The Walking Dead: What are the Emmy voters missing?

Photo Credit: Jace Downs/AMC
Photo Credit: Jace Downs/AMC /

Emmy voters are ignoring the powerful performances on The Walking Dead

Another Emmy nomination season has arrived and sadly once again some of the best of the best in the acting field have been passed over. The Walking Dead has been ignored for the entirety of its ten seasons, but why is that happening?

While I don’t know the criteria for a nomination, it seems impossible the likes of Melissa McBride, Norman Reedus, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Danai Gurira and Samantha Morton did not receive at least a nomination in their categories. Season 10 saw impressive acting on the parts of several actors but none more so than the 5 I had hoped would FINALLY be recognized for their talent.

Melissa McBride amped up her already amazing acting up to new heights this past season. Season 10 “Ghost” and “Look at the Flowers” were powerhouse episodes that highlighted her talent to perfection. During the course of 10 years, McBride has consistently given performances that have led to calls by fans and fellow cast mates for an Emmy nomination, going all the way back to the season 4 episodes “The Grove”. Even when the writing left something to be desired, she has always brought her A game to the show.

walking dead
Photo Credit: Jace Downs/AMC /

Norman Reedus has also brought his A game this season.  I found myself surprised at the breadth and depth of emotion Daryl has shown this season. We’ve seen Daryl blow stuff up, make snarky comments, and make walker kills that at times can seem a bit over the top, but this season we got to see a vulnerability in the character, whether it was his scenes with Judith, Lydia and RJ or trying to reach Carol through the rage fueled revenge that has been burning in her since last season’s “Calm Before”,  We also got to see Daryl as a leader, something I personally had doubts about, but Reedus has fully stepped into the void left by the departure of Andrew Lincoln and has shown himself to be capable of leading the show.

Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan, Samantha Morton as Alpha; group - The Walking Dead _ Season 10, Episode 13 - Photo Credit: Jace Downs/AMC
Photo Credit: Jace Downs/AMC /

Jeffrey Dean Morgan is one of the few cast members whose work I knew and enjoyed prior to his being added to the show as Negan. I’ll admit I wasn’t a fan of the character Negan until last season and while I still hold a grudge over Glenn (R.I.P Glenn, you are still missed) I have developed an appreciation for the character which has grown this past season. Like Daryl, there has been a vulnerability to the character yet he has still managed to keep his edge. His scenes with Samantha, Melissa and Norman have been fantastic to watch and a treat for viewers.

Photo Credit: Jackson Lee Davis/AMC
Photo Credit: Jackson Lee Davis/AMC /

And then there is Samantha Morton… What can I say about her in the role as Alpha that could possibly do the character and the actress justice? I didn’t realize I knew her work before she was cast. In her role as alpha, she has managed to make one of my least favorite comic arcs compelling to watch and kept me riveted to the screen. Watching her act off Melissa in “look at the flowers” was as a friend said, a MASTER CLASS in acting. Brilliantly channeling long dead characters as the manifestation of Carol’s fears should have guaranteed a nomination for Samantha in a guest role. There were nuances to her acting that made Alpha hypnotic to watch.

Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC /

Danai Gurira had an excellent finale season and its heart breaking for this fan that she was overlooked by the Emmy voters. Her finale episode was a testament to her talent and she is one actress I will definitely miss on the show. Our Sarabeth Pollock did an excellent article a few weeks ago highlighting all the reasons Danai deserved a nomination and I couldn’t agree more with her reasoning. Check the link in case you missed it.

Having watched this season I’m boggled at the fact these talented actors were not given the recognition they deserve.  Acting wise, I feel each of them could stand toe to toe with their peers that were nominated.

light. Related Story. Emmy Awards 2020: Another year, another snub for The Walking Dead

So what did the Emmy voters miss? They missed some of the hardest working, multi- faceted acting on T.V. this past year and I almost feel sorry for them because they have missed out on some astonishing talented performances.