Predicting the TV Winners at the 2013 Golden Globes

I’ll be honest: Prognosticating about the Golden Globes is a fruitless exercise. Trying to logically consider possible winners and losers for the Globes is even more difficult than it is for the Emmys. Because, despite our general frustration with the Emmys, there’s a lot of predictability in the Emmy voter process that makes thinking about outcomes much easier. When I think about the Globes—both in terms of picking winners and the whole enterprise—I mostly just laugh to myself. But here is what we do know about the Globes and the television awards:

There are always random nominees.

Piper Perabo in 2011, Callie Thorne in 2012, and Danny Huston this year make you wonder exactly how much television the members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association watch or how much money they’re willing to accept for nominations.

The categories are quite wonky.

The two large “genre” fields are "Drama" and "Musical or Comedy," and in the supporting acting races, there are no separate categories for the "Drama," "Musical or Comedy" and "Miniseries" fields. Instead, there are just five available slots, open to performers across all different kinds of television. This helps make the telecast shorter (and keeps the focus on the IMPORTANT FILM AWARDS), but makes guessing who might win even more challenging.

Quality might not necessarily matter.

It’s truly unclear whether these voters actually watch television, so if they’ve seen trade publications buzzing about a show or are familiar with the big names in it, that's a plus. Case in point in this year’s field: There’s a lot of love for The Newsroom and Smash, perhaps the two most anticipated, yet consistently derided new shows of the year. Similarly, Mad Men wasn’t nominated in the drama series category, but Downton Abbey, with a second season most critics didn’t care for, is.

Bright and shiny is more likely to prevail at the Golden Globes than at the Emmys.

Few of the big categories feature winning streaks like Modern Family’s Emmy run. Lots of minor upheaval.

Armed with those thoughts, let’s make some predictions for this year’s race, shall we? Don’t forget to come back to this on Monday and laugh. I know that I will.


DRAMA SERIES

Nominees:
Breaking Bad
Boardwalk Empire
Downton Abbey
Homeland
The Newsroom

The Favorite: Downton Abbey

Also in contention: Homeland, The Newsroom

Downton won last year in the miniseries category and while it doesn’t seem like the HFPA enjoys repeat winners in this category (Homeland and Boardwalk Empire won the past two years in their respective first seasons), the move over to the big-boy race might invalidate that crack-pot theory I just came up with. If my theory holds true, The Newsroom looks to be the beneficiary. It feels like a Golden Globes show, doesn’t it?


MUSICAL OR COMEDY SERIES

Nominees:
The Big Bang Theory
Episodes
Girls
Modern Family
Smash

The Favorite: Smash

Also in contention: Modern Family, Girls

Despite its dominance at the Emmys and really everywhere, Modern Family didn’t break through at the Globes until last year. In its first two years of eligibility, the popular ABC sitcom lost to Glee. There’s a reason that “musical” falls into this category title after all! With this in mind, I can easily picture a world where Smash dethrones Modern Family. It should appeal to voters even more than Glee, thanks to the more recognizable cast, high-profile producers, and major marketing campaign.


MINISERIES OR TELEVISION FILM

Nominees:
Game Change
The Girl
The Hour
Hatfields & McCoys
Political Animals

The Favorite: Game Change

Also in contention: Hatfields & McCoys

With Downton out of this category, it's a lot easier to predict; it’s between Julianne Moore’s bad accent work and Kevin Costner’s beard. Game Change won the Emmy, which isn’t necessarily a concrete indictor of Globes success, but means something. I’m expecting a big night for the film, and this will likely be the capper to that night.


BEST PERFORMANCE IN A DRAMA - ACTOR

Nominees:
Steve Buscemi (Boardwalk Empire)
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad)
Jeff Daniels (The Newsroom)
Jon Hamm (Mad Men)
Damian Lewis (Homeland)

The Favorite: Jeff Daniels

Also in contention: Damian Lewis, Bryan Cranston

For whatever dumb reason, people don’t like giving Jon Hamm awards. Like at the Emmys, Hamm’s been shut out at the Globes, only here, he’s also joined by Bryan Cranston in perpetual defeat. And even though Homeland and Claire Danes were successful last year, Damian Lewis lost to a much showier performance from Kelsey Grammer on Boss. There’s a chance that voters will come around on Lewis after his Emmy win and increased buzz for Homeland (it’s in a much bigger field of view than it was at this time last year), and I guess it’s possible that the newfound series nomination for Breaking Bad suggests Cranston has a shot this year. Still though, when in doubt, go bright, shiny and populist. Daniels is my pick.


