Emmys

Emmys 2011: A Look at the Lead Comedy Actress Race — Including Our Dream Nominees

When it comes to the Emmy Awards, there’s no counting out 30 Rock’s Tina Fey. Ever. In 50 years, she’ll be Betty White. But this year’s Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series competition may be all about Showtime and its three show-stopping leading ladies. Will the Academy prescribe a consecutive win for Nurse Jackie’s Edie Falco, or will Toni Collette grab a second statue to go with Tara’s multiple personalities? Or could they and The Big C’s Laura Linney split the pay cable vote, leaving an opening for someone new, like Raising Hope’s Martha Plimpton?

Emmys 2011: Sizing Up the Best Comedy Race — And Sharing Our Dream Nominees

Review this slideshow of the major contenders — including TVLine’s half-dozen Dream Nominees — then vote for your own favorite six below. And check back tomorrow for our review of the Lead Actor in a Comedy race!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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721 Comments
  1. Lea Michele Fan says:

    LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE LEA MICHELE

    Lea Michele deserves to win!!!! She’s Very Talented. <3

  2. Liz says:

    Amy, Lea, Martha, Kaley, Courtney, Tina, Melissa,

  3. Alyssa says:

    you ALL vote for Glee :(

    SHEEP

  4. Miss Mica says:

    Guess it’s all about how well we relate to the comedian and their comedy…Mary L Parkers my evil twin, and I love no other female comedian more. Talk about dead pan…

  5. Anna S. says:

    Yvonne Strahovski, definitely. If Lea Michele wins Emmy, I’ll lose all my respect for these awards.

    • rude says:

      please as least she has been nominated before Yvonne whom I like hasn’t been consider after years now.

  6. Nico says:

    All the way for Mary Louise Parker! Six years of outstanding performance. Nancy Botwin is amazing. Give her what she deserves. Otherwise, Laura Linney and Courtney Cox are also cool. But Amy Poehler, no way, P&R is like The office, nothing new. Booooooooring. I’m tired of Lea Michelle and Glee. It’s all about Showtime this year.

  7. WirednWicked says:

    Where are Alison Brie and Gillian Jacobs from COMMUNITY? I mean, that show is hilarious AND, in the season finale, Alison Brie kicked ass! I demand a recount! lol

    • sheri says:

      probably in the supporting category.

      • WirednWicked says:

        How sad. Their characters are leads. I mean, it is incredible how funny they are. Has anyone else but me watched this show? Gillian Jacobs threw out a corpse from a window? As grim as it sounds, it was hilarious! Also, Yvette Nicole Brown gave birth in a classroom full of people while Ms. Jacobs threw up and then cut the cord! LOL COME ON!

        • Mini says:

          No they’re a true ensemble show. Except Joel McHale I think. I do hope they and the show get nominated though. Sooo funny!!!

  8. Jennifer says:

    Love, love, love Mary-Louise Parker! I think she is amazing in Weeds. Not many people could carry off her character but she does it flawlessly. She’s gifted and I love her…. She is Nancy Botwin.

  9. kiko says:

    I just can’t belive..Lea Michele fans found this pool –‘ kids go back to your beds,grow up and then learn what a real and good comedy actress really is! She sucks,and oh..nobody beat Courteney Cox..just saying.

    • Jane says:

      I am 36 and voted for Lea and Courtney. No reason to be dismissive of other people’s opinion.

      I find the character Rachel Berry extremely funny and love how she is played.

    • renata says:

      lea was praized by critics on broadway and at glee, golden globe and emmy noms proved, so don’t let your hate blind you the girl is talented and deserves the nom.

  10. steve says:

    So great to see Lea Michele on this list. Just hope that people begin to realize that this young lady has crazy talent. Her voice has got to be among the very best talents that I’ve ever heard and i’ve been around for 57 years! But her acting has been so impressive this year. Her character on Glee is such a great vehicle for an actress and vocal talent that I think is without parallel. Its going to be nice having Lea Michele around for a lot of years!

  11. Samantha says:

    As much as I love Glee and Lea Michele, I don’t think she’s worthy of an Emmy as much as a Tony. I would love for Yvonne to get a nomination. Chuck’s entire cast, and the show itself, is underappreciated especially in the award-winning category. After an AMAZING penultimate season I would love for them to get some Emmy love!

  12. julie says:

    Who I think will be nominated: Tina, Amy, Lea, Laura, Edie, Toni

    Who I WANT to be nominated: Tine, Amy, Lea, Martha, Melissa, Kaley

    I think Laura Linney will win, despite the fact that she’s not the best actress in a comedy (HELLO, AMY!). I’m over all the showtime shows now, though. It feels disingenuous to put them in comedy. At least when I watch Glee most of the time I laugh (don’t get me started on that god-awful religion episode, or the crap-fest that was the wedding episode).

    Lea Michele deserves to be nominated, not win. Maybe some day, but not this year. I just hope she’ll be nominated.

  13. Erin says:

    So hard to choose one! Toni Collette is amazing in The united States of Tara! Mary-Louise Parker had me hooked from the first Episode of Weeds! Laura Linny is a trip!! Edie Falco is the queen of underhanded comments! SHOWTIME ROCKS!

