My Emmy Picks

If I was in charge of giving out the awards of the 66th Emmy’s – this is what it would look like. Bold and black is who I think will win. Bold and Red is who I want to win. If there is just a black name, then it’s both. Ok cool, good conversation.

Outstanding Drama Series
Breaking Bad
Downton Abbey
Game of Thrones
House of Cards
Mad Men
True Detective

Breaking Bad had an amazing last season – House of Cards is a tour de force – and True Detectives is highly overrated in my opinion. Downton is something my mom talks about sometimes and Mad Men is there for kicks. Here’s the scoop guys, Game of Thrones is the best piece of entertainment, tv show or otherwise, that is currently available for our eyes and ears to take in. Breaking Bad might get the nod just because it was the last season, but GoT deserves this. Sons of Anarchy and The Americans should have replaced True Detective and Mad Men on this list as well. 

Outstanding Comedy Series
The Big Bang Theory
Louie
Modern Family
Orange Is the New Black
Silicon Valley
Veep

Orange is the New Black is an amazing Dramedy that I’d say leans more towards Drama than comedy, but okay fine sure. I’m glad Veep and Silicon Valley are on this list as well. They are quality television shows that deserve some recognition, especially Silicon Valley that is the new kid on the block with young comedic talent that will shine in the coming years. The Big Bang Theory needs to stop being on this list next to shows like Louie and Modern Family, though. It just isn’t the same caliber, and honestly, it’s not even close. The Mindy Project should be on this list instead of The Big Bang Theory if anyone was wondering. I think Modern Family comes away with another win due to some of the best writing in television history, but Louie or Orange is the New Black could swiper no swipe it away from them with ease. Also on a related note, Rick and Morty is the best comedy on television currently and will most likely never be taken seriously, but I needed to mention it here so that I could, ya know, sleep at night. 

Outstanding Miniseries 
American Horror Story: Coven
Bonnie & Clyde
Fargo
Luther
Treme
The White Queen

Fargo was super weird and super entertaining and more importantly, it stood up to the monster of a movie it was based on. (That’s a good thing.) The one downside to Fargo was its finale, that seemed lackluster in retrospect. Because of that I won’t be surprised if American Horror Story nabs the win on Emmy night.

Outstanding Television Movie 
Killing Kennedy
Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight
The Normal Heart
Sherlock: His Last Vow
The Trip to Bountiful

To me this is a two horse race. Sherlock vs. The Normal Heart. Sherlock for its wildly entertaining writing and acting (although the 3rd season of the BBC hit did not live up to the masterpieces season 1 and 2 were), and The Normal Heart for both of those things plus a little extra. It’s heartwrenching and it’s about AIDs. So, in line with most award shows (COUGH that travesty called “12 years a Slave” that should never have beaten “Her”) it has heavy material that attracts award show wins like no other.

Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Matthew McConaughey, True Detective
Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Jeff Daniels, The Newsroom
Jon Hamm, Mad Men
Woody Harrelson, True Detective
Kevin Spacey, House of Cards

I think Brian Cranston will get a last season of a monster hit show bump with this one. Jeff got his last year, Jon Hamm is on this list as a placeholder (he’s great, but not Spacey great) speaking of – Spacey could absolutely steal this one and if he did I wouldn’t be mad about it. He is wonderful in House of Cards. Woody wouldn’t beat out Mr. Alright Alright Alright from the same show he is on and on that same note Mr. McConaughey’s performance was grasping at Emmy strings from the moment he came on screen. He should not win, but he just might.  Oh, and if James Spader is around he might just Kanye West this shit and take the award for himself for the work he is doing on The Blacklist this year, one of the only bright spots for NBC this last season. 

Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Lizzie Caplan, Masters of Sex
Claire Danes, Homeland
Michelle Dockery, Downton Abbey
Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Kerry Washington, Scandal
Robin Wright, House of Cards

In my world the best performance gets the prize, but this isn’t my world. Lead Actress in a Drama is always a huge toss-up. It’s like they put their faces on a dart board, blindfold themselves and hope for The Good Wife to win. My pick is Kerry Washington in the sickeningly entertaining show Scandal, but who the hell knows in this category. Robin Wright might get the nod because Spacey’s category is so stacked. Julianna Margulies might get the nod because the Emmy’s need to remind people The Good Wife exists. Claire Danes is still on one of the best shows of our entire generation and Lizzie Caplan is finally getting some recognition for something other than her chest. Hopefully they are solid dart players over there at the Emmy’s.

Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie
Benedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Dancing on the Edge
Idris Elba, Luthor
Martin Freeman, Fargo
Mark Ruffalo, The Normal Heart
Billy Bob Thornton, Fargo

If we’re talking performance alone, Mr. Billy Bob wins this category. But we’re not. I think The Normal Heart is about to have one hell of a night and this award will come right along with it.  

Lead Actress in a Miniseries or Movie
Helena Bonham Carter, Burton and Taylor
Minnie Driver, Return to Zero
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story: Coven
Sarah Paulson, American Horror Story: Coven
Cicely Tyson, The Trip to Bountiful
Kristen Wiig, The Spoils of Babylon

I gotta go see about a girl who should win this category but probably won’t.

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Louis CK, Louie
Don Cheadle, House of Lies
Ricky Gervais, Derek
Matt LeBlanc, Episodes
William H. Macy, Shameless
Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory

The Emmy’s have a raging hard on for Louie. They use giving him awards as if to say, “Hey look Alt Comedy crowds! We totally get you!” Louie is a writer first and actor second. He shouldn’t be winning these acting awards on acting grounds alone, although he already has. House of Lies needs the bump much more than Louie does and Don Cheadle rocks it in that show as one of the worst characters on television, in a completely loving way.

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Lena Dunham, Girls
Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Melissa McCarthy, Mike & Molly
Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation
Taylor Schilling, Orange Is the New Black 

Orange is the New Black and Taylor Schilling delivered a 2nd season that was better than the first and the main reason was because Taylor was just hands down better this time around. Either way I think they will still pick the safe HBO choice with Lena Dunham, though. This list is also missing Mindy Kaling for the Mindy Project btdubbs. 

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad
Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones
Jon Voight, Ray Donovan
Jim Carter, Downton Abbey
Mandy Patinkin, Homeland
Josh Charles, The Good Wife

I don’t care. I’m not picking Aaron Paul as amazing as he is. He already got one of these. The Dink, for that one scene in the court room, deserves an Emmy for the next 10 years of his life. Give this man a stupid trophy and a box to stand on for his well-deserved acceptance speech. Oh, and one more thing, Charles Dance as Tywin Lannister in Game of Thrones is left off this list? How in the holy hell is that possible? 

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad
Joanne Froggatt, Downton Abbey
Christina Hendricks, Mad Men
Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey
Lena Headey, Game of Thrones
Christine Baranski, The Good Wife

Skylar is SO ANNOYING. But anyway…Lena Headey plays a character you love to hate sometimes and hate to hate most of the time and at the end of the day is the real winner because she keeps us watching one of the most reprehensible characters ever created for books or television. Still though, last seasons of shows like Breaking Bad carry a heavy weight that usually comes along with awards to spare. 

Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie
Colin Hanks, Fargo
Jim Parsons, The Normal Heart
Alfred Molina, The Normal Heart
Martin Freeman, Sherlock
Joe Mantello, The Normal Heart
Matt Bomer, The Normal Heart

Sherlock, at its core, is a 2 lead show with two gigantic movie stars in the roles that made them this famous. Martin Freeman is fantastic. The Normal Heart doesn’t care though, and will be pillaging this award as well.

Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie
Frances Conroy, American Horror Story: Coven
Angela Bassett, American Horror Story: Coven
Ellen Burstyn, Flowers in the Attic
Kathy Bates, American Horror Story: Coven
Allison Tolman, Fargo
Julia Roberts, The Normal Heart

They want so badly to give Julia Roberts an Emmy. They want nothing more. But Kathy Bates will straight up hobble them if they don’t give it to the right lady, which, for the record, is her.

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Ty Burrell, Modern Family
Fred Armisen, Portlandia
Adam Driver, Girls
Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Modern Family
Tony Hale, Veep

With Brooklyn 99 snubbed from outstanding comedy series, they gotta give them something while Fred Armisen is one of the most under-appreciated talents of this generation . Also, Ben Schwartz (you might know him as Jean Ralphio) should be on this list for his brilliant work in “House of Lies.”

