Emmy Predictions: ‘Game of Thrones’ Will Win Big, But What Else?

HBO’s juggernaut drama series should clean up in its final season, but elsewhere we’ll see some tough battles for Emmy’s gold throne

Last Updated: September 22, 2019 @ 2:30 PM

Netflix may be the future of television, but it will likely need to wait a year and watch its rival HBO dominate the Primetime Emmy Awards on Sunday.

HBO, after all, goes into the show with two shows that have ruled the Emmys over the past few years and recently completed their final seasons: “Game of Thrones,” the most-nominated and winningest series in Emmy history, will be competing one last time in the drama categories, and “Veep,” which has won the top Emmy for each of its last three seasons, will do the same in comedy.

Plenty of other shows are gunning for upsets, including “Killing Eve,” “Fleabag,” “Succession,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Pose” and “Barry,” but the chance to give a golden sendoff to “Game of Thrones” and “Veep” should prove irresistible.

And if “Game of Thrones” wins three Emmys, which it should, it will add to the 10 it won at the Creative Arts Emmys on Sunday and set a new record for the most awards ever won by a series in a single year.

In the limited series and movie categories, meanwhile, Netflix has a real shot with “When They See Us,” which will be going head-to-head with HBO’s “Chernobyl” in plenty of categories. The latter show won most of the awards at last weekend’s Creative Arts Emmys, but the former should hold its own at the big show.

One thing to keep in mind: While Emmy voters have a long history of rewarding the same shows and people over and over, they’ve been getting less predictable in recent years – and with different groups of voters casting ballots in different categories, you can’t really look at them as a group with a single mind. Make no mistake, there will be upsets.

With that said, here are our best guesses in all 27 of the categories that will be presented on Sunday at the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards.

DRAMA CATEGORIES

game of thrones why jon snow is the true heir over daenerys targaryen kit harington emilia clarke

HBO

Outstanding Drama Series
Nominees:
“Better Call Saul”
“Bodyguard”
“Game of Thrones”
“Killing Eve”
“Ozark”
“Pose”
“Succession”
“This Is Us”

“Better Call Saul” and “This Is Us” have paid their dues and “Bodyguard,” Killing Eve,” “Ozark,” “Pose” and “Succession” are first- and second-year shows that have come on strong lately. (“Succession” in particular had a very nice surge right around the time of voting.) But if voters were tired of eight-time nominee and three-time winner “Game of Thrones,” they certainly didn’t show it in the nominations, in which it set a new record for the most nominations any series has had in a single year, or at the Creative Arts Emmys, where it won in 10 different categories.

This category will probably be hugely competitive next year. But this year, not so much: Whatever critics or fanboys thought of the HBO juggernaut’s final season, Emmy voters will almost certainly send it out on top.

Predicted winner: “Game of Thrones”

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Nominees:
Bob Odenkirk, “Better Call Saul”
Kit Harington, “Game of Thrones”
Jason Bateman, “Ozark”
Billy Porter, “Pose”
Sterling K. Brown, “This Is Us”
Milo Ventimiglia, “This Is Us”

This category is wide open. Kit Harington probably doesn’t have a big enough role to make this another “Game of Thrones” win, and last year’s winner, Matthew Rhys from “The Americans,” isn’t in the running because his show is off the air. The previous year’s champ, Sterling K. Brown from “This Is Us,” is nominated, but so is his castmate Milo Ventimiglia. Bob Odenkirk has been nominated for every season of “Better Call Saul” and has never won, so he could be due. First-time nominee Billy Porter is the likeliest winner from “Pose,” and Jason Bateman has been nominated for acting in and directing “Ozark” for two years in a row now.

It feels as if the Emmy could go to Odenkirk, Porter, Bateman or Brown, with Odenkirk and Porter having the best chance. This category has gone to a first-year show twice in the last three years, so maybe that gives Porter a slight edge.

Predicted winner: Billy Porter, “Pose”

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Nominees:
Emilia Clarke, “Game of Thrones”
Robin Wright, “House of Cards”
Viola Davis, “How to Get Away With Murder”
Jodie Comer, “Killing Eve”
Sandra Oh, “Killing Eve”
Laura Linney, “Ozark”
Mandy Moore, “This Is Us”

The size of the “Game of Thrones” ensemble could work against Emilia Clarke, though she certainly had many of the showiest scenes of the season. Robin Wright could get a nice parting gift for surviving the Kevin Spacey debacle and taking over “House of Cards,” but voters may be reluctant to honor that show’s final season in any category. And while Laura Linney and Mandy Moore are welcome additions to the category, it feels as if this could be the year for “Killing Eve” to win a significant Emmy.

