Emmy Predictions 2022: Who Will Win, Who Should Win

I’ve never been able to write an Emmys post before! Usually, my tastes don’t align with the Emmys, and I haven’t seen most of the shows, but I did pretty well this year. I’ve seen all of the nominated dramas, except for Better Call Saul–if you read this blog, you know how much I hate all things Breaking Bad. I did especially well with limited series: thanks to a nasty bout of COVID, I binged every single docudrama miniseries of note this year, even the ones that weren’t nominated but should have been. (We’ll get to that.)

Anyway, the Emmys are on Monday! Here are our picks for who will win–and who should win–in each category.

Outstanding Drama Series

Better Call Saul (AMC)

Euphoria (HBO)

Ozark (Netflix)

Severance (Apple TV+)

Squid Game (Netflix)

Stranger Things (Netflix)

Succession (HBO)

Yellowjackets (Showtime)

Will win: Succession

Should Win: Yellowjackets

Either Succession or Squid Game will win this one, and either would make me happy. I would be happy with a lot of these, actually–Ozark had a phenomenal final season, especially in its ambiguous last moments, Severance had a perfect tonal balance right out of the gate, and Euphoria had an extremely flawed second season that I nevertheless couldn’t tear my eyes away from. But I would give my vote to Yellowjackets. Cannibal stories are super trendy right now, weirdly, but Yellowjackets quickly transcends its genre trappings and reveals itself to be an insightful, funny, scary, and feminist exploration of trauma and female anger. Plus, you can’t beat that iconic 90s casting.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Jodie Comer – Killing Eve

Laura Linney – Ozark

Melanie Lynskey – Yellowjackets

Sandra Oh – Killing Eve

Reese Witherspoon – The Morning Show

Zendaya – Euphoria

Will win: Melanie Lynskey – Yellowjackets

Should Win: Laura Linney – Ozark

Aw, don’t make me choose between Laura Linney and Melanie Lynskey!

(I mean, I might not have to, because Zendaya could easily take this, which would make her the youngest two-time winner in this category. And Zendaya is transcendent in everything she does, but aside from her one big mid-season showcase, she didn’t get much interesting material in this season of Euphoria. Has there ever been a duller love triangle in the history of love triangles?)

Anyway, there’s been more and more chatter for Lynskey, who has launched a full charm offensive and is long overdue for some accolades. But speaking of overdue–it would be crazy if Laura Linney was never awarded for her insanely committed performance as the villainous Wendy Byrde.

Snubs: Mandy Moore – This Is Us, Jennifer Aniston – The Morning Show, Britt Lower – Severance

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Jason Bateman – Ozark

Brian Cox – Succession

Lee Jung-jae – Squid Game

Bob Odenkirk – Better Call Saul

Adam Scott – Severance

Jeremy Strong – Succession

Will win: Lee Jun-jae

Should win: Jeremy Strong

Lee Jun-jae carried Squid Game very well, but Jeremy Strong’s performance in “Too Much Birthday” was one of the best things that happened on TV this year. He’s so good, he almost makes me believe in method acting.

(As an aside, I would also be totally pleased with Adam Scott, who channeled the pain from his mother’s recent death to portray a bereaved man, and deftly created two characters that felt like two halves of the same whole. But alas, he’s arguably the least likely to take this one.)

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Patricia Arquette – Severance

Julia Garner – Ozark

HoYeon Jung – Squid Game

Christina Ricci – Yellowjackets

Rhea Seehorn – Better Call Saul

J. Smith-Cameron – Succession

Sarah Snook – Succession

Sydney Sweeney – Euphoria

Will win: Rhea Seehorn – Better Call Saul

Should win: Sydney Sweeney – Euphoria

This category is STACKED. I’d honestly be happy if any of these talented women won. It’s very possible that I’d be giving my vote to Rhea Seehorn if I had watched Better Call Saul, but as it stands, I’d pick the double-nominated Sydney Sweeney, who poured her heart and soul into Cassie’s challenging, often unsympathetic arc–no one does GIF-able crazy eyes quite like her.

