Monday, September 12, 2016

Emmy Winner Predictions: Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series

As I’ve done the past few years, I’m excited to present a detailed look at the Emmy race in each category with a spotlight on every sample episode submitted for consideration to voters. Click on episode titles to read reviews and offer your thoughts in the comments!

Kyle Chandler (Bloodline) – Part 23
Rami Malek (Mr. Robot) – Pilot
Bob Odenkirk (Better Call Saul) – Klick
Matthew Rhys (The Americans) – The Magic of David Copperfield V
Liev Schreiber (Ray Donovan) – Exsuscito
Kevin Spacey (House of Cards) – Episode 52

In this category we have four returning nominees from last year, one freshman star, and another actor who finally scored a nomination after lots of fan support for his show. It’s still crazy to me that Spacey hasn’t won, and his submission of the season finale in which he shows force and is back to his usual formidable self is in my opinion a much stronger choice than any early episode that shows him in a more weakened state. He could well win this thing. Odenkirk, whose show didn’t astound with its nominations haul but is clearly respected, chose the superb season finale which finds him freely admitting to his crimes. If his show had more buzz right now, he might have a not, but I don’t see him winning. I was pleasantly surprised to see Schreiber included again this year, and his submission of the season finale, which also earned a nomination for directing, is definitely a superb choice that shows him as being very vulnerable and considering atoning for his many sins. Chandler won this award for the final season of “Friday Night Lights,” but he’s so entirely unlikeable in the season two finale of his show. Without context of the whole season, it’s hard to appreciate his performance, and I think that negates his chances of winning. Rhys, who scored a nomination for the first time for his show’s fourth season, has good material, but I think he’s not nearly as revered as costar Keri Russell, and his nomination is the victory. And then there’s Malek, a fantastic addition to this race who is electric and amazing in the pilot of his show. If there was any justice in this world, he would win, but I suspect that he won’t be able to pull it off.

Who should win (based on entire season): Malek, Odenkirk, or Schreiber
Who should win (based on individual episodes): Malek or Spacey
Who will win: I think it’s Spacey’s turn since he has never won before, and aside from a welcome win for Malek, I don’t see anyone else mustering the momentum to take it away from him.

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