Mad Men Emmy Shocker: Newcomer Jessica Pare to Vie With Elisabeth Moss for Lead Actress Nod

Get More: Awards, Emmys

Megan Draper is movin’ on up, indeed.

In the same week that Mad Men‘s secretary-turned-copywriter opted to bail on SCDP and pursue a career as an actress, awards hub GoldDerby.com is reporting that series newbie Jessica Paré has submitted herself in the Lead Actress in a Drama race for this year’s Emmys. That puts her in the same category as Mad Men original cast member Elisabeth Moss, who plays Peggy.

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The “face-off” mirrors one from a year ago, when word broke that January Jones was stepping up from the Supporting Actress field to vie with Moss for a Lead nomination. This time around, however, GoldDerby says, Jones has returned to the supporting ranks, alongside cast mate Christina Hendricks.

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Supposing that you were among those deciding which of Mad Men‘s Lead Actress candidates gets a nomination — who gets your vote? Hey, poll!

Comments (44)

  • I guess it makes sense since Megan’s been getting just as much screen time as Peggy this season if not more…

    Comment by Alex – May 10, 2012 05:31 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • We must be watching different shows, the show I’ve been watching isn’t giving Peggy a fraction of the same amount of screen time as Megan. Elisabeth Moss is obviously not getting a lead actress nomination this year as she’s hardly been on the show at all. At this rate, I doubt Christina Hendricks is getting a supporting nod as she’s been on even less.

      Comment by Britta Unfiltered – May 10, 2012 09:44 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Actually actors choose what category to submit themselves as so it’s up to them.

        Comment by GDB – May 10, 2012 11:31 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I’m with you. This has been a mostly Peggy-free season. Whereas Mrs Draper is in every other scene. If Elisabeth Moss gets one good scene, she should submit that show for Supporting and get it over with. Unless they give her another Don/Peggy showstopper.

        Comment by KevyB – May 12, 2012 02:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Ok I’m one of the few people for whom Megan has kind of grown on me, but just no. Has to be Elisabeth Moss. She’s absolutely shining this season.

    Comment by Dani – May 10, 2012 05:31 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • bisou bisou, SERIOUSLY?

    Comment by Izzie – May 10, 2012 05:32 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This isn’t surprising, most of this season’s plotlines so far have in some way revolved around Megan. Based on Mad Men’s award show cred alone, she definitely has a chance of being nominated alone with Elisabeth Moss.

    Comment by SKM – May 10, 2012 05:32 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Peggy’s obviously the better character, the only question is if Moss is the better actor. I think she probably is. But I don’t trust the Emmys anyway, for many reasons including that they keep giving best variety show to the Daily Show over the Colbert Report.

    Comment by George – May 10, 2012 05:36 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Has Elizabeth Moss won one yet? If not, shame on them! If so, then… I guess it’s okay. Maybe.

    Comment by slizabeth – May 10, 2012 05:38 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Elisabeth Moss has never won. Last year really should have been her year for that.

      Comment by Britta Unfiltered – May 10, 2012 09:45 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • There are just too many A-lister women out there for the Mad Men girls to ever get Emmys. If they wanted a shot at a real Emmy, their only chance is Supporting, until Glenn Close, Kyra Sedgwick, Julianna Margulies, Kathy Bates, Connie Britton, Mariska Hargitay, Mireille Enos, and this year possibly the underappreciated women from Breaking Bad, not to mention Danaerys and Cersei from Game of Thrones all quit acting on television.

        Comment by KevyB – May 12, 2012 02:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • It doesn’t matter anyway, because neither one of them will win or possibly even get nominated.

    Comment by Lu – May 10, 2012 06:07 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Elisabeth has been nominated for an Emmy 3 years in a row and it is a shame she hasn’t won yet. She’s a sure bet IMO.

      Comment by Sarah – May 10, 2012 06:14 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Nothing against Jessica Pare, but I can’t stand her character Megan at all. Its like Mad Men has been shoving her down our throats this season. I wish they would realize they have other characters on the show.