But which “Killing Eve” actress? Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer are both nominated, but we’ll go with Oh, a more familiar face to Emmy voters (via “Grey’s Anatomy”) and a Golden Globe and Critics’ Choice winner for the role.

Predicted winner: Sandra Oh, “Killing Eve”

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Nominees:
Jonathan Banks, “Better Call Saul”
Giancarlo Esposito, “Better Call Saul”
Alfie Allen, “Game of Thrones”
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, “Game of Thrones”
Peter Dinklage, “Game of Thrones”
Michael Kelly, “House of Cards”
Chris Sullivan, “This Is Us”

You could make a strong case for lots of these guys deserving the award, with six-time nominee Jonathan Banks and two-time nominee Nikolaj Coster-Waldau being particularly noteworthy, and “House of Cards” stalwart Michael Kelly surviving that show in style. But Peter Dinklage already has more nominations, eight, than anybody else in this category’s history, and one more Emmy will break a tie with Don Knotts, Art Carney and Aaron Paul and make him the category’s biggest winner. Once again, his Tyrion Lannister should go out on top.

Predicted winner: Peter Dinklage, “Game of Thrones”

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Nominees:
Gwendoline Christie, “Game of Thrones”
Lena Headey, “Game of Thrones”
Sophie Turner, “Game of Thrones”
Maisie Williams, “Game of Thrones”
Fiona Shaw, “Killing Eve”
Julia Garner, “Ozark”

Will the four “Game of Thrones” actresses split the vote and allow Julia Garner to grab the Emmy? They just might. (The show had multiple nominees twice before and didn’t win either time.) But with women dominating the show’s final season, it’s also quite possible that voters will find one “GoT” actress and rally behind her.

If they do, the likeliest candidates are Lena Heady and Maisie Williams — and because Cersei Lannister had an anticlimactic death in the rubble while Arya Stark killed the Night King, we’re giving Williams the edge.

Predicted winner: Maisie Williams, “Game of Thrones”

Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series
Nominees:
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, “Game of Thrones” (episode: “The Iron Throne”)
David Nutter, “Game of Thrones” (episode: “The Last of the Starks”)
Miguel Sapochnik, “Game of Thrones” (episode: “The Long Night”)
Daina Reid, “The Handmaid’s Tale” (episode: “Holly”)
Lisa Bruhlmann, “Killing Eve” (episode: “Desperate Times”)
Jason Bateman, “Ozark” (episode: “Reparations”)
Adam McKay, “Succession” (episode: “Celebration”)

Three of the seven nominees are episodes of “Game of Thrones,” but is that going to split the vote? It’s hard to tell: “GoT” has had two nominations in the category three times and has won twice in those years, but in Emmy history shows with at least three noms in the category have lost six times and only won twice. But it’s been 18 years since any series has landed three directing nominations in the same year, so it’s hard to draw conclusions from the fate of “The Sopranos,” “ER” “NYPD Blue,” “L.A. Law” or “Lou Grant.”

Here’s a guess: The plethora of “GoT” nominees will boost the chances of “Succession,” “Killing Eve” and “The Handmaid’s Tale,” but voters will focus on the sheer scale of “The Long Night,” the huge battle episode of “Game of Thrones.”

Predicted winner: Miguel Sapochnik, “Game of Thrones”

Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series
Nominees:
Peter Gould and Thomas Schnauz, “Better Call Saul” (episode: “Winner”)
Jed Mercurio, “Bodyguard” (Episode 1)
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, “Game of Thrones” (episode: “The Iron Throne”)
Bruce Miller and Kira Synder, “The Handmaid’s Tale” (episode: “Holly”)
Emerald Fennell, “Killing Eve” (episode: “Nice and Neat”)
Jesse Armstrong, “Succession” (episode: “Nobody Is Ever Missing”)

In the drama writing category, “Game of Thrones” was nominated for its finale, an episode that drew mixed reaction. That should give a boost to a couple of its rivals. “The Handmaid’s Tale” won Outstanding Drama Series two years ago (when “Game of Thrones” wasn’t eligible) and it landed 11 nominations this year even though only three episodes aired during the eligibility period. It also won three Creative Arts Emmys last weekend — two of them for “Holly,” the same episode that’s nominated in this category.

