Emmy Predictions 2016

This Sunday is the Emmy’s, TV’s under-appreciated and unpredictable awards show that honors outstanding work in (what else?) television compared to the pageantry, anticipation, and extremely predictable Oscars telecast.  Again, this year shows why TV is progressing much better than it’s other filmic counterpart: diversity is front and center as all of the major acting nominations has at least one person of color being represented.  As a warm-up to calculating this year’s Oscar race, I’d thought I take a crack at that Emmy predictions list.  However, I will likely end up short.  Note that half of the awards were given out last weekend over a two day period, so I won’t be going into that.

Best Drama Series

Better Call Saul

Downton Abbey

Game of ThronesWill Win


House of Cards

Mr. RobotShould Win

The AmericansShould Win

Everyone’s favorite fantasy epic will win top prize second year in a row.  Most people will be happy (except for me), but real love needs to be shown to The Americans, a beloved show by its fans.  Mr. Robot became one of the most addictive summer shows last year, but summer shows are least likely to break through.  I would love to see Better Caul Saul get a victory, but it has a couple more seasons to go before the really good stuff may happen; the same thing that happened to its big brother, Breaking Bad.

Best Comedy Series

black-ish – Should Win

Master of None

Modern Family

Silicon Valley


Unbreakable Kimmy SchmidtShould Win

VeepWill Win

Modern Family is one of my favorite shows, but its content hasn’t be good or as hilarious as it once was back in seasons one and two.  black-ish, Transparent, and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt are too out there for the television academy, but they are all very good shows (giving  more love to the first and last series mentioned in this sentence).  Veep won last year, and considering HBO is the king of all TV, it will sweep again.

Best Limited Series

American Crime

FargoShould Win


The Night Manager

The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime StoryWill Win, Should Win

The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story was hands-down my favorite television program of the entire season.  Ryan Murphy does an un-Ryan Murphy thing in that he executive produces a show that isn’t rooted in his life nor does he have any writing credits involved.  Instead, he sits behind the camera for a few episodes as he lets a talented group of non-Ryan Murphy-esque writers craft a well know event in American history, and make it feel suspenseful despite knowing the outcome.  Fargo enhanced on its stellar first season, but I found some of it dragged on when it came to lengthy dialogue scenes.

Lead Actor in a Drama Series:

Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul

Kyle Chandler, Bloodline

Kevin Spacey, House of Cards

Rami Malek, Mr. RobotWill Win, Should Win

Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan

Matthew Rhys, The Americans

Young fresh face and the only way to honor the USA series with some possible Emmy love.

Lead Actress in a Drama Series:

Taraji P. Henson, Empire

Claire Danes, Homeland

Robin Wright, House of CardsShould Win

Viola Davis, How to Get Away With MurderWill Win

Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black

Keri Russell, The Americans

I’m a huge fan of Robin Wright and what she does on House of Cards, but the momentum is still on Viola Davis and her commanding performance on one of the hottest broadcast network shows around.  Sadly, we are missing the grace of Julianna Margulies and The Good Wife, and the academy should have done justice by nominating her one final time here.

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series:

Jonathan Banks, Better Call SaulShould Win

Ben Mendelsohn, Bloodline

Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones

Kit Harrington, Game of ThronesWill Win

Michael Kelly, House of Cards

Jon Voight, Ray Donovan

How many times can we sit through another year without Jonathan Banks winning an Emmy for Mike?  There has been no love so far for the Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul favorite, but the academy will screw him over again for someone on Game of Thrones.  My bet’s on Kit Harrington for still be around.

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series:

Maggie Smith, Downton AbbeyWill Win

Lena Headey, Game of Thrones

Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones

Maisie Williams, Game of Thrones

Maura Tierney, The Affair

Constance Zimmer, UnREALShould Win

Three’s company is going to be an issue for the ladies of Game of Thrones.  My bet is that they’ll honor Maggie Smith one final time as the memorable Dowager Countess of Grantham (the thing that should have happened to Julianna Margulies of The Good Wife), but Constance Zimmer as whipper-snapper, no-holds-bars Quinn could sneak in.

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series:

Anthony Anderson, black-ish

Aziz Ansari, Master of None

William H. Macy, Shameless

Thomas Middleditch, Silicon Valley

Will Forte, Last Man on Earth

Jeffrey Tambor, TransparentWill Win, Should Win

This one is set in stone.  Nothing can top Tambor now.

