"Game of Thrones" will break new ground for fantasy at the Emmys by winning Best Drama Series … depending on whom you ask. It's the strong favorite to win according to our Editors, Users and Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who scored highest predicting last year's Emmy winners) – but not according to our Experts, who are strongly favoring "Mad Men" to win a record-breaking fifth title. Why the disconnect?
Well, it's true that history favors a "Mad Men" victory. It's a period drama with cultural and historical import, and it has plenty of snob appeal, taking place among affluent advertising executives that TV academy elites can probably relate to. Indeed, they've already rewarded "Mad Men" as Best Drama Series four times (2008-2011), which tied the record shared by "Hill Street Blues," "L.A. Law" and "The West Wing." And other prestige drama have recently won for their final seasons: "The Sopranos" (2007) and "Breaking Bad" (2014).
But "Mad Men" hasn't won a single award since 2011, and though it rebounded in its nominations tally (11, up from eight last year), that's still less than half the number of bids received by "Game of Thrones" (24). And while both shows contend for writing, casting, editing and multiple acting awards, "Mad Men" is absent from the Best Drama Directing race, which may be telling.
As it stands, 13 of our Top 24 Users, six out of seven Editors and more than 450 overall Users say "Game of Thrones" will prevail. Click on the chart below for more stats:
But it's worth noting that, of last year's top-scoring Gold Derby users, our number-one user Jonathan Sydel is currently predicting a victory for "Mad Men." Our second place user, Jose Gonzalez, is also picking "Mad Men." And the only Gold Derby editor picking "Mad Men" is Paul Sheehan, who tied their top predictions score.
Do they know something the rest of us don't? Will the overwhelming nominations support for "Thrones" be unable to overcome the TV academy's bias against sci-fi and fantasy shows?
Make your predictions and you could win one of our three prizes ($500, $300 and $200 Amazon gift certificates) as well as a place of honor on our leaderboard and a starring role in next year's Top 24 Users.
Meet the guy who won our contest to predict the Emmys last year — and learn how he did it and how you can be our next Gold Derby superstar.
Last year, our Experts had an accuracy rate of 58.62% when it came to predicting the Emmy winners. That score tied them with both Gold Derby's Editors and the Top 24 Users (those two dozen folks who did the best at predicting last year's Emmys). Our Users scored 51.72% (Click on any of these groups to see what they got right and wrong last year.)
Which group will be victorious this year?
As some of our Users turn out to be our smartest prognosticators, it's important that you give us your predictions. Your picks influence our Users racetrack odds, which also factor into our official combined odds.
Photo: Emilia Clarke in "Game of Thrones." Credit: HBO/Everett/REX