The other strong contenders are “Killing Eve,” “Better Call Saul” and “Succession,” which was airing highly lauded episodes during the voting period and might have come on strong at just the right time.

Predicted winner: Jesse Armstrong, “Succession”

COMEDY CATEGORIES

Veep final season

Outstanding Comedy Series
Nominees:
“Barry”
“Fleabag”
“The Good Place”
“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”
“Russian Doll”
“Schitt’s Creek”
“Veep”

“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” is the defending champion, and “Fleabag” has as much heat as any show on TV this past season. It’s too bad for them that not only did “Veep” stick the landing in its seventh and final season, but it did so after a one-year hiatus so that star Julia Louis-Dreyfus could battle breast cancer.

Both “Mrs. Maisel” and “Fleabag” gave signs that they might pull off an upset with their showings at the Creative Arts show: The former won six awards, most of any series besides “Game of Thrones,” and the latter won in the key Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series category. “Mrs. Maisel” is probably the likelier of the two to pull off an upset – but despite the signs, it’s hard to imagine that three-time winner “Veep” won’t end its run with a fourth win.

Predicted winner: “Veep”

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Nominees:
Bill Hader, “Barry”
Don Cheadle, “Black Monday”
Anthony Anderson, “black-ish”
Ted Danson, “The Good Place”
Michael Douglas, “The Kominsky Method”
Eugene Levy, “Schitt’s Creek”

Like the drama-actor category, this one is wide open. Ted Danson and Michael Douglas are beloved vets, while Eugene Levy is a cult icon of sorts who’s never gotten his due. But Bill Hader won last year for the first season of “Barry,” a series he co-created and one that got even more Emmy love for Season 2. (It received 17 nominations after getting 13 last year, and was the only show in this category to win any Creative Arts Emmys this year.) So he’s in a good position to repeat.

Predicted winner: Bill Hader, “Barry”

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
Nominees:
Christina Applegate, “Dead to Me”
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, “Fleabag”
Rachel Brosnahan, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”
Natasha Lyonne, “Russian Doll”
Catherine O’Hara, “Schitt’s Creek”
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”

Rachel Brosnahan won in this category last year, and her show led all comedy series in nominations and in wins at the Creative Arts Emmys. Phoebe Waller-Bridge is hotter than hot and says this is the last year for a show that Emmy voters just figured out is great.

But c’mon, people, it’s Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who pretty much holds every record you can hold for wins and nominations in this category, and she’s coming back from breast cancer. Emmy voters sometimes eschew sentimental picks, but will they really resist this inevitable standing ovation?

Predicted winner: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Nominees:
Anthony Carrigan, “Barry”
Stephen Root, “Barry”
Henry Winkler, “Barry”
Alan Arkin, “The Kominsky Method”
Tony Shalhoub, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”
Tony Hale, “Veep”

If Brosnahan won’t win in the lead category, can “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” keep up the Emmy acting momentum it had at the Creative Arts Emmys (where Jane Lynch and Luke Kirby swept the guest-acting awards) in the supporting categories? Quite possibly. Tony Shalhoub is an Emmy favorite with three previous wins, while last year’s winner, Henry Winkler from “Barry,” is now competing against two other actors from his own show, Stephen Root and Anthony Carrigan.

Of course, Alan Arkin is a serious threat, and Tony Hale is competing for the last time for the classic “Veep” role that has already landed him six nominations and two wins. This might come down to Hale v. Shalhoub – and if it does, we’ll take those Creative Arts wins as a sign that Emmys acting voters really love “Mrs. Maisel.”

Predicted winner: Tony Shalhoub, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Nominees:
Sarah Goldberg, “Barry”
Sian Clifford, “Fleabag”
Olivia Colman, “Fleabag”
Betty Gilpin, “GLOW”
Alex Borstein, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”
Marin Hinkle, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”
Kate McKinnon, “Saturday Night Live”
Anna Chlumsky, “Veep”

Anna Chlumsky’s scorched-earth performance as Amy Brookheimer on “Veep” has landed her six nominations over the years, but she lost the first five times and now has one last chance to win. It’ll be tough, with two-time winner Kate McKinnon, last year’s winner Alex Borstein and the reigning Best Actress Oscar winner Olivia Colman among the eight nominees in this supersized category.