    Then there’s the ABC’s COURTNEY COX on Cougar Town which is one show I am so glad plays back on on-demand! She makes me laugh till my face hurts!

    I can’t choose!! Those are the only shows I ever watch and I look forward to them all! Good luck to all the ladies this year! You should all get awards!! Muahhh! Ps just watched my first episodes of Raising Hope this week on on-demand, loved it!!

  14. W30 says:

    Either Tina Fey or Mary-Louise Parker. 30 Rock and Weeds are two of my absolute favorites.

  15. Shailee says:

    Mary Louise-Parker ask the way!!!!!

  16. Spring says:

    Amy, Tina, Lea, Laura, Edie, Toni.

    Either Laura or Amy for the win.

  17. Amanda says:

    Hahahahahah at all these gross Lea Michele fanboys acting like her constipated facial expressions and singing are keys to winning a COMEDY Emmy. Thank god all these Gleetards don’t get to vote for the Emmys.

    • Lonny says:

      Really if you don’t like her that is fine, you have a right to your opinion, but know reason to be nasty or call her fan names.

      she was nominated before so to think she is a contender is not far fetched.

    • Mini says:

      “gleetards”? Classy.

    • Starr Lopez says:

      Your real classy, your parents must be real proud. Just so you know, no matter what you think Lea Michele is worthy of winning an Emmy, because she has talent. Why aren’t you nominated, because your probably talentless and maybe also, us ‘Gleetards’ rather follow and idolize someone worth appreciation.

  18. Naomi.A says:

    Lea Michele deserves to win!! She’s very talented!! Yes she’s in a huge bracket of very talented women don’t get me wrong! But she’s a bright shining star and deserves to win for her hard work, her amazing voice and her role in one of the best shows on tv today! It’s not all blood n guts or vampires, or cop/detective work! It’s raw talent at it’s best!

  19. Banana says:

    Edie Falco is hands-down the best tv actress of her time. Nurse Jackie is a smart, funny, touching show that will be overlooked by most because it’s not on the major 3 networks. It’s a shame that most people can’t or don’t see it, because I think your opinions would definitely change.

  20. Erica says:

    where is Melissa McCarthy?

  21. Debbie Joy says:

    Edie Falco for Nurse Jackie!

  22. bobby says:

    My vote would go to Toni Collette, boy can that woman act her freakin’ butt off! Not only does she act well, but she gives life to several characters because of the whole DID aspect of her character. I’d be exhausted…

  23. Austen says:

    The lady who plays Tara literally Plays ten people an episode and sequentially as well. She should definitely win.

  24. Karen says:

    Lea Michele of course!! She’s a great actress :) And her voice when she sings is from another planet!

  25. Courtney Cox or Amy Poehler. How is there no Modern Family, though? Is the entire ensemble considered support?

    • Joe says:

      Yes Modern Family is in supporting category

    • KSWerleman says:

      I think when submitting nominations, they submit them all as supporting roles, no idea why but that’s how they do it.

      BUT glad they did, the leading lady category as we can see….already stacked.

  26. Kathleen Baker says:

    Edie Falco ROCKS at acting while playing Nurse Jackie.

  27. jay says:

    Courteney cox for me she’s so funny, love her high voice sometimes lol

  28. Mariana says:

    Can I vote on Amy 6 times?

    She deserves so much.!

    Seriously, Lea Michelle winning? I’m a Glee fan, but I’m not blind.

  29. Penny Rene says:

    TONI COLETTE –
    I have watched most of these others shows and fail to see how any other woman could lead in this poll.

  30. Chanel says:

    Lea Michele is defiantly the most talented !

  31. remy harnick says:

    LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.

    Lea Michele deserves this Emmy because she is just so talented. Whether it is acting, singing, or dancing she is always amazing. When she acts she always gives 110% and it shows. When she is acting in a sad scene, she is so realistic you want to cry, and when she is part of a funny scene it is so easy to laugh. She is like that in every scene of Glee and she deserves to be recognized in this wonderful event. Glee is a hysterical show with a hilarious cast that works together outstandingly. If Lea does not win I do not understand people today. She is young, talented, and amazing. Although there is no denying that everyone nominated for this category is so hilarious I think Lea shines the brightest. Of course i agree that each of the women on this list are amazing…my heart lies with Lea. Lea is gorgeous, talented, and youthful!! She is a such an amazing role model and lots of young girls look up to her and she plays a very inspirational character. LEA MICHELE FOR THE EMMY!

  32. remy harnick says:

    LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.LEA.

    Lea Michele deserves this Emmy because she is just so talented. Whether it is acting, singing, or dancing she is always amazing. When she acts she always gives 110% and it shows. When she is acting in a sad scene, she is so realistic you want to cry, and when she is part of a funny scene it is so easy to laugh. She is like that in every scene of Glee and she deserves to be recognized in this wonderful event. Glee is a hysterical show with a hilarious cast that works together outstandingly. If Lea does not win I do not understand people today. She is young, talented, and amazing. Although there is no denying that everyone nominated for this category is so hilarious I think Lea shines the brightest. Of course i agree that each of the women on this list are amazing…my heart lies with Lea. Lea is gorgeous, talented, and youthful!! She is a such an amazing role model and lots of young girls look up to her and she plays a very inspirational character. LEA MICHELE FOR THE EMMY!

