If the Television Academy thought they were going to escape the 24-hour news cycle this Emmy season then the non-stop headlines the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences endured at the end of 2017 should have been a huge wakeup call. It also doesn’t help that the “Leader of the Free World” spent one week advocating for the canceling of a TV series and admonishing the cancelation of another. Yes, we’ve reached the portion of Trump’s attempt at a culture war has put the Emmy Awards just one tweet away from being the centerpiece of a 30-minute cable news segment.
And voting for nominations doesn’t even start until Monday.
Needless to say, there have been some unique twists and turns this season and that’s led to some big questions we’re honestly not sure we can answer yet. Still, indulge us in contemplating them, won’t you?
Is “Westworld” really still a Drama Series player?
Here’s the thing. HBO’s “Westworld” is probably still going to earn an Oustanding Drama Series nomination. The show’s ratings are still too good, it’s a series that features a slew of actors other actors have adored for years (Ed Harris, Anthony Hopkins, Jeffrey Wright, Thandie Newton) and actors they are loving now (Evan Rachel Wood, Tessa Thompson). That’s a huge branch to get behind your series. That being said, the second season has been somehow more bumpy than the first (which found HBO shutting down production at one point). It should still make the cut, but if it doesn’t? Don’t be surprised.
Can Sandra Oh and “Killing Eve” crash the party?
BBC America hasn’t had a real breakout hit since “Orphan Black,” but that’s all changed with “Killing Eve” which has become a critic’s favorite (83 on Metacritic, 97% on Rotten Tomatoes) and ended its first season as a word of mouth wonder with over 700,000 viewers in overnights (huge for the cabler). It took Tatiana Maslany three years to earn an Emmy nod for “Black,” but could five-time nominee and “Grey’s Anatomy” favorite Sandra Oh get BBCA into the awards mix on the first go around? And could her celebrated co-star Jodie Comer surprise as well? The latter is less likely, but Oh’s candidacy should be taken very seriously. And there’s even a tiny chance of show creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge (“Fleabag”) sneaking into a directing or writing category (maybe).
Does Jason Bateman’s “Arrested Development” interview hurt his “Ozark” chances?
A two-time Emmy nominee, Bateman is attempting to earn nominations for both his role on Netflix’s “Ozark” in the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series category and in the Outstanding Lead Actors in a Comedy Series category for the fifth season of “Arrested Development.” That being said, his comments in a group interview with the “Arrested” cast in the New York Times did him no favors. Bateman and his male co-stars seemed to have little sympathy for Jessica Walter who recollected verbal abuse from another “Arrested” star, Jeffrey Tambor, while on set. Tambor, of course, left his award-winning role on“Transparent” because of even more serious accusations. The entire situation somehow took a worse turn when the NYT reporter released the audio of the interview where Walter can be heard crying. Bateman eventually issued a mea culpa on Twitter, but it was after a good 24-hours of him being dragged on social media. After a Golden Globe and SAG nomination for “Ozark,” Bateman seemed a likely Emmy nominee. Were a large number of Television Academy members paying attention or was the, cough, “damage” contained to just social media? Ponder.
Is “Roseanne” really DOA?
It was always going to be tough for the “Roseanne” revival to earn a Comedy Series nomination, but after ABC cancelled the second season of the series and suspended a formal Emmy campaign following Roseanne Barr’s racist tweet at former Obama administration member Valerie Jarrett, it doesn’t have a chance. The question remains, however, whether Emmy voters will reward legendary actors John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf (and perhaps a guest actor or two) for their work. We still think Metcalf, already an Oscar and Tony Award nominee this year, will land a nomination, but Goodman is simply too close to call. And if and when either is nominated it’s certainly going to be a wee bit awkward.