HBO’s The Wire seems a case in point as to why the Emmys frequently ignore some of TV’s best work. The show has earned near unanimous praise from critics at EW and elsewhere for three seasons, but it’s only earned one Emmy nod to date: It’s up for a writing award at this year’s ceremony. Fans might speculate that Emmy voters have spurned the show because it’s too low-profile (it doesn’t have the ratings or buzz that HBO shows like Six Feet Under or even Deadwood have earned), but the truth may be even more appalling.

Talking to Variety, some anonymous Hollywood-based Emmy voters confirm one’s worst suspicions about their voting patterns, explaining why they ignored The Wire: They can’t relate to its drug-infested Baltimore milieu, they don’t see the actors and producers around Los Angeles because they shoot on location in Maryland, and the plots are too hard for them to follow. Guess Wire fans can take consolation in knowing that many couch potatoes offer some of the same excuses for avoiding the show — but then again, you’d think Emmy voters would hold themselves to a higher standard than that.

addCredit(“The Wire: Paul Schiraldi”)

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