Who could, should, and absolutely will win at the 2019 Emmys

Illustration by Sammy Newman

Brandon Shillingford, Contributing Writer

The eligibility period to qualify for the 2019 Emmys nominations ran from June 1, 2018 to May 31 of this year. That means that shows such as “Big Little Lies” that premiered outside of that window are not eligible for this years Emmys. However, ones like “Sharp Objects” and “Game of Thrones” are eligible.

With shows like these as nominees, and plenty more like ones I talked about in July, it means that this year’s Emmys will be harder to predict than most. But fear not, I’ll try my best to provide you with semi-accurate — but always passionate — predictions for this years Emmys.

 

Outstanding Drama Series 

“Better Call Saul” (AMC)

“Bodyguard” (Netflix)

“Game of Thrones” (HBO)

“Killing Eve” (BBC America)

“Ozark” (Netflix)

“Pose” (FX)

“This Is Us” (NBC)

“Succession” (HBO)

 

Should Win: “Succession”

Will Win: “Game of Thrones

 

If the 160 nominations weren’t evidence enough, the Television Academy loves “Game of Thrones.” We all do, or did (but that’s a different conversation) and we’ll all miss it. The Academy won’t miss one final opportunity to reward the show that defined the peak TV era. However, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the presence of fellow HBO patron “Succession.” Its inclusion in the drama category is questionable enough seeing as it’s funnier than most comedies on TV. 

 

Outstanding Comedy Series 

“Barry” (HBO)

“Fleabag” (Amazon)

“The Good Place” (NBC)

“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” (Amazon)

“Russian Doll” (Netflix)

“Schitt’s Creek” (Pop)

“Veep” (HBO)

 

Could Win: “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”

Should Win: “Barry” or “Fleabag”

Will Win: “Veep”

 

That same logic that applies to “Game of Thrones” winning on Sunday, applies to fellow HBO show “Veep.” It’s always been an academy favorite. All six seasons have been nominated for “Outstanding Comedy Series,” and its star, Julia Louis Dreyfus, has won all five outstanding lead actress in a comedy series Emmys she’s been nominated for in her time on Veep. And with the final season ending earlier this year, The Emmys won’t miss an opportunity to reward it. 

However, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” is also an Academy favorite that took advantage of the fact that “Veep” was ineligible last year and won the comedy series” Emmy. So if there’s any chance for an upset, it’d “Mrs. Maisel” that gets it done.

 

Outstanding Limited Series

“Chernobyl” (HBO)

“Escape at Dannemora” (Showtime)

“Fosse/Verdon” (FX)

“Sharp Objects” (HBO)

“When They See Us” (Netflix)

 

Could Win: “Chernobyl”

Should Win: “When They See Us or Sharp Objects”

Will Win: “When They See Us”

 

Besides being one of the best shows of the year, “When They See Us” was second in total nominations behind only “Game of Thrones.” It’s an important work made by an artist who is extremely popular among voters in Ava DuVernay. It’s hard to see “When They See Us” not coming away with the win on Sunday. Chernobyl would be the populous pick that I could see winning if it were still July, but it’s just been too long since it’s premiered and the buzz has died down. The same is true for “Sharp Objects,” which (and don’t kill me please) is the best show in the category and would’ve won if it hadn’t premiered over a year ago. 

 

Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Emilia Clarke (“Game of Thrones”) 

Jodie Comer (“Killing Eve”)

Viola Davis (“How to Get Away With Murder”)

Laura Linney (“Ozark”)

Mandy Moore (This Is Us”)

Sandra Oh (“Killing Eve”)

Robin Wright (“House of Cards”)

 

Could Win: Jodie Comer

Should Win: Sandra Oh or Jodie Comer

Will Win: Sandra Oh

 

Claire Foy pulled off a surprising upset when she beat Sandra Oh in this category last year for her role as Queen Elizabeth in “The Crown.” Oh has a much clearer path to a win this year since previous winners like Foy and Elizabeth Moss aren’t nominated. Her only real competition is her co-star, Jodie Comer. But with this being Comer’s first nomination, she’ll have other opportunities to win and this is Oh’s time. 

 

Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Jason Bateman (“Ozark”)

Sterling K. Brown (“This Is Us”)

Kit Harington (“Game of Thrones”)

Bob Odenkirk (“Better Call Saul”)

Billy Porter (“Pose”)

Milo Ventimiglia (“This Is Us”) 

 

Could Win: Billy Porter 

Should Win: Billy Porter

Will Win: Bob Odenkirk 

 

Odenkirk is a journeyman who’s never won before and will likely be rewarded for his outstanding work on “Better Call Saul.” But it’d be so refreshing to see Billy Porter pull off the upset and winning in this category for his role as Pray Tell in “Pose.”

