When I set about to figure out who my nominees were for the Lead Actor in a Comedy Emmy, I ran into a problem almost immediately — I couldn’t think of almost any. Alec Baldwin, maybe? I guess Joel McHale counts as a lead? I’ve heard good things about Louie? I really was stuck. This is a pretty shallow field with no one I wanted to win, and it’s a shallow field for two reasons. The first is that lead actor/actress races are always going to be less competitive than the supporting races because basic math means that there are always more supporting roles than lead roles. But the lead actress race is actually pretty competitive, which brings me to the second and, in my view, more important reason why, when it comes to lead actors, there are slim pickings — women are far outstripping men when it comes to leading good sitcoms.
So I think we can all agree that, generally speaking, Legend of Korra is an all-around great show. And since it’s from the same people who did Avatar: The Last Airbender, I kind of expected a lot from the season finale. I mean, Avatar always gave us real gut-wrenchers, so Korra was probably going to do the same thing, right? I was so convinced of this, in fact, that I purposefully didn’t watch it until Monday because I was home alone for the weekend and didn’t trust myself to be able to handle my emotions properly.
It turns out that was kind of unnecessary. You see, as great as this season of Korra has been episode-to-episode, season finales tend to put in perspective overall season arcs, and the fact of the matter is, Korra suffered hugely from being only 12 episodes instead of the usual 22-24. If Korra wants to tell the same sorts of epic stories that Avatar did, they need more than twelve episodes to do it, because the pacing on this series was all off. It didn’t strike me until the season finale, but Korra has been stuffed almost too full of plot and left no time for character development. Like, where has Bolin been for the second half of this season? Do we know anything about General Iroh Jr.? I mean besides that he can use his firebending like a jet pack and looks like a Disney Prince? I felt like there were a lot of things I got in this finale that I didn’t earn, either. Like, how is Amon already dead? Why are Mako and Korra already a thing? Because I still have no idea what Korra sees in him and none of his problems had time to be fixed. Character-wise, Asami probably suffered the most from this shortchanging, and she really deserves some emotional wallow time next season, because her life kind of sucks. But plot-wise, Korra reaching the Avatar state when she’s not supposed to be in touch with her spiritual side at all felt especially egregious.
Hey, look, some artwork! It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Not because I haven’t been doing art, but because I haven’t really been producing anything I’m very happy with, besides this, which marks a few firsts for me. The first first is that I have never drawn naked boobs before, but every time I tried to cover those bad boys up I was like “no, no, I think they want to roam free”, so there they are. In all their freckled glory. The second is that I don’t think I ever draw women with short hair, which was really where the idea for this all started.
And the third and most exciting is that this is the first exploration I’ve made of using brushes, which I was turned on to by the very talented Kali Ciesemier in a post she made on her tumblr, which is probably the most helpful post I’ve ever read by any artist in my entire life. I’ve never liked the unnaturally smooth look of Photoshop coloring, and I’ve always been very, very frustrated when I need to change a line that I drew in pencil, and anything I drew in Photoshop looked different. In order to get the look I wanted, I had to spend weeks micro-managing every pixel to get it to look like I wasn’t micro-managing every pixel.
But thanks to some amazing brushes by Chris Wahl, this took me about an hour and a half, max. I didn’t have to google search random things to use as layers and hope they worked, I didn’t have to zoom in super close to preciously erase things and then hate that they looked so preciously erased, I just… colored. And it was great.
Also, those boobs look pretty good. If I do say so myself.
Welcome back to CliqueClack Goes to the Emmys, a column in which I break down my dream nominations (and winners) in a given category. This week — supporting actress in a comedy. Traditionally, this is the hardest category for me, first of all because there are always so many more supporting actors to choose from, and second of all because I tend to gravitate towards comedies with multiple women that I love. (I sadly didn’t have room for everyone from Community or Happy Endings, for example, and eliminating people from Parks and Recreation was like my own personal Sophie’s Choice.) But after much deliberation, the nominees are:
Yvette Nicole Brown, Community
Jane Krakowski, 30 Rock
Busy Phillips, Cougar Town
Maya Rudolph, Up All Night
Casey Wilson, Happy Endings
Being a girl can be an extremely disheartening experience. Not because once a month your body betrays you in a mess of blood and hormones (though that’s never fun), but more because it often feels, especially lately, like you can’t wake up without some story about girls being harassed about anything from what hobbies they have to wanting to have access to birth control to the fact that now it is apparently wrong for us to even name the part of our bodies that makes us biologically female because ew, girl parts! Girls are super gross! And this is discounting sexist advertising (don’t get me started on sexist advertising), daily interactions with men who are creepy (inevitable), sexist movies, sexist TV shows, or even the super-sexist trending topics on twitter every single day.
It’s not just really, really, really nice to have things to remind you that everything gender-related sucks, but it’s remarkable that one of those things is a Saturday morning cartoon. I grew up on One Saturday Morning, which was pretty balanced, gender-wise. (Pepper Anne, Pepper Anne, she’s too cool for seventh grade!) It wasn’t until I was about thirteen and we got cable that I realized that cartoons were not usually very nice to girls. At all.
Welcome back to CliqueClack Goes to the Emmys, a column where I, Julia, go through who and what I want to be nominated and win at this year’s Emmys, and pretend that it has any effect on the actual (inevitably disappointing) nominations. This week we’re conquering the Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Emmy. And the nominees are:
Ty Burrell, Modern Family
Max Greenfield, New Girl
Tony Hale, Veep
Danny Pudi, Community
Damon Wayans Jr., Happy Endings
You’ll note that the forever-ignored Nick Offerman isn’t here for his role on Parks and Recreation, and there’s a good reason for that: he’s Lead Actor material. I mean, if Rob Lowe counts as a “lead” actor, doesn’t Offerman? I’d go into more detail on this logic, but that would spoil my Lead Actor column that’s coming up in a few weeks, so you’re just going to have to trust that I’ve thought this one out. But yes, on to the actual nominees!
So I know this week’s episode of Legend of Korra was full of action and revelations and flashbacks (!!!), but let’s talk about what you all want to talk about — romance! I mean, I know that there’s a point to this show (and all shows) besides who’s going to end up with who, but I’ve been steadily avoiding discussing the subject of who Korra’s going to end up with and my opinions on it, and after the way Mako acted this week, I feel like I’ve probably put it off for long enough.
So, straight talk — Mako seems to be Korra’s intended romantic endgame. Mostly, I’m cool with this. I mean, he’s not my favorite. But if we’re assuming Korra’s going to end up with a dude (and as a note to the Korra producers who are probably not reading this, if you’re considering the possibility of Korra and Asami getting together, consider this an enthusiastic “yes” vote from me), he seems the only logical choice. My other favorite dudes are Tenzin, Meelo, and Bolin. Tenzin and Meelo wouldn’t work with Korra for the obvious ick factor, and Bolin’s crush seems to have pretty much bit it ever since he saw Korra and Mako making out. Which I think is fair. I feel like seeing your crush making out with your brother probably kills whatever feelings you were having.
The problem with Mako is I don’t love him yet. To be fair, his character isn’t inherently adorable the way Bolin’s is. And that’s okay! I’m all for growing to love Mako the way I grew to love Zuko, but he’s going to need a lot more development. Of all the main characters, he’s probably tied with Asami if not being beaten by her in terms of development, only what we’ve seen of Asami so far is way more likable. What we’ve seen of Mako makes him sympathetic, but it also makes him hardcore trip what I call “the douchebag alarm.”