Friday, September 16, 2016

Emmy Predictions 2016 - Which Program Will Likely Win for Outstanding Comedy Series?

The nominations are in for The 68th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. The final round of voting has occurred. So now, it's time to speculate on who is likely to win in each major category. Next up for analysis is Outstanding Comedy Series.

The Nominees:
  • ABC's black-ish
  • Netflix's Master of None
  • ABC's Modern Family
  • HBO's Silicon Valley
  • Amazon's Transparent
  • Netflix's Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
  • HBO's Veep

With the sole exception of Modern Family, there really are no bad winners for Best Comedy Series this year. It's just a fantastic time for comedy right now. It's where all of the experimentation and creative differences are taking place. There are traditional family comedies like Modern Family and black-ish. There are high concept comedies that take down one specific concept of society like Veep and Silicon Valley. There are half-hour dramas with just a few comedic moments but have something profound to say about the modern world like Transparent. All of these series are completely unique and different from each other. But they also help define this year as a strong time for comedies. That makes this prize one of the most exciting ones to watch on Emmy night.

Veep is the reigning champion in this category. After five straight wins for Modern Family, Veep finally took them down last year. Now, it may be starting its own winning streak in this category. Veep was the most nominated comedy at the Emmys this year. Much like in drama (for Game of Thrones) and limited series (for The People v. O.J. Simpson), that makes it an immediate frontrunner in every race it's nominated in. It could very well sweep in all of the comedy fields. The sole exception is lead actor. It doesn't have a nomination in that category. But everything else could go to Veep. They would be deserving victories too. Despite a change in the writing team, this season was just as strong as the show has always been. Voters still clearly love it a ton. So, it would not be surprising at all for it to repeat as Best Comedy Series.

And yet, we have to remember that last year's victory for Veep was only the second time in the history of this category that a non-broadcast network show has won. The other was Sex in the City back in 2001. This category really has been the final stand for the broadcast networks at the Emmys. Yes, a few actors from those shows may still win. But the Emmys have shifted to rewarding cable and streaming more and more over the years. However, this history could signal a win for either Modern Family or black-ish this year. It would be seen as support for the big four networks. In black-ish's case, it would mark a win for a terrific second season. It has been winning so many critical awards this year. So, it could all be building up to a major victory at the Emmys with being named the best comedy of the year. That's a honor that would greatly help the show.

But again, there are just so many different options for voters to pick. Anything could happen in this category. Transparent is so different than anything else in this field. That could be its way to stand out and claim the top prize. Master of None is the exciting and strong newbie that could make quite a splash with a win. Silicon Valley has been a reliable veteran for a couple of years now. This could be the season the voters gift it with a win. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt had a strong second season as well. Plus, voters are such big fans of Tina Fey. That kind of love could propel the show to victory. Again, every single nominee is a deserving winner. I will be happy with any of them and will continue to praise all of them for their distinct differences.

Should Win: Transparent
Will Win: Veep
Dark Horse: black-ish