Monday, September 12, 2016

Emmy Winner Predictions: Best Lead Actress in a Comedy 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!

Ellie Kemper (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt) – Kimmy Goes to a Hotel
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep) – Mother
Laurie Metcalf (Getting On) – Am I Still Me?
Tracee Ellis Ross (Black-ish) – Sink or Swim
Amy Schumer (Inside Amy Schumer) – Welcome to the Gun Show
Lily Tomlin (Grace and Frankie) – The Test

Half of this category is new, which is cool, though the nominees aren’t exactly the ones I would include. In fact, just one of them ranks in my top ten this year, and that’s Kemper, who was snubbed last year and now finds herself deservedly nominated for her impossibly plucky portrayal of the most optimistic New Yorker ever. Her submitted episode is great, finding her on a quest to take chances despite her natural impulses and expectations of what she should get in life. If she won, I’d be thrilled, but I don’t see it happening. I like Schumer but can’t comprehend why her show does it for other people, and while her submitted episode deals with guns and offers some insightful commentary, it’s just not that funny. Ross’ show is popular, and her episode is fun, giving her ample opportunity to show some personality. Metcalf, who is nominated in three categories this year, is weird but dedicated, and if Emmy voters want to reward her, they could do it here, though I imagine most viewers and predictors would find her a strange choice. Tomlin is always fun, and dealing with a forced driving test gives her great material. There’s no reason to expect, however, that Louis-Dreyfus, who has won four years in a row, won’t win again this year, especially since her show is the most-nominated comedy. I didn’t like her submitted episode but I’m sure voters will love it.

Who should win (based on entire season): Kemper
Who should win (based on individual episodes): Kemper
Who will win: It’s going to be Louis-Dreyfus again, which will set a record both for most consecutive wins and most wins in this category.

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