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Julie Bowen, Modern Family
Kate Mulgrew, Orange Is the New Black
Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory
Allison Janney, Mom
Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live
Anna Chlumsky, Veep

Should and I think, will win. Plus she was Captain Janeway in Star Trek: Voyager before she was a Russian lady in Orange is the New Black. Mad props. 

Outstanding Variety Series
The Colbert Report
The Daily Show
Jimmy Kimmel Live
Real Time with Bill Maher
Saturday Night Live
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

You know how many times I’ve had this exact conversation with people: “Ya know, I don’t like Jimmy Fallon but god damn he is killing it.” The answer is, lots of times.

Outstanding Reality Competition Program
The Amazing Race
Dancing With the Stars
Project Runway
So You Think You Can Dance
Top Chef
The Voice

I don’t care but also if Top Chef doesn’t win nothing else matters.

My Not So Secret Obsession

I have an obsession only some close friends and family know of – and I wont waste your time here: it’s the Olympics. Both the summer and winter games although I only take off work for the summer Olympics. To put this in perspective I give up vacation days to sit at home and watch my television for a week in the summer every 4 years. I bought a stupidly gigantic TV this year because I want to feel like I’m almost in Sochi, Russia for the 2014 winter games and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for the 2016 summer games.

To give you another example of how invested I am in the Olympic games I know off the top of my head that on September 7th, 2013 the International Olympic Committee (IOC) will be choosing from 3 cities (Tokyo, Madrid, and Istanbul)

logosat the 125th IOC session in Buenos Aires, Argentina to see who will be hosting the summer games in 2020. (For the record my educated guess is Tokyo, followed closely by Istanbul and Madrid is 3rd but who knows miracles have happened before and they almost beat Rio for the 2016 slot which at this point it looks as though they should have due to the overwhelming protests Rio is dealing with because of preparations for said Olympic games and the 2014 FIFA World Cup.)

FYI – The 2018 winter Olympics city has already been chosen to be PyeongChang, South Korea which I know sounds strange but I assure you it’s not. Also if I had to guess the next time any Olympic games would be on American soil I would say either the 2024 in Los Angeles (although the Toronto bid is strong) or 2026 in Salt Lake City, Utah for the winter games. So yeah, I’m super into it.

The first Olympics I remember watching was the summer Olympics of 1996. I tuned in because at the time I was a huge Orlando Magic fan (NBA team) and more specifically a Shaquille O’Neal fan (starting Center on the Orlando Magic) – so I needed to see him compete with the USA Basketball team. That week I was visiting my grandparents in Saratoga, NY and I begged and pleaded to stay up late enough to catch a replay of the game that happened earlier that day in Atlanta, GA.

Around 11pm that night I was sitting in my grandparent’s living room on a fluffy pillow in the middle of the hardwood floor aimed directly at the television. Behind me in their respective chairs both of my grandparents were completely passed out and had been for several hours which was fantastic because they would have never let 9 year old me stay up that late otherwise. My knees were digging into the ground through the pillow making it extremely uncomfortable but I fought through it because I was almost there. The promised land. The greatest show on earth. As the broadcast started on July 20th, 1996 (USA’s first game against Argentina) my mind was racing.

Before I dive deeper let me explain this team so that even if you don’t like or understand basketball you’re on the same page as me. For what it’s worth I consider the 1996 USA Men’s Basketball team to be the second best team in all of sports history. I’m not talking just basketball – I’m talking the second best group of human beings playing any sport of all time. And they would be #1 easily if it wasn’t for the 1992 USA Men’s team. See in 1992 the Olympics began to allow professional basketball players participate in the Olympics. Prior to 1992 only semi-pro players could play which meant the USA teams were mostly made up of the best collegiate players in the nation. That’s not to say we weren’t a force to be reckoned with before 1992 as we had won 9 gold medals in Olympics past but since then it has become a popular past time in many other regions of the world and America was not the overall favorite at every Olympic games in the 1980’s. In 1992 that all changed.

