The Primetime Emmy Award nominations will be announced tomorrow, and as is Emmys tradition, we probably shouldn't expect many surprises. But that doesn't mean we have to stop hoping that some of our dream nominees will have their names read in the a.m. In that spirit, we've gone category by category (well, the major ones anyway) and picked a dream longshot (or not-so-longshot, in some cases) nominee for each one.
We can expect to see Parks & Recreation and Modern Family and even Louie on the list tomorrow. Who knows about The Office these days. We suspect that the Julia Louis-Dreyfuss factor might push Veep into the mix, which we'd be happy about. But you know what would be a great surprise? If the TV academy recognized the controversial but otherwise perfectly funny satisfying Girls. Not because it's necessarily TV's greatest comedy (that'd be you, Lou), but because it's young and different and thoughtful in a way that, say, The Big Bang Theory has never, ever, ever been.
Sure, Mad Men. Yup, Game of Thrones. For definite, Homeland. Probably The Good Wife too. And Breaking Bad, duh. Those might be the locks right there, and that'd be the whole category. But we'd really like to see Justified up there. Sure its Mags-less third season wasn't quite as thrilling as the one before it, but it's still TV's coolest caper. If not Justified, we'd love to see Law & Order: SVU's excellent, well-directed, oddly thoughtful 13th season (they're still chugging along!) get a nod. If for no other reason than that it's remarkable to have a creative resurgence so late in the game.
Best Actors, Comedy
In the leading man category, we'd be thrilled to see Louis C.K. get a nomination, and we think he likely will. Beyond him, if we're just throwing out names here, why not give a little nod to Neil Flynn's likable, understated work on The Middle? Or crazy Charlie Day for It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia? As for the supporting dudes, we'd be happy seeing Matt Walsh or Tony Hale from Veep or J.B. Smoove from Curb Your Enthusiasm pick up a nod. Too bad they very likely won't.
Best Actresses, Comedy
Lena Dunham could be an interesting longshot for leading actress, but Girls' high achievement is really more in the writing and directing than in the acting. (That said, Zosia Mamet would make an acceptable supporting nominee.) So instead of Dunham let's say our not-gonna-happen pick is the ever-hilarious Kaitlin Olson for It's Always Sunny. Or, ohh, Ashley Rickards on Awkward. Speaking of, supporting-wise, we'd be thrilled to see that show's wacky guidance counselor Desi Lydic get the accolade. Talk about not gonna happen!
Best Actors, Drama
Of the undersung leading men, we'd most like to see Joel Kinnaman from The Killing get some love. Sure that show as a whole wasn't much to write home about, but Kinnaman was terrific — sleazy but sympathetic, swaggery but sensitive. Plus he's so cute! On the supporting end, the terrific Charles Dance gave such flint and spark to sinister old Tywin Lannister on Game of Thrones that he should get a special shout-out. Plus he did most of it while acting with a kid.
Best Actresses, Drama
For bringing such grounded talent and feeling to an otherwise pretty shlocky show, poor beleagured Megan Hilty should get a nod for Smash. Emmy Rossum also did excellent work on this season of Showtime's grubbily good Shameless. For supporting, we'd love to see Game of Thrones' Maisie Williams get a nomination. Sure she's only 15 years old, but her scenes with Dance, and everything else she did, were spitfiery delights.