The 2011 Emmys: The Biggest Upsets

The 2011 Emmys: The Biggest Upsets It was a night for upsets at the 2011 Emmys, with many wins causing a collective shout of "WHAT?!" across the country. Sure, there were a number of winners who were no surprise at all ("Modern Family," for example. No-brainer), but others came from as far out of left field as they could. Read on to find out which picks were the biggest shockers!

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy:

Jim Parsons as Sheldon Cooper, "The Big Bang Theory
Johnny Galecki as Leonard Hofstadter, "The Big Bang Theory"
Matt LeBlanc as Matt LeBlanc, "Episodes"
Louis C.K. as Louie, "Louie"
Steve Carell as Michael Scott, "The Office"
Alec Baldwin as Jack Donaghy, "30 Rock"

It seemed a sure thing that voters would give the statue to Steve Carell, considering it was his final year with "The Office" and he has gone winless. True, the show has declined in quality of late, but that's no reason not to recognize Carell for his many years of amazing performances on the show.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy:

Melissa McCarthy as Molly Flynn, "Mike & Molly"
Laura Linney as Cathy Jamison, "The Big C"
Edie Falco as Jackie Peyton, "Nurse Jackie
Amy Poehler as Leslie Knope, "Parks & Recreation" 
Martha Plimpton as Virginia Chance, "Raising Hope"
Tina Fey as Liz Lemon, "30 Rock"

Edie Falco and Laura Linney seemed the frontrunners for this one, but it looks like voters decided to reward those who put in a funny performance, rather than those who put in a good performance on a show that is called a comedy (but is really just not a drama). However, even then this is a surprise as former winner Tina Fey or the very funny Amy Poehler would probably have been a more obvious choice. However, McCarthy is hot right now after "Bridesmaids," so this makes some sense.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy:

Julie Bowen as Claire Dunphy, "Modern Family"
Jane Lynch as Sue Sylvester, "Glee"
Betty White as Elka Ostrosky, "Hot In Cleveland"
Sofia Vergara as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett, "Modern Family"
Kristen Wiig as Various characters, "Saturday Night Live"
Jane Krakowski as Jenna Maroney, "30 Rock"

It's not that an actress from "Modern Family" winning an award is a surprise...after all, pretty much the entire adult cast of the show is nominated. But this was a strong year in the category, with Jane Lynch considered by many to be a sure thing. And if Lynch didn't win, Betty White seemed to be next in line considering that she had won a SAG award just a few months ago. But, never underestimate the Academy's love for ABC's most critically-acclaimed comedy.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama:

Kyle Chandler as Coach Eric Taylor, "Friday Night Lights"
Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson, "Boardwalk Empire"
Michael C. Hall as Dexter Morgan, "Dexter"
Hugh Laurie as Dr. Gregory House, "House"
Timothy Olyphant as Raylan Givens, "Justified"
Jon Hamm as Don Draper, "Mad Men"

Wow. Just wow. "Friday Night Lights" has been on the air forever, and only just last year were Chandler and his co-star Connie Britton nominated for awards. It's not that they weren't deserving, but the Academy just didn't give "FNL" the love it deserved, so a statue seemed well out of reach for the both of them. Not only that, but this year is one of the strongest in recent memory, with Steve Buscemi adding to the lineup of talented leading men for the first time. Many hoped that voters would rubber-stamp Chandler for a win, but few would have bet on him over Hamm or Buscemi.

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