In 1992 the USA Men’s Basketball team didn’t lose one game on their way to a gold medal and furthermore their average margin of victory was 43.8 points. That’s a large amount for anyone wondering. Not only did they win, but they absolutely destroyed every team that got in their way. Sports Illustrated later stated that the Dream Team was “arguably the most dominant squad ever assembled in any sport” with the likes of Michael Jordan (the greatest basketball player of all time), Larry Bird (Best shooter in my opinion/small forward of all time in most peoples opinions), Magic Johnson (best point guard of all time hands down), Charles Barkley (Said to be the slowest and fattest guy on the court, but also one of the leading scorers on the team and one of the best power forwards of all time), Karl Malone & John Stockton (One of the best power forwards and point guards respectively of all time, and arguably the best duo of all time), Patrick Ewing (top 10 centers of all time), Clyde Drexler( top 10 shooting guards of all time), David Robinson (top 10 centers all time), Chris Mullin (50 greatest players of all time), Scottie Pippin (top 5 small forwards of all time), and last and certainly least Christian Laettner who had no right being there but he hit one amazing shot to win at the end of a game that some consider the greatest basketball game ever played.) All but one (you can guess which) of those players are in basketballs Hall of Fame for their individual efforts and the entire team is immortalized in the HoF as the first accurately named  “Dream Team.” If you ever want to learn more about said team watch this fantastic documentary on youtube fo free.

1992 – Jordan, Ewing, Johnson, Malone, Barkley

Sadly I was 4 years old in 1992 and did not yet have the level of appreciation for Olympic basketball as I did in 1996, so when I sat down to watch my first USA basketball game that night I was hearing about 1992 like it was already a legend. The 1996 team had 5 players from 1992 – Karl Malone, John Stockton, Scottie Pippin, David Robinson, and Charles Barkley. The new players included Shaquille O’Neal (top 5 centers of all time), Hakeem Olajuwon (top 5 centers of all time), Gary Payton (top 10 point guards of all time), Reggie Miller (2nd on the list of most 3 pointers ever made), Mitch Richmond (6 time NBA All-Star), Grant Hill (7 time NBA All-Star), and Penny Hardaway (3 time NBA All-Star). The margin of victory in 1996 ended up being a measly 32.3 points – not over 40, but it still did the job.

1996 Dream Team

Throughout the game these players would show off their talent against a well put together Argentina team that had no chance from the get go. John Stockton would throw a no look pass to Karl Malone for an easy dunk. From time to time head coach Larry Wilkens would put Shaq (7 foot 1), Hakeem (7 feet), and David Robinson (7 foot 1) in simultaneously which was just amazingly unfair. Reggie Miller would drain a 3 like he did in the other teams nightmares. I swear to this day I didn’t blink for long extended periods of time on purpose so I wouldn’t miss a single play. That year the Dream Team won the championship game 95 to 69 against FR Yugoslavia (now Serbia) – a blowout to end all blowouts.

When my grandparents woke up as the game ended and my obsession had taken complete hold of me I was in tears. My grandmother, obviously concerned that her grandson was sitting by himself in the dark and crying asked me what was wrong. I looked up at her, wiped the tears from my face and said “nothing. Nothing is wrong.” That night was the first time I  remember crying tears of joy.

To this day if I am asked what my overall goals in life are I say the ones that are sort of obvious: I want to be a writer and musician full time, but besides that – one day, I want to watch the USA Men’s Basketball team at the Olympics win a gold medal. And whomever is with me that day must be prepared, because I’m going to cry like a little baby. And if it’s my future wife (crosses fingers, knocks on wood at the same time) she will have to come to terms with the fact that she just witnessed the greatest moment of my life (tied of course with children and day of marriage) but it’s absolutely tied with no questions asked.

So – now that you know that about me what are your incredibly specific obsessions that no one really knows about? Let me know.

Til next time thanks for reading,

Ryan

My Spec Scripts!

Spec Scripts?! What does that mean?! Well, let me tell you friend.

Spec scripts are things that you write to show that you have the ability to…write. Over the years I’ve written lots of stuff but only a small amount of it I am proud enough to let the world see with their vision holes. I created a new part of my website literally called Specs (Click here to see it) that now has 3 examples of original scripts I have written. If you like what I’ve written here on this blog thing, I’m certain you’ll at least sort of like those spec scripts.

Oh, also, if you by any chance want to hire me to write things and/or just throw money at my face because of one of those scripts you read, I highly recommend doing so and contact me HERE.

8 Recommendations for Every Day Life

I’m always looking for products and entertainment that will make my life more awesome, because without new stuff how will I know if my old stuff sucks or not? Exactly, I won’t.

