It’s literally exciting that ABC is airing a virtual Emmys ceremony Sunday.
Putting pandemic safety first, Jimmy Kimmel will host the proceedings remotely from inside the Staples Center in Los Angeles. There won’t be an audience or any red carpet for celebrities to walk. Most of the nominees presumably will be attending from home, just like the rest of us.
To give the actors their moment in the spotlight, the Emmys are planning to have live camera feeds from about 130 nominees. Gee, that won’t present any technical challenges, will it? Not to worry. The best part of an awards show is often an unscripted mistake. If a live feed freezes on the face of a losing nominee while the winner is giving a speech, for instance, consider it a moment for future blooper reels.
And it’s been a good year for great TV. It feels as if two series are poised to grab the most awards: HBO’s “Watchmen” which received 26 nominations, the most for any series. and Pop TV’s “Schitt’s Creek” which earned 15, or a Schitt’s load (sorry, censors, it’s allowed). Other top contenders are HBO’s “Succession” and “Ozark,” Amazon Prime’s “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” and Disney+’s “The Mandalorian.”
Here’s a look at the nominees in the main categories who’ve been helping us get through COVID-19 quarantining, along with best guesses for who’ll win, and who should win.
Nominees: “Curb Your Enthusiasm” (HBO); “Dead to Me” (Netflix); “The Good Place” (NBC); “Insecure” (HBO); “The Kominsky Method” (Netflix)’ “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (Amazon Prime); “Schitt’s Creek” (Pop TV); “What We Do in the Shadows” (FX).
Should win: Rarely has television attempted an existential quest for the meaning of life – and the after-life – like “The Good Place.” Where most shows drag on an eternity, this one ended its run exquisitely.
Will win: The final season of “Schitt’s Creek” was a victory for compassion and inclusion, so why not make it official? More proof that sophisticated, quirky humor is Canada’s greatest export.
“Better Call Saul” (AMC); The Crown” (Netflix); “The Handmaid’s Tale” (Hulu); “Killing Eve” (BBC America); “The Mandalorian” (Disney+) “Ozark” (Netflix); “Stranger Things” (Netflix); “Succession” (HBO)
Should win: “Ozark” may eventually wear out its permanent-anxiety welcome, but its third season seemed remarkably fresh as the feds pressured Marty Byrde (Jason Bateman) and Wendy Byrde (Laura Linney) went full Lady MacBeth. Not having to deal with Marty and Wendy’s problems made being in your bubble a little easier to bear.
Will win: To paraphrase Tolstoy, all happy TV families are alike; each unhappy TV family deserves a golden trophy. The delicious infighting of the media dynasty in “Succession” is carried out by a superb cast that embraces the miseries of its unlikable characters with comedic panache. The Roys are as much fun to hate as the real-life Murdochs.
Jason Bateman, “Ozark” (Netflix); Sterling K. Brown, “This Is Us” (NBC); Steve Carell, “The Morning Show” (Apple TV+); Brian Cox, “Succession” (HBO); Billy Porter, “Pose” (FX); Jeremy Strong, “Succession” (HBO)
Should win: Jason Bateman is overdue for “Ozark.” As the quintessentially overstretched family man, Bateman’s Marty Byrde suffers a fate of his own making. But don’t you love to see him try to talk his way out of a desperate jam?
Will win: Nobody does disappointed ruthlessness like Brian Cox, who plays the Machiavellian patriarch of “Succession.” Logan Roy would rather have an heir worthy enough to succeed him, but since that isn’t happening, he’ll just keep all the power to himself.
Jennifer Aniston, “The Morning Show” (AppleTV+); Olivia Colman, “The Crown” (Netflix); Jodie Comer, “Killing Eve” (BBC America); Laura Linney, “Ozark” (Netflix); Sandra Oh, “Killing Eve” (BBC America) Zendaya, “Euphoria” (HBO)
Should win: Olivia Colman, who’s always great, handled the tricky task of conveying how Queen Elizabeth became more invisible as a woman with middle age, even as she gained power as a ruler.
Will win: Colman magnificently grabbed the baton from Claire Foy when she took over role, k…