Saturday, September 8, 2018

Emmy Winner Predictions: Best Guest Actress in a Drama Series

Nominees are listed in alphabetical order. Submitted episode titles are in parentheses. Beware of minor spoilers for listed episodes.

Viola Davis as Annalise Keating, Scandal (Allow Me to Reintroduce Myself)
Davis managed a clever trick this year, missing out on a fourth consecutive nomination for “How to Get Away with Murder” but managing to get cited for playing the same character on a crossover episode of another show. I’d say that’s a positive thing since this show is a bit more tolerable. It’s a very competitive category, but it’s possible the recent Oscar winner, who took home the Emmy for the first year of her show in 2015, could triumph for an episode in which she barrels her way straight to the Supreme Court. I wouldn’t count on it though.

Kelly Jenrette as Annie, The Handmaid’s Tale (Other Women)
Jenrette was a surprise nominee since most expected Oscar winner Marisa Tomei to get her slot. The young actress was apparently memorable to voters for her portrayal of Luke’s ex-wife in a time where marriage still meant something and June was the one disrespecting it. She is good but I don’t think that she can take the four powerhouse veterans and one other returning nominee in this category.

Cherry Jones as Holly Maddox, The Handmaid’s Tale (Baggage)
Jones was nominated for an Emmy once before, in 2009 for “24,” and she won then. The respected Tony winner played a role well-suited for her as June’s mother in flashbacks, the kind of person who would never have gone quietly when a totalitarian regime took over. Her character makes sense in context with who June became, and though she’s not as terrific as the regular cast members, she’s a well-regarded performer who is sure to earn plenty of votes.

Diana Rigg as Olenna Tyrell, Game of Thrones (The Queen’s Justice)
This is Rigg’s fourth nomination for this role and her ninth overall. She won an Emmy back in 1997 for the TV movie “Rebecca.” Olenna has always been a character more than capable of controlling events around her, and she gets to do just that as she confronts an impassable obstacle. Rigg, an established actress with a long history of great performances, would be a respectable choice for any voter, but I’m not sure her chances are all that better now than they ever were, and she hasn’t won yet.

Cicely Tyson as Ophelia Hartness, How to Get Away with Murder (I’m Going Away)
This is the third nomination for ninety-three-year-old actress Tyson for this role, and she has eleven additional nominations prior to that, dating back to 1974 and including three wins, most recently in 1994. Playing the mother of the main character whose mental state is deteriorating, Tyson gives a lived-in performance as someone who knows more than she lets on and is surprisingly ready to face what comes. If she hasn’t won yet, I’m not sure why this would be the year, but as she gets older and continues working, I can only imagine people respect her more.

Samira Wiley as Moira, The Handmaid’s Tale (After)
Wiley was nominated in the supporting actress category for this show last year even though I and others thought she should have been cited for “Orange is the New Black.” Now, she’s back in a limited role as the person who made it out, seeing the horrors of what became of our country and now relegated to not be able to do much on the outside in Canada. The way she deals with getting precious little information from back home in her submitted episode makes a good case for her talent, but I’m not sure she can take down the more well-known actresses in this category.

Who should win (based on entire season): N/A
Who should win (based on individual episodes): Rigg
Who will win: It’s a battle of the juggernauts, and I’m not sure who to endorse. I guess Rigg is likelier than Jones or Tyson, her closest competitors.

Next up: Best Guest Actor in a Comedy Series

No comments: