Emmys Observed: Our Picks for Outstanding Lead Actor and Actress in a Drama

Remember when Jeff Daniels won last year for Newsroom? That really shook me up. I don't even know what's real anymore.

k spacey

Where tvDownload’s Drew and Vinnie discuss their picks for this year’s Emmys!

Best Actor, Drama

Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Jeff Daniels, The Newsroom
Jon Hamm, Mad Men
Woody Harrelson, True Detective
Matthew McConaughey, True Detective
Kevin Spacey, House of Cards

Best Actress, Drama
Lizzy Caplan, Masters of Sex
Claire Danes, Homeland
Michelle Dockery, Downton Abbey,
Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Kerry Washington, Scandal
Robin Wright, House of Cards

Drew: God, remember when Jeff Daniels won last year for Newsroom? That really shook me up. I don’t even know what’s real anymore. Especially since I judge all nominees by how many GIFs of them I can find on the Internet, and for Daniels the best I could get was:

j daniels

I mean, compare that to the rest of the nominees:

walter white m hart k spacey r cohle d draper

Haha, okay, maybe not Hamm. But this was the final time we’ll be seeing Marty Hart, Rust Cohle or Walter White, so maybe let’s give it to one of them. I say McConaughey.

Unlike the Best Actor category, I think the problem with the Best Actress this year is a lack of great contenders. Caplan was great in MOS, but her role is pretty low-key. Kerry Washington…as much as I love her, the acting on Scandal isn’t great because it’s too absurd.

o pope

The lines she delivers on this show totally undercut any performance she may or may not be giving. Danes in Homeland? Meh, she did have that *MAJOR PLOT SPOILER* mid-season, and she is very good at making her face cry, but I’m just not feeling her. And I know how we both feel about Downton Abbey and The Good Wife, leaving only last year’s winner, Robin Wright, as my pick for best actress.

Vinnie: I truly feel bad for Woody Harrelson. Like on a personal level. Not only is he really bad at being asked about anything, but he just so happened to give probably the best performance of his career at the same time someone decided to hit the acting switch on the robot that is Matthew McConaughey. I almost, really want Harrelson to win just for that brief second of absolute silence where the entire Emmy room is like, “wait what?”

But LOL he isn’t going to win. And neither is Jeff Daniels because lightning can only strike twice, even if the thing it’s striking is as big as Jeff Daniel’s head. And you know what, neither is Jon Hamm and I’m only saying that because I’m the only person in the universe who doesn’t “get” Mad Men.

So between those last three, I’m going with McConaughey because this is the “MCCONAISSANCE” and we’re just living through it. That’s not to say Rust Cohle wasn’t the best, because he was absolutely the best. All that’s left is his acceptance speech where he tells us God is important and Matthew McConaughey is important and sort of hint that God and Matthew McConaughey are the same thing?

Then like the Oscars he’ll prove his point by taking a picture with Jesus.

Full disclosure: I’ve had an unstoppable crush on Lizzy Caplan ever since I saw Hot Tub Time Machine in theaters twice. So I’ll try and keep this fair and balanced. Right after this.

l caplan

*sighs.* Okay, but seriously, Robin Wright is the only one I can see winning, and that makes me sad. She’s great, and plays off Kevin Spacey brilliantly but I’m not a fan of back to back winners. Great performances aside, I like to see some variety in my awards shows. Downton Abbey and Good Wife, yuck, but I’d even like to see Kerry Washington take it because what the heck else is Scandal going to win?

With that all being said, my pick is…Lizzy Caplan. I’m sorry.

Drew: *Record machine screeches to halt*
Hot Tub Time Machine, Vinnie? HOT TUB TIME MACHINE??


Us real Caplan-heads have been fans of her from the Janice Ian/Party Down days. Like this. I’m legit disappointed in you, Vinnie.

But now I’m kind of hoping that Harrelson wins against McConaughey, who is NOT YET A GOD! See, it’s his future self that is a god, and he is trying to meet that self, which is him as a young boy, because Tim is a flat circle. Who is Tim? The name young Mattie McConaughey gave to that creepy homeless man who used to come by and play with him up in the treehouse, where no one else could see. That old man? Matthew McConaughey, in a bandana.


Vinnie: * quickly pays $55.99 on the Observer credit card for Party Down box set* Duh, everyone knows that.

Wait, since we’re talking about UPSETS from the cast of True Detective, can I write in a Lead Actor ballot for the Carcosa tree, since it starred in both True Detective


AND Game of Thrones?


Drew: Well then supporting actress has to go to Ann Dowd, for True Detective and The Leftovers:

ann d

a dowd 2

At the very least…Ann Dowd for next year’s host!

Emmys Observed: Our Picks for Outstanding Lead Actor and Actress in a Drama