Friday, August 10, 2018

Emmy Predictions 2018 - Who Will and Should Win for Directing in a Drama Series?

The nominations are in for The 70th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. So now, it's time to speculate on who will and should win in each major category. Next up for analysis is Directing for a Drama Series.

The Nominees Ranked By Which Director Should Win:
  1. Alan Taylor for HBO's Game of Thrones - "Beyond the Wall"
  2. Kari Skogland for Hulu's The Handmaid's Tale - "After"
  3. The Duffer Brothers for Netflix's Stranger Things - "Chapter Nine: The Gate"
  4. Jeremy Podeswa for HBO's Game of Thrones - "The Dragon and the Wolf"
  5. Stephen Daldry for Netflix's The Crown - "Paterfamilias"
  6. Daniel Sackheim for Netflix's Ozark - "Tonight We Improvise"
  7. Jason Bateman for Netflix's Ozark - "The Toll"

A year ago Reed Morano became the first female director to win an Emmy here in 22 years. It would be absolutely fantastic if it only took one year to reward the next female director. Kari Skogland did some fantastic work on The Handmaid's Tale. "After" is a cinematic episode that still deals with some brutal and gripping emotions. However, the spectacle of Game of Thrones is just so all-consuming and impressive. There is a reason why it always gets multiple nominees in this category. The frozen landscape of "Beyond the Wall" was so beautiful and horrifying. That was a significant episode and easily the best directed of the season. Alan Taylor used that focus and extreme setting remarkably well. Meanwhile, one can't analyze this category without talking about how completely ridiculous it is that Ozark got two nominations. That's insane and completely baffling. That show isn't directed well at all. The color scheme is a complete mess that makes everything seem so dire and depressing. It doesn't know how to light things in a way to make them interesting to look at. I just don't understand how they got two nominations here when there is so much terrific work being done by directors in so many different formats.

The Nominees Ranked by Which Director Will Win:
  1. Alan Taylor for HBO's Game of Thrones - "Beyond the Wall"
  2. Jeremy Podeswa for HBO's Game of Thrones - "The Dragon and the Wolf"
  3. The Duffer Brothers for Netflix's Stranger Things - "Chapter Nine: The Gate"
  4. Kari Skogland for Hulu's The Handmaid's Tale - "After"
  5. Jason Bateman for Netflix's Ozark - "The Toll"
  6. Stephen Daldry for Netflix's The Crown - "Paterfamilias"
  7. Daniel Sackheim for Netflix's Ozark - "Tonight We Improvise"

This is one of the few categories where who will win and who should win will probably line up. The voters clearly love spectacle. That's what fueled the previous two victories for Game of Thrones. "Beyond the Wall" is an intense, action-packed hour with a ton of special effects work. At times, these voters choose to reward the nominee with the most cinematic look and scope. As such, it's easy to assume that something like Game of Thrones or Strange Things will win instead of The Crown or Ozark. Of course, I'm not counting out Jason Bateman either. Sure, he doesn't deserve to win. But he's clearly someone whom the voters love. He got nominated for both acting and directing in Ozark. That's an impressive achievement. It may be an uphill battle to win but it's definitely possible. Meanwhile, there just feels like less urgency to reward The Handmaid's Tale for its bold and vibrant direction this year. Skogland was still very impressive and would be a deserving winner. But the narrative may shift to Game of Thrones winning again or Stranger Things possibly winning something during the main awards ceremony this time around.

What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with my predictions? Let me know in the comments below!