Welcome to movies, miniseries and -- what the heck -- let's do reality and variety series too, in today's Emmys' picks. The minis category is always a good one, thanks to HBO. And as you will notice below, HBO will most assuredly will win something this Sunday.
LEAD ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE: Michael Douglas, "Behind The Candelabra," HBO; Matt Damon, "Behind The Candelabra," HBO; Toby Jones, "The Girl," HBO; Benedict Cumberbatch, "Parade's End," HBO; Al Pacino, "Phil Spector," HBO
Who will win: Not as easy as this looks here, and -- in fact, this may be the most interesting category in Emmy-Dom this year. Really, this is down to just two -- Douglas or Damon -- but either choice works.
Who should win: Douglas. Remarkable performance that never once fell to the level of mimicry or gimmickry. Doesn't mean Douglas didn't ham it up in parts, but then how could he resist?
LEAD ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE: Jessica Lange, "American Horror Story," FX; Laura Linney, "The Big C: Hereafter," Showtime; Helen Mirren," Phil Spector," HBO; Sigourney Weaver, "Political Animals," USA; Elisabeth Moss, "Top of the Lake," Sundance Channel
Who will win: Imagine the poor, harried, crazed voters agonizing over this one? But, at the end of the day, they will punch the ticket for Sigourney Weaver, if only because her political suasion in this mini so clearly matches their own.
Who should win: Elisabeth Moss. No one seems to realize that her work in "Top of the Lake" often exceeded (or is, at the very least, was as good as) her work in "Mad Men."
MINISERIES OR MOVIE: "American Horror Story: Asylum," FX; "Behind the Candelabra," HBO; "Phil Spector," HBO; "Political Animals," USA; "The Bible," The History Channel; "History Top of the Lake," Sundance Channel
What will win: Simply no contest here. The sequined one walks away with it.
What should win: "Animals" doesn't really belong here; "AHS" had an uneven season (some really good episodes, some really not good episodes), "Phil Spector" was silly; "The Bible" was good in parts, way over the top in others; "Top of the Lake" was relentlessly grim under that wide blue New Zealand sky. Leaving ... just one: "Candelabra."
REALITY-COMPETITION PROGRAM: "The Amazing Race," CBS; "Dancing With the Stars," ABC; "Project Runway," Lifetime; "So You Think You Can Dance," Fox; "Top Chef," Bravo; "The Voice," NBC
Who will win: "The Amazing Race"
Who should win: "The Voice" This is a category in need of fixin'. Nothing against "Amazing," which is a fine television show, but I have long held the belief that voters have an inherent bias against unscripted, and consider it beneath their dignity as TV professionals. So they go for the lesser of evils: "Amazing Race." It's not a wrong choice but you wonder if they bother to watch some of the other worthy contenders here, like "SYTYCD"?
VARIETY SERIES: "The Colbert Report," Comedy Central; "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart," Comedy Central; "Jimmy Kimmel Live," ABC; "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon," NBC; Real Time With Bill Maher," HBO; "Saturday Night Live," NBC
Who will win: "The Daily Show"
Who should win: "The Colbert Report" and for a whole bunch of reasons — some of them dating back years. "Colbert" deserves a win here big time, and the failure of the Academy to recognize this show represents a failure of either imagination or thinking outside of the obvious box, which in this instance has enclosed — for over a decade — you-know-what. It's a good box, but try another one sometime.