Borstein gets the “Mrs. Maisel” boost, but she’s up against Olivia Freakin’ Colman, fresh off beating Glenn Close at the Oscars and making everybody feel good about that. Let’s just hope that Chlumsky loses in character on Emmy night.

Predicted winner: Olivia Colman, “Fleabag”

Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series
Nominees:
Alec Berg, “Barry” (episode: “The Audition”)
Bill Hader, “Barry” (episode: “ronny/lily”)
Mark Cendrowski, “The Big Bang Theory” (episode: “The Stockholm Syndrome”)
Harry Bradbeer, “Fleabag” (Episode 1)
Amy Sherman-Palladino, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (episode: “All Alone”)
Daniel Palladino, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (episode: “We’re Going to the Catskills!”)

The “We’re Going to the Catskills!” episode of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” has already won three Creative Arts awards, and “Mrs. Maisel” won in this category last year. Or this could be a good place to give a major award to “Fleabag.” Or to salute “The Big Bang Theory” by recognizing its final episode after a long run as television’s most popular scripted series.

But has any comedy episode this season prompted as much talk as the crazy “ronny/lily” episode of “Barry?” No.

Predicted winner: Bill Hader, “Barry”

Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series
Nominees:
Alec Berg and Bill Hader, “Barry” (episode: “ronny/lily”)
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, “Fleabag” (Episode 1)
Josh Siegal and Dylan Morgan, “The Good Place” (episode: “Janet(s)”)
Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle, “PEN15” (episode: “Anna Ishii-Peters”)
Leslye Headland, Natasha Lyonne and Amy Poehler, “Russian Doll” (episode: “Nothing in This World Is Easy”)
Allison Silverman, “Russian Doll” (episode: “A Warm Body”)
David Mandel, “Veep” (episode: “Veep”)

If “Veep” wins the Outstanding Comedy Series Emmy for its final season, it stands to reason that its final episode should also win the writing award – except that there’s a different group of voters in the writing category, and the program and writing awards only match about half the time. In fact, two of the previous three times that “Veep” has won the series award, something else – in both cases, “Master of None” – won the writing Emmy.

“Barry,” “Fleabag,” “Russian Doll” and “The Good Place” could all be this year’s “Master of None,” so to speak. And with Phoebe Waller-Bridge unlikely to score a major upset in the other categories where she’s nominated, this could well be the one where she’s recognized.

Predicted winner: Phoebe Waller-Bridge, “Fleabag”

LIMITED SERIES AND TELEVISION MOVIE CATEGORIES

Chernobyl

Outstanding Limited Series
Nominees:
“Chernobyl”
“Escape at Dannemora”
“Fosse/Verdon”
“Sharp Objects”
“When They See Us”

“Sharp Objects,” “Escape at Dannemora” and “Fosse/Verdon” have all had moments when they looked like favorites in the category, with “Fosse/Verdon” showing strength more recently than the other two. But two powerful shows based on real events, “Chernobyl” and “When They See Us,” both premiered late in the eligibility period and had huge impact. The race in this highly competitive category seems to be between those two.

It’s hard to ignore the fact that at the Creative Arts ceremony, “Chernobyl” won in seven different categories, while “When They See Us” won only for casting. Still, “When They See Us” has the advantage of a subject, race relations in America, that might feel timelier than the Russian nuclear accident depicted in its main competitor. “Chernobyl” has a real shot to win and “Fosse/Verdon” could conceivably stage an upset, but we think “When They See Us” will squeak out a win.

Predicted winner: “When They See Us”

Outstanding Television Movie
Nominees:
“Bandersnatch” (“Black Mirror”)
“Brexit”
“Deadwood”
“King Lear”
“My Dinner With Herve”

Three of the five nominees – “Brexit,” “King Lear” and “My Dinner With Herve” – don’t have any nominations except in this category. That probably means the race is between “Bandersnatch,” which has two nominations and has already won for its interactive elements, and “Deadwood,” which has seven nominations in below-the-line categories but has already lost in all of them. The “Black Mirror” franchise has won the last two Emmys in this category, and voters are creatures of habit.

