‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ Deserves All the Golden Globes (and Emmys) — Here’s Why
A 1950s Jewish housewife who's half-in-the-bag and on the brink of divorce walks into a bar...
That's the premise of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Amazon Studios' latest critically acclaimed comedy series that has maintained a 95 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes since its November 29, 2017 debut. The show — creator Amy Sherman-Palladino's rightful Gilmore Girls-successor, according to superfans — follows Miriam "Midge" Maisel (played by the incredible Rachel Brosnahan), who accidentally performs a world-class comedy set at a downtown New York club while mourning her failing marriage, and unwittingly sets into motion a career that could be something fantastic.
The show has been called a "a backhanded riposte to the old canard that women can't be funny" by NPR and more simply "exuberance in episodic form" by The Atlantic. And TV's most coveted distinctions might follow. While Gilmore Girls only managed to earn a single Golden Globes nomination (a Best Actress nod for the the excellent and underrated Lauren Graham) across seven seasons, Mrs. Maisel has managed two nods ahead of the 2018 ceremony: one for Best Comedy Series and another for Brosnahan for Best Actress.
Because the Hollywood Foreign Press Association prefers to throw curve balls over two-seamers, and frequently rewards new and quirky talent over expected, solid contenders (in Brosnahan's category, alone, the magnificent Julia Louis-Drefyus — who's won six Emmys in a row for her Veep role — has been completely shut out in favor of the good-but-greener Lena Dunham, Gina Rodriguez and Rachel Bloom), a Brosnahan win could be in the can. But it certainly wouldn't be undeserved.
Firstly, for all the Seinfelds, Louies and Crashings TV offers, women comedians are rarely, if ever, at the forefront of comedy series that, themselves, depict comedians. Tina Fey, who won two Golden Globes and an Emmy for her role as 30 Rock's fictional late-night comedy writer Liz Lemon, nearly fit the bill — but even then, the series' fictional TGS featured a man, Tracy Morgan's Tracy Jordan character, as its star.
Brosnahan told Variety she's very aware of how unusual the chance to play Maisel is, and how seriously she takes its responsibilities
"I think history is often told by men about men, so it was exciting for me to see a woman at the center of a period piece," she said. "Midge is also unwaveringly confident. I have never played a role like that. I don’t come across a lot of women like that in scripts. Trying my hand at standup was exciting to me. And I was really excited to work with a female creator, and that female creator being the brilliant woman that is Amy."
And for many, the potential for Mrs. Maisel victories — either at the Golden Globes or the subsequent Emmys later in the year— would be a long time coming for Sherman-Palladino, as Gilmore Girls remains one of TV history's most perplexing snubs. The show, famous for its mile-a-minute dialogue and bite-sized intellectualism, won an Emmy for Outstanding Makeup in 2004 and...that's it — no other nominations, either.
TV Guide.com even acknowledges that there was once a "Lauren Graham Rule" instituted to curb voting systems that keep massively talented stars like Graham — critically acclaimed but perhaps slightly less famous than some of their peers — at a deficit. So, no pressure, Brosnahan, but the redemption of one of TV's most beloved cult comedies could be on your shoulders...
And should Mrs. Maisel win, it would make Amazon Studios a verifiable comedy powerhouse — Transparent and Mozart in the Jungle have both won the Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy category since Amazon began producing original content in 2013. Transparent has also received two Emmy nominations in the Outstanding Comedy Series.
The 75th Golden Globe Awards will air Sunday January 7, 2018 at 8PM EST on CBS.
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