My Annual Emmy Rant

It’s that time of the year again. The 2014 Emmy nominations were announced sometime this morning while I was asleep, and predictably, frustratingly, and stupidly — like mind-boggling stupidly — Tatiana Maslany was left out. Again.


Now, I’m an adult. I understand that the people who decide these things have a hard job. There’s a lot of great TV out there, and I sure as hell don’t watch all of it, or maybe even most of it. I don’t anticipate the greater majority of the stuff I watch to make it on the Emmys. I adore Teen Wolf with all my fangirl heart, but I don’t expect Dylan O’Brien to get nominated for anything, even if he was particularly excellent last season. I think Sleepy Hollow was one of the most entertaining surprises of the 2013-2014 TV season, but I’m not outraged that Nicole Beharie wasn’t nominated for Best Actress, even though Abbie is a wonderfully strong female character, and Beharie did some truly awesome work.

But Tatiana Maslany, you guys. Her work on Orphan Black is OUTSTANDING. She doesn’t just play the lead character. She plays five lead characters, characters who all regularly interact with one another. And even though you know that, even though you know it’s all the same actress — it’s amazing how often you forget that Sarah and Helena and Rachel and Allison and Cosima are all brought to life by just one woman.

I’m not upset when my clearly silly science fiction and fantasy shows aren’t reflected in prestigious awards ceremonies. But when critically acclaimed performances in excellent genre programming are ignored, just because they’re genre, because someone somewhere has decided that because a show is science fiction and fantasy, it has to be silly? That’s maddening. I mean, it’s great that Lena Headey, at least, is finally getting recognition for her stellar work on Game of Thrones . . . but it still took four years for that recognition, despite GoT being on HBO and, like, the most watched show on the PLANET. Maslany has won Best Actress two years running in the Critics Choice Awards, but the Emmys can’t even get it together to nominate her?

Of course, the Emmys has a history of ignoring superb performances from women in genre television — Sarah Michelle Gellar from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Mary McDonnell from Battlestar Galactica, Anna Torv from Fringe, Michelle Fairley from Game of Thrones — but this snub just seems to particularly sting.

I’d like to say I’m going to boycott the Emmys in protest, but that would just be a big lie. I’m one of the rare people who enjoys watching award shows, and I’m a huge sucker for all the pretty dresses. Still, I plan to sit on my couch and grumble a lot because this is bullshit, people.

You have no idea who I am, Tatiana Maslany, and we will almost certainly never meet, but let it be said that I know you deserve an Emmy, even if they Emmys themselves do not.

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