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Can 'Grey's Anatomy' revive its Emmy hopes?

May 8, 2009 |  2:47 pm

On last night's episode of "Grey's Anatomy," it was bridesmaid Izzie (Katherine Heigl) who ended up walking down the aisle, rather than bride-to-be Meredith (Ellen Pompeo). This was doubly surprising as many of the medical drama's devout fans had expected Heigl to be walking the plank following her dismissal of the quality of the show's writing last year when Gold Derby asked her why she didn't submit her name for Emmy consideration.

In 2007, Katherine Heigl won the second of only two Emmy Awards to go to this drama series over its first four years in contention; the other was a 2006 casting prize. In total, the show has amassed 25 nominations and competed for best drama series for its first full season in 2006 (losing to "24") and again the following year ("The Sopranos" won for its farewell season). Last year, the show did not number among the final six series nominees, but it did make the top 10 runoff.

This year, the nominating process has been revised to eliminate the juried runoff and the contenders will be determined solely by popular ballot. That "Grey's Anatomy" ranks 14th so far this season in TV's Nielsen ratings should help its cause. Up against ratings powerhouse "CSI," the show's average audience is 12.5 million (about half the number of who tune in to "American Idol")  And last night's much-hyped 100th episode was up substantially from that with an estimated audience of 15.3 million.

Grey's Anatomy Katherine Heigl Justin Chambers Emmy AwardsOn "Grey's Anatomy" this season, Izzie has been stricken with cancer that has spread to her brain and caused her to hallucinate. In an emotional moment last night, she asked her late love Denny to leave her in peace so that she could be with her new husband, Alex (Justin Chambers). Such socko material should make Heigl happy enough to submit her name for Emmy consideration this season.

Two years ago, Heigl had prevailed over two of her cast mates (Sandra Oh, Chandra Wilson) as well as "The Sopranos" stars Lorraine Bracco and Aida Turturro, and Rachel Griffith from "Brothers and Sisters" to win the supporting actress Emmy Award. So it was quite the surprise last June when we saw that Heigl had not listed herself on the preliminary Emmy list. When asked why, she responded: "I did not feel that I was given the material this season to warrant an Emmy nomination."

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Photo: ABC

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