  33. Shona says:

    Toni Collette all the way. She is amazing!

  34. Veronica says:

    Marylouise Parker

  35. S says:

    TONI!!!!!!!!

  36. KSWerleman says:

    This has got to be the BEST group of women we’ve seen in MANY MANY years.

    Leading the pack are certainly Laura Linney who had a FLAWLESS performance in The Big C, Toni Collette has done AMAZING this season and EVen Lea Michelle, she has proven to be a great comedian, especially in the Blame it on the alcohol episode.

    Other top names, Edie Falco, Tina Fey, Mary-Louise Parker and Amy Pholer.

    Other great nods are Patricia Heaton, Martha Plimpton, Tamsin Greig and Kaley Cuoco i wouldn’t mind seeing nominated.

    All the women above TRULY worthy of a Emmy nominee, sucks is only six i’d nominate all of them lol

    At the bottom of the barrell is probably Couteney Cox, Melissa McCarthney and Yvonne Strahovski

  37. CC says:

    Lea Michele, REALLY?? She’s a good actress, but she is not in the same LEAGUE as these other women.

    Amy Poehler deserves the win – she has just been HILARIOUS on Parks and Rec this season, but I also love Tina Fey!

    • Owen says:

      many seem to think Lea is and was last year as well.

      i don’t see why not, her character is really funny and she plays her to the hilt.

      As far as this season she probably was more consistently funny than any other characters.

      • KSWERLEMAN says:

        Exactly, this she HAS been funny, Lea Michelle, funny? something i never expected. BUT when i saw her in the “Blame it on the Alcohol” episodes, she showed her comedic side, they should submit THAT episode for Best Comedy Series and as an acting nod for Lea Michelle, she was spectacular in that episode, she was super funny and honestly this whole season, she has been consistant with her acting. IMO she is one of the front runners to win this. Like i said in my post, their are 9 women who REALLY REALLY deserve, so to say who doesn’t is kinda hard, i wish i could nominate em all. I just HOPE toni collette goes home with a nod, like the New Adventures of old Christine, i’d love to see her go out with a nominee. Next year tougher being Tina’s last year…and potentionally Mary Louis-Parker last year….SOO seeing either of them get nominated is a plus and Mary Louis winning would be a blessing.

  38. jlaff says:

    ok this is my prediction ;

    Amy Poehler
    Lea Michele
    Laura Linney
    Toni Colette
    Martha Plimpton
    Edie Falco

    i think amy is gonna win

  39. Neo says:

    I absolutely loove Tina Fey, she has to win this one. She is really funny

  40. Neo says:

    Tina Fey deserves it, she is really good at what she does and thats to entertain!

  41. Destiny says:

    Toni C. Hands down! No one else is needed in her category unless shes going againt herself with the many characters she plays in united states of tara!

  42. Eric Dupont says:

    As far as raw acting talent goes, Toni Collette really deserves this. She really convincingly plays so many different characters. It is a crying shame that this show was cancelled. I’m legitimately upset. I will continue to follow Weeds, Nurse Jackie, and The Big C, but as far as future series are concerned, Showtime and I are through.

  43. Deb says:

    This list is full of amazing actresses but my vote goes for Lea Michele simply Because she is phenomenal and complete in all departments ( Humor/Drama she is just incredible and she doesnt even have to say a word just her facial expression can make you feel all kind of things) and she is a hard working girl who deserves Emmy!

  44. henri says:

    Some one up thread said that using the singing in regards to why Lea should be nominated is a “cop out”. I guess this person has not seen glee. The point of most of the songs they do is to express emotions due to the situation they are in at the time.

    Rachel Berry lives life as if she were performing on the stage, in all is theatrical bliss. Music is a integral part of her life and her story.

    The songs are performances that help tell the story so yes her singing is relevant to her acting and her deserved nomination last year and hopefully this year.

    • Kit says:

      Exactly, it is the same as saying Toni Collette does multiple personalities. It is all a part of the character and therefore is acting.

  45. gula says:

    Courteney Cox should win already! This girl knows how to be funny

  46. Kylie says:

    COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX

  47. lola says:

    COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX

  48. friends town says:

    COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX
    COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX
    COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX COURTENEY COX

  49. bass says:

    Courteney, Tina, Amy, Toni the great comedy actress, talented and cult

  50. Pete says:

    After 10 yeears of being overshadowed on Friends despite, in my opinion, being the best actress in Friends, Courteney Cox deserves an Emmy. Cougar Town is teh funniest show out there. I like Lea Michele, but she’s done nothing noteworthy for me. I’d like to see Toni nommed as she’s probably the best all-round actress here, and Martha Plimton/Raising Hope deserves some recognition.

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