BEST PERFORMANCE IN A DRAMA - ACTRESS

Nominees:
Connie Britton (Nashville)
Glenn Close (Damages)
Claire Danes (Homeland)
Michelle Dockery (Downton Abbey)
Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife)

The Favorite: Claire Danes

Also in contention: Michelle Dockery, Connie Britton

Although Danes won last year and therefore undercuts one of my rules and this category’s general instability, her performance was so wonderful that it’s tough for me to pick against her. Dockery and Britton have the newness factor working for them, which makes me think they have a better shot at knocking Danes off than Close and Margulies, two former winners in this category. Would it be amazing if Connie B. won a major award like this? Duh. Can she do it? Probably not, but the singing might help.


BEST PERFORMANCE IN A MUSICAL OR COMEDY - ACTOR

Nominees:
Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)
Don Cheadle (House of Lies)
Louis C.K. (Louie)
Matt LeBlanc (Episodes)
Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory)

The Favorite: Don Cheadle

Also in contention: Matt LeBlanc, Jim Parsons

Another category, another trend of new winners. In the previous three years, Alec Baldwin, Jim Parsons and Matt LeBlanc have all won this award, so there’s precedent for voters liking them. But Don Cheadle is a movie star doing TV on Showtime, a network the HFPA seems to like. It’s Globes kismet. Cool for C.K. to get nominated, I guess.


BEST PERFORMANCE IN A MUSICAL OR COMEDY - ACTRESS

Nominees:
Zooey Deschanel (New Girl)
Lena Dunham (Girls)
Tina Fey (30 Rock)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep)
Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation)

The Favorite: Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Also in contention: Lena Dunham

This category has been dominated by women on cable shows in recent years (Laura Dern, Laura Linney, and Toni Collette), so that makes Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Lena Dunham the major threats. JLD feels like the better option considering her Emmy win for Veep and past Globe victory. It’d be kind of cool if Zooey made some noise here though, right?


BEST PERFORMANCE IN A MINISERIES OR TELEVISION FILM - ACTOR

Nominees:
Kevin Costner (Hatfields & McCoys)
Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock)
Woody Harrelson (Game Change)
Toby Jones (The Girl)
Clive Owen (Hemingway & Gellhorn)

The Favorite: Kevin Costner

Also in contention: Woody Harrelson, Clive Owen

Movie stars, movie stars, movie stars. Recent winners in this category include Kevin Bacon and Al Pacino, so apologies to The Cumberbatch and Toby Jones. Costner won the Emmy for Hatfields & McCoys and previously took home two Globes for film work. I liked Harrelson’s work better (I won’t even pretend that I saw Hemingway & Gellhorn and you shouldn’t either), but doesn’t it seem like he and Julianne Moore have been collecting nominations and awards for that film for like three years now?


BEST PERFORMANCE IN A MINISERIES OR TELEVISION FILM - ACTRESS

Nominees:
Nicole Kidman (Hemingway & Gellhorn)
Jessica Lange (American Horror Story)
Sienna Miller (The Girl)
Julianne Moore (Game Change)
Sigourney Weaver (Political Animals)

The Favorite: Julianne Moore

Also in contention: Nicole Kidman, Sigourney Weaver, Jessica Lange

Okay, this movie star thing is just getting silly. Recent winners in this category: Kate Winslet, Claire Danes (who wasn’t a STAR but more known for movies by 2010) and Drew Barrymore. Thus, common sense and a hundred other victories tells us that Julianne Moore is a shoo-in, yet Sigourney Weaver and Nicole Kidman are threats thanks to their movie connections and Jessica Lange won in the supporting category last year. I still think Moore walks away with yet another trophy, but it wouldn’t surprise me if one of these other women won.


BEST SUPPORTING PERFORMANCE IN A SERIES, MINISERIES, OR TELEVISION FILM - ACTOR

Nominees:
Max Greenfield (New Girl)
Ed Harris (Game Change)
Danny Huston (Magic City)
Mandy Patinkin (Homeland)
Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family)

The Favorite: Mandy Patinkin

Also in contention: Ed Harris, Max Greenfield

Because all the larger categories are mashed into one race, this is tough one to guess. The movie star rule isn’t as sturdy here. Last year, Peter Dinklage won over Paul Giamatti, Guy Pearce, and Tim Robins, and in 2011 (Chris Colfer) and 2010 (John Lithgow), the winners came from TV actors in TV roles. Like I said before, it’s quite possible that Homeland keeps the good vibes going and actually rolls through all the big categories. That’s good news for Patinkin, who also happens to be the most deserving nominee here. If the TV streak continues and voters are over Homeland, you’d think Max Greenfield would be the beneficiary, but it’s crazy enough that Danny Huston is nominated, so maybe he’s a serious contender. But people know Ed Harris and Game Change debuted a decade ago, so can’t rule him out.


