Some people have the NFL Playoffs and the Super Bowl and some people, like me, have ~awards season~ (I like both actually). Awards season has officially kicked off as the first round of A-level award nominees have been announced and that is the Screen Actors Guild Awards (SAG) which are when actors give shiny statues to other actors and I have weirdly strong opinions about it.
The full list of nominees are here but let’s look at the ones that I like best and like least and the biggest surprise:
My strongest opinions so far this year (I still have many films to complete viewing before the awards take place) are in the Best Actor in film category.
I disagree with these nominations more than I agree with them. Javier Bardem as Desi Arnaz was good but not necessarily “best of the year.” His character in the show was definitely second banana to Nicole Kidman as Lucille Ball. Will Smith as Richard Williams was in my opinion absolutely terrible. It was a tutorial in overacting and caricature to the point of nausea. He was without question the worst part of King Richard.
However, Benedict Cumberbatch as Phil Burbank in Power of the Dog is one of the strongest performances I’ve seen in the better part of five years and he should be a top front runner in this category.
It seems like TV is king this year for the award cycle. I am the most pleased with the nominees for the best series and best actors on the silver screen.
Looking at the nominees for comedy “Best Ensemble” which is one of the more coveted in the TV category, I have a hard time picking my favorite. In fact, I can’t remember the last time there was a group of shows this strong that I liked so much all up for awards. It’s refreshing that the strongest category by far is in the comedy field and not over in drama where the accolades are normally given.
The Great is a funny, charming, never-before-attempted look at one of the world’s most important leaders and its entire cast shows up in spades. Elle Fanning and Nicholas Holt as Catherine the Great and her usurped husband Peter are mesmerizing. Hacks is an unflinching look at the entertainment industry and Jean Smart is a force who perhaps is finally getting the recognition she deserves.
But my two favorites are definitely Only Murders in the Building and Ted Lasso. Both series are near perfection. I want to give it to Only Murders in the Building because Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez have incredible chemistry and are beloved icons and comedic geniuses in the case of Maritn and Short. However, in fairness, led by Jason Sudekis the Ted Lasso cast is phenomenal and there are so many stand-outs and the story doesn’t work without each individual contributor. So by a small hair I have to give it to Ted Lasso but it pains me because Only Murders is so sensational and I’m a huge Steve Martin stan.
Over in Best Actress for a Television Mini-Series comes a big surprise dark horse nomination for the fabulous Jennifer Coolidge.
She’s up against some true greats like Jean Smart and Kate Winslet as well as award circuit darling, Cynthia Erivo, but it’s wonderful to finally see the comedy force that is Jennifer Coolidge get some much deserved credit. Nominated for her role as a wealthy and vulnerable woman staying at a luxury resort in The White Lotus, Coolidge carried the weight of deeply nuanced political and socio-economic humor and was by far the most enchanting character in the viral HBO series.
Whether my favorites take home the trophy or not I’m excited for the shows. Let awards season commence!