Mrs. Maisel amazed us, Game of Thrones played out and Chernobyl blew up. It’s been a massive year for television, but which of these TV shows will claim the honor of an Emmy award?
The 71st Primetime Emmy Awards take place this Sunday, Sept. 22, at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and will be broadcast in the US by Fox. Let’s look at which shows and stars are likely to be celebrating when all the envelopes have been opened.
Setting the scene
This year is going to be big for Game of Thrones — the show ended in May, and 2019 is its last chance to scoop a third Emmy for best drama. HBO’s phenomenally popular fantasy show leads the pack with 32 nominations, despite a final season that divided viewers (it already won 10 awards at this year’s Creative Arts Emmys). Nine of the show’s stars are nominated for the lead or supporting actor categories, including Gwendoline Christie who nominated herself much to the confusion of fans.
Thrones plays a big part in making HBO the network with the most nominations. This year HBO claims 137 noms for shows including pitch-black comedy Barry and cutting satire Veep, which also ended this year. The network brought us powerful one-off dramas Chernobyl and Sharp Objects, while you can currently catch up with the new season of Succession, a biting look at the luxurious lives of the super-rich that plays like Game of Thrones with helicopters and boardroom battles instead of dragons and sword fights.
Just behind Thrones is When They See Us, with 16 nominations. The hard-hitting docu-drama is based on a true story, a big trend on the big screen and increasingly dominates the small screen. Chernobyl, Escape at Dannemora, A Very English Scandal and Fosse/Verdon are other true stories on the shortlist.
When They See Us is one of many shows to earn nominations for streaming service Netflix, which could win awards for shows like Ozark, Russian Doll and the final season of House of Cards.
Netflix rival Amazon Prime Video has been nominated 47 times, including 20 for the streaming service’s irrepressible original show The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Amazon also claims nominations for Fleabag and A Very English Scandal, which appeared on the BBC first.
How will fan reaction to Game of Thrones and other shows influence Emmy voters? Look here for the full list of nominees, and here for a handy guide on how to watch their shows. It also might be useful to check out this guide to who’s behind the voting, what with a level of secrecy surrounding the whole thing.
Also note that the Emmys are following in the Oscars’ footsteps by not having a host. It worked out for the Academy, so let’s hope one of TVs biggest nights has a good one too.
Outstanding drama series
- Better Call Saul
- Game of Thrones
- Killing Eve
- This Is Us
It’s got to be Thrones — partly because it’s likely most Emmy voters will have actually watched the show’s entire, and partly because there may be some goodwill toward sending the massively influential show out with a bang. That’s not to mention the it bagged at the Creative Arts Emmys — focused on technical achievement, which aside from one , has been one of Thrones’ best assets.
Outstanding comedy series
- The Good Place
- The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
- Russian Doll
- Schitt’s Creek
Veep is also heading out the door after its seventh and final season aired in May, but with so many worthy competitors in the category it has dominated for the last four years, it may have to step aside for the likes of the Bill Hader-starring Barry. The dark comedy’s second season not only bettered the first, it turned heads with a surreal standout episode upping its credentials as something completely unique on TV.
Outstanding limited series
- Escape at Dannemora
- Sharp Objects
- When They See Us
It’s between Chernobyl and When They See Us for sure. But Ava DuVernay’s miniseries might just pip the former with its unflinching, empathetic light shed on the case of the Central Park Five.
Outstanding television movie
- Black Mirror: Bandersnatch
- Deadwood: The Movie
- King Lear
- My Dinner With Herve
Who didn’t have a go at clicking through the different pathways in, Charlie Brooker’s painstaking choose-your-own-adventure movie? But while Bandersnatch ticks the uniqueness box, the poignant vote would go to Deadwood: The Movie. Arriving 13 years after the TV show ended, with the majority of the original cast including Timothy Olyphant and Ian McShane, it would be some victory for the celebrated show.
Outstanding lead actress in a drama series
- Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones
- Jodie Comer, Killing Eve
- Viola Davis, How to Get Away With Murder
- Laura Linney, Ozark
- Mandy Moore, This Is Us
- Sandra Oh, Killing Eve
- Robin Wright, House of Cards
She lost out last year to a gracious Claire Foy (The Crown), but this year’s the one for Sandra Oh, the bumbling heart of everyone’s favorite spy thriller, Killing Eve. It’ll be historic too: If Oh wins, she’ll be the first woman of Asian descent to win an Emmy in this category. This year’s the one.
Outstanding lead actor in a drama series
- Jason Bateman, Ozark
- Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us
- Kit Harington, Game of Thrones
- Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
- Billy Porter, Pose
- Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us
Some would say they know who it won’t be (sorry, Kit Harington).would be a worthy winner, but in a tight category, the nod might go to Bob Odenkirk, who’s been knocking on the door for some while now with his consistently excellent work in Better Call Saul.
Outstanding lead actress in a comedy series
- Christina Applegate, Dead to Me
- Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
- Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
- Natasha Lyonne, Russian Doll
- Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek
- Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag
While the entire world may not have seen Fleabag, which they absolutely should, Emmy voters in this category probably have. That gives us some hope that Phoebe Waller-Bridge will take home lead actress. Despite this being Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ last chance to win with Veep, her six-year winning streak already seems like ample recognition…….Read More>>