BEST SUPPORTING PERFORMANCE IN A SERIES, MINISERIES, OR TELEVISION FILM - ACTRESS

Nominees:
Hayden Panettiere (Nashville)
Archie Panjabi (The Good Wife)
Sarah Paulson (Game Change)
Maggie Smith (Downton Abbey)
Sofía Vergara (Modern Family)

The Favorite: Maggie Smith

Also in contention: Sarah Paulson, Hayden Panettiere

Maggie Smith lost to Jessica Lange last year, but benefits from Lange moving up to a more prominent category. I rarely pick against Smith because you don’t just do that to Professor McGonagall and this category isn’t as stacked as it could be. Still, Game Change could run roughshod all over this ceremony, which makes me lean toward Paulson even a little. Vergara, like her co-star Eric Stonestreet, has been nominated multiple times now, but I don’t see her winning.


Who are your picks? Will you be watching the Golden Globes?

Comments (40)
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Oh, and Jennifer Carpenter should DEFINITELY have been nominated!!!
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Many people have pointed it out in the comments. . . But I'll say it again. Justified is freaking awesome. I don't ever agree completely with these awards shows though, so I can't say I care what they decide that much. I know what I like.

Among these nominees, I don't care who wins the drama category. I have yet to see most of the comedies, though I do plan to watch a couple of them at some point. From what I've seen so far, I'd have to root for The Big Bang Theory. People talk a lot of trash, but I still love that show.

I haven't seen any of the miniseries.

Among these nominees, I would like to see Jon Hamm and Claire Danes win in the drama category, Alec Baldwin and Tina Fey/Julia Louis-Dreyfus in comedy, Benedict Cumberbatch for miniseries. (And any of the ladies, what a great bunch of actresses! I do personally love Nicole Kidman and Julianne Moore the most, but they're all great. I haven't seen any of these specific performances, though.)

In the supporting actors category, for once your Golden Globes predictions agree with my thoughts. Mandy Patinkin and Maggie Smith ALL THE WAY! I do think Peter Dinklage should have been nominated. And Walton Goggins! Even though I hate Theon Greyjoy, the actor (Alfie Allen) did an awesome job this season. But Mandy Patinkin is sooo amazing, so if he wins, it'll be ok.

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Most of them are just not my kind of nominees.
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Trying to logically consider possible winners--- you split an infinitive.
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It's obvious they don't watch TV when Sons of Anarchy, The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones are not nominated
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Not a SINGLE nomination for Game of Thrones? Community? What on earth?
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The weird thing is that Game of Thrones was nominated in the big category last year, as was Dinklage. And then nothing this year. See: bright and shiny.
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Yeah and the second season was as good as the first or even better. So weird.
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Also, the Emmy's gave it to Homeland last year. During BB's 4th season, which was a beast among beasts. It doesn't make any sense.
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I honestly didn't see a single scene from Homeland that Bryan Cranston could not do. But so many Breaking Bad scenes I couldn't imagine Damian Lewis doing. Don't get me wrong, I like Homeland, but the show just doesn't compare, especially season 2.
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These are my picks of who should win...and who got royally snubbed.

Best Drama - Breaking Bad (Snubs: Game of Thrones, Dexter, Sons of Anarchy all amazing)

Best Comedy - Episodes if i had to pick. (Snubs: Community, Parks and rec., Psych all wayy funnier)

Miniseries - Hatfields and McCoys

Best Actor Drama - Damian Lewis (Snubs: Charlie Hunman for SONS OF ANARCHY; Timothy Olyphant for JUSTIFIED; John Noble for FRINGE unfortunately will never get the recognition he deserves; Anson Mount for HELL ON WHEELS; Michael C. Hall for DEXTER

Best Actress Drama - Claire Danes (HUGE SNUB: Jennifer Carpenter. SHE should be nominated and win, she was amazing and better than Danes this year on DEXTER)

Best Actor Comedy - Jim parsons (Snubs: James Roday for PSYCH; Danny McBride for Eastbound and Down)
Best Actress Comedy - Amy Poehler
Best Actor MiniSeries - Benedict Cumberbatch
Best Actress MiniSeries - Jessica Lange
Best Supporting Actor - Mandy Patinkin (Snubs: Peter Dinklage for Game of Thrones; Colm Meaney for Hell on Wheels; Walton Goggins for Justified; Nick Offerman for Parks and Recreation)
Best Supporting Actress - Maggie Smith

Mostly the Golden Globes for TV nominations are crap!
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psych is hilarious, and 27th of february can not come soon enough
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Ok finally someone who points out Deb isn't in this list.
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its truee...danny huston is really out of nowhere!!..why is benedict cumberbatch not going to winnnn! :o
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Not a single nomination for Community.
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It'd be cool for Breaking Bad to win, or at least Bryan Cranston, especially after the show wasn't even nominated last year (or previously, I believe). The globes are simultaneously on the money and somewhere near pluto in terms of nominations and winners, though. I'm only watching for Amy and Tina.
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This is so stupid. How can you nominate not nominate John Hamm? This awards are just stupid. Hayden Panettiere? REALLY?
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It seems to me that the people who voted opted to indicate who they would like to see win and not who they think will win :)

Some nominations are truly bizarre, by the way.
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These award shows are getting more ridiculous by the year. Are they actually watching television? There are so many things wrong with the nominations and it seems all they are doing is going for familiar instead of quality. Breaking Bad, Mad Men, 30 Rock, The Big Bang Theory, Modern Family, The Newsroom, Smash & Episodes?!? Most of these shows are past their prime or haven't lifted off at all.

