Tue. Oct 27th, 2020

Final 2020 Emmy Predictions: the COMEDY categories

Of the eight categories in the Comedy race cover, Kevin, Amanda and I only agree on one: all three of us are predicting the exact same six for Lead Actor in a Comedy Series. Are we right or is there a returning previous nominee we’re all missing or is it that easy this year?

Elsewhere, where we really separate is the writing and directing categories, with one-offs everywhere and something you’ll only find here. Check out our full predictions below with some notes about last year to this year, eligibility and a few facts and stats.

COMEDY SERIES (8)

  • Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Dead to Me (Netflix) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • The Great (Hulu) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • The Good Place (NBC) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Schitt’s Creek (PopTV) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Silicon Valley (HBO) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Insecure (HBO) – Erik, Kevin
  • The Kominsky Method (Netflix) – Amanda

Only three of last year’s seven nominees return this year. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel has been nominated for its first two seasons, winning in 2018. The Good Place broke through with its first Series nomination last year. It is eligible for its fourth and final season this year. Schitt’s Creek broke through with its first Series nomination last year. It is eligible for its sixth and final season this year.

Emmy Podcast #35: Final Emmy predictions in Drama, Comedy, Limited Series

black-ish was nominated for its second, third and fourth seasons. It is eligible this year for its sixth. Curb Your Enthusiasm has been nominated eight times in this category, never winning. They have also entered a writing submission for the first time in 10 seasons. As it’s a largely improvised show, it’s never been a contender here before. First time’s a charm? Modern Family is eligible for its final season, a winner in this category five consecutive times from 2010-2014. Silicon Valley is eligible for its final season, a nominee for each of its first five seasons.

LEAD ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES (6)

  • Don Cheadle – Black MondayErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Ted Danson – The Good PlaceErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Larry David – Curb Your EnthusiasmErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Michael Douglas – The Kominsky MethodErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Eugene Levy – Schitt’s CreekErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Ramy Youssef – RamyErik, Kevin, Amanda

Last year’s winner (Bill Hader from Barry) is ineligible, but all the other nominees are eligible again this year. Previous nominees who find themselves eligible again: Larry David, Curb Your Enthusiasm; Thomas Middleditch, Silicon Valley; William H. Macy, Shameless; Zach Galifianakis, Baskets; John Goodman, The Conners (he was nominated seven times for the same role on Roseanne)

LEAD ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES (6)

  • Pamela Adlon – Better ThingsErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Christina Applegate – Dead to MeErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Rachel Brosnahan – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Catherine O’Hara – Schitt’s CreekErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Linda Cardellini – Dead to MeKevin, Amanda
  • Issa Rae – InsecureErik, Kevin
  • Kristen Bell – The Good PlaceAmanda
  • Elle Fanning – The Great Erik

Our winner from last year is gone and so is Emmy stalwart Julia Louis-Dreyfus. Natasha Lyonne is ineligible this year. So, we’ve got three empty slots.

Previous nominees who find themselves eligible again: Pamela Adlon, Better Things; Jane Fonda, Grace and Frankie; Lily Tomlin, Grace and Frankie; Allison Janney, Mom; Issa Rae, Insecure; Tracee Ellis Ross, black-ish and Helen Hunt, Mad About You

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES (8)

  • Alan Arkin – The Kominsky MethodErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Sterling K. Brown – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Nicholas Hoult – The GreatErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Daniel Levy – Schitt’s CreekErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Tony Shalhoub – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Mahershala Ali – RamyErik, Kevin
  • James Marsden – Dead to MeErik, Amanda
  • Louie Anderson – BasketsAmanda
  • Chris Elliott – Schitt’s CreekAmanda
  • Marc Maron – GLOWErik
  • Noah Reid – Schitt’s CreekKevin
  • Kenan Thompson – Saturday Night LiveKevin

The three Barry actors and plus previous winner Tony Hale are all gone, making room for four new nominees this year.

A ton of previous nominees are eligible this year, including 2017 winner Alec Baldwin and Kenan Thompson (Saturday Night Live), 2011 and 2014 winner Ty Burrell and Ed O’Neill (Modern Family), 2016 winner Louie Anderson (Baskets) and Andre Braugher (Brooklyn Nine-Nine).

Mahershala Ali and Sterling K. Brown both have inaugural eligibility for Ramy and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, respectively. Saturday Night Live hasn’t had a huge stranglehold on this category, with Baldwin and Thompson as the show’s only nominees since 2013.

SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES (8)

  • Alex Borstein – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • D’Arcy Carden – The Good PlaceErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Betty Gilpin – GLOWErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Marin Hinkle – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Jane Lynch – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Kate McKinnon – Saturday Night LiveErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Annie Murphy – Schitt’s CreekErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Emily Hampshire – Schitt’s CreekKevin, Amanda
  • Yvonne Orji – InsecureErik

Four of last year’s eight are ineligible this year.

Alex Borstein (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel) has won two years in a row.

A host of previous nominees are eligible again this year, including Aidy Bryant (Saturday Night Live), Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) and Laurie Metcalf (The Connors).

Jane Lynch (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), eligible in Supporting this year, won the Emmy last year for Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for the same role.

GUEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES (6)

  • Jon Hamm – Curb Your Enthusiasm Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Luke Kirby – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • John Mulaney – Saturday Night LiveErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Eddie Murphy – Saturday Night LiveErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Jason Alexander – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin
  • Brad Pitt – Saturday Night LiveErik, Amanda
  • Victor Garber – Schitt’s CreekAmanda
  • Fred Willard – Modern FamilyKevin

Saturday Night Live has occupied at least two spots in this category since 2013.

  • Jane Krakowski – Curb Your EnthusiasmErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Maya Rudolph – The Good PlaceErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Wanda Sykes – The Marvelous Mrs. MaiselErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Phoebe Waller-Bridge – Saturday Night LiveErik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Lisa Kudrow – The Good PlaceKevin, Amanda
  • Judith Light – The PoliticianErik, Amanda
  • Angela Bassett – A Black Lady Sketch ShowErik
  • Valerie Mahaffey – Dead to MeKevin

Luke Kirby (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), last year’s winner, is eligible again this year. John Mulaney (Saturday Night Live) is the only other eligible nominee who was nominated last year.

GUEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES (6)

Saturday Night Live has occupied at least two spots the last four years, winning three times. Last year’s winner, Jane Lynch (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel), has been bumped to Supporting. Maya Rudolph (The Good Place) is the only nominee from last year who is eligible again this year…at least for the same show.

DIRECTING FOR A COMEDY SERIES (7)

  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – “It’s Comedy or Cabbage” (Amy Sherman-Palladino) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – “Marvelous Radio” (Daniel Palladino) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Schitt’s Creek – “Happy Ending” (Andrew Cividino & Daniel Levy) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Silicon Valley – “Artificial Lack of Intelligence” (Mike Judge) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • The Good Place – “Whenever You’re Ready” (Michael Schur) – Erik, Kevin
  • The Great – “The Great (Pilot)” (Matt Shakman) – Kevin, Amanda
  • Will & Grace – “We Love Lucy” (James Burrows) – Erik, Kevin
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm – “Happy New Year” (Jeff Schaffer) – Erik
  • The Neighborhood – “Welcome to the Hockey Game” (Mark Cendrowski) – Amanda
  • Silicon Valley – “Exit Event” (Alec Berg) – Amanda

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel received two nominations here last year and won in 2018. Curb Your Enthusiasm didn’t receive a directing nomination for its previous two seasons but in 2004 and 2003 took three of five spots, winning in 2003. Silicon Valley has received a directing nomination for every year of its run so far, including two in 2017 and 2016.

WRITING FOR A COMEDY SERIES (7)

  • The Good Place – “Whenever You’re Ready” (Michael Schur) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – “It’s Comedy or Cabbage” (Amy Sherman-Palladino) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Schitt’s Creek – “Happy Ending” (Daniel Levy) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Silicon Valley – “Exit Event” (Alec Berg) – Erik, Kevin, Amanda
  • Dead to Me – “It’s Not You, It’s Me” (Liz Feldman & Kelly Hutchinson) – Erik, Kevin
  • The Great – “The Great” (Tony McNamara) – Erik, Amanda
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm – “Happy New Year” – Amanda
  • Insecure – “Lowkey Happy” (Natasha Rothwell) – Erik
  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – “Marvelous Radio” – Amanda
  • Schitt’s Creek – “The Presidential Suite” (David West Read) – Kevin
  • Sex Education – “Episode 1” (Laurie Nunn) – Kevin

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel won the writing Emmy in 2018 but missed out on a nomination last year. Silicon Valley has received a writing nomination for every year of its run so far, including two in 2016. Curb Your Enthusiasm enters the writing race for the first time in its 10 seasons this year.

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