Melissa McCarthy joined the “Saturday Night Live” five-timers club this spring when she hosted the sketch comedy for the fifth time. She has earned Emmy nominations for Best Comedy Guest Actress for every hosting gig, but she has yet to win for the show. Will she win this year after making headlines for her performances as former White House press secretary Sean Spicer? Within just the last six years she has become a TV academy favorite, with three additional nominations for the CBS sitcom “Mike and Molly”; she won Best Comedy Actress for that show on her first try in 2011.
Be sure to make your own predictions in this race as well as the rest of the Primetime Emmy categories and compete against our Emmy experts who cover this race year-round for such leading media outlets, as well as the two dozen amateurs who ranked in the top 24 last year, the all-stars who did well for two years in a row, and thousands of Emmy fans just like you. (Scroll down to see up-to-date racetrack odds derived from all of these predictions.)
McCarthy faces fellow “SNL” guest host Kristen Wiig, who is also nominated for the eighth time, but she has never won. Voters may be compelled to finally reward her an overdue Emmy, but her performance on the show may be overshadowed by McCarthy’s viral Spicer sketches. Or both women may split the vote, allowing one of their four competitors to win instead.
That could pave the way for a posthumous victory for Carrie Fisher for her role in the Amazon streaming series “Catastrophe.” The actress died unexpectedly last December at age 60, but she had already filmed her appearance in “Episode 6” from season three. This would be Fisher’s first Emmy win on her third nomination, but this is the only bid for “Catastrophe” this year — compared to “SNL,” which has 22 — so there might not be enough support for “Catastrophe” as a whole. There may be a desire among many in the TV academy to pay tribute to Fisher regardless, but that kind of sentiment rarely sways Emmy voters.
Angela Bassett is nominated for her performance in the “Master of None” episode “Thanksgiving,” which was also a hit with the academy’s writers branch. This is her fourth nomination, and she has yet to win.
Wanda Sykes (“Black-ish”) earned a surprise nomination for her performance in the acclaimed episode “Lemons” about the election of Donald Trump. This is Sykes’s first Emmy bid for acting, but she’s a longtime Emmy favorite in other categories with seven previous nominations: two for producing and five for writing. She won Best Variety Writing in 1999 for her work on “The Chris Rock Show.”
Becky Ann Baker (“Girls”) is the only first-time nominee in this category, but she’s also the only nominee who has played a long-term recurring role on her series, though voters are specifically considering her performance in the episode “Gummies.” “Girls” has had a hit-and-miss track record at the Emmys, but perhaps Baker will achieve a surprise victory just like her on-screen husband Peter Scolari did last year.
UPDATED: August 8, 2017
1. Melissa McCarthy, “Saturday Night Live” — 17/10
2. Carrie Fisher, “Catastrophe” — 21/10
3. Angela Bassett, “Master of None” — 12/5
4. Becky Ann Baker, “Girls” — 5/2
5. Kristen Wiig, “Saturday Night Live” — 5/2
6. Wanda Sykes, “Black-ish” — 13/5