Aaron Paul Vs. Peter Dinklage: Who Will Win The Supporting Actor Emmy?

The Emmys will air tonight on NBC at 8:00 p.m. Celebrities will dress up. Speeches will be given. The Internet will react. And a ruling will be made concerning the most important debate of our generation.

Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series: Aaron Paul (Jesse Pinkman) versus Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister)

First, credit where it’s due: I’m sure the category’s four remaining nominees — Jim Carter, Mandy Patinkin/Mandy Patinkin’s reassuring voice, Josh Charles, and Jon Voight — are deserving actors. In another year, maybe we’d be talking about them. But 2014 is about Paul v. Dinklage.

All the mudslinging and slander and campaign war propaganda you’ll see in the coming weeks will be from Camp Pinkman and Camp Tyrion. Carter, Patinkin/voice, Charles, and Voight know they’re out. They haven’t even produced a libelous commercial with intent to ruin an opponent’s personal life and career. Such a white flag move.

But Paul and Dinklage are deeply engaged in the campaign war game. Right now, they’re in the Silent/Secret Phase, I believe it’s called. It’s when they rigorously prepare to destroy the other by digging up all possible dirt and fabricating libel if/when no dirt exists. Soon, they’ll unleash all their slander-bullets. Just like Walt and Cersei taught them.

For now, it’s our job to predict the winner of this war. Slash, who will the Television Academy determine was the better actor for his most recent season of television?

Sounds like it’s time for a TRADITIONAL ACTOR BATTLE, *explosion sound effect*

(Disclaimer: There is no traditional actor battle, so instead I will answer a series of narrowly thought-out and hopefully relevant questions and then review the answers to determine the better actor.)

WHO HAD THE BEST SCENE?
This is impossible. Tyrion had the Purple Wedding, his trial, the Tywin/Shae double-murder, and all those poignant and thought-provoking conversations in his prison cell. But Jesse Pinkman doused the White’s living room with gasoline, despondently tossed stacks of money from his car, watched Andrea die, tricked Walt into going to the desert, beat up Saul, and drove away from everything screaming and crying and laughing. I won’t pick a best scene, because who the hell do I think I am? But I’m close-to-comfortable saying Peter Dinklage had to carry his scenes slightly/a little/kinda more than Aaron Paul had to carry his. Dinklage was the scene’s best actor more often than Paul, maybe.
Winner: Peter Dinklage

DID YOU MODEL YOUR PHYSICAL APPEARANCE AFTER ONE OF THEM?
Yes. I did. I got an Aaron Paul haircut and tried to grow out my beard like him. I did not let my hair grow shaggy, imprint a scar across my face, or attempt to decrease in height.
Winner: Aaron Paul

WHO IS THE MORE LIKELY WINNER BASED ON RECENT HISTORY?
Take a look at this official chart:

2008: no one relevant nominated, Michael Emerson (Lost) wins
2009: Aaron Paul nominated, Michael Emerson wins fucking again!
2010: Aaron Paul wins, Michael Emerson DENIED!
2011: Peter Dinklage wins
2012: Aaron Paul wins, Peter Dinklage nominated
2013: Peter Dinklage and Aaron Paul both nominated, target=”_blank”>Boardwalk Empire Bro wins
2014: Peter Dinklage and Aaron Paul both nominated, also there are others

‘08 was the last time neither of these dudes was nominated for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series. Since ‘09, they own a combined nine nominations and three wins. They’re both riding three-year nomination streaks. But if we’re treating this like a study, which we are, then it’s important to hone in on 2012, the only year when one of these actors actually defeated the other in a head-to-head matchup.

The following statement is true: When both Aaron Paul and Peter Dinklage are nominated for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, and one of them wins, the winner is Aaron Paul. See? Simple.
Winner: Aaron Paul

WHO WAS FUNNIER?
Throughout Breaking Bad, Aaron Paul was a source of levity in an otherwise tragic series. But in the show’s final season, he was at the heart of all the tragedy. Meanwhile, Tyrion hasn’t yet delivered a non-witty sentence in his history of GOT. But Austin, this has more to do with the writing of the characters than the actor’s actual performance! Shut up, you’re ruining it.
Winner: Peter Dinklage

WHO HAD THE MOST PHILOSOPHICAL, BROADER-STROKES/GREATER-MEANING, TRUE DETECTIVE FINALE TYPE MOMENT?
There’s no doubt Aaron Paul toyed with the existential during his time as Nazi hostage and slave. And yes, he finally figured out the philosophy behind Walter White’s character. But Peter Dinklage delivered the beetle soliloquy.
Winner: Peter Dinklage

WHO WOULD YOU RATHER HAVE A BEER WITH?
Aaron to tell him to cool the jets on loving fame so much or Peter to ask what midget sex is like? Trick question.
Winner: Will Smith

WHO WOULD YOU RATHER HAVE MARRY YOUR SISTER?
Aaron, so you never wonder what little person sex is like.
Winner: Aaron Paul

WHO HAD THE BETTER INTERNET PRESENCE?
Peter Dinklage did this Reddit AMA, which revealed he was an apathetic cat owner. And then there were the dog pictures and the scooter pictures. But Aaron won the unofficial (but so official) award for Summer ‘13 Internet King. First, the late night interviews and cameos. Then, the Price Is Right video surfaced. And he met some fans outside his house. Dude has over two million Twitter followers. Sorry, Pete.
Winner: Aaron Paul

WHO MADE YOU CRY MORE?
Easy. Aaron. Every single episode we were crying for Aaron.
Winner: Aaron Paul

WHO HAD MORE GREAT QUOTES?
Jesse Pinkman had some all-star one-liners that made you cheer from your couch. But Tyrion looked Tywin directly in the eyes and said, “I did not kill Joffrey,” and then he turned to look Cersei directly in the eyes, “…but I wish that I had.” And then he briefly paused. And then he continued. “Watching your vicious bastard die gave me more relief…” and then he turned to look Shae directly in the eyes, “…than a thousand lying whores.” And it was perfect.
Winner: Peter Dinklage

WHO WAS MORE QUOTE-ABLE?
You tell me, bitch.
Winner: Aaron Paul

WHO HAD THE MOST TRIUMPHANT MOMENT?
Pinkman’s story arc concludes somewhat triumphantly. He refuses to kill Walt because it’s what Walt wants, and then he melodramatically escapes to kinda freedom. Tyrion, on the other hand, kills his lord father and his stupid whore, and also escapes to kinda freedom. Toss-up, but we’ll give it Dinklage for having to carry that cross bow down a hallway.
Winner: Peter Dinklage

Well, my final count is Paul 6, Dinklage 5, and Will Smith 1. But Peter Dinklage seemed to win most of the awards that had to do with acting. So Aaron Paul, while probably a good actor, might get much of his credit from just being a really fun person.

That leaves Dinklage and Smith. And that’s where I’m putting my money.

Congratulations, Peter Dinklage or Will Smith, on your 2014 Emmy win for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series. TC mark

featured image – Game Of Thrones

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