexing
This is where I was going to go on a rant about people who did not deserve nominations. An episode of "Amy Behaving Badly." But you know last night I went to the Madonna concert and I'm in a very good mood so I've decided to leave this section to your imagination. You all could probably write it for me anyway.
What did you think about the Emmy nominations? Talk about it on the TV Gal message boards.
Amy Awards Redux
As you know, when you're not happy, I'm not happy. And well, last week you were mighty cranky that I failed to give you the percentage breakdown of all the nominees. And to even further incur your wrath, somehow one category got eliminated from last week's results list. But, like that old E.F. Hutton commercial, when you talk, I listen. Once more, with feeling, here are the winners and the results of how the rest of nominees did in the 2006 Amy Awards.
Floor, Please Give Me My Jaw Back (a.k.a. Most Shocking Moment)
Michael killing Libby and Ana on "Lost" -- 48% of the vote
The first ten minutes of the fifth season of "24" -- 16%
Jim declares his love and kisses Pam on "The Office" -- 14%
Chris Daughtry voted off "American Idol" -- 14%
Josh and Donna kiss on "The West Wing" -- 8%
Best Scene Stealer
Chandra Wilson as Dr. Miranda Bailey on "Grey's Anatomy" -- 27% of the vote
Neil Patrick Harris as Barney on "How I Met Your Mother" -- 23%
Jason Dohring as Logan on "Veronica Mars" -- 21%
Chris Pratt as Bright on "Everwood" -- 15%
Mary Lynn Rajskub as Chloe on "24" -- 14%
Let's Lemon Law This (a.k.a. Worst Show)
They May Take Our Shows But They'll Never Take Our Love for Them (a.k.a. Show that Ended/Was Canceled Way Too Soon)
"Everwood" -- 33% of the vote
"Arrested Development" -- 31%
"Alias" -- 17%
"Invasion" -- 10%
"The West Wing" -- 9%
You Can Say That Again (a.k.a. Best Quote)
"Should I go and get a ruler?" Kate to Jack and Sawyer on "Lost" -- 27% of the vote
"You beat death Arvin, but you couldn't beat me." Jack to Sloane on "Alias" -- 22%
"I love you too. I knew it then. I know it now. I'll know it always. You're it Amy. You're my one." Ephram to Amy on "Everwood." -- 18%
"Thanks boss" Josh to Leo's picture on "The West Wing" -- 17%
"Hey Sam who do you think is the hotter psychic - Patricia Arquette, Jennifer Love Hewitt or you?" Dean to Sam on "Supernatural." -- 16%
The Awards Shows Don't Love You But We Do (a.k.a. Most Underrated Cast or Actor)
Cast of "Veronica Mars" -- 34% of the vote
Cast of "Gilmore Girls" -- 29%
Michael Vartan as Michael Vaughn on "Alias" -- 17%
Kathryn Morris as Detective Lily Rush on "Cold Case" -- 10%
Harold Perrineau as Michael on "Lost" -- 10%
They Made Us Wait for This? (a.k.a. Worst Season/Series Finale)
Til Death Do Us Part (a.k.a. Best Death)
Jack on "Alias" -- 33% of the vote
Denny on "Grey's Anatomy" -- 25%
Beaver on "Veronica Mars" -- 17%
Edgar on "24" -- 14%
Libby on "Lost" -- 11%
Beating a Dead Horse (a.k.a. Why Does TV Gal Still Talk About This Show?)