Snubs: Sophie Thatcher – Yellowjackets, Maude Apatow – Euphoria, Justine Lupe – Succession

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Nicholas Braun – Succession

Billy Crudup – The Morning Show

Kieran Culkin – Succession

Matthew Macfadyen – Succession

O Yeong-su – Squid Game

Park Hae-soo – Squid Game

John Turturro – Severance

Christopher Walken – Severance

Will win: Kieran Culkin – Succession

Should win: Matthew Macfayden – Succession

I honestly don’t know who will win this one? I’ve literally seen predictions for every one of them, except for the Severance guys (sorry, Severance guys). But Kieran Culkin has apparently been very active on the Emmy trail, and judging from Succession‘s overall Emmy love, he might just win.

Unless there’s too much vote-splitting between him, Nicholas Braun, and Matthew Macfayden, the latter of whom would get my vote. They’re all great, but Macfayden turned Tom into a tragic character this season, which I never would have thought was possible, and even pulled off a betrayal of his own in the end.

Snubs: Alan Ruck – Succession (poor Conor Roy, always overlooked)

Outstanding Comedy Series

Abbott Elementary (ABC)

Barry (HBO)

Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO/HBO Max)

Hacks (HBO)

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Prime Video)

Only Murders in the Building (Hulu)

Ted Lasso (Apple TV+)

What We Do in the Shadows (FX)

Will win: Ted Lasso

Should win: Barry

Is Barry a comedy? It’s funny, but darkly funny, and also devastating and existential. It feels like maybe Barry and Succession should switch categories. (Or they should just add a Dramedy category, that would make the most sense.) Anyway, Barry is freaking fantastic, and I hope it wins over the crowdpleasing Ted Lasso, especially after the latter’s wildly uneven second season.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Rachel Brosnahan – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Quinta Brunson – Abbott Elementary

Kaley Cuoco – The Flight Attendant

Elle Fanning – The Great

Issa Rae – Insecure

Jean Smart – Hacks

Will win: Jean Smart – Hacks

Should win: Elle Fanning – The Great

I’m still bitter that Elle Fanning wasn’t nominated for her dramatic turn in The Girl from Plainville, but it’s a pleasant surprise to see her recognized for her equally great comedic performance in The Great. She won’t win this, but she deserves to.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Donald Glover – Atlanta

Bill Hader – Barry

Nicholas Hoult – The Great

Steve Martin – Only Murders in the Building

Martin Short – Only Murders in the Building

Jason Sudeikis – Ted Lasso

Will win: Bill Hader – Barry

Should win: Bill Hader – Barry

Give Barry all the awards!

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Alex Borstein – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Hannah Einbinder – Hacks

Janelle James – Abbott Elementary

Kate McKinnon – Saturday Night Live

Sarah Niles – Ted Lasso

Sheryl Lee Ralph – Abbott Elementary

Juno Temple – Ted Lasso

Hannah Waddingham – Ted Lasso

Will win: Hannah Waddingham – Ted Lasso

Should win: Sheryl Lee Ralph – Abbott Elementary

I love Ted Lasso‘s Rebecca when she’s a complex villain, but unfortunately she was sidelined in a boringly implausibly romantic plot this season. Meanwhile, both Sheryl Lee Ralph and Janelle James are HI-larious in Abbott Elementary. I’d pick Ralph, because her performance as a seasoned schoolteacher is a little more nuanced, but I’d be happy with either.

Snubs: Sarah Goldberg – Barry

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Anthony Carrigan – Barry

Brett Goldstein – Ted Lasso

Toheeb Jimoh – Ted Lasso

Nick Mohammed – Ted Lasso

Tony Shalhoub – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Tyler James Williams – Abbott Elementary

Henry Winkler – Barry

Bowen Yang – Saturday Night Live

Will win: Brett Goldstein – Ted Lasso

Should win: Henry Winkler – Barry

Brett Goldstein was one of the highlights of Ted Lasso’s first season, but the dreamy Roy Kent didn’t have much of an arc this season (although his relationship with his niece is super cute). Meanwhile, Henry Winkler had a much meatier role in Barry’s third season, and deserves to win this again.

