9 Emmy nominations we really want to see

9 Emmy nominations we really want to see

In anticipation of next week's big announcement, here are the hat-tips Team TV is pulling for the most

By
We may earn a commission from links on this page.
Clockwise from bottom left: Rhea Seehorn in Better Call Saul (Photo: Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television), Desus & Mero (Photo: Greg Endries/SHOWTIME), Lee Minho and Minha Kim in Pachinko (Photo: Apple TV+), Adam Scott in Severance (Photo: Apple TV+), Lena Waithe and Pamela Adlon in Better Things (Photo: Suzanne Tenner/FX), and Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle in PEN15 (Photo: Hulu)
Clockwise from bottom left: Rhea Seehorn in Better Call Saul (Photo: Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television), Desus & Mero (Photo: Greg Endries/SHOWTIME), Lee Minho and Minha Kim in Pachinko (Photo: Apple TV+), Adam Scott in Severance (Photo: Apple TV+), Lena Waithe and Pamela Adlon in Better Things (Photo: Suzanne Tenner/FX), and Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle in PEN15 (Photo: Hulu)
Graphic: Libby McGuire

The race for the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards is on, as they say. (Do they say that? They should stop. It’s kind of…gross.) While the ceremony doesn’t go down until September, the nominations will be unveiled next week, on July 12. We’ll be sure to pick apart the snubs and surprises and WTF-inducing picks then. But in the meantime, here are the shows, performers, and artists most deserving of recognition, in our not-so-humble opinions.

Advertisement

2 / 11

Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama Series: Rhea Seehorn, Better Call Saul

Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama Series: Rhea Seehorn, Better Call Saul

Rhea Seehorn in Better Call Saul
Rhea Seehorn in Better Call Saul
Photo: Greg Lewis/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

It’s frankly criminal that Rhea Seehorn hasn’t already won an Emmy for Better Call Saul, let alone not even scored a nomination in all these years. AMC’s brilliant drama might’ve started out as the origin story for how Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) transformed into Saul Goodman. But the show simply wouldn’t work without Seehorn’s calculated, riveting performance as Kim Wexler. Her acting prowess further elevates BCS, especially as Kim begins (ahem) breaking bad too. In season six, Kim goes to the extreme in order to seek revenge on Howard (Patrick Fabian). With each cunning move, Seehorn adds more complexity to her character. And despite her shady plans, it’s easy to root for Kim’s success thanks to the actor’s inherent charisma. She may be up in the supporting category, but Seehorn’s a BCS lead in her own right. [Saloni Gajjar]

Advertisement

3 / 11

Outstanding Comedy Series: PEN15

Outstanding Comedy Series: PEN15

Pen15 Season 2, Part 2 Trailer

This is the last chance for PEN15 to nab the Emmy it so rightfully deserves. (The series was nominated in the Comedy Series category last year, but, alas, no win.) There are a lot of reasons for the show to earn a statuette, but a big one that sticks with me is how a premise that seems tailor-made for a sketch—two thirtysomethings (creators Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle, who have an irresistible chemistry) playing grade-school versions of themselves while surrounded by actual grade schoolers—can be stretched over two glorious seasons and reach such emotional depths. Never afraid to double down on cringe comedy or creativity (I love season two’s recreation of that epic pool-party shot in Boogie Nights), it’s the Hulu show I’ve most loved to date. [Tim Lowery]

Advertisement

4 / 11

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series: Adam Scott, Severance

Outstanding Lead Actor In A Drama Series: Adam Scott, Severance

Adam Scott and Britt Lower in Severance
Adam Scott and Britt Lower in Severance
Photo: Apple TV+

Adam Scott has been a small-screen workplace icon since sharpening his comedic chops on Party Down and Parks And Recreation. But Severance finally let the actor apply his more dramatic talents (think his performance on Big Little Lies) to the job. As the manager of Macrodata Refinement, Mark Scout becomes the reluctant leader of a rebellion against Lumon Industries. Scott’s nuanced approach to Severance’s conflicted protagonist, whose initial uncertainty grounds much of the first season, adds some essential complexity to the show’s more obvious symbolism. Plus, the actor’s natural relatability helps sell so much of the drama in one of the best new shows this year. [Alison Foreman]

Advertisement

5 / 11

Outstanding Drama Series: Pachinko

Outstanding Drama Series: Pachinko

Pachinko — Official Trailer | Apple TV+

Without a doubt, Apple TV+’s Pachinko is one of 2022’s most visually stunning and powerfully written TV dramas. So it would be an egregious snub if the show doesn’t get nominated for an Emmy. Spanning across time and countries, Pachinko focuses on generations of an immigrant Korean family as they adapt to global, cultural, geographical, and economic changes. Their intricate personal narratives seamlessly tie together with the dark history of Japan-occupied Korea. Showrunner Soo Hugh (who brings Min Jin Lee’s bestselling novel of the same name to life) casts Pachinko with an ensemble that can carry the intense material without missing a beat, from relative newcomer Minha Kim to Oscar winner Youn Yuh-jung. Everything about Pachinko—music, direction, cinematography, costumes—hits the right note. [Saloni Gajjar]

