2019 Emmy Predictions, Part 5: Drama, Comedy, And Limited Series

Finally, here we are now with the top series categories. There’s one lock, one two way race and one with I think three of four distinct possibilities. 

DRAMA SERIES

Jon Snow, Khaleesi and the iconic series says goodbye

Jon Snow, Khaleesi and the iconic series says goodbye

  • Better Call Saul

  • Bodyguard

  • Game of Thrones

  • Killing Eve

  • Ozark

  • Pose

  • Succession

  • This is Us

The least suspenseful award of the night goes to Game of Thrones in a walk, given its record nomination haul and the recognition of the series long achievement as a whole. I don’t think anything else stands a chance actually, so I’m not sure what else to even make a case for. It will be a more interesting race next year, when Succession’s buzz will have grown even higher, in my opinion, and perhaps with The Handmaid’s Tale back in contention as well. 

Winner: Game of Thrones

COMEDY SERIES

I’m too chicken to predict my favorite,  Barry , so I’m defaulting to last year’s winner

I’m too chicken to predict my favorite, Barry, so I’m defaulting to last year’s winner

  • Barry

  • Fleabag

  • The Good Place

  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

  • Russian Doll

  • Schitt’s Creek

  • Veep

This one is more difficult, because I think the winner could be any one of either Veep, Maisel, Barry or Fleabag. But, I will adhere to my own Emmy rule- when in doubt go to last year’s winner. So as much I really would like Barry to win and was excited at first about its chances when it got so many nominations, I think it’s in competition with Veep as the other HBO series (and that one being a multiple past winner that just had its final season), and that leaves space for the voters to just go with Mrs. Maisel again, which got a bunch of creative arts Emmys last weekend and seems to still be on a high with the industry in general. The other choice here is Fleabag, which has no other chance to ever win, but I still think that’s a major dark horse, despite the huge buzz surrounding Phoebe Waller-Bridge. My guess is that show wins a writing award for its creator/star, while the top ones go to something else.

Winner: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Alternate: Veep

Dark Horse: Barry

LIMITED SERIES

I think  Chernobyl  will take it…but  When They See Us  could easily prevail

I think Chernobyl will take it…but When They See Us could easily prevail

  • Chernobyl

  • Escape at Dannemora

  • Fosse/Verdon

  • Sharp Objects

  • When They See Us

I believe this one will go to HBO’s Chernobyl, but it’s in a head to head fight with Netflix’s When They See Us, and it’s probably closer than people think. Both series are incredibly powerful and got showered with nominations this year, and the passion for them is high. But I think When They See Us will take an acting award and possibly directing for Ava Duvernay, leaving Chernobyl, as the prestige HBO series (the network still triumphs over streaming) to come out on top in series. As for the other shows, probably Ben Stiller’s Escape at Dannemora is in third, with Fosse/Verdon fourth and Sharp Objects having come out too long ago now to sustain its initial buzz, as HBO’s other entry.

Winner: Chernobyl

Alternate: When They See Us

Dark Horse: Escape at Dannemora

2019 Emmy Predictions, Part 4: Acting in a Drama Series

So now we’re on to drama. These are sort of all over the place and I don’t quite feel good about my picks for any of them besides supporting actor.

DRAMA ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

Crossing my fingers for Bob Odenkirk this year

Crossing my fingers for Bob Odenkirk this year

  • 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

Ummm. There’s no real heavy hitter in this category this year, which means it really should be Bob Odenkirk’s turn for Better Call Saul, but I just question the show’s momentum. It’s so quiet at the moment- will voters flock to him? I don’t know this Ozark show, but Jason Bateman is pretty beloved in the industry, so he may win in lieu of another favorite. I don’t think Harington will win lead actor, despite the enormous amount of love for Game of Thrones’s final season (from the Emmys, not the public). Ehh..I’m unsure.

Winner: Bob Odenkirk (really hoping his time has come)

Alternate: Jason Bateman 

Dark Horse: Billy Porter (this would be great, and a big surprise and boost for Pose)

DRAMA ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

This would sort of be an upset, but not to anyone who actually watches  Killing Eve

This would sort of be an upset, but not to anyone who actually watches Killing Eve

  • 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

I’m taking this category for my one wild dart and predicting who I desperately want to win, and that’s Jodie Comer. Most people think Sandra Oh will take it this time, as an overdue vet in the industry, but if you actually watch Killing Eve, you will see that Comer is the biggest revelation on it and the true factor in making you want to continue watching. I’m just going to go for it with her. Sometimes surprises occur, especially if people actually view the submission tapes, and hers is a killer.

