2019 Emmy Predictions, Part 1: Talk/Variety/TV Movie

It’s Emmy predictions time! As always, these are probably the biggest crapshoot winners, since I don’t think there’s any kind of precursor award that influences anything the TV academy does (certainly not TV critics). Which means I’m flying blind except for what I’ve actually seen and loved, heard some measure of hype around, and possibly factoring in beloved/overdue status if there’s no clear frontrunner, or even simply repeating previous winners (a longtime Emmy trend). So without further ado, let’s get started. The Emmys themselves are on Sunday, Sep 22nd, so today we’re getting our feet wet with variety and talk show categories, before moving on to acting in a limited series on Thursday.



Expect  SNL  to bag another trophy this year

Expect SNL to bag another trophy this year

  • At Home With Amy Sedaris

  • Documentary Now

  • Drunk History

  • I Love You, America with Sarah Silverman

  • Saturday Night Live

  • Who is America?

I assume that SNL will be winning this again. I don’t think there’s much hype for any other nominee here, and from what I remember, Sacha Baron Cohen’s Who is America? series was considered disappointing, so they may have had trouble filling the roster. When in doubt, go with the repeater.

Wiinner: SNL

Alternate: I Love You America (maybe Sarah Silverman has some clout here?)

Dark Horse: Drunk History (this is a perennial nominee but can it ever win?)


John Oliver skewers his home country’s new prime minister

John Oliver skewers his home country’s new prime minister

  • The Daily Show with Trevor Noah

  • Full Frontal with Samantha Bee

  • Jimmy Kimmel Live

  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

  • The Late Late Show with James Corden

  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Again, I’m gonna have to go with the perennial winner now, John Oliver. His show’s great and Emmy tends to stick with one winner here until that show is literally off the air. But he’s hardly the only person who deserves it, as certainly Colbert does, and Jimmy Kimmel has only grown more beloved in recent years. But I can’t predict anything else to win in this category until it does. So Last Week Tonight it is.

Winner: Last Week Tonight 

Alternate: The Late Show (I always think there’s a chance Colbert, who won this twice with The Colbert Report, can come in for this, but I won’t go with it until it happens. I know he’d be winning if not for Oliver, let’s put it that way)


Assuming RuPaul will now start to repeat his win from last year

Assuming RuPaul will now start to repeat his win from last year

  • The Amazing Race

  • American Ninja Warrior

  • Nailed It!

  • RuPaul’s Drag Race

  • Top Chef

  • The Voice

Now, this award does tend to alternate and we’ve got several past winners here. The Amazing Race used to always win it, Top Chef has taken it, The Voice was a recent favorite and just last year Drag Race took the award for the first time. It could always swing back to The Voice, but I’m thinking maybe RuPaul is now the hip choice for this and will probably start to repeat until he falls out of fashion.

Winner: RuPaul’s Drag Race

Alternate: The Voice


Deadwood  was the most acclaimed of these, but never count out  Black Mirror  I suppose

Deadwood was the most acclaimed of these, but never count out Black Mirror I suppose

  • Black Mirror: Bqndersnatch

  • Brexit

  • Deadwood: The Movie

  • King Lear

  • My Dinner With Herve

I’m putting this category here in my first predictions, because for the last couple of years they haven’t even given this out on the televised ceremony, reserving it for the technical awards that happen the week before. So this may be handed out already before I even get to predicting the top series awards. It may just be time to combine it with limited series again, to be honest. I’m not sure what the frontrunner is here- Black Mirror has fraudulently won this twice, with good episodes that were decidedly not TV movies, but the interactive Bandersnatch wasn’t even that. Deadwood got great reviews, but it’s difficult to know if people are nostalgic enough for a show that was always a cult thing in its original run. Brexit is probably the other option. I really don’t know.

Winner: Deadwood (going to guess that appreciation for creator David Milch himself on his last project will carry this through to a win?)

Alternate: Bandersnatch

Dark Horse: Brexit