Emmys 2020: Who’s Nominated, Who Deserves to Win and Who Will Win


If you’re have told me that Watchmen was going to lead all shows with 26 Emmy nominations, I’d have said “Yeah, that tracks, Green Book and Crash both won Oscars.” Hollywood insiders love shows and movies like Watchmen that tell them they can be good, non-racist people and lets them feel good about calling the police to complain that they saw a homeless person in front of the Whole Foods.

I’d also just like that mention that taking your prestige television show based on a high-profile IP that was very clearly canceled and submitting it in the less-competitive limited series category because it was canceled is a stroke of genius.

The big news to me, however, is that The Mandalorian was nominated for best drama. Disney +’s Star Wars series is not a prestige TV show, it’s been more commonly compared to 90s shows like Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. This could be a sign that we’re moving back to the time when the Emmys awarded more mainstream shows: it wasn’t that long ago that Modern Family and The Big Bang Theory were slugging it out at the awards every year.

One good thing is that Rick and Morty’s “The Vat of Acid Episode” episode was nominated for Outstanding Animated Program and I swear to god if they give the award to Netflix’s horny teenagers or sad horse shows there should be a riot. “The Vat of Acid Episode” is maybe the best episode of Rick and Morty ever, but it was for sure the best half-hour of animation on television in the past year.

So let’s get on to the nominations. I’m just going to cover the major categories, you can read the full list of nominees on the Emmy website here. I’ll put the nominee we think will win in bold and the one that we think should win in italics.

Outstanding Drama Series

Better Call Saul
The Crown
The Handmaid’s Tale
Killing Eve
The Mandalorian
Stranger Things

Outstanding Comedy Series

Curb Your Enthusiasm
Dead to Me
The Good Place
The Kominsky Method
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Schitt’s Creek
What We Do In the Shadows

Curb your Enthusiasm has only ever won two Emmys, one for directing and one for picture editing. This category does not generally reward comedies for being funny anymore. Schitt’s Creek is funny, but not as funny as Curb, and I think it wins because of all the media attention it got around its final season.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Jason Bateman, Ozark
Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us
Steve Carell, The Morning Show
Brian Cox, Succession
Billy Porter, Pose
Jeremy Strong, Succession

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Jennifer Aniston, The Morning Show
Olivia Colman, The Crown
Jodie Comer, Killing Eve
Laura Linney, Ozark
Sandra Oh, Killing Eve
Zendaya, Euphoria

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Anthony Anderson, Black-ish
Don Cheadle, Black Monday
Ted Danson, The Good Place
Michael Douglas, The Kominsky Method
Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Ramy Youssef, Ramy

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Christina Applegate, Dead to Me
Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Linda Cardellini, Dead to Me
Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek
Issa Rae, Insecure
Tracee Ellis Ross, Black-ish

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Nicholas Braun, Succession
Billy Crudup, The Morning Show
Kieran Culkin, Succession
Mark Duplass, The Morning Show
Giancarlo Esposito, Better Call Saul
Matthew Macfadyen, Succession
Bradley Whitford, The Handmaid’s Tale
Jeffrey Wright, Westworld

Can’t wait to hear Whitford drone on about how we need to save neoliberalism and how he wishes he could have voted for Obama a third time in his acceptance speech.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Helena Bonham Carter, The Crown
Laura Dern, Big Little Lies
Julia Garner, Ozark
Thandie Newton, Westworld
Fiona Shaw, Killing Eve
Sarah Snook, Succession
Meryl Streep, Big Little Lies
Samira Wiley, The Handmaid’s Tale

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Mahershala Ali, Ramy
Alan Arkin, The Kominsky Method
Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Sterling K. Brown, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
William Jackson Harper, The Good Place
Daniel Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Kenan Thompson, Saturday Night Live

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
D’Arcy Carden, The Good Place
Betty Gilpin, GLOW
Marin Hinkle, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live
Annie Murphy, Schitt’s Creek
Yvonne Orji, Insecure
Cecily Strong, Saturday Night Live

I’d also expect Watchmen to do well in the minor categories and probably win for Limited Series for the reasons I laid out above. I think Jeremy Irons probably deserves to win that category for his performance as Adrien Veidt, even if the show completely botched the character compared to the comic.

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