 

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Gwendoline Christie (“Game of Thrones”)

Julia Garner (“Ozark”)

Lena Headey (“Game of Thrones”)

Fiona Shaw (“Killing Eve”)

Sophie Turner (“Game of Thrones”)

Maisie Williams (“Game of Thrones”)

 

Could Win: Julia Garner

Should Win: Sophie Turner

Will Win: Lena Headey

 

Sophie Turner is and always has been the beating heart of “Game of Thrones.” Everyone on the show is great, but she has always been a standout. However, Lena Headey has been waiting for this moment ever since the first season of “Thrones” and I really can’t see Turner or Julia Garner (who is honestly the best part of “Ozark”) standing in her way. 

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Alfie Allen (“Game of Thrones”)

Jonathan Banks (“Better Call Saul”)

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (“Game of Thrones”)

Peter Dinklage (“Game of Thrones”)

Giancarlo Esposito (“Better Call Saul”) 

Michael Kelly (“House of Cards”)

Chris Sullivan (“This Is Us”)

 

Should Win: Alfie Allen 

Will Win: Peter Dinklage

 

As great and as deserving of one final win as Peter Dinklage is (and make no mistake, he’s going to win. This is one of the only 100% locks of this year), it’s a shame that neither of his phenomenal co-stars, Alfie Allen and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, won’t get to reap some of the rewards.

 

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Christina Applegate (“Dead to Me”)

Rachel Brosnahan (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”) 

Julia Louis-Dreyfus (“Veep”) 

Natasha Lyonne (“Russian Doll”)

Catherine O’Hara (“Schitt’s Creek”) 

Phoebe Waller-Bridge (“Fleabag”) 

 

Could Win: Rachel Brosnahan

Should Win: Phoebe Waller-Bridge

Will Win: Julia Louis-Dreyfus

 

I talked about her in my comedy prediction, but Louis-Dreyfus has never lost an outstanding lead actress in a comedy series Emmy. And with its final season ending earlier this year, the Academy won’t miss an opportunity to reward her. 

 

Last year’s winner, Rachel Brosnahan, has an outside shot to win again. But her chances of winning increase exponentially when Louis-Dreyfus isn’t involved. But let’s not kid ourselves, Phoebe Waller-Bridge deserves this more than anyone. But if the Academy will reward her at all on Sunday, it’ll likely be in the writing categories, in which she’s nominated twice for writing “Fleabag” and “Killing Eve.”

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Anthony Anderson (“Black-ish”)

Don Cheadle (“Black Monday”)

Ted Danson (“The Good Place”) 

Michael Douglas (“The Kominsky Method”)

Bill Hader (“Barry”)

Eugene Levy (“Schitt’s Creek”)

 

Could Win: Michael Douglas

Should Win: Bill Hader

Will Win: Bill Hader

 

Bill Hader is one of the most talented people on the planet, and “Barry” is the perfect showcase for all his talents. He writes, directs and stars in the show, and he’s either won or been nominated for all three. And I don’t see the Academy falling out of love with him anytime soon. This is the rare case where the actor who has the best chance at winning and the one who actually deserves to win is the same guy. 

 

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Alex Borstein (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)

Olivia Colman (“Fleabag”) 

Sian Clifford (“Fleabag”)

Anna Chlumsky (“Veep”)

Sarah Goldberg (“Barry”)

Betty Gilpin (“Glow”)

Marin Hinkle (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)

Kate McKinnon (“Saturday Night Live”)

 

Could Win: Kate McKinnon

Should Win: Sian Clifford, Sarah Goldberg, or Betty Gilpin

Will Win: Alex Borstein 

 

This may be the best and worst category this year. Every single actress is so talented and deserving of the award, but it’s hard to predict who’ll win because of all of the options. The most likely outcome is that Alex Borstein repeats after winning in the same category last year, but perennial contender and SNL standout Kate McKinnon is always a threat to win.

 

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Alan Arkin (“The Kominsky Method”)

Anthony Carrigan (“Barry”)

Tony Hale (“Veep”)

Stephen Root (“Barry”)

Tony Shalhoub (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”)

Henry Winkler (“Barry”) 

 

Could Win: Tony Hale 

Should Win: Stephen Root or Anthony Carrigan 

Will Win: Henry Winkler 

 

This is another category in which the Academy favorite will likely win out. Winkler won his first and (long overdue) Emmy last year, and not much as changed since then. Even with two of his co-stars, Stephen Root and Anthony Carrigan, picking up their first noms, Winkler is still the favorite. Previous winner Tony Hale is also nominated, and since it’s his last chance, Academy voters could reward him one last time for his work in “Veep”. 

 

The 71st Primetime Emmy Awards will broadcast Sept. 22 at 8 p.m. EST on Fox.

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