The Critics' Choice Awards Nominations Choose Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad

It's been several months since we've gotten our fix of random TV award nominations to pointlessly bicker and argue over, so thank the TV gods for [looks up whatever organization's name this is in the press release] the Broadcast Television Journalists Association and the Critics' Choice Television Awards! This is the third year for the CCTAs, and while though they're still noobs relative to the stodgy old Emmy Awards, they sure have gotten it right the past two years.

Below you'll find their nominations for the Critics' Choice Television Awards (with my gripes and praises), which will take place Monday, June 10. But before we get to that, here are some quick stats: HBO leads the networks with 21 nominations, followed by 19 for FX. American Horror Story: Asylum (taking advantage of miniseries "eligibility") and The Big Bang Theory lead the shows with six nods apiece, and The Middle earned more nominations than Sons of Anarchy

The 3rd Annual Television Critics' Choice Television Awards Nominations 
(Not to be confused with the Television Critics Association Awards, but we totally understand if you do get them mixed up.)

Best Comedy Series

The Big Bang Theory – CBS
Louie – FX
The Middle – ABC
New Girl – FOX
Parks and Recreation – NBC
Veep – HBO

NO MODERN FAMILY!? Good. Obviously Enlightened belongs here, but that show will never get the respect it deserves. Critics have always been huge proponents of Community, which won the award last year, but it's not even nominated this year. If Louie doesn't win, I'll jump off a bridge (onto a pile of pillows because awards shows are kinda dumb).

Best Actor in a Comedy Series

Don Cheadle (House of Lies) – Showtime
Louis C.K. (Louie) – FX
Jake Johnson (New Girl) – FOX
Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
Jeremy Sisto (Suburgatory) – ABC

Jeremy Sisto, eh? Okay. Thus begins Jake Johnson's repeated presence in the comedy category at awards shows? I think so. But Louis C.K. deserves this for the second year in a row.

Best Actress in a Comedy Series

Laura Dern (Enlightened) – HBO
Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) – FOX
Lena Dunham (Girls) – HBO
Sutton Foster (Bunheads) – ABC Family
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep) – HBO
Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation) – NBC

Holy shnikums! This is the first time I can remember the Best Actress in a Comedy field being this strong, even stronger than the men, I'd say. My personal favorite is Laura Dern, my personal favorite number two is Sutton Foster, but really anyone (probably with the exception of Lena Dunham) could take this home and I wouldn't mind. 

Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Max Greenfield (New Girl) – FOX
Simon Helberg (The Big Bang Theory) - CBS
Alex Karpovsky (Girls) – HBO
Adam Pally (Happy Endings) – ABC
Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
Danny Pudi (Community) – NBC

True story: I sat behind Alex Karpovsky on a plane once and snooped over the seat and caught him reading emails from Lena Dunham and Judd Apatow. That's my commentary on this category.

Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Carly Chaikin (Suburgatory) – ABC
Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) – ABC
Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Eden Sher (The Middle) – ABC
Casey Wilson (Happy Endings) – ABC

So... should we be concerned that Modern Family's only nomination is for Sarah Hyland? Are the TV Awards Gods going to strike us down with floods and locust swarms? Joining Hyland are Carly Chaikin (Dalia on Suburgatory) and Eden Sher (Sue on The Middle). All of these nominees' characters are teenage girls. The supporting actors nominees' characters are all adults. Conclusion: Television critics are perverts. In this group, Casey Wilson makes me laugh the most, so since this is a comedy category, I give it to her.

Best Guest Performer in a Comedy Series

Melissa Leo (Louie) – FX
David Lynch (Louie) – FX
Bob Newhart (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Patton Oswalt (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
Molly Shannon (Enlightened) – HBO
Patrick Wilson (Girls) – HBO

I'm cutting the award in half and giving the top to Lynch and the bottom to Shannon. They were both fantastic. But where's Parker Posey for Louie, you dumb critics? She kicked the biggest ass of all!

Best Drama Series

The Americans – FX
Breaking Bad – AMC
Downton Abbey – PBS
Game of Thrones – HBO
The Good Wife – CBS
Homeland – Showtime

I can argue that Justified belongs on this list over any of the shows that are on it. So I will. Justified belongs on this list! Argument over. But since it's not here, Game of Thrones. Though I'd be equally tickled if The Americans won. And though it didn't stand a chance of being nominated, I'm obligated to say that Rectify belongs on here. 

Best Actor in a Drama Series

Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) – AMC
Damian Lewis (Homeland) – Showtime
Andrew Lincoln (The Walking Dead) - AMC
Timothy Olyphant (Justified) – FX
Matthew Rhys (The Americans) – FX
Kevin Spacey (House of Cards) – Netflix

Let me tell you sump'in: Andrew Lincoln shouldn't be on this list. Sorry, it's true. Replace him with Charlie Hunnam from Sons of Anarchy or Aden Young from Rectify and you're looking at a very solid category. Great to see Rhys up there, he deserves it. Flip a five-sided coin. 

Best Actress in a Drama Series

Claire Danes (Homeland) – Showtime
Vera Farmiga (Bates Motel) – A&E
Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife) – CBS
Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) – BBC America
Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) – AMC
Keri Russell (The Americans) – FX

Have you seen Maslany in Orphan Black? Contest OVER. She's amazing. She should be nominated nine times in this category. Let's hope Emmy voters recognize her.

Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Jonathan Banks (Breaking Bad) – AMC
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Michael Cudlitz (Southland) – TNT
Noah Emmerich (The Americans) – FX
Walton Goggins (Justified) – FX
Corey Stoll (House of Cards) – Netflix

This is another outstanding field, but I'm putting Goggins and Stoll just a smidgen above an also-deserving Coster-Waldau (Jaime in the hot tub might be the single best performance of the year). I would've liked to have seen Ron Perlman up here for Sons of Anarchy, too.  

Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter) – Showtime
Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) – AMC
Regina King (Southland) – TNT
Monica Potter (Parenthood) – NBC
Abigail Spencer (Rectify) – Sundance

I don't want to upset anyone (a common disclaimer when you are going to upset someone), but is Emilia Clarke really doing award-worthy stuff? I'm as big a Dany fan as anyone, but it's the character, not the performance. Not that Clarke isn't good, because she is, and she's probably done her best work in Season 3. But I think Lena Headey is the better supporting actress. Hey, just my opinion, man! No Maggie Siff for Sons of Anarchy, for some reason. Abigail Spencer was amazing in Rectify and I'm on a huge kick with that show, so I'm passing the award to her. 

Best Guest Performer in a Drama Series

Jim Beaver (Justified) – FX
Jane Fonda (The Newsroom) – HBO
Martha Plimpton (The Good Wife) – CBS
Carrie Preston (The Good Wife) – CBS
Diana Rigg (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Jimmy Smits (Sons of Anarchy) – FX

Ummmm... Rigg? I really don't know.

Best Movie or Miniseries

American Horror Story: Asylum – FX
Behind the Candelabra – HBO
The Crimson Petal and the White – Encore
The Hour – BBC America
Political Animals – USA
Top of the Lake – Sundance

Although I like American Horror Story, I'm rooting against it because it's B.S. that it keeps sneaking into miniseries categories. I'm partway through Top of the Lake, and it's great so I'm sending vibes that way. But Behind the Candelabra (which airs this Sunday) has a shot at jumping up my list, especially with Steven Soderbergh behind it (I'm a Soder-nerd). And since we're starting the Bathroom Break categories, I'm going to keep my mouth shut going forward.

Best Actor in a Movie or Miniseries

Benedict Cumberbatch (Parade's End) – HBO
Matt Damon (Behind the Candelabra) – HBO
Michael Douglas (Behind the Candelabra) – HBO
Toby Jones (The Girl) – HBO
Al Pacino (Phil Spector) – HBO
Dominic West (The Hour) – BBC America

Best Actress in a Movie or Miniseries

Angela Bassett (Betty & Coretta) – Lifetime
Romola Garai (The Hour) – BBC America
Rebecca Hall (Parade's End) – HBO
Jessica Lange (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Elisabeth Moss (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
Sigourney Weaver (Political Animals) – USA

Best Supporting Actor in a Movie or Miniseries

James Cromwell (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Peter Mullan (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
Zachary Quinto (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Sebastian Stan (Political Animals) – USA
David Wenham (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
Thomas M. Wright (Top of the Lake) – Sundance

Best Supporting Actress in a Movie or Miniseries

Ellen Burstyn (Political Animals) – USA
Sienna Miller (The Girl) – HBO
Sarah Paulson (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Lily Rabe (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Imelda Staunton (The Girl) – HBO
Alfre Woodard (Steel Magnolias) – Lifetime

Best Reality Series

Duck Dynasty – A&E
The Moment – USA
Pawn Stars – History Channel
Push Girls – Sundance
Small Town Security – AMC
Wild Things with Dominic Monaghan – BBC America

Best Reality Series - Competition

Chopped – Food Network
Face Off – Syfy
Shark Tank - ABC
So You Think You Can Dance – FOX
Survivor – CBS
The Voice – NBC

Best Reality Host

Tom Bergeron (Dancing With the Stars) – ABC
Cat Deeley (So You Think You Can Dance) – FOX
Gordon Ramsay (Hell’s Kitchen/Masterchef) – FOX
RuPaul (RuPaul’s Drag Race) – Logo
Ryan Seacrest (American Idol) – FOX
Kurt Warner (The Moment) – USA

Best Talk Show

Conan – TBS
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart – Comedy Central
The Ellen DeGeneres Show – Warner Brothers Television Distribution
Jimmy Kimmel Live! – ABC
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon – NBC
Marie – Hallmark Channel

Best Animated Series

Adventure Time – Cartoon Network
Archer – FX
Phineas and Ferb – Disney Channel
Regular Show – Cartoon Network
The Simpsons – FOX
Star Wars: The Clone Wars – Cartoon Network

Like what you see? Got more beef than a butcher a shop? Let's hear your agrees/disagrees in the comments.

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