Predicted winner: “Bandersnatch” (“Black Mirror”)

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Nominees:
Jared Harris, “Chernobyl”
Benicio del Toro, “Escape at Dannemora”
Sam Rockwell, “Fosse/Verdon”
Mahershala Ali, “True Detective”
Hugh Grant, “A Very English Scandal”
Jharrel Jerome, “When They See Us”

This may come down to the same match as the Outstanding Limited Series category: “When They See Us” v. “Chernobyl,” here represented by Jharrel Jerome and Jared Harris, respectively. Harris is a known quantity to voters through his work on “Mad Men,” but Jerome might have had more emotional impact in his decade-spanning portrayal of a young black man falsely convicted of sexual assault.

But watch out for three other nominees who have a very real potential to be spoilers here: recent Oscar winner Mahershala Ali for “True Detective,” the relentlessly likable Hugh Grant as an unlikeable person in “A Very English Scandal,” and Sam Rockwell with his dancing, singing performance as Bob Fosse in “Fosse/Verdon.”

Predicted winner: Jharrel Jerome, “When They See Us”

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Nominees:
Joey King, “The Act”
Patricia Arquette, “Escape at Dannemora”
Michelle Williams, “Fosse/Verdon”
Amy Adams, “Sharp Objects”
Aunjaune Ellis, “When They See Us”
Niecy Nash, “When They See Us”

If Sam Rockwell doesn’t win an Emmy for playing Fosse in “Fosse/Verdon,” Michelle Williams might well do it for playing Gwen Verdon. In fact, her chances are better than his, though she is facing the formidable competition from Patricia Arquette for “Escape at Dannemora” (one of her two mini-movie nominations) and Amy Adams for “Sharp Objects” (who throughout her career has been very good at getting nominated but not as good at winning). The summer of 2018 air date might work against Adams, leaving this a battle between Williams and Arquette. “Fosse/Verdon” has already won a couple of Creative Arts awards, so maybe it gets the nod.

Predicted winner: Michelle Williams, “Fosse/Verdon”

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Nominees:
Stellan Skarsgard, “Chernobyl”
Paul Dano, “Escape at Dannemora”
Ben Whishaw, “A Very English Scandal”
Asante Blackk, “When They See Us”
John Leguizamo, “When They See Us”
Michael K. Williams, “When They See Us”

With half the category consisting of actors from “When They See Us,” it may be difficult to avoid vote-splitting — though if somebody turns that trick, it will probably be Michael K. Williams. More likely, Ben Whishaw slips in for his performance as Hugh Grant lover-turned-nemesis in “A Very English Scandal.”

Predicted winner: Ben Whishaw, “A Very English Scandal”

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie
Nominees:
Patricia Arquette, “The Act”
Emily Watson, “Chernobyl”
Margaret Qualley, “Fosse/Verdon”
Patricia Clarkson, “Sharp Objects”
Marsha Stephanie Blake, “When They See Us”
Vera Farmiga, “When They See Us”

Here’s Patricia Arquette’s other shot at an Emmy this year. And while Patricia Clarkson is considered the favorite in this category, she’d be a more convincing favorite if “Sharp Objects” had aired in 2019 instead of mid-2018 (although, yes, voters could have watched their screeners recently). You can’t rule out Emily Watson for “Chernobyl,” but we think voters will want to give Arquette an award in one of her categories.

Predicted winner: Patricia Arquette, “The Act”

Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie or Dramatic Special
Nominees:
Johan Renck, “Chernobyl”
Ben Stiller, “Escape at Dannemora”
Jessica Yu, “Fosse/Verdon” (episode: “Glory”)
Thomas Kail, “Fosse/Verdon” (episode: “Who’s Got the Pain”)
Stephen Frears, “A Very English Scandal”
Ava DuVernay, “When They See Us”

It seems silly to compare two directors who did single episodes of “Fosse/Verdon” with four others who directed entire miniseries, but that’s what voters have to do here – probably to the detriment of the single-episode directors. And while Stephen Frears and Ben Stiller are attractive propositions, it will likely come down to “Chernobyl” v. “When They See Us” again, with Ava DuVernay being the right director on the right project.

