Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Poll Results - Who Should Win The Emmy For Outstanding Performance By An Actress In A Drama?

First a reply to Tami who wrote "A total of 20 votes were cast for you poll and you are actually taking the outcome seriously? Actually analyzing the voting patterns for the whopping 18 votes cast for Actress in a Comedy? Your comment about the SURGE of late voting actually had me in hysterics." Well I don't take it that seriously. Polls like this are scarcely scientific and I realise that the polling sample is miniscule, but then it's "important" to realise that this isn't a high volume site. If Maureen Ryan of the Chicago Tribune ran Emmy polls in her TV review blog, I'd take the result far more seriously than I'd take mine. That said, I do the polls for fun and like any blogger I want to see if people are responding to me. One sign is page views but another sign is people voting in polls. "Analyzing the voting patterns" is purely anecdotal in that I check the poll stats once or twice a day. If I were serious about analyzing voting patterns I'd set up a spreadsheet and be able to tell you exactly when votes started appearing for each category.

Actually a spreadsheet might not have been a bad idea in watching this poll. My old buddy Toby wrote in a comment, "Something fishy about this latest poll, I'm thinking, based on the number of votes cast (and for who)...." There were 15 votes cast this time around. Tied for fourth place with no votes were Minnie Driver, Mariska Hargitay, and Kyra Sedgwick. In third place with two votes is Edie Falco from The Sopranos with two votes (13%). In second place with five votes (33%) is Sally Field from Brothers & Sisters. But the winner of this poll is Patricia Arquette with eight votes (53%).

The low vote totals for Driver and Sedgwick (and incidentally, if I had voted I would probably have cast my vote for Kyra – I've been watching the first season of The Closer on the W Network and she is amazing) can be explained by the bias that polls in this blog seems to have related to cable shows. And before you go into hysterics again Tami (but I kid because I love) this bias is quite real and something that I've noticed throughout the three years that I've been running Emmy polls. I don't know about any bias towards Mariska Hargitay except that she won the Emmy last year. As for Edi Falco, the "anti-cable" bias may well be in place to hold her down to two votes. I won't be surprised if she wins in real life if for no other reason than it being the last chance they get to vote for The Sopranos, but I also won't be surprised if she doesn't.

This leaves us with Patricia Arquette and Sally Field, and what Toby thought was "fishy." If I can get into a little voting pattern riff for just a moment, most of the votes cast for Arquette all came within a 36 hour period. During that same period only one vote was cast for Sally Field. I don't know what to make of it but there you go. I was surprised because while I like Arquette's performance as Allison Dubois, I hate the show. Sally Field's performance as Nora Walker is much more to my liking. Here's what Toby said about it: "For me, she's the rock on which the whole show is founded, which is surprising since she was a recast for the role. But her character of Nora has this strength and indomitable spirit that fills the screen (probably not easy to do for such a small woman!)" It's more than that though. Field has taken what was presumably intended as a supporting role behind Callista Flockhart, and by force of personality and tremendous acting ability honed by over 40 years in the business made it into a part that gets nominated for Outstanding Actress while no one would even think of nominating the show's star. Nora is the glue that binds the show together and if I'm being honest with myself I would be less than surprised to see Sally Field – terminal cuteness and all – picking up her third Emmy. Like I said I like Patricia Arquette, primarily for the way that she plays a "real woman" – not the real Allison Dubois but a generic woman who isn't exactly the weight that TV and the movies say is "perfect" and a woman who is a harried mother who has to work to live the lifestyle she's become accustomed to. And then you add in the special abilities which is what makes it interesting as a TV show but which I find unbelievable and is the reason why I haven't watched the show since the first season. Sorry, but that's how I feel.

New poll up in a few hours – I'm off to the casino!

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