Winner: Jodie Comer

Alternate: Sandra Oh

Dark Horse: Laura Linney

DRAMA SUPPORTING ACTOR

Look for Peter Dinklage to win Emmy no. 4

Look for Peter Dinklage to win Emmy no. 4

  • Alfie Allen, Game of Thrones

  • Jonathan Banks, Better Call Saul

  • Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Game of Thrones

  • Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones

  • Giancarlo Esposito, Better Call Saul

  • Michael Kelly, House of Cards

  • Chris Sullivan, This is Us

Now, for this one I feel pretty good about predicting Peter Dinklage as Game of Throne’s acting trophy for the final season, and his fourth one for the role of Tyrian Lannister. He’s always been the face of the show and unless one of the other people pulls it off this year, will remain the only actor to win an Emmy for their performance on the series. I’m fine with that choice too, as he’s great and I don’t think the other guys in the category are particularly better than him.

Winner: Peter Dinklage

Alternate: Jonathan Banks

DRAMA SUPPORTING ACTRESS

I don’t watch this show, but I’ve heard she’s the only good thing about it

I don’t watch this show, but I’ve heard she’s the only good thing about it

  • Gwendoline Christie, Game of Thrones

  • Julia Garner, Ozark

  • Lena Headey, Game of Thrones

  • Fiona Shaw, Killing Eve

  • Sophie Turner, Game of Thrones

  • Maisie Williams, Game of Thrones

With a record four actresses from Game of Thrones vying for the award here, it’s a pretty good bet none of them takes it, but if anyone could, I guess it might be Maisie Williams? Of the four, she’s the only one who had much to do in these last episodes. I always wanted Lena Headey to win an Emmy for Cersei, but she couldn’t possibly win it for hanging around on a balcony drinking wine all season, right? Or can she? I don’t know, I think this may go to Julia Garner or even Fiona Shaw, just for standing apart in the category.

Winner: Julia Garner

Alternate: Maisie Williams

Dark Horse: Fiona Shaw

2019 Emmy Predictions, Part 3: Acting in a Comedy Series

Today we’re back with the comedy acting races, which I think have frontrunners for the leads, while it’s anyone’s game in supporting. Let’s have at it, shall we?

COMEDY ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

I think JLD will take it one last time, but Rachel Brosnahan is on her heels

I think JLD will take it one last time, but Rachel Brosnahan is on her heels

  • 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

I think this will got to Julia Louis-Dreyfus pretty easily, and she will make history as the first actress to win the Emmy for every single season her show was on the air. In second place is probably last year’s winner Rachel Brosnahan, but Phoebe Waller-Bridge has a lot of hype for Fleabag, and this would be her only chance to ever win, since the show is over now. 

Winner: Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Alternate: Rachel Brosnahan

Dark Horse: Phoebe Waller-Bridge

COMEDY ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

Bill Hader seems safe to win again for  Barry ’s second season

Bill Hader seems safe to win again for Barry’s second season

  • Anthony Anderson, Black-ish

  • Don Cheadle, Black Monday

  • Ted Danson, The Good Place

  • Michael Douglas, The Kominsky Method

  • Bill Hader, Barry

  • Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek

Bill Hader won last year, and I really think he’s winning again. The second season of Barry was even better and the show’s buzz has only grown, so I’m betting he repeats, as Emmy loves to do. Other possibilities are Michael Douglas, or perhaps Eugene Levy, who’s pretty beloved in the comedy world, but I think Hader is pretty far ahead of the pack.

Winner: Bill Hader

Alternate: Michael Douglas

Dark Horse: Ted Danson (also a beloved veteran actor, and for another show that’s ending, so he’s a possibility as well)

COMEDY SUPPORTING ACTRESS

This is a total free for all- I have no idea and am placing a bet on Colman

This is a total free for all- I have no idea and am placing a bet on Colman

  • Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

  • Anna Chlumsky, Veep

  • Sian Clifford, Fleabag

  • Olivia Colman, Fleabag

  • Betty Gilpin, GLOW

  • Sarah Goldberg, Barry

  • Marin Hinkle, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

  • Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live

Don’t ask me why they have so many names on this list, but I really am flying blind on this one. It could be any of them. I’m sort of leaning towards Olivia Colman of all people, just because she recently won the Oscar and perhaps she’s more at the front of people’s minds here? Then again, Anna Chlumsky’s never won for Veep, so that’s possible. The old Emmy rule says when in doubt go to a repeater, but that could be either Borstein or McKinnon. Man, this one’s hard. I have no clue.

