By Mehera Bonner published
We'd be lying if we said there wasn't a chance that this year's Emmy nominations, announced this morning, weren't at risk for going seriously wrong. But the Emmys took a cue from last year's race- and gender-fueled Oscars controversy and honored a relatively diverse group of actors and shows.
The nominations were a pretty even mix of safe bets (Modern Family) and groundbreaking television (hi, Transparent!). Our biggest issue? The fact that—yet again—so many talented women didn't come close to getting the recognition they deserve.
Despite a few unforgivable snubs (we'll get to that in a minute), the Emmy Awards *are* clearly trying to up their game—the biggest win by far is Taraji P. Henson's nomination for her killer portrayal as Cookie Lyon in Empire. (Though, the internet would have probably broken if she hadn't been nominated, and not in a sexy Kim Kardashian way.) And with shoutouts to Transparent, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and Parks and Recreation, the Outstanding Comedy Series category is a true indication of how much the Emmys are trying to diversify.
Lena Dunham is visibly absent, which seems a glaring oversight considering her perpetual timeliness and talent. Her voice and interests have grown to reflect—as her character so notoriously forecasted—the pulse of an entire generation, making her omission a curious one.
And then there's the Lead Actress in Comedy category, which was another major fail. Jane the Virgin's Gina Rodriguez—a burgeoning critical darling—was bypassed in favor of usual suspects Edie Falco, Lisa Kudrow, and Julia Louis Dreyfus; and while it was exciting to see Amy Schumer get some recognition, Rodriguez absolutely deserved to be on that extremely homogenous list. And honestly, so did Mindy Kaling—another talented woman of color who's once again been passed over for her outstanding work on the Mindy Project, a show that's consistently more satisfyingly subversive and boundary-pushing than Modern Family.
The Lead Actress in a Drama nominations make up—somewhat—for how bland the comedy roundup is (Viola Davis and Tatiana Maslany are welcome newcomers), but what about Outlander's Caitriona Balfe? She delivers one of the most powerful feminist performances on TV, and approaches it with a subtlety and precision that's worthy of an award itself—let alone a nomination. (And, FYI, Starz isn't on the Emmys' unofficial blacklist like The CW is rumored to be, so there's really no reason for the snub.)
This year's Emmy noms do take a step forward, but is it so much to ask for a leap?
Check out the full list of nominees here:
Parks & Recreation
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Better Call Saul
Game of Thrones
House of Cards
Orange Is The New Black
American Horror Story: Freak Show
The Honorable Woman
Outstanding Television Movie
Agatha Christie's Poirot: Poirot's Last Case
Grace of Monaco
Hello Ladies: The Movie
Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
William H. Macy
Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Julia Louis Dreyfuss
Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Taraji P. Henson
Outstanding Variety Series
The Colbert Report
The Daily Show
Jimmy Kimmel Live
Last Week Tonight
Late Show With David Letterman
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
Outstanding Reality Competition Program
The Amazing Race
Dancing With the Stars
So You Think You Can Dance
Outstanding Variety Sketch Series
Inside Amy Schumer
Key & Peele
Saturday Night Live
Mehera Bonner is a news writer who focuses on celebrities and royals.
Heidi Klum in a Fuchsia Pantsuit Is The Ultimate Workwear Inspiration for 2022
I'm getting 'Legally Blonde' vibes.
By Iris Goldsztajn
The Creators Issue
A celebration of making, doing, innovating, iterating.
By Marie Claire Editors
Finding Wonder in Textile Waste
Cliché but true: One man's trash is another man's treasure.
By Diana Tsui
The 51 Best Love Songs of All Time
The best, most romantic love songs ever written, spanning every genre.
By Gabrielle Ulubay
'Euphoria' Season 2: Everything We Know So Far
New episodes will drop weekly until the end of February.
By Neha Prakash
'Bridgerton' Season 2: Everything We Know
The viscount and his new love interest will hit your queue in March.
By Andrea Park
'The Fastest Way to Fall' Resonated With Readers Looking to Embrace Their Bodies
"The slow burn pining, tension, and steam had me blushing."
By Marie Claire
The 75 Best Romantic Comedies of All Time
Where does your fave fall on the list?
By The Editors
Join #ReadWithMC: Marie Claire's Virtual Monthly Book Club
Never feel guilty about skipping book club again.
By The Editors
The 47 Best Comedy Series Ever
They'll make you laugh until your face hurts.
By Kayleigh Roberts
The 50 Best Musical Movies to Get You Singing
All the dance numbers! All the show tunes!
By Lori Keong