LOS ANGELES — Scaling Emmy heights is tough in the era of so-called peak TV, with the volume of shows matched by lofty expectations from academy voters.
Good isn’t enough for comedies and dramas, which need to resonate with the current political and social zeitgeist. Actors who also pull off the high-wire act of writing and directing collect more respect and trophies.
Talent aside, a lavish marketing campaign helps in a crowded field: With as many as seven or eight nominees in some key categories, about 14 per cent of the TV academy vote can determine who gets a trophy, according to awards website Gold Derby.
So is it “Game of Thrones” (with a leading 22 nods, but the majority technical ones) or “The Handmaid’s Tale” for best drama? Will Donald Glover repeat as best comedy actor for “Atlanta” or could Bill Hader of freshman “Barry” be an upset winner?
The comedy arena is the big unknown: It’s wide open with two-time winner “Veep” and its star, six-time comedy actress champ Julia Louis-Dreyfus, sitting this one out.
Despite such daunting wild-card factors, we’re still game to predict who will win, and who should, at the ceremony airing on NBC at 8 p.m. EDT Monday, Sept. 17. It’s hosted by “Saturday Night Live” players Michael Che and Colin Jost.
Here’s AP Television Writer Lynn Elber and Entertainment Writer Mark Kennedy’s guesses in the glamour categories.
Should win: “The Handmaid’s Tale.” It remains true to its unsparing vision of a poisoned society, daring us to watch or choose blind ignorance. No other show matches its demands with equal rewards.
Will win: “The Handmaid’s Tale.” For many viewers and voters, it’s got that zeitgeist thing down pat.
Should win: “The Handmaid’s Tale.” Even though the second season was more brutal than the first, it went beyond the source material brilliantly. “Game of Thrones” may have returned to claim its crown with a visually stunning season, but the zeitgeist is indeed firmly in Gilead.
Will win: “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
Should win: “Atlanta.” Auteur TV at its best, with star Donald Glover the series’ creator as well as creative force, winning Emmys last year for acting and directing. But does it include enough punchlines per dramatic moments for voters?
Will win: “Atlanta.” While worthy freshman competitor “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” offers a female-empowerment vibe and more wisecracks, the series set in the 1950s can’t compete with the contemporary edge of “Atlanta.”
Should win: “Atlanta.” The show, …read more