Winner: Olivia Colman (this is pure instinct on my part)

Alternate: Alex Borstein

Dark Horse: Anna Chlumsky

COMEDY SUPPORTING ACTOR

Tony Shalhoub didn’t win last year, but he probably will this time, since the show is still well liked

Tony Shalhoub didn’t win last year, but he probably will this time, since the show is still well liked

  • Alan Arkin, The Kominsky Method

  • Anthony Carrigan, Barry

  • Tony Hale, Veep

  • Stephen Root, Barry

  • Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

  • Henry Winkler, Barry

I honestly think the three Barry actors who got in here will probably cancel each other out, which sucks because Stephen Root SO deserves to win, not just for this (even though he’s great), but for being so good on so many shows in guest and bit appearances in recent years. But because of the three guys fighting it out, I think the Academy falls back on old Emmy favorite Tony Shalhoub, unfortunately. 

Winner: Tony Shalhoub

Alternate: Tony Hale (another previous winner)

Dark Horse: Stephen Root (still pulling for him)

2019 Emmy Predictions, Part 2: Acting in a Limited Series

Today we’re on to acting in a limited series/TV movie, and this limited series category really is the best of the nominations this year. So many great shows were nominated here, it completely dwarfs the top comedy/drama races for a change. 

ACTOR IN A LIMITED SERIES/TV MOVIE

Jharell Jerome should be the winner for his heartbreaking role in  When They See Us

Jharell Jerome should be the winner for his heartbreaking role in When They See Us

  • Mahershala Ali, True Detective

  • Benicio del Toro, Escape at Dannemora

  • Hugh Grant, A Very English Scandal

  • Jared Harris, Chernobyl

  • Jharell Jerome, When They See Us

  • Sam Rockwell, Fosse/Verdon

Oh boy, right off the bat this is a tough one. I think this has to go to Jharell Jerome, based on the devastating impact of his episode of When They See Us, and we know a lot of voters did watch it, because it was showered with nominations, including many supporting actors. I think he deserves it and will get it, because I’m not totally sure that the show will prevail in the top series award. It’s in tight competition with Chernobyl, which is the big HBO prestige drama. But previous Mad Men nominee Jared Harris certainly has a shot for this, and I think Hugh Grant does too, for a very good performance in A Very English Scandal. I’m going with Jerome though.

Winner: Jharell Jerome

Alternate: Jared Harris

Dark Horse: Hugh Grant

ACTRESS IN A LIMITED SERIES/TV MOVIE

I want Williams to win for this because she’s  so  great, but Patricia Arquette has a better than equal shot, to be honest

I want Williams to win for this because she’s so great, but Patricia Arquette has a better than equal shot, to be honest

  • Amy Adams, Sharp Objects

  • Patricia Arquette, Escape at Dannemora

  • Aunjanue Ellis, When They See Us

  • Joey King, The Act

  • Niece Nash, When They See Us

  • Michelle Williams, Fosse/Verdon

So, for this one, Patricia Arquette already won the Golden Globe and the SAG over Amy Adams (whose show was basically eclipsed by HBO’s other series Chernobyl), but Michelle Williams was SO amazing in Fosse/Verdon, and she came on strong in the spring, which was after those other awards shows. The TV academy did like Fosse/Verdon too, which got a lot of nominations in acting and for series. I think this could be the big thing it wins, but it’s a real close one, like coin-toss close (and I haven’t seen Escape at Dannemora, I admit). It’s definitely between those two, though.

Winner: Michelle Williams 

Alternate: Patricia Arquette

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A LIMITED SERIES/TV MOVIE

I think Ben Whishaw stands apart from the rest for what’s really a co-lead role

I think Ben Whishaw stands apart from the rest for what’s really a co-lead role

  • Asante Black, When They See Us

  • Paul Dano, Escape at Dannemora

  • John Leguizamo, When They See Us

  • Stellan Skarsgard, Chernobyl

  • Ben Whishaw, A Very English Scandal

  • Michael K. Williams, When They See Us

Okay, here, I think Ben Whishsaw, who won the Golden Globe, will take it, simply because the three When They See Us actors may cancel each other out, and Skarsgard’s role in Chernobyl may not have been big enough. Especially compared to Whishaw, who was really a co-lead.

Winner: Ben Whishaw

Alternate: Stellan Skarsgard

Dark Horse: Michael K. Williams (if it’s anyone from When They See Us, it may be him, as he has a history of being unrewarded for other shows like Boardwalk Empire and The Wire and is familiar to voters in the industry).

