Early Emmy predictions from our Experts: Could ‘Atlanta’ upset defending champ ‘Veep’?

The 2017 Emmy nominations were announced on Thursday, July 13, so now that we know which shows are nominated and for what, how does that chance the race for the year’s top prizes? A dozen Experts from top media outlets have already weighed in with their picks for Best Comedy Series, and they declare it a close race between “Veep” and “Atlanta.”

Seven of our Experts predict a third straight victory for “Veep”: Debra Birnbaum (Variety), Eric Deggans (NPR), Joyce Eng (TV Guide), Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby) and Anne Thompson (IndieWire).

This is the sixth consecutive nomination for “Veep,” which has won the last two years in a row. And not only has it maintained its momentum over the years, it actually keeps gaining momentum. This year the show has more noms than ever before (17) and far more than any other comedy this year. That includes return nominations for five-time Comedy Actress champ Julia Louis-Dreyfus and supporting players Tony Hale, Matt Walsh and Anna Chlumsky, plus a first-time guest-acting bid for Hugh Laurie. The other branches of the TV academy love “Veep” too with two nominations for writing, three for directing and two for picture editing. With all that support the HBO political satire seems tough to bet against.

However, our other five Experts think “Atlanta” is in the lead: Matthew Jacobs (Huffington Post), Kerry Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes), Lynette Rice (Entertainment Weekly), Robert Rorke (New York Post) and Jarett Wieselman (Buzzfeed).

“Atlanta” has six total nominations, not nearly as many as “Veep,” but it has most of the noms it need to indicate a strong contender in the top category. Donald Glover is up for Best Comedy Actor, Best Comedy Writing and Best Comedy Directing. The show also has a second writing nomination, and it’s up for Best Comedy Casting as well. What’s more, the show cleaned up during the fall and winter awards season, winning Best Comedy Series from the Producers Guild and Writers Guild, which indicates strong industry support for the freshman show.

So who’s right? Will “Veep” continue its winning streak, or will the academy pick the buzzworthy newcomer?

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