Saturday, July 29, 2006
emmy viewing -3

The five actresses nominated in the Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series are:
FRANCES CONROY for "Six Feet Under"
GEENA DAVIS for "Commander In Chief"
MARISKA HARGITY for "Law & Order: SVU"
ALLISON JANNEY for "The West Wing"
KYRA SEDGWICK for "The Closer"

These are five really incredibly talented actresses. I have now watched all five performances, and this is a very difficult catagory. First of all because there isn't a bad performance in the bunch, and secondly, the voting is a bit different in this category than it was for the last panel I viewed. (More on this later) Those nominated pick one episode from the 2005-2006 season to be viewed. This can be a difficult choice depending on the characters involvement in the story line during the season. In alphabetical order....lets begin with Frances Conroy.


Frances Conroy is a wonderful wonderful actress. In the ensemble show "Six Feet Under" she played the matriarch of the Fisher Family. At the beginning of this series, Nathaniel Fisher, her undertaker husband, died in the very first episode. The 'family' consists of her three grown children, her oldest son Nate, her middle son David, and her only daughter and youngest child, Clare. At the start of this series, the character of Ruth Fisher was a pretty uptight unhappy woman. As the series progressed, Ruth Fisher grew and changed and loosened up quite a bit. And Francis Conroy grew with her character. This series ended this season, I'm sorry to say. If you are unfamiliar with this show it is wonderfully written with superlative actors in every role and is very very much worth renting or buying, for that matter. The episode Frances Conroy picked to be viewed happened to be the very last episode of the series. In it her character goes from abject despair, because her eldest son has died, to a kind of resignation and then a kind of a 'peace' with her situation...a 'moving on as best she can' situation, if you will. Ms. Conroy's performance was very moving and totally believable. An extremely demanding and difficult job of acting for her in this, the very last episode ever, of "Six Feet Under", and she was more than up to it....she was brilliant.


Next, Geena Davis in "Commander In Chief". This series started out and was the highest rated ABC series of the new season this past year.
But it ran into problems in the production schedule, and the Writer/Creator/Executive Producer Rod Lurie, was fired and Steven Bochko was brought in to take over the Executive Producing duties. For about eleven weeks during the height of the television season, this show was off the air. And when it came back on, it seemed to have lost it's way as well as it's time slot. The original concept was changed somewhat, as well. The character that Ms. Davis played was still the first woman President of The United States, but the series was now no longer 'character driven' so much as "crises" driven, and it became rather unbelievable. Each week a different horrible world dilemma had to be dealt with and solved and of course this is why it became very unbelievable, to me. So, the episode that Ms. Davis chose 'for our consideration' was the Pilot Episode. A wise choice I think, because it showed her character in a very clear way when the series had a really much clearer focus of what it was about and where it was going. I think it is too bad that the circumstances of this series undercut it's ability to hold an audience and it was canceled before it even actually had aired all of it's filmed episodes. What started out so high, ended on a rather low and sad note....no fault of Geena Davis', I might add.


Mariska Hargity is a lovely actress who until recently hasn't received the attention by the Television community that she deserves.
This series is a very solid one in the "Law & Order" 'franchise', as it is known, and is extremely well written and well acted, too. In this series Ms. Hargity plays Olivia Benson, a cop who along with her partner, played by Christopher Meloni, (Also up for an Emmy this year) handle 'sexually based heinous crimes' for the NYPD...thus the name Special Victims Unit. We have seen her in all sorts of situations over the years. And in the episode she chose 'for our consideration' she is on the phone for almost the entire episode with a young girl of nine, so we are told, who has called 911 for help because she is being abused sexually by a man she says is her father. The way this story unfolds the police are not sure this phone call is 'for real', but Olivia is pretty sure it is authentic. It is a rather complicated script with many twists and turns and as with all the "Law & Order" shows, as things unfold they aren't always what they seemed to be at first. Mariska Hargity is pretty much the featured person in this episode and she must show frustration, compassion, fear, disgust, sympathy, heartbreak...you name it and she had to 'act' it. She was superb, and I can see why she chose this episode for our viewing.


Allison Janney is a very very special actress, to my way of thinking.
I have seen her do any number of parts over the years and she always seems to embody the character she is playing in a way that is not only completely believable, but you think, well, this must be who she is herself---and it is different every time. She has, I believe won two Emmy's for her portrayal of C.J. Cregg on "The West Wing", already. And I believe she has had at least 4 nominations before this for the very same role. Did she deserve to win the Emmy both times? Yes! Absolutely. Over the life of this series her character went from being the press secretary to being the Chief of Staff to the President, and it was completely believable within the context of her character. "The West Wing" ended it's run with this season and there was a lot of winding up to do as the Bartlett Administration was ending it's tenure and the newly elected President, Matt Santos was about to be sworn in as the new President. The episode Allison Janney chose 'for our consideration' was packed full of all the qualities we have come to know and love about C.J. Cregg, and then some. And Ms. Janney was, as always, smashing.


