No Joke: Cable Comedies Out Of Globes, SAG Mix


The Wire was quite surprised at the lack of love given to cable's quality comedy series in last week's Golden Globe, Writers Guild and SAG Award nominations in the television category.
Broadcast networks are in the midst of a comedy sitcom revival after they all but abandoned the genre following Everybody Loves Raymond's departure from the air. But cable, too, has mined the space effectively, with very good comedy series that have drawn acclaim from TV critics and viewers alike.
With due respect to freshman broadcast comedy sitcoms Glee and Modern Family - which received best- comedy nods from all three awards groups, along with perennial picks The Office and 30 Rock from NBC - it's hard to imagine that shows like Showtime's Weeds or United States of Tara, FX's much-improved It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia and Starz's Party Down, which was recently recognized by the American Film Institute as one of the top shows of 2009, didn't receive nods from the Writers Guild, Golden Globes or the SAG Award committees.
Only HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm curried favor with SAG and Writer's Guild Award voters among cable comedies, while HBO's Entourage generated a comedy nomination from the Globes.
The Writers' Guild did recognize HBO's Hung and Showtime's Nurse Jackie in the best new comedy series category.
Actors and actresses in cable comedy sitcoms fared marginally better. Toni Collette, star of United States of Tara, and Edie Falco from Nurse Jackie were recognized by both SAG and the Golden Globes in the best actress/comedy series category.
The Globes hung best male comedy performance nominations on Thomas Kane (HBO's Hung) and David Duchovny (Showtime's Californication), while SAG tapped Curb's Larry David and Tony Shalhoub (USA's Monk) in the category. (The Writer's Guild Awards do not have best TV actor or actress categories.)
Outside of comedy, AMC drama series Breaking Bad was notably omitted from the Globes' best-drama categories. Could Brian Cranston's back-to-back Emmy wins for best actor in a drama series disqualify him from a Globes nomination in the same category? SAG recognized Cranston's great portrayal of crystal-meth-cooking anti-hero Walter White in its choices for best actor in a drama series.
Katey Sagal, considered a likely nominee for FX's Sons of Anarchy, was also snubbed.