Tonight’s Primetime Emmy award for best comedy actress could have gone to a number of the six actresses nominated without causing too much controversy. Sure, Parks and Recreation‘s fan base was rabid to see Amy Poehler finally snatch the title for her portrayal of Leslie Knope. Still, few could fault a win for the what many called Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ best season yet as troubled first female president Selina Meyer — even if a certain audience member might have gotten the last laugh when it came to the acceptance speech.
Amy Poehler wins anyway. pic.twitter.com/i12mPU9AlK
— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) September 21, 2015
The other women nominated weren’t as likely to pull out ahead of Amy, Julia, and Lisa. While Amy Schumer has picked up massive amounts of press this for the second season of Inside Amy Schumer and her feature-length film debut Trainwreck, she brings more to the table on the series in terms of writing than acting range. Lily Tomlin, while endlessly entertaining in Grace and Frankie, still suffered from mediocre-at-best material to work with. Edie Falco in Nurse Jackie, on the other hand, just hasn’t generated the amount of buzz as many of the other women nominated.
That’s part of the reason why Poehler seemed like such the perfect winner for the best comedy actress category. Veep is set to get at least a few more seasons; Schumer is on an unshakable upward trajectory with her show — which makes the other Amy a more sensible pick when it comes to doling out the honor in a sensible fashion. Poehler’s portrayal of Leslie has been an integral part of American comedy television for too many years for her to leave without a final acknowledgment of her performance.
As a series itself, Parks and Recreation faces extremely stiff competition when it comes to reigning best comedy Emmy champion Modern Family, a critical smash season of Veep and much talked about fan favorites Transparent and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Rewarding Amy for her work on the show may have been the only way to finally give the series its due.
With that said, it’s hard to fault Julia Louis-Dreyfus for taking the best comedy actress Emmy in the end. Selina became infinitely more complicated on this season of Veep, and she never faltered in delivering that depth. It’s just a pity that Amy Poehler was never able to get her proper due for creating one of the best characters in the history of the sitcom.
[Image via Kevin Winter/Getty Images]