Advertisement

6 / 11

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series: Nicholas Braun, Succession

Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Drama Series: Nicholas Braun, Succession

Nicholas Braun and Matthew Macfadyen in Succession
Nicholas Braun and Matthew Macfadyen in Succession
Photo: Macall B. Polay/HBO

HBO’s Succession hit the jackpot with its masterful ensemble, so it’s no wonder that a lot of the cast have been up for (and will certainly score more) Emmy nods. However, no one deserves acclaim for their work in season three more than Nicholas Braun, who skillfully morphs his Cousin Greg over nine episodes, striking the necessary comedic balance required to be a bumbling mess while adapting to the manipulators he calls family. As The A.V. Club notes in a recent interview with him, the actor’s potent performance fully sells a convincingly chilling line like, “Souls are boring,” a stark contrast to the demure Greg we’ve known and rooted for so far. Braun would be up against co-stars Matthew MacFayden and Kieran Culkin in this category, but what better ode to Succession than letting the cast compete with each other, right? [Saloni Gajjar]

Advertisement

7 / 11

Outstanding Limited Or Anthology Series: Angelyne

Outstanding Limited Or Anthology Series: Angelyne

Angelyne | Official Trailer | Peacock Original

Peacock’s Angelyne starts and stops with the superstar performance of executive producer Emmy Rossum. So it should go without saying that if she is not simply pelted with statuettes for her titular role, then something has gone horribly wrong. However, in addition to honoring Rossum with an Emmy all her own, Angelyne ought to be recognized as a uniquely successful limited series backed by an embarrassment of talents. We gave it an “A” at the time of release and explained our overarching love for the series there. But to sum it up: Angelyne delivers everything you need to know about its inspiration in a way that’s entertaining, respectful, and resonant. The jaw-dropping costuming, makeup, and production design are just bonuses. [Alison Foreman]

Advertisement

8 / 11

Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series: Pamela Adlon, Better Things

Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series: Pamela Adlon, Better Things

Pamela Adlon in the Better Things series finale
Pamela Adlon in the Better Things series finale
Photo: Suzanne Tenner/FX

Pamela Adlon carried FX’s comedy Better Things for its entire run, closing it out with a pitch-perfect fifth and final season. Loosely based on her own life, she plays Sam Fox, an actor and single mother to three daughters. As she has done expertly since season two, Adlon directed each of the 10 episodes this time around, using vivid imagery to tell a larger-than-life story. Yet even in simple moments—ones where Sam is cooking a scrumptious meal, or Max (Mikey Madison) is cleaning the house, or they’re all hosting a patio dinner—Adlon’s direction is pretty remarkable, honing in on the cast’s harmonious chemistry. It would be a shame if her work goes unrecognized yet again. [Saloni Gajjar]

Advertisement

9 / 11

Outstanding Variety Talk Series: Desus & Mero

Outstanding Variety Talk Series: Desus & Mero

Desus Nice, Sam Jay, and The Kid Mero on Desus & Mero
Desus Nice, Sam Jay, and The Kid Mero on Desus & Mero
Photo: Scott Gries/SHOWTIME

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver has won this category six years in a row. Maybe it’s time for some new blood? And better yet, how about some new blood that has yet to even get a nomination? And even better yet, how about some new blood that’s very, very funny? Now in their fourth season as hosts on Showtime, Desus Nice and The Kid Mero have an uncanny comedic chemistry, an ability to riff on, say, dumb videos—and there are a lot of them—in incredibly quick and sharp ways, showing some real improv chops. (Mero losing it—and there is a lot of that, too—is incredibly infectious.) If bringing the funny is worth anything in this category (and it ought to be, right?), these guys should be shoo-ins. [Tim Lowery]

Advertisement

10 / 11

Outstanding Directing For A Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie: Mike Flanagan, Midnight Mass

Outstanding Directing For A Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie: Mike Flanagan, Midnight Mass

Midnight Mass | Teaser Trailer | Netflix

Horror auteur Mike Flanagan may be best known for adaptations like The Haunting Of Hill House, Gerald’s Game, and Doctor Sleep. But he’s at his best when he’s working on original material, and Midnight Mass is some of top-shelf Flanagan. Netflix’s terrifying miniseries is thematically anchored in the uncertainty of faith, narratively centered around a young man (Zach Gilford) grappling with guilt and a zealous priest (Hamish Linklater) aiming to revitalize a town’s spiritual conviction. Flanagan deftly explores that slippery subject area with gorgeous cinematography and an unflinching approach to grim scenes. [Alison Foreman]

Advertisement

11 / 11