Outstanding Limited or Anthology Series

Dopesick (Hulu)

The Dropout (Hulu)

Inventing Anna (Netflix)

Pam & Tommy (Hulu)

The White Lotus (HBO/HBO Max)

Will win: The White Lotus

Should win: Dopesick

The White Lotus has this in the bag. Unpopular opinion: while it deserves to be recognized for its incredible cast, I thought the writing was pretty flawed, especially the undercooked exploration of colonialism. None of my favorite miniseries from this year were nominated–the omission of Maid is particularly criminal–so I would vote for Dopesick, which was also flawed creatively but somewhat made up for it with its urgent, essential subject.

Snubs: Maid, Midnight Mass, The Girl from Plainville

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series

Toni Collette – The Staircase

Julia Garner – Inventing Anna

Lily James – Pam & Tommy

Sarah Paulson – Impeachment: American Crime Story

Margaret Qualley – Maid

Amanda Seyfried – The Dropout

Will win: Amanda Seyfried

Should win: Margaret Qualley

The Emmys favor impersonations, even baffling ones (Julia Garner is fantastic in everything else, but that accent was not it, and how could they nominate Sarah Paulson’s fat suit over Beanie Feldstein’s sensitive, empathetic portrayal of Monica Lewinsky?).

To be fair, Amanda Seyfried is very good as Elizabeth Holmes, or at least as good as she can be, when the character is a cipher by design. So I won’t be mad when she wins, but I wish it would go to Margaret Qualley, who was technically playing a real person but also had the opportunity to create a full, rich, nuanced fictional character.

Snubs: Beanie Feldstein – American Crime Story: Impeachment, Elle Fanning – The Girl from Plainville, Jessica Chastain – Scenes from a Marriage, Jessica Biel – Candy

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series

Colin Firth – The Staircase

Andrew Garfield – Under the Banner of Heaven

Oscar Isaac – Scenes from a Marriage

Michael Keaton – Dopesick

Himesh Patel – Station Eleven

Sebastian Stan – Pam & Tommy

Will win: Michael Keaton

Should win: Oscar Isaac

Michael Keaton is always great, but his character in Dopesick is mostly a one-note “good country doctor” stereotype. Even falling into the throes of addiction didn’t add much dimension to his character as written. Meanwhile, every episode of Scenes of a Marriage was essentially a one-act play, with Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain left on their own to bounce off each other and create a lived-in, often hard-to-watch dynamic. Their now-infamous chemistry doesn’t hurt, either.

Snubs: Hamish Linklater – Midnight Mass

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series

Connie Britton – The White Lotus

Jennifer Coolidge – The White Lotus

Alexandra Daddario – The White Lotus

Kaitlyn Dever – Dopesick

Natasha Rothwell – The White Lotus

Sydney Sweeney – The White Lotus

Mare Winningham – Dopesick

Will win: Jennifer Coolidge

Should win: Kaitlyn Dever

This is Jennifer Coolidge’s world, and we’re just living in it. But I absolutely loved Kaitlyn Dever’s portrayal of addiction in Dopesick, the one shining human element of an otherwise straightforward morality play. I would also be happy with Alexandra Daddario, who gave a fabulously nuanced and underrated performance in The White Lotus.

Snubs: Chloe Sevigny – The Girl from Plainville, Melanie Lynskey – Candy, Samantha Sloyan – Midnight Mass

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series

Murray Bartlett – The White Lotus

Jake Lacy – The White Lotus

Will Poulter – Dopesick

Seth Rogen – Pam & Tommy

Peter Sarsgaard – Dopesick

Michael Stuhlbarg – Dopesick

Steve Zahn – The White Lotus

Will win: Murray Bartlett – The White Lotus

Should win: Jake Lacy – The White Lotus

Murray Bartlett will win–he was just so memorable. But I actually loved former nice-guy Jake Lacy’s performance as the ultimate douchey husband. He even made him feel like a person in the end (although a person I would never, ever want to spend time with.)

Snubs: Zach Gilford – Midnight Mass

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