Monday, August 13, 2018

Emmy Predictions 2018 - Who Will and Should Win for Writing in a Limited Series or TV Movie?

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 Writing for a Limited Series or TV Movie.

The Nominees Ranked By Which Writer Should Win:
  1. Kevin McManus and Matthew McManus for Netflix's American Vandal - "Clean Up"
  2. Mark Frost and David Lynch for Showtime's Twin Peaks: The Return
  3. William Bridge and Charlie Brooker for Netflix's Black Mirror: USS Callister
  4. Tom Rob Smith for FX's The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story - "House by the Lake"
  5. David Nicholls for Showtime's Patrick Melrose
  6. Scott Frank for Netflix's Godless

There are no bad nominees in this category. At least, there's no one whom I can immediately just write off completely as having no chance of winning. Once again, it's clear that some truly inventive things are being done in the limited series format. All of these writers produced some excellent content in the last year. American Vandal, in particular, was very surprising because it subverted audience expectations in such a phenomenal way. It presented as this incredibly silly comedy that was mocking the true crime genre. But by the end of its run, it proved to be such an intricate and personal story about the struggle to balance personal identity with perception. At times, the Twin Peaks revival was a little bloated. When the show was firing on all cylinders though, it was one of the most emotional and moving pieces of television in 2017. And then, the rest of the nominees all found unique ways to tell familiar stories in new and exciting ways. They really dug deep into their particular genres to offer some truly great conversational pieces about the humanity that connects us all. That was thrilling to watch across so many series.

The Nominees Ranked by Which Writer Will Win:
  1. William Bridge and Charlie Brooker for Netflix's Black Mirror: USS Callister
  2. Tom Rob Smith for FX's The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story - "House by the Lake"
  3. Scott Frank for Netflix's Godless
  4. David Nicholls for Showtime's Patrick Melrose
  5. Mark Frost and David Lynch for Showtime's Twin Peaks: The Return
  6. Kevin McManus and Matthew McManus for Netflix's American Vandal - "Clean Up"

Over the last few years, it's been clear that the voters in the writing category typically reward the best script. It doesn't always matter who has the best track record at the Emmys or who is the biggest name on the ballot. A year ago Charlie Brooker won despite some stiff competition from some heavyweight contenders. And now, no one can underestimate him winning in this category once more. USS Callister was an episode that broke from the formula of the show in some tremendous ways and was easily one of the best hours of television from last year. And as much as I would like Twin Peaks or American Vandal to win here, it just seems like such an uphill battle. This is the only opportunity for American Vandal to win. As such, that could give some urgency to the voters. But it still seems unlikely. Meanwhile, there just has to be the assumption that Twin Peaks will win more of the technical awards. As such, it's less necessary for it to win here. Plus, the other three nominees in the category simply have more nominations across the board - which will make them all formidable contenders.

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