2011 Emmy Nominees: 'Glee' Gals, 'SNL' Hosts Take Guest Acting Categories
2011 Emmy Nominees: 'Glee' Gals, 'SNL' Hosts Take Guest Acting Categories
John Kubicek
John Kubicek
Senior Writer, BuddyTV
Some of the smaller Emmy categories are usually my favorites, and this year, the races for Guest Actor and Actress are filled with some superb performances. Glee scored three nominations for its guest actresses, including a surprising but deserving one for Dot-Marie Jones as Coach Beiste. And Saturday Night Live also dominated with three hosts scoring nominations.

On the drama side, there are also some cool nominees, including Lost alum Jeremy Davies on FX's Justified, Paul McCrane for Harry's Law (it's a terrible show, but he was fantastic and very deserving) and, in a nomination that makes me the happiest, Rande Heller as Don Draper's old and now deceased secretary, Miss Blankenship.

Also, here's a fun fact: This is the first time in five years that Law and Order: SVU didn't get any guest acting nominations. Plus, helping Paul McCrane's chances, actors from David E. Kelley legal dramas have won this category for seven of the last 13 years.

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Here are the nominees for guest actor and actress.

Idris Elba, The Big C
Nathan Lane, Modern Family
Zach Galifanakis, Saturday Night Live
Justin Timberlake, Saturday Night Live
Matt Damon, 30 Rock
Will Arnett, 30 Rock

-Elba wasn't funny, but after getting regularly snubbed for The Wire, I like that he's a double nominee this year for The Big C and Lead Actor in a Miniseries/TV Movie for Luther. I'm also amused that, even though this is a guest category, Arnett and Timberlake have been nominated here before for the same roles.

Kristin Chenoweth, Glee
Dot-Marie Jones, Glee
Gwyneth Paltrow, Glee
Cloris Leachman, Raising Hope
Tina Fey, Saturday Night Live
Elizabeth Banks, 30 Rock

-The trio of Glee ladies is fine (Jones being the most deserving), but I think Leachman is the real highlight and a lock to win.

Bruce Dern, Big Love
Beau Bridges, Brothers and Sisters
Michael J. Fox, The Good Wife
Paul McCrane, Harry's Law
Jeremy Davies, Justified
Robert Morse, Mad Men

-It's cool to see a Lost alum here, and Davies definitely deserves it, but I'm also happy that after a long career and solid, McCrane finally has his first Emmy nomination.

Mary McDonnell, The Closer
Julia Stiles, Dexter
Loretta Devine, Grey's Anatomy
Randee Heller, Mad Men
Carla Buono, Mad Men
Joan Cusack, Shameless
Alfre Woodard, True Blood

-This is a stacked category, though Cusack and Stiles, who both appeared in nearly every episode of their Showtime dramas, would be better suited as supporting actresses. Like McCrane, I'm happy that the brilliant Loretta Devine scores her first ever Emmy nomination too.

(Image courtesy of FOX)