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Emmy Nomination Snubs and Surprises: Stephen Colbert to ‘The Americans’

Emmy Nominations Snubs and Surpises
Courtesy of FX/CBS/Netflix

Those screams of joy (and shrieks of anger) you heard emanating from Hollywood this morning meant one thing: the TV Academy released the annual Emmy nominations. And with that list came the usual surprises and snubs. Here’s who was disappointingly shut out — and happily included — this morning.

SNUB: Stephen Colbert, “The Daily Show,” Samantha Bee
A massive shake-up in the variety talk category left veterans “The Daily Show” (with new host Trevor Noah) and Stephen Colbert shut out for the first time in over a decade (when Colbert’s “The Colbert Report” launched on Comedy Central). Both shows drew zero noms this morning. Voters clearly didn’t warm to Colbert’s take on “The Late Show,” which had been nominated in its final season with original host David Letterman last year. “Daily Show” vet Samantha Bee was also expected to join the club for her host freshman series “Full Frontal,” but that program did pick up a nom for variety series writing.

SURPRISE: “Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee” and “The Late Late Show with James Corden”
Two beneficiaries of the turnover in the variety talk races: Jerry Seinfeld’s cult favorite Crackle interview series “Comedians In Cars” and breakout James Corden’s buzzy “Late Late Show.” CBS has to be thrilled for the man behind the “Carpool Karaoke” concept (which even scored a bonus nom in the Variety Special category), but who expected he’d overshadow his lead-in, Colbert, at the Emmys?

SNUB: “Girls”
Critics hailed the HBO dramedy’s “comeback” season, but the show was shut out of the Emmys completely for the first time in its run (last year both Adam Driver and guest star Gaby Hoffmann landed noms). Better luck next year for the final season?

SURPRISE: “The Americans
After three seasons of shutouts, the FX drama finally broke through in a major way landing five noms including the big drama series, actor (Matthew Rhys), and actress (Keri Russell) categories. The tide is turning, comrades.

SNUB: “Orange Is the New Black
Things are looking bleak in Litchfield. The third season of Netflix’s acclaimed dramedy drew just a single nom this year (for casting) after picking up four last year and 12 in season one. Perhaps the buzzier fourth season, which launched last month, can right the ship next year.

SNUB: Uzo Aduba
“Orange” standout Aduba, a two-time Emmy winner and heavy favorite heading into this year’s race, was among the most high-profile snubs.

In a first for Lifetime scripted series, critical darling “UnReal” landed noms in both the writing and acting categories, with Constance Zimmer’s hard-edged reality producer singled out in the drama supporting actress category.

SNUB: HBO’s limited series
HBO dominated the Emmys last year with wins in the drama, comedy, TV movie, and limited series categories. There’s no chance of that happening this year as the network’s highest profile limited series — David Simon’s Oscar Isaac starrer “Show Me a Hero” and season two of “True Detective” — drew a just one nomination between them (sound mixing for “True Detective”).

SNUB: Starz
It’s been a tough go for Starz at the Emmys over the years, and this year’s four noms for the premium cabler fell one short of last year’s already low five. Both “Outlander” and “Black Sails” picked up a pair of craft noms each, but there was nothing in the top categories and nothing at all for a range of programs including TV movie “The Dresser,” limited series “The Girlfriend Experience” and “Flesh and Bone,” dramas “Power” and “Da Vinci’s Demons” and comedies “Blunt Talk,” “Ash vs. Evil Dead” and “Survivor’s Remorse.”

SURPRISE: “American Ninja Warrior”
After four consecutive years of the exact same nominees in the reality competition category, NBC’s hot athletic trial topped Fox’s fading “So You Think You Can Dance” to land a nom alongside five returning nominees.

Critical favorites “Jane the Virgin” and “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” have found success at the Golden Globes, but can’t seem to get any love from Emmy voters, either in the comedy or acting races. (“Jane” did earn a repeat nom for narrator, while “Crazy” picked up four noms, almost all for its original music.)

SURPRISE: Louie Anderson
Louie Anderson’s work in “Baskets” was one of the year’s most acclaimed performances in a comedy, but it’s still a relief to see the quirky, cult favorite show recognized with a nom.

SNUB: “Horace and Pete”
To be sure, the self-financed series was a long shot at best, but the Louis CK effort was adored by critics and stocked with powerhouse performances, from Steve Buscemi to Edie Falco. Yet the only recognition it received was for Laurie Metcalfe’s guest turn, as well as editing.

SNUB: Jim Parsons and Julianna Margulies
Once Emmy darlings with a crate of trophies to their credit, both were shut out for the second year in a row. Perhaps it was a long shot that they would return to the fold, but nostalgia for “The Good Wife’s” final season should have at least helped Margulies.

SURPRISE: “A Very Murray Christmas”
A star-studded but deeply silly old-fashioned variety special less than a hour long topped multiple serious contenders to land a TV movie nom. That’s the power of Murray.

SNUB: “American Horror Story: Hotel”
It’s hard to call a show that managed eight noms a true snub, but last year’s “Horror Story” installment (“Freak Show”) racked up 19 noms, so the decline is extreme. While supporting actresses Sarah Paulson and Kathy Bates landed repeat noms, new leading lady (and Golden Globe winner) Lady Gaga proved no substitute for the series’ two-time Emmy winner Jessica Lange.

SNUB: “Billions”
Showtime’s financial drama seemed tailor-made for the Emmys, given its weighty themes and movie-star credentials in Paul Giamatti, not to mention Emmy winner Damian Lewis. But it landed zero noms.

SURPRISE: Laurie Metcalf
Three noms in a single year would be a great showing for anyone, but Emmy veteran Metcalf scored in every category she was entered: guest actress in a drama for “Horace and Pete,” guest actress in a comedy for “The Big Bang Theory,” and (arguably most surprising) lead actress in a comedy for “Getting On.”

SNUB: “Modern Family”
How the mighty have fallen. After winning Emmy’s comedy series category a record-tying five times, the ABC powerhouse dropped to an all-time low of four noms this year. And it’s the first time in Emmy history only one cast member (Ty Burrell) landed a nom.