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A LIMITED SERIES/TV MOVIE

Patricia Clarkson’s delectable evil in  Sharp Objects  should get her the win here

Patricia Clarkson’s delectable evil in Sharp Objects should get her the win here

  • Patricia Arquette, The Act

  • Marsha Stephanie Blake, When They See Us

  • Patricia Clarkson, Sharp Objects

  • Vera Farmiga, When They See Us

  • Margaret Qualley, Fosse/Verdon

  • Emily Watson, Chernobyl

There’s quite a few options here. Arquette could well win it if she’s not going to win in lead, and Emily Watson might end up being the winning acting performance for Chernobyl. Even Margaret Qualley (daughter of Andie MacDowell) was terrific on Fosse/Verdon. But I think Patricia Clarkson has the edge, for a similar reason as Ben Whishaw. Her role is bigger, meatier, and the villain of this group, which makes her stand out. Plus, Sharp Objects will likely not win anything else, I think this is its best chance to win something.

Winner: Patricia Clarkson

Alternate: Patricia Arquette

Dark Horse: Emily Watson

2019 Emmy Predictions, Part 1: Talk/Variety/TV Movie

It’s Emmy predictions time! As always, these are probably the biggest crapshoot winners, since I don’t think there’s any kind of precursor award that influences anything the TV academy does (certainly not TV critics). Which means I’m flying blind except for what I’ve actually seen and loved, heard some measure of hype around, and possibly factoring in beloved/overdue status if there’s no clear frontrunner, or even simply repeating previous winners (a longtime Emmy trend). So without further ado, let’s get started. The Emmys themselves are on Sunday, Sep 22nd, so today we’re getting our feet wet with variety and talk show categories, before moving on to acting in a limited series on Thursday.

EMMY PREDICTIONS 2019

VARIETY SKETCH SERIES

Expect  SNL  to bag another trophy this year

Expect SNL to bag another trophy this year

  • At Home With Amy Sedaris

  • Documentary Now

  • Drunk History

  • I Love You, America with Sarah Silverman

  • Saturday Night Live

  • Who is America?

I assume that SNL will be winning this again. I don’t think there’s much hype for any other nominee here, and from what I remember, Sacha Baron Cohen’s Who is America? series was considered disappointing, so they may have had trouble filling the roster. When in doubt, go with the repeater.

Wiinner: SNL

Alternate: I Love You America (maybe Sarah Silverman has some clout here?)

Dark Horse: Drunk History (this is a perennial nominee but can it ever win?)


VARIETY TALK SERIES

John Oliver skewers his home country’s new prime minister

John Oliver skewers his home country’s new prime minister

  • The Daily Show with Trevor Noah

  • Full Frontal with Samantha Bee

  • Jimmy Kimmel Live

  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

  • The Late Late Show with James Corden

  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Again, I’m gonna have to go with the perennial winner now, John Oliver. His show’s great and Emmy tends to stick with one winner here until that show is literally off the air. But he’s hardly the only person who deserves it, as certainly Colbert does, and Jimmy Kimmel has only grown more beloved in recent years. But I can’t predict anything else to win in this category until it does. So Last Week Tonight it is.

Winner: Last Week Tonight 

Alternate: The Late Show (I always think there’s a chance Colbert, who won this twice with The Colbert Report, can come in for this, but I won’t go with it until it happens. I know he’d be winning if not for Oliver, let’s put it that way)

REALITY COMPETITION SERIES

Assuming RuPaul will now start to repeat his win from last year

Assuming RuPaul will now start to repeat his win from last year

  • The Amazing Race

  • American Ninja Warrior

  • Nailed It!

  • RuPaul’s Drag Race

  • Top Chef

  • The Voice

Now, this award does tend to alternate and we’ve got several past winners here. The Amazing Race used to always win it, Top Chef has taken it, The Voice was a recent favorite and just last year Drag Race took the award for the first time. It could always swing back to The Voice, but I’m thinking maybe RuPaul is now the hip choice for this and will probably start to repeat until he falls out of fashion.

Winner: RuPaul’s Drag Race

Alternate: The Voice

TV MOVIE

Deadwood  was the most acclaimed of these, but never count out  Black Mirror  I suppose

Deadwood was the most acclaimed of these, but never count out Black Mirror I suppose

  • Black Mirror: Bqndersnatch

  • Brexit

  • Deadwood: The Movie

  • King Lear

  • My Dinner With Herve

I’m putting this category here in my first predictions, because for the last couple of years they haven’t even given this out on the televised ceremony, reserving it for the technical awards that happen the week before. So this may be handed out already before I even get to predicting the top series awards. It may just be time to combine it with limited series again, to be honest. I’m not sure what the frontrunner is here- Black Mirror has fraudulently won this twice, with good episodes that were decidedly not TV movies, but the interactive Bandersnatch wasn’t even that. Deadwood got great reviews, but it’s difficult to know if people are nostalgic enough for a show that was always a cult thing in its original run. Brexit is probably the other option. I really don’t know.

Winner: Deadwood (going to guess that appreciation for creator David Milch himself on his last project will carry this through to a win?)

Alternate: Bandersnatch

Dark Horse: Brexit