Where are the nominations for Justified, Game of Thrones, Person of Interest, Shameless and Go On? Why does a good actor/actress always have to be from the same shows? Emmy Rossum gave away a perfect performance as Fiona in Shameless this year, where is the nomination? Ksenia Solo kicks ass every episode as Kenzi in Lost Girl and is probably the funniest character in a supporting role on tv. Timothy Olyphant as Raylan Givins, Justified, by far the coolest guy on tv today. Maisie Williams portrayal of Arya Stark was brilliant this year. I know there are choices to be made and you can't please everybody, but at least try. I'm seeing the same names every year and it seems biased.

So I will not be watching and I really don't care who wins. And I think the award organisations and their shows really have to step up their game if they want to continue to be relevant. Same goes for the Oscars..looking at the nominations..it's ridiculous..
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Um...Breaking Bad is the best show on TV, and this season is no different. Mad Men is widely recognized as being near the top as well. 30 Rock has been stellar this year. I agree that some of the nominations are weird, especially The Newsroom and Smash, and some of the comedy awards. I don't really know what the HFPA is but they're a weird bunch.
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The good thing is that people can have different opinions. I speak to a lot of people who like Breaking Bad and the show itself is not bad, I just think it is not as good as people make it out to be. I don't like any of the characters and it's a lot of fumbling around. Same goes for Mad Men, people like it and I respect their opinion. The fact that these shows get blindly nominated each year makes me wonder if there aren't any other shows deserving credits and I think there are. Homeland is a good show but it had a very sloppy second season, does it deserve to be nominated because it had a couple of good episodes? I don't think so. Claire Danes however does deserve her nomination based on performance, but Homeland itself not. And that makes me wonder why a show like Justified is not nominated at all. Three solid season, strong cast, good storylines, great characters and award winning guest stars...I just think it deserves a nomination. The same goes for Game of Thrones. How can GOT not be nominated in any category?!?

With regards to comedy, I like comedies like Louie, New Girl, Community, Happy Endings, Veep, Go On and Don't trust the Bitch from Apartment 23. But it really surprises me that Modern Family, which had a good first season and then became very bad to worse in it's third season get nominated. The same goes for The Big Bang Theory, loved the first two seasons, is now average at best.

I totally agree with you that whoever does the nominating are a weird bunch!
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NO, seriously Breaking Bad is the best show on tv right now. It's not even my favorite show, but it is the best.
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Definitly not my choices - Games of Thrones missing. Downtown Abbey is good - but not so overhelming
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How was SHERLOCK not nominated in the Miniseries or Television Film category?
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I completely agree!! How did Sherlock not make it!?!
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It's in its second season with a third season greenlit. Hard to spin that as a mini-series.
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Three 1 1/2 hour episodes qualifies it as miniseries. Note Benedict Cumberbatch's Sherlock nomination for: best performance in a miniseries or television film - actor.
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Six episodes over two years isn't a mini-series.
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I don't make the rules. It is what it is.
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I still dont see how The Newsroom is better than Game of Thrones, Jeff Daniels does a really good job but still.
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I think Hatfields & McCoys are going to win in the categorie Miniseries or Television Film.
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After almost being done watching Breaking Bad for the past week, marathoning it, I realize I'm not addicted to alcohol or drugs...but it's IMPOSSIBLE to stop. Only one more episode....one more episode...one more...one m....please, help me!!! :))
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Despite what people may think about The Newsroom (I love it) there's no denying that Jeff Daniels is just flat-out awesome in this show. I also think Hayden Panettiere is very worthy of a win but she probably won't because people still think of her as a young "teenybopper" actress.
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DRAMA
Will: Downton Abbey
Should: Breaking Bad or Homeland

COMEDY or Musical
Will: Girls
Should: Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh...?
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The Comedy/Musical category is a bit of a joke.
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I didn't even know of Golden Globe Awards for TV till now.
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Danny Huston was excellent as "The Butcher" in "Magic City". To decry his nomination means that you never saw his work and as such maybe you shouldn't be calling his nomination "crazy". Maybe you just shouldn't comment on something you know nothing about rather than look the fool.
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I saw a few episodes of Magic City. Hes' solid, but to pretend that it's one of the five best supporting performances on all of TV is silly. Or crazy.
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Michael Emerson and Person of Interest
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