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series:

Tracee Ellis Ross, black-ishShould Win

Laurie Metcalf, Getting On

Lily Tomlin, Grace and Frankie

Amy Schumer, Inside Amy Schumer

Ellie Kemper, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep Will Win

Julia Louis-Dreyfus is the queen until Veep ends, leaving little room for the love to go ‘round.  So here’s a shout-out to black-ish’s standout and leading lady Tracee Ellis Ross (and yes, daughter of Diana Ross).

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series:

Louie Anderson, Baskets

Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-NineShould Win

Keegan-Michael Key, Key & Peele

Ty Burrell, Modern Family

Tituss Burgess, Unbreakable Kimmy SchmidtShould Win

Tony Hale, VeepWill Win

Matt Walsh, Veep

Tony Hale has another good year.  Ty Burrell was really weak again this year.  But the love needs to be shown to two great characters in comedy: Titus Andromedon of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Captain Ray Holt of Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series:

Niecy Nash, Getting On

Allison Janney, MomWill Win

Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night LiveShould Win

Judith Light, Transparent

Gabby Hoffman, Transparent

Anna Chlumsky, Veep

Allison Janney is still on top, but Kate McKinnon is one of the most gifted comedians out there, and her work on Saturday Night Live is always a joy to watch over and over again.

Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie:

Bryan Cranston, All the Way

Idris Elba, Luther

Benedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock: The Abominable Bride

Tom Hiddleston, The Night Manager

Courtney B. Vance, The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime StoryWill Win, Should Win

Cuba Gooding, Jr., The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

In what will be like a dominating night for The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, Courtney B. Vance will likely win over his (much) weaker co-star and the competition.  Since the Emmy is going to Johnnie Cochran, let’s add Marcia Clark to the mix.

Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie:

Felicity Huffman, American Crime

Lili Taylor, American Crime

Kerry Washington, Confirmation

Kirsten Dunst, Fargo

Audra McDonald, Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill

Sarah Paulson, The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime StoryWill Win, Should Win

Oh look, it’s Marcia Clark!  Jokes aside, this was the performance of the year, making everyone’s least favorite female attorney into one of the most sympathetic characters ever.  Episode 6 will break you.  Hard.

Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie:

Jesse Plemons, Fargo

Bokeem Woodbine, FargoShould Win

Hugh Laurie, The Night Manager

Sterling K. Brown, The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime StoryWill Win, Should Win

David Schwimmer, The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

John Travolta, The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

Flip a coin, see where it lands.  I give an edge for Sterling K. Brown due to the love of The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, and the fact that he has This Is Us debuting next season.

Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie:

Melissa Leo, All the Way

Regina King, American Crime

Sarah Paulson, American Horror Story: Hotel

Kathy Bates, American Horror Story: Hotel

Jean Smart, FargoWill Win, Should Win

Olivia Colman, The Night Manager

Jean Smart as a matriarch and inheritor of a family crime gang was the best part of Fargo.  Every scene with her is electric, and she is one icy lady you will not want to cross.

Best TV Movie:

A Very Murray Christmas

All the WayShould Win



Sherlock: The Abominable BrideWill Win

This one’s a confusing mess.  So let’s see what happens, but Sherlock may manage to steal another win.

Best Variety Talk Series:

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

Jimmy Kimmel Live

Last Week Tonight with John OliverWill Win, Should Win

Real Time with Bill Maher

The Late Late Show with James Corden

The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon

While the rest of the shows have their strengths, Last Week Tonight continues to be engaging, fresh, and funny despite all of the unnerving topics that are discussed at fifteen to twenty minutes at length.  John Oliver and Samantha Bee are the new leaders in late night comedy news after John Stewart (and they both were correspondents for The Daily Show years ago), but Bee’s no where to be found on this list, so I’ll go with Oliver.

Best Variety Sketch Series:

Documentary Now!

Drunk History

Inside Amy SchumerWill Win

Key & PeeleShould Win


Saturday Night Live

This is Key & Peele’s last chance to prove that it is one of the best sketch series ever created, but the wave is still on Schumer’s side.

Author: Samantha Felmus

Samantha Felmus is a writer with a cinematic vision. She holds a BA in Liberal Arts with concentrations in film from Sarah Lawrence College and a MFA in writing and producing for television from Long Island University - Brooklyn, specifically the TV Writer's Studio Program. In her downtime, she likes to cook and watch all the random things available on Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube. She currently resides in New York City.

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