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The Ausiello Files: June 5, 2009

EW’s TV scooper shares his dream Emmy ballot

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Best Drama
Big Love
TV’s most addictive, entertaining, and unpredictable family drama.
Breaking Bad
Heard of the sophomore slump? This is the opposite.
Friday Night Lights
They shot, they scored — their best season since the first.
Mad Men
I don’t remember what happened, but I know it looked and sounded absolutely brilliant.
Rescue Me
Bounced back from last season’s creative rut by once again stirring the embers of 9/11.
The Shield
One of the most satisfying (and gut-wrenching) TV swan songs ever.

Best Comedy
30 Rock
Had a shaky start, but by the end, we were shaking…with laughter.
The Big Bang Theory
I still don’t understand what string theory is. But I’m giggling anyway!
NBC saved the show. Now you should save it from an Emmy snub.
How I Met Your Mother
The fact that it’s never been nominated is — wait for it — unacceptable.
The Office
Having Michael start a rival firm was a much-needed (albeit short-lived) game changer.
Pushing Daisies
Good writing, good directing, good acting, good…bye.

Best Actor (Drama)
Gabriel Byrne (In Treatment)
He bared all as his shrink got shrunk.
Kyle Chandler (Friday Night Lights)
The heart of FNL never once punted.
Michael Chiklis (The Shield)
We rooted for Mackey right down to his final heinous act. That’s art.
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad)
Last year’s winner deserves a repeat nod.
Hugh Laurie (House)
His doc kissed Cuddy, lost Kutner, saw ghosts, and got committed. ‘Nuff said.
Denis Leary (Rescue Me)
Fired up about the show’s resurgence? Thank the guy who fanned the flame.

Best Actress (Drama)
Glenn Close (Damages)
So sharp she cut through a scattered season 2.
January Jones (Mad Men)
Played the ultimate desperate housewife with remarkable restraint.
Regina King (Southland)
Her complicated, compassionate cop is the standout.
Evangeline Lilly (Lost)
She parted ways with her ”son” Aaron and delivered the mother of all performances.
Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men)
Masterfully conveyed the pain of giving up a child.
Jeanne Tripplehorn (Big Love)
She made Barb’s excommunication a religious experience for viewers.

Best Actor (Comedy)
Alec Baldwin (30 Rock)
Ironically, he soared by bringing his pompous character down to earth.
Kyle Bornheimer (Worst Week)
The show’s gone. But let’s keep its Everyman star as a souvenir.
Steve Carell (The Office)
With the help of Amy Ryan’s Holly, he gave Michael some heart and depth.
Zachary Levi (Chuck)
Shifts seamlessly between comedy, drama, and kung fu!
Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory)
Revenge of the nerd!
James Roday (Psych)
My sixth sense says this is the underrated comic’s year.

Best Actress (Comedy)
Christina Applegate (Samantha Who?)
MAde trying to be good look good.
Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory)
Only a real dork would write her off as just another pretty face.
America Ferrera (Ugly Betty)
Props for hiding the show’s signs of wear. Without a poncho, even.
Tina Fey (30 Rock)
I want her to go to there. Again.
JoAnna Garcia (Privileged)
If Emmy didn’t neglect the CW, it’d admit it likes Garcia.
Eva Longoria Parker (Desperate Housewives)
The most unsung member of the ensemble is also the funniest. Let’s give her some love.