Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Emmy Predictions 2019 - Who Will and Should Win for Directing in a Comedy Series?

The nominations have been announced for The 71st 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 Comedy Series.

The Nominees Ranked By Which Should Win:
  1. Bill Hader for HBO's Barry - "ronny/lily"
  2. Daniel Palladino for Amazon's The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel - "We're Going to the Catskills!"
  3. Amy Sherman-Palladino for Amazon's The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel - "All Alone"
  4. Harry Bradbeer for Amazon's Fleabag - "Episode 1"
  5. Alec Berg for HBO's Barry - "The Audition"
  6. Mark Cendrowski for CBS' The Big Bang Theory - "The Stockholm Syndrome"

"ronny/lily" was a divisive episode of Barry. I certainly had problems with the actual plotting of the story. And yet, it was always easy to admire just how insanely well it was directed. It was the most visually distinctive episode of the show across its two seasons. It stands out even amongst this field of many other well deserving nominations. Hader created a sense of intimacy and confusion with an episode chock full of action that may have veered into the supernatural at times. That alienation could be polarizing but the weird specificity of it all required a strong command behind the camera. That was abundantly clear throughout the proceedings. Meanwhile, the episodes of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel directed by Amy Sherman-Palladino or her husband, Daniel Palladino, are always the most distinctive of its season. They just bring a specific and welcome energy to the proceedings. Their nominations are wildly different as well. Daniel Palladino's is the show's big introduction to the Catskills which is a marvelous and joyous occasion. Meanwhile, Amy Sherman-Palladino's episode was all about the longing over what comes next in life both in one's career and personal life. Both episodes had their challenges but both clearly rose to the occasion in stunning ways. And finally, Fleabag is such a distinctive show in its own right. The way it blends action that plays just to the characters and also to the audience remains absolutely genius.

The Nominees Ranked by Which Will Win:
  1. Bill Hader for HBO's Barry - "ronny/lily"
  2. Amy Sherman-Palladino for Amazon's The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel - "All Alone"
  3. Harry Bradbeer for Amazon's Fleabag - "Episode 1"
  4. Daniel Palladino for Amazon's The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel - "We're Going to the Catskills!"
  5. Alec Berg for HBO's Barry - "The Audition"
  6. Mark Cendrowski for CBS' The Big Bang Theory - "The Stockholm Syndrome"

Amy Sherman-Palladino won a year ago for directing the premiere of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. And now, she could very easily win again for directing the second season finale. In fact, a victory for her would cement a trend for the category this decade with several directors winning consecutive Emmys. First, it was Gail Mancuso for Modern Family in 2013 and 2014. Then, it was Jill Soloway for Transparent in 2015 and 2016. Of course, Bill Hader will be some serious competition as well for directing one of the most visually distinctive and significant episodes of television this year. However, Sherman-Palladino won a year ago even though she was facing off with Hiro Murai for the "Teddy Perkins" episode of Atlanta. So, she may have the track record of overcoming some apparent frontrunners. But it would also be easy to see Harry Bradbeer or Daniel Palladino actually pulling off the victory. Those four contenders are the most likely to prevail in this race. The Big Bang Theory could certainly earn the nostalgia vote simply because it's a genre-defining hit airing its final episode. And yet, the voters have long proven that they aren't all that sentimental. If they ever are, then it's more likely shown in the writing category than the directing one. And Alec Berg will probably struggle because his efforts on Barry will be judged to Hader's which seems like an unfair comparison. They are both truly gifted. They collaborate on everything with the series. Hader just happens to have the superior episode that is probably the frontrunner at this moment in time.

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