It’s not always the star that gets the biggest laugh or most memorable zingers.

From the lead of a precinct to a man working his way up a football team and a young man coming to terms with his anger and sexuality, here are our picks for the Best Supporting Performances in a Comedy Series from 2021.

5.) Nick Mohammed (Ted Lasso: Season 2)

In Season 1 of Ted Lasso, Nate was the loveable, kind kitman-turned coach who was naive to a lot but had a great mind for the game. Seeing this fan favourite character struggle with his newfound success, his own father-figure issues and sense of righteous entitlement as he slowly broke away from the rest of the Richmond FC was hard to watch but made incredibly believable by Nick Mohammed.

The number of small moments that you can look back on that lead to his final position at the end of the season is really special, and Mohammed can take a fair amount of the credit for it.

– Ashley Hobley

4.) Andre Braugher (Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 8)

It can be difficult when a show enters the eighth season for a show to find something new for its characters to explore. That is not the case with Captain Raymond, with him having to face the aftermath of the events of 2020 and how that has changed the way we see police officers, especially as a black man, as well as his separation from Kevin.

Andre Braugher tackles all this difficult subject matter with the same grace and steadiness we’ve seen from him for years but still provides us with laughs. How lucky we were to have Braugher try his hand at comedy. Captain Holt has truly been a gift.

– Ashley Hobley

Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Season 1-8 DVD

3.) Gillian Anderson (Sex Education: Season 3)

We may keep giving Gillan Anderson a spot on this list as long as Sex Education exists, but it’s simply because she is that good in the show. However, Anderson gets more to move with this season as she deals with discovering her recent pregnancy and how to tell Jakob. Her son’s school attempts an almost prison-like structure, and her words are used against her from many different sides. The emotionally exhausting ending of the third season of Sex Education rests heavily on Gillian Anderson, and her performance is top of the field.

– Dylan Blight

2.) Brett Goldstein (Ted Lasso: Season 2)

While Brett Goldstein may have won an Emmy for his performance as veteran footballer Roy Kent in Season 1, I would say he does even better work in season 2 as Roy tries to figure out what to do post-football. Roy tries his hand at being a media pundit to hilarious results but we all kind of knew he would find his way back to Richmond.

Watching Roy try to be a better coach, mentor, parental figure and partner all season was not only funny but kind of inspiring. We can all look forward to more of Roy Kent in the future.

– Ashley Hobley

1.) Connor Swindells (Sex Education: Season 3)

What an incredible turnaround for the character of Adam Groff. In Season 1, he was the high school bully who showed his penis to everyone and struggled with this sexuality. In Season 2, he began to win fans over with his unusual courtship of Chidi. In Season 3, Adam has surely cemented himself as a fan favourite in the show, largely thanks to the performances of Connor Swindells.

Whether it is serious moments, like his break up with Chidi, or more comedic moments, like him constantly spilling substances on his clothes and being surprisingly aware of the ongoing lives of the Kardashians, Swindells does it all with aplomb. We can all look forward to what he does on Sex Education next and what other work he does in the future.

– Ashley Hobley

Dylan Blight and Ashley Hobley compiled this Top 5 list. The TV shows nominated must have finished airing their selected season within November 15th 2020 – November 15th 2021 and have been released in Australia via network TV, VOD or a streaming platform.