Predicted winner: Ava DuVernay, “When They See Us”

Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie or Dramatic Special
Nominees:
Craig Mazin, “Chernobyl”
Brett Johnson, Michael Tolkin and Jerry Stahl, “Escape at Dannemora” (Episode 6)
Brett Johnson and Michael Tolkin, “Escape at Dannemora” (Episode 7)
Steven Levenson and Joel Fields, “Fosse/Verdon” (episode: “Providence”)
Russell T. Davies, “A Very English Scandal”
Ava DuVernay and Michael Starrbury, “When They See Us” (episode: “Part Four”)

This time, “When They See Us” might be hurt by the fact that it’s a single episode going up against the entire “Chernobyl” miniseries. (“Escape at Dannemora” and “Fosse/Verdon” are also represented by single episodes, “A Very English Scandal” by the entire series.) More importantly, it’s hard to imagine that “Chernobyl” could win seven Creative Arts Emmys and then go home empty-handed on the big night; voters are fond of it and will give it an award somewhere.

Predicted winner: Craig Mazin, “Chernobyl”

VARIETY AND REALITY CATEGORIES

John Oliver Boris Johnson

Outstanding Variety Sketch Series
Nominees:
“At Home With Amy Sedaris”
“Documentary Now!”
“Drunk History”
“I Love You, America”
“Saturday Night Live”
“Who Is America?”

People love to complain that “Saturday Night Live” isn’t as good as it used to be, but for Emmy voters, it’s the other way around. “SNL” only won this award (or its predecessor, Outstanding Variety Series) twice in its first 41 seasons, once in 1975 and once in 1993. But it’s won the last two years in a row and picked up three Creative Arts Emmys on Saturday. It’s hard to bet against it completing a three-peat.

Predicted winner: “Saturday Night Live”

Outstanding Variety Talk Series
Nominees:
“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”

It feels as if it could be time for Stephen Colbert or even Jimmy Kimmel or James Corden to step up and win this one – but John Oliver has won this award three years running, plus his show just won two Creative Arts Emmys, which is two more than anybody else in the category. Until Emmy voters give us some reason to believe they’ve changed their minds, it makes sense to stick with the defending champ.

Predicted winner: “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”

Outstanding Directing for a Variety Series
Nominees:
Alex Buono and Rhys Thomas, “Documentary Now!” (episode: “Waiting for the Artist”)
Derek Waters, “Drunk History” (episode: “Are You Afraid of the Drunk?”)
Paul Pennolino, “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” (episode: “Psychics”)
Jim Hoskinson, “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” (episode: “Live Midterm Election Show”)
Don Roy King, “Saturday Night Live” (episode: Adam Sandler, host)
Sacha Baron Cohen, Nathan Fielder, Daniel Gray Longino and Dan Mazer, “Who Is America?”

You might think that voters would give degree-of-difficulty points to “Documentary Now,” which has to imitate a different classic documentary each week. But “Saturday Night Live” has won in this category seven times in the last nine years, and one of the times it didn’t win was because it wasn’t nominated. Don Roy King will likely hit double digits and get his 10th win for directing “SNL.”

Predicted winner: Don Roy King, “Saturday Night Live”

Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series
Nominees:
“Documentary Now!”
“Full Frontal with Samantha Bee”
“Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”
“Late Night With Seth Meyers”
“The Late Show With Stephen Colbert”
“Saturday Night Live”

Since 2003, writers who came up through “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” have won this award every year except once, when Conan O’Brien’s team grabbed it. But apart from that, it’s been Stewart’s team eight times, Stephen Colbert’s four times and John Oliver’s the last three years in a row. When a show gets on a roll with Emmy voters, it’s not wise to pick against it.

Predicted winner: “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver”

Outstanding Competition Program
Nominees:
“The Amazing Race”
“American Ninja Warrior”
“Nailed It!”
“RuPaul’s Drag Race”
“Top Chef”
“The Voice”

RuPaul Charles won the Emmy for reality host last weekend for the fourth year in a row. The show he fronts is now looking for its second consecutive win and will likely get it. Still, it’s up against three previous winners in “The Voice” (four wins), “Top Chef” (one win) and “The Amazing Race” (10 wins, but none since 2014).

Predicted winner: “RuPaul’s Drag Race”

Keep
Reading...

Looks like you’re enjoying reading
Keep reading by creating
a free account or logging in.