And last but not least, we have Kyra Sedgwick. This was a new series this year, like 'Commander In Chief'...on the FX Network.
An interesting premise....a young woman from the south is brought into the L.A.P.D. as someone who is capable of 'closing' cases fast and with a special insight that separates her from the pack. Kyra Sedgwick is a very wonderful actress and this is her first time as the lead in a Television Drama series---she has made many many films and is always terrific. The episode she chose is one where she gets to show her 'acting chops'....a girl has been raped and murdered and Sedgwick's character is trying to pinpoint exactly who the rapist/murderer is. When interviewing a suspect she wins him over by pretending to be this forgetful southern-belle type young woman, but turns completely when needed, to the very strong direct smart southern woman that she actually is, to "close" out the case. This nomination is well deserved.


Here is the really tough part about voting in this category. You have 5 levels of excellence assigned to you by number...The number one (#1) being the best and each number thereafter going down from there...till you have assigned all five numbers. number five (#5) being the least best. And you can only use each number once! As I said, no one is bad in this categiry or in any category for that matter...Ten or Fifteen (I cannot remember cause it is a new voting rule this year) Nominees were voted on by the entire Performing Members out of around 50 or 60 women who were submitted in this category. Then, a second level of Panels was held at The Academy where other volunteer Performer Members picked these 5 women as the final-final top five for this important category, having watched their tapes/dvd's. And now, it is up to those of us who are doing the "At Home Judging" (possibly 300 to 400 people or more) to decide who is the very best of these five.
Quite honestly, I am finding this a very very tough call.




More To Come....

Special Reminder: Wendy's First Of The Month Auditions, begin tomorrow...(It's the 31st in New Zealand you know....) So do go by and pay her a visit. It's loads of fun to play and you get to meet lots of nice fun people, too. And, she gives out a prize at the end of the few days...Pass your curser over her name just above and that will take you right there! Have fun, and I'll see you there!











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31 Comments:
had this to say:

I've only seen two of those. As you said, Geena Davis was wonderful as the president, but the series lost its focus and it wasn't nearly as enjoyable for me to watch after it stopped focusing on the character drive stories. As for Mariska Hargitay? I can also see why she chose that episode. She was amazing. The story was gripping and kept you guessing. If I were voting, she'd get my vote...lol!

Saturday, July 29, 2006 at 5:55:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I only watched/watch Six Feet Under out of the shows listed. The Closer has just started to air here but I have yet to catch an episode of it. I will try to this week.
I loved loved SFU though the final episode closing montage was a gem.

Saturday, July 29, 2006 at 6:13:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Oppps btw thanks for the Audition reminder notice, hope to see lots of you there this month :)

Saturday, July 29, 2006 at 6:14:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I've seen them all, but my two favorite are Allison Janney and Kyra Sedgewick. I miss the West Wing and I really love The Closer. They are all good, though!

Saturday, July 29, 2006 at 8:48:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

I'd have to vote for Frances Conroy. She was excellent in "Six Feet Under". I was really sorry to see that show end.

Saturday, July 29, 2006 at 8:58:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Have a wonderful day!
*^_^
(=':'=) huge huggles
(")_ (")Š from da Raggedy one

Saturday, July 29, 2006 at 10:39:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Frances Conroy!!

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 5:44:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Oh! Oh! I've seen that episode with Mariska, I couldn't tear myself away from that one! She gets my vote, hands down!! Go Mariska!

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 8:15:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Hi Lady - thanks for an interesting post!
I just came here to wish you a lovely Sunday and a great week ahead:-)

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 8:42:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

well I vote for Frances Conroy

But My fiance works on Law & Order SVU(boom) and works with Mariska and of course it would be great if she won :)

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 9:14:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I was a huge fan of 6 feet under. Frances Conroy was just outstanding in every episode. She'd get my vote. And besides, Ms. Janney already has a couple of Emmy's, I think.

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 10:04:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I was so annoyed with Commander in Chief - such potential, great actress.......wasted. Totally wasted.

cq

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 1:45:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

SVU is my favorite. I love her. She's so real. Acting is very different from her mothers. Most probably don't remember Jayne Mansfield. I grew up watching old movies. Loved them all. I'm not sure people even know who her mom was.

