Movieline Predicts: Lead Actor Emmys

We're three days and one rib-tickling episode of NBC's Community away from the Emmys! It's during this time that Movieline's TV writers will become the towering intellects of high society, bursting with trenchant commentary like, "Tina Fey, TOUCH US" and "Jon Hamm is a HOTTIE-PA-TOTTIE. He can pull a corporate takeover whenever he wants... on our ass!!" Oh, what a cloudy day. Oh, it's raining Pulitzers.

We already tackled the supporting cast nominees yesterday. Now we investigate the biggest names of the bunch, ranging from a paternal psychiatrist who counsels multiple personalities to a maternal suburbanite who has multiple personalities. Our picks after the jump!

Outstanding Lead Actor, Drama

Julie: Simon Baker and Michael C. Hall make the short list. And as much as Don Draper should get a statuette, I think Gabriel Byrne has the best shot with In Treatment.

Louis: Much has been said and hyped about the "subtlety" of the Mad Men, and that goes for the acting as well. With Cranston winning last year for his bracing, visceral style, the Emmy committee can prove they appreciate "a range" of acting talent by giving it to Hamm. I agree though...Gabriel Byrne's character, above all else, is original. Mind you, I think it's a very "actorly" role, with all his quick responses to his patients' often-horrifying idiosyncrasies. That can work for or against him. Still, In Treatment is underrated, and... I begrudgingly admit that I think he'll win because his victory would be a decent-sized hero's tale.

Julie: And I predict a Don Draper emotional breakdown in the works a few seasons down the line that will really clinch a future Jon Hamm Emmy.


Winner: Gabriel Byrne, In Treatment

Potential Spoiler: Jon Hamm, Mad Men

Other Nominees: Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad; Michael C. Hall, Dexter; Hugh Laurie, House; Simon Baker, The Mentalist

Outstanding Lead Actress, Drama

Louis: Oh, Holly Hunter. It was fun and growly while it lasted.

Julie: Kyra and Mariska, better luck next year. I would love to see Elisabeth Moss win.

Louis: Me too, honestly. But this is another Jon Hamm-delayed-win situation -- this season she's shaping up to be much more forthright and powerful. I feel like 2010 is the proper setting for the Elisabeth Moss Appreciation Hour.

Julie: Right. I think she'll have a better chance with next year's Emmy screener -- where she experiments with cannabis and unprotected cunnilingus. Glenn is going to win.

Louis: Glenn Close actually scares me on that show, and in an Emmy-winning way. Holly Hunter cracks her back and tectonic plates shift, which is also frightening, but only in a geologic way. For that alone, I grant her "spoiler" status.


Winner: Glenn Close, Damages

Potential Spoiler: Holly Hunter, Saving Grace

Other nominees: Sally Field, Brothers & Sisters; Mariska Hargitay, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit; Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer, Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men

Outstanding Lead Actor, Comedy

Louis: Two and a Half Men is barely a comedy at this point, to me. I think it's a grim parlor room drama by Strindberg now.

Julie: Although congratulations to Chuck Lorre for his two leading men being nominated! I think it's between Baldwin and Jim Parsons.

Louis: Tony Shalhoub is a much-decorated Emmy-winner who could come back for a final steal.

Julie: Functional autism and OCD are so two years ago. Which I guess actually applies to Jim Parsons' character on Big Bang, but he did win the coveted Television Critics Award earlier this year.

Louis: My issue is that Alec Baldwin's performance is one of the best of all time. He is our generation's follow-up to Carroll O'Connor and Ed Asner, and no one is denying that. If anyone deserves to win two years in a row, it's him.


Winner: Alec Baldwin

Potential Spoiler: Jim Parsons

Other Nominees: Tony Shalhoub, Monk; Steve Carell, The Office; Charlie Sheen, Two and a Half Men; Jemaine Clement, Flight of the Conchords

Outstanding Lead Actress, Comedy

Louis: And Christina and Julia seem so nice, too.

Julie: Mary-Louise Parker is wonderful but Weeds jumped the shark once the Botwins fled Agrestic. I think Tina Fey is the funniest but Toni Collette is the popular vote. No one else has gotten to thrust her thong in John Corbett's face and urinate on her parents while wearing a Maid of the Mist poncho.

Louis: That didn't even occur on The Sarah Silverman Program, indeed. Ugh, my highly sensual Tina Fey love is churning! Might she lose this Emmy? I think that's not legal, and I want Variety to run a lengthy warning to voters. It's between Toni and Tina, and both are pretty damn likable, on and offscreen. I'm going to say Toni, and decide to feel fine about it -- if only because her role is truly unprecedented for television. She's like if Samantha Stevens was less subversive and more unhinged with her powers. Tina already won an Emmy this week anyway.


Winner: Toni Collette, United States of Tara

Potential Spoiler: Tina Fey, 30 Rock

Other Nominees: Christina Applegate, Samantha Who?; Julia Louis-Dreyfus, The New Adventures of Old Christine; Sarah Silverman, The Sarah Silverman Program; Mary-Louise Parker, Weeds