    Comment by rachel – May 10, 2012 06:17 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I like both but Peggy seems to have more Emmy-worthy material. I’d go for Moss. :)

    Comment by Natalie – May 10, 2012 06:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I don’t understand why anyone on this show puts their hat in the ring for anything other than supporting. Unless you are Jon Hamm, you are not the lead.

    Comment by YowzaPowza – May 10, 2012 06:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Megan is ruining Mad Men and Pare doesn’t deserve to be nominated for anything.

    Comment by anna – May 10, 2012 06:57 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Pare doesn’t write the scrips. Matt W. and his crew do, if you don’t like the Megan character that is fine but don’t blame Jessica’s acting. She is doing the best she can with what is written. I love Elizabeth Moss, and the scenes she has been in have been great but it doesn’t distract from Megan at all for me.

      Comment by John From Raleigh – May 10, 2012 07:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • It really doesn’t matter, because they’re both going to lose the Emmy to Claire Danes.

    Comment by Keeko – May 10, 2012 07:17 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • ya, Danes has the win in the bag

      Comment by rob – May 10, 2012 10:24 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Started watching Homeland for Damien Lewis, but Claire Danes absolutely makes the show.

      Comment by stromboli – May 11, 2012 12:32 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • So true.

      Comment by Mary – May 11, 2012 03:45 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Danes has this in the bag. And Mad Men has never won an emmy in the acting categories and I don’t see it changing this year.

      Comment by Ethan – May 11, 2012 06:19 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Dream on!

    Comment by Megan – May 10, 2012 07:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • That seems fair to me, she’s been the star of the season.

    Comment by pria – May 10, 2012 07:40 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Jessica Pare gets my vote as to who should submit and be nominated for lead actress. However she would never get my vote to win. I’d love to have said “neither” (and I think I did click on that before I realized what the question here really was), but we ARE talking about The Megan Show after all. No one else has had the stories or the airtime. There is no other “lead actress” unfortunately.

    Comment by april-ann – May 10, 2012 07:41 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • It does make sense. Jessica is getting a lot of air time and is doing a fine job. I do think Elizabeth is certainly the better actress but I also don’t know what the rest of the season has in store and therefore what episode(s) will be submitted by both. I’ve been a fan of MM’s season 5 in general, though. I’d wager from the last episode that Megan’s presence will be reduced so that’ll be a plus for her detractors.

    Comment by Allison – May 10, 2012 09:10 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I think it’s accurate from a storyline and screentime perspective but she’s frankly the 10th name in the credit plus there are to “with’s” Robert Morse and John Slattery. So, I think it’s a mis-step. Further, I enjoy Megan enough but Elisabeth Moss blows her off the screen.

    Elisabeth Moss is the second name in the credits. Lead actress for her is accurate. And she’s putting in Emmy worthy performances this year. The way she appeared to physically crumble when Ma Olson put the harsh light of reality on her decision to move in with Abe? Brilliant.

    Now if we could just get a Vincent Kartheiser nomination for Supporting Actor. He’s third listed in the show, is having an outstanding year but it’s likely only Slattery will get nominated because Emmy voters are lazy and vote for who they know.

    Comment by orchardist – May 10, 2012 09:19 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This isn’t shocking news at all, I knew Mad Men would do this as it’s been The Megan Show all season. Nonetheless, it’s disappointing to hear. Actually, I take it back, I am shocked by one piece of news. I am shocked they are submitting Elisabeth Moss for lead actress over supporting and that kind of screws her, I think. No way the Emmy voters will consider her role on the show this season to be a lead role when she’s barely been on. Remember last year when they tried that with January Jones (who’s role had been reduced) and had her compete against Elisabeth Moss for lead? Lizzie got the nod, January didn’t. I don’t think Elisabeth Moss will get a nomination this year, which breaks my heart as she’s such a good actress and so deserving of an Emmy.
    Now for Jessica Pare…hmm, that’s a tough one to call. It’s possible she could get nominated. The last couple of years have been slim pickings for lead actress nominations at the Emmys due to a lack of great roles for women. And the Emmy voters will probably want a representative from Mad Men in that category, and they’ll have to pick her by default since she’s been the only true female lead. I guess I can see her getting nominated.
    But as a person above said, it doesn’t really matter because Claire Danes will win. She’s probably the biggest shoo-in at the Emmys this year. She’s on a really great show, the character is the best written female role on all of television right now, and her performance blows anything out of the water. I knew she would win this year the second in that season I stopped thinking of her as Claire Danes and started calling her Carrie Mathison in my head. She disappeared into that role so well, I forgot who she was in real life. I think when an actor as famous as her can make you forget who they really are, it’s a sign of a truly great performance.