I am by no means qualified to review products but I don’t actually believe anyone is so screw it; I’ll throw myself into the ring and see how it goes. I’ll try to pick things I don’t think most people have and or have seen/owned, and if it so happens you have already graced these objects or products with your presence or even worse, you hate them, then I don’t care and shut your face.

Movie: Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

It didn’t do well in the box office and it has a generally annoying star (Michael Cera) but the director (Edgar Wright who also directed Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz) is balls to the wall good at his job. I bought this blu-ray 30 minutes into watching someone else’s blu-ray instead of illegally downloading it so…yeah…pretty big stuff.

TV Show: Sherlock (BBC)

CBS recently premiered a show called Elementary based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes. I watched it. It was okay. You know what’s not okay because it’s some of the greatest writing and acting to ever be put into the television format? The same god damn show that the BBC premiered in 2010.

Benedict Cumberbatch has the best name ever and plays Sherlock, an on and off addict and full time sociopath who solves the shit out of mysteries using deductive reasoning while his mistakenly homo life partner Dr. John Watson played by Martin Freeman gets dragged around and is charming in a best sidekick ever sort of way.

Also did I mention Martin Freeman is going to be fuckin’ Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit and Benedict Cumberbatch is slated to be both Kahn in the new Star Trek and Smaug in The Hobbit? I didn’t until right now? Crazy…SEE THIS SHOW

Food: Bacon and Meatloaf Wrap

If you’re a vegetarian I respect your decision but that sucks because this wrap is awesome. I’m not going to get into measurements because the only true way to measure during the food making process if with your eyes and your mouth. Also sometimes teaspoons.

For this wrap you’ll need:

Smoked Baconcooked crispy and ground up into small pieces

Meatloaf – cook in bacon grease if possible; sooo good.  You can also add stuff like onions, garlic, oregano, 3 tablespoons of extra prude olive oil, and black pepper

Cheddar Cheese– Melt that shit on top of the meatloaf

Russian Dressing– Oh my gawww soooo gooood. Basically it’s Mayo, Ketchup, and throw some horseradish, chives, and other shit in there. Or just buy it from the store like a normal human being. Thousand Island dressing is a decent backup in a pinch but just know that using it is total failure and you should reevaluate your poor life choices.

Caramelized OnionsPossibly the greatest invention since forever everything, read about making the tummy equivalent of striking oil here

Apple/Android Game: The Simpsons Tapped Out

               So okay, The Simpsons tricked me into playing Farmville, but this game got me through Super Nintendo Storm Sandy so I owe it an everlasting debt of gratitude.

Youtube Channels: Daily Grace, Mike Falzone, and VSauce

               For this I broke it into 2 categories which are comedy and learning shit. For Comedy check out Daily Grace and Mike Falzone and for accidental learning check out VSauce.

Grace, as her vlogs name suggests, makes a video every weekday and she is a lady who is just awkward enough to laugh with and not so awkward that you feel as though you should call the cops.

Mike Falzone is from the state I’m from and gives great advice that I wish I had said first.

VSauce tricks you into learning things and the guy who narrates the videos has the voice of a sex angel if you are into dudes who have cool voices.

Website: Rainy Mood

Have you ever thought the insanely generic thought, “Gosh I love thunder storms.” Well then you’re in luck! This website is a 20 minute loop of a fantastic rain and thunder track that you can play at different volumes! Ambient noise, guys! This is some highbrow shit!

If you want to take the experience from epic to super epic go to the bottom of the page and click the song choice that changes every time you visit the site. Personally I refresh the page until Bon Iver – Perth comes up but you can do whatever floats your metaphorical boat.

Book: Mine

There’s no way I wasn’t going to plug my own book. It’s sort of the entire point of this blog.

Music: Agnes Obel

Welcome to most relaxing shit of all time playa. This lady is straight outta Copenhagen, like a true Danish gangster. She plays piano and has a voice that could easily be put over every Indie movie you’ve ever seen. I highly recommend her for your ears. Also if you wanna get your funk in medium amounts of motion, check out the remix of her song Riverside.

So that’s it for my recommendations for now. If you guys liked it I’ll do it again, if you hate it we will never speak of it and it will hang an eerie awkwardness over our internet relationships for pretty much infinity. Sound good?

Good.