By Paula Hendrickson
One of the biggest surprises of this year’s Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe nominations — on the television side of things, anyway — is that there aren’t very many surprises. Both awards shows are typically far more likely to have unexpected nominations than say, the Emmys, which often seems to nominate the same people and series year after year after year.
While new drama or comedy series were nominated for ensemble performances by the Screen Actors Guild this year, Viola Davis got a nod from both the Screen Actors Guild and the Golden Globes for her turn as Annalise Keating on How to Get Away With Murder. But who didn’t see that coming?
New series were better represented by The Golden Globes with nominations for Dominic West and Ruth Wilson for The Affair, Jeffrey Tambor for Transparent, and Gina Rodriguez for Jane the Virgin. Those series all earned nominations as well, with Rodriguez and Jane the Virgin being The CW’s only nominations.
For me, the only really exciting nomination from the Screen Actors Guild was seeing Orphan Black star Tatiana Maslany recognized for her “various” roles. Want to know what would have been really fun? If they’d nominated her in the ensemble category. After all, what other actor can say they’ve fought and danced with multiple versions of themselves in the same hour of television? When you think about it, it makes sense since Maslany alone makes up about 80 percent of the show’s cast.
Jessica Lange and Kathy Bates were nominated for Golden Globes for their work on American Horror Story: Freak Show (for lead and supporting actress in a TV movie or miniseries, respectively), but everyone else from the anthology series seemed to be overlooked by the Screen Actors Guild this year. A similar thing happened with the cast of Fargo. Allison Tolman, Martin Freeman and Billy Bob Thornton were all nominated for Golden Globes for their work on Fargo, but Thornton was the only one nominated by the Screen Actors Guild.
Perhaps the categories were too crowded, but a lot of the TV movie and miniseries nominees were safe bets. The funny thing is Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson both scored well-deserved nominations for the first season of True Detective, but while the Screen Actors Guild has them vying against one another as lead actors in a drama series, the Golden Globes have them both competing for lead actors in TV movies or miniseries.
• The Golden Globe Awards air at 7 p.m. (Central), Sunday, Jan. 11 on NBC.
• The Screen Actors Guild Awards air at 7 p.m. (Central), Sunday, Jan. 25, on TNT.
Paula Hendrickson is a regular contributor to Emmy magazine and Variety, and has been published in numerous national publications, including American Bungalow, Television Week and TVGuide. Follow her on Twitter at P_Hendrickson and send your suggestions to email@example.com.
From the Dec. 17-23, 2014, issue