The final season of "Mad Men" will be one for the record books according to our Emmy Experts, as they give the AMC hit leading 4/9 odds to win its fifth Best Drama Series trophy. "Mad Men," which won this award four years running beginning in 2008, is currently tied with "The West Wing" (2000–2003), "L.A. Law" (1987, 1989–1991) and "Hill Street Blues" (1981–1984). Over on the comedy side, laffers "Modern Family" and "Frasier" have already won five trophies apiece, so isn't it time for a drama to play catch-up?
A leading nine of our 12 Experts have "Mad Men" in their first position to win the Emmy: Robert Bianco (USA Today), Debra Birnbaum (Variety), Eric Deggans (NPR), Joyce Eng (TV Guide), Matthew Jacobs (HuffPo), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby), Ken Tucker (Yahoo), Glenn Whipp (LA Times) and Jarett Wieselman (Buzzfeed).
We should mention that Gold Derby's own Sheehan was the leading Expert last year in predicting the Emmy winners, reaping 66% accuracy. So, if he's saying "Mad Men" will win, that means the other six nominees — "Game of Thrones," "Orange is the New Black," "Better Call Saul," "House of Cards," "Homeland," "Downton Abbey" — had better watch their backs.
"Mad Men" has a leg up on the competition this year due to its now-or-never nature. Voters may feel a sense of urgency to reward this classic show one last time, just as they did for the final seasons of "Breaking Bad" (2014), "The Sopranos" (2007), "Everybody Loves Raymond" (2005) and "Barney Miller" (1982). Comparisons to "The Sopranos" are apt for two reasons. "Mad Men" showrunner Matthew Weiner worked in its writers' room a decade ago and it was a series that fickle Emmy voters spurned, loved, jilted, then gave a touching goodbye kiss in the aftermath of its controversial last episode.
Now, on the eve of "Mad Men's" final Emmy showing, it's significant to note that TV critics, awards experts and other Hollywood curmudgeons seem to be pleased with how the show faded to black as Don Draper (Jon Hamm) fled the madness of Madison Avenue to find redemption in the sprawl of the American west.
However "Mad Men" fares at the Emmys next month, it'll always hold a place as one of TV's greats — a show that dared to be different while always staying true to Weiner's unique vision. Have some scotch on us, "Mad Men." You deserve it.
Make your own Emmys picks now to the right or at the bottom of this post. 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 (the two dozen folks who do the best predicting this year's Emmys line-up).
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: Christina Hendricks, Elisabeth Moss. Credit: AMC/courtesy Everett Collectio/REX