But I hope she wins.

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 2:54:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

By a rather large coincidence, Naomi, I finally watched the last two aired episodes of Commander in Chief today. I'd been putting it off for several months.

I've not seen Frances Conroy or Kyra Sedgwick so I can't judge who's the best in this catagory. From what I've heard, it sounds like Conroy's the leader in this group. I've not had HBO in a great many years and it seems I've been missing some great programming. And just to save some money. Sad!

Michele sent me by to see you today, Naomi. Hi!

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 3:00:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

and ACTION ... auditions post is now up.
Someone this past weekend told me I look a bit like Kyra Sedgewick, I think they were drunk though LOL

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 3:36:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Ya know... I honestly don't know HOW you are sitting through ALLLLLL these shows this week! I have SUCH a hard time making it through just a one hour show... sometimes even a 30 minute sit-com! I think somebody ought to give YOU an Emmy for viewing!!! :)

Oh yea... WENDY sent me! (bet you knew that!)

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 4:23:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Oh dear -- I don't watch TV, so I have nothing to say! I'll have to come back another time so I can at least attempt to sound intelligent. :P

Wendy directed me here.

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 6:21:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Tough decision to make, I have faith that if anyone can, you will make a good call. :)

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 7:08:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Well look at me... I'm back again! OOL ~ I am doing GOOD! Hey, that was a knockout number your performed for Miss Wings! I mean really... If I don't get the part, I really hope you do! ;)

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 7:25:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

As it is now it seems to be tough already. However, I know you'll manage. I know you make good and fair judgments. Good luck to the winners.

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 8:25:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Since SFU is the only one I've seen, I'll have to go with Conroy. I miss that show. Grrrrr.

Sunday, July 30, 2006 at 8:55:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Wow, what a truly difficult decicion to make and such responsibility too. I can see that you have a very difficult job of trying to separate the candidates so good luck with that. On the other hand it must be nice to have to watch such good performaces from talented actresses :-)

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 1:31:00 AM PDT 

Anonymous Ivy
had this to say:

I'm a huge fan of Mariska Hargitay.. And I saw that episode.. Several times infact.. Very good episode!

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 1:41:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

The only one I recognized in this group is the Law and Order one. Never heard of these other people! You see how much TV I watch!!

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 6:36:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Gosh, did I ever enjoy reading this. Once again, thanks for sharing the "inside" story with us.
I've watched all the series mentioned, except Six Feet Under. And that sounded very good, so I just might have to see about renting it.
I saw that episode of Law & Order and she played a spectacular part. I also like all the other nominees very much....so I wish you the best on making your decision. You're right...a very tough choice with so many talented actresses!

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 7:06:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

oh boy... trying to play catchup today!.. but have to tell you I am hooked on The Closer!!! Kyra is fantastic !!! The show had it's first season last year and I have to say I was stuck on it from the first show!! I don't envy you this choice you have to make!!.. (but Kyra would get my vote! lol)

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 7:18:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

I am fan of Frances Conroy and also I like Kyra Sedgwick!
Here I have the Sky satellite TV and I can see these series, but I prefer "Law & Order: SVU".

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 9:36:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Wow. That would be a really tough call. I love Allison Janney, too. What a gifted and appealing performer she is. Tough choice.

Geena Davis just gave a talk to Disney Animation about being more proactive in placing female role models for children. Very inspiring. Animation is a bit of a boy's club, and sometimes the hard and physical comedy is hard to pull of with female characters. But I admire her for raising awareness.

~S

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 10:29:00 AM PDT 

had this to say:

Another tough category.

Wendy directed me here this time. :-)

Monday, July 31, 2006 at 4:33:00 PM PDT 

had this to say:

Darn! You should have posted a spoiler warning, I watched Six Feet Under via Netflix DVD and haven't started the last season yet. :-( As for the others, love Geena Davis in everything I've seen her in. Allison Janey is superb as well. Love Kyra but haven't seen this series. Wow, what a tough decision to make.

Tuesday, August 1, 2006 at 6:02:00 AM PDT 

Anonymous Anonymous
had this to say:

Mariska Hargity should win this all the way. She has proved herself worthy of this nomination and deserves the award. She was robbed twice before but this is her year. As an actress she is amazing, captivating the audience. In the episode she chooses she shows so many emotions and portrays them expertly, which makes her a fabulous actress.
Law and order SVU is such a great show and is so underrated. Hopefully next year this show will get some nominations.

Saturday, August 12, 2006 at 10:05:00 PM PDT 

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