"7th Heaven" -- 32% of the vote
"The O.C." -- 20%
"Everwood" -- 17%
"American Idol" -- 16%
"Desperate Housewives" -- 15%
I Wouldn't Buy That If It Was on Sale (a.k.a. Worst Story line or Plot Twist)
Everyone is having twins on "7th Heaven" -- 39% of the vote
Luke's long lost daughter on "Gilmore Girls" -- 31%
Vaughn's death on "Alias" -- 14%
The Carver is revealed on "Nip/Tuck" -- 9%
Toby was behind the leak on "The West Wing" -- 7%
Resurrect Me (a.k.a. Character/Actor You Would Most Like to See Brought Back on Another Show Next Season)
James Marsters (Professor Milton Fine/Brainiac on "Smallville") -- 27% of the vote
Michael Vartan (Vaughn on "Alias") -- 23%
Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Denny on "Grey's Anatomy," John on "Supernatural") -- 22%
Carlos Bernard (Tony on "24") -- 16%
Janel Moloney (Donna on "The West Wing") -- 12%
It's Like a Freaking Car Wreck (a.k.a. Best Guilty Pleasure)
ABC New Shows
You know the more of the new pilots I watch, the more I realize it really is like grading on a curve. An average show can seem pretty great when I've just watched three terrible pilots in a row. And can you believe ABC has nine, that's right nine new shows. That's because of all the new series the alphabet network premiered last season, only "What About Brian" got the pick up for a second season.
So let's start with the good news. I loved "The Nine," a drama about nine survivors of a bank robbery starring Kim Raver, Scott Wolf, Tim Daly and Chi McBride. A definite theme this season is playing with time. TV shows have long been fond of an episode that shows us an ending and then reveals what led up to that moment. "The Nine" takes that format and runs with it. In this drama, every hour will reveal more about what happened during the 52-hour hostage standoff. I was hooked. So far this is the only pilot where I wished I could see a second episode immediately.
"Day Break," staring Taye Diggs as a man who lives the same day over and over again trying to figure out who framed him for murder, also got my attention. "Betty the Ugly," stars America Ferrera as a homely woman who gets a job at a fashion magazine -- think "The Devil Wears Prada" with a nicer boss. I think this show has potential (how can you not root for America Ferrera?) but too often crossed over into over-the-top campy plot twists. Think "Ally McBeal" dancing baby worst moment. But Vanessa Williams is fantastic and it's so great to see her in good role after the horror that was UPN's "South Beach" (Vanessa, I promise never to mention that show again.).
Remember how sometimes "Felicity" could be annoyingly pretentious? That's kind of the problem with J.J. Abrams' "Six Degrees." The drama improved as the hour progressed, but I still wanted to shake sense into most of the characters. Anne Heche is a relationship coach stranded in Alaska in "Men in Trees." Mark the time because this is the first show I hated of the new fall season. There are so many men in Alaska they're even in trees. Get it? Isn't that hilarious. Um, no it's not.
As for ABC half-hour comedies (an area where the network truly needs help, only "According to Jim" is returning), nothing really stood out. "Help Me Help You" starring Ted Danson as a therapist had the most potential. "The Knights of Prosperity" (the TV series formerly known as "Let's Rob ..."), about a group who decide to rob Mick Jagger, had some hilarious moments (and hilarious bits from Jagger spoofing himself).
TV is determined to make a star out of Josh Cooke ("Four Kings," "Committed") who returns in "Big Day," a comedy that will cover one wedding day -- so far the concept is better than the execution, but the show has Wendie Malick and she makes anything better. "Notes from the Underbelly" follows a couple about to have a baby -- again some funny moments but after the pilot ended I had trouble remembering anything specific.
Phew. Got all that? Again these are just pilots and most of the shows will undergo revisions before their fall premieres. So it's anybody's game really.
Coming next week, my thoughts on FOX and CBS's new shows. I'll be having a little tete-a-tete with CBS because one of the one-named dramas ("Jericho," "Shark," "Smith") has got to change its name (hint I vote for "Smith.")
Highlights of the Week Ahead
All times listed are Eastern Time for July 10 to 16
There are times when I believe you can really tell "Rescue Me" is a series written by men. Because the way the female characters are portrayed seems to always come from the male perspective. The sex-crazed high school teacher. The insecure Sheila. Susan Sarandon as a delusional woman who would take Franco's child. I don't know women like this, do you? But I think this was clearest with the rape scene a few weeks back. To me, Janet's reaction was completely incomprehensible.
That's all for today. I'm completely out of room. I'll be back next Monday to talk about the new shows on FOX and CBS. Plus thoughts on "Windfall" (which I'm officially declaring to be so bad it's good), "The Closer," and much much more. Have a question, seen a familiar face, have an inside scoop or want to nominate a quote of the week? Write me at firstname.lastname@example.org .