    Comment by Britta Unfiltered – May 10, 2012 10:02 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Elisabeth Moss still belongs in lead. Peggy’s the only character on the show who’s screen time hasn’t been reduced to make way for The Megan Show.

      Comment by re – May 11, 2012 10:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Pare has been absolutely believable this year as Megan, a surprisingly complex, frequently compelling character that requires a wide range. Moss is still great, probably better.

    Comment by Seanny – May 10, 2012 11:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Pare is not a best actress, supporting or otherwise. Her character hasn’t even been explored. I don’t understand what would make her nominate herself.

    Comment by rubytu – May 10, 2012 11:45 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • she’s merely submitting herself in the race. nobody has been nominate yet. all the actors pretty much submit every year no matter how big or slim their chances are, it’s just show business.

      Comment by W – May 10, 2012 11:57 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Zou Bisou Bisou, bitches. Pare has been fantastic on Mad Men, more than hold her own on a show full of heavyweights.

    Comment by W – May 10, 2012 11:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Based on screen time and plot relevance Megan would be lead. Bummer. This whole thing just serves as a reminder that Elizabeth Moss has been given material this year that has grossly underused her talents.

    Suppose it does not matter though– Claire Danes should have this category locked down.

    Comment by AlyssaGs – May 11, 2012 02:34 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Megan represents the generational divide on Mad Men and I think the focus on her character (and how different she is from Betty) is essential to the story Matt Weiner wants to tell about the time and place the Mad Men characters are in. She has definitely been the female lead. As for Moss, she only needs to submit one strong episode to be considered, and she’s had her share of them this series.

    Comment by ramification – May 11, 2012 07:29 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • IMHO unless Mad Men turns this season around soon they are not going to win an Emmy for the Best Drama Series Again.
    Personally I think when Matthew Weiner signed his 2 year and out deal with AMC he knew that he could do whatever he wanted with the show without the worry of renewal .
    It shows.
    Mad Men has become the Megan Show.
    It makes sense that Jessica Pare / Megan is nominated as a lead actress because she has had the most screen time however that doesn’t make her the Best Actress in a Drama Series.
    That should go to Claire Danes.

    Comment by Lisa – May 11, 2012 09:28 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I think Homeland will win this year. Mad Men’s reign has to end sometime.

      Comment by re – May 11, 2012 09:54 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • There is nothing about Jessica Pare’s acting that is deserving of an Emmy. If she gets in over Elisabeth Moss I am going to be very upset!

    Comment by re – May 11, 2012 09:48 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I have to admit, Elisabeth Moss has had some great scenes this year, I loved her when she made Roger give her all the money in his wallet. Another great one was when she blew up at the presentation, I think for Heinz. In some ways she is becoming a little Draperesque! For me, the program has not had the bite from past seasons, but I do think Elisabeth Moss and John Slattery deserve emmys. Slattery always delivers his lines with great timing.

    Comment by Norma – May 14, 2012 11:49 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Jessica Pare is just not that good of an actress to deserve an Emmy nomination. Just because her character has dominated the season, does not mean she deserves a nomination. I’m really not that impressed. She’s okay. That’s it.

    Comment by drush76 – May 23, 2012 01:29 PM PDT  Reply To This Post

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