The Best Comedy Series prize at Sunday’s Writers Guild Awards is between two shows, according to our latest predictions: “Master of None” and “Veep.” The former is slightly ahead with 10/11 odds, while the latter is on its tail with 27/20 odds. “GLOW” (33/1 odds), “Curb Your Enthusiasm” (66/1 odds) and “Silicon Valley” (80/1 odds) are complete longshots.
Our roster of pundits is divided between the two favorites, with five Experts and three Editors backing “Master of None,” and four Experts and four Editors rooting for “Veep.” Our Top 24 Users, who scored the best last year, are split 13-11 for “Master of None.”
This would be the first WGA Award for “Master of None” and the third for “Veep,” which won four years ago and two years ago (if you believe in patterns, then it’s due to win again this year). “Veep” would tie “30 Rock” for the most wins in the category.
What could ultimately decide this heated race are outside factors. “Master of None” creator and star Aziz Ansari has been embroiled in a scandal after a woman came forward last month accusing him of sexual impropriety following a date. He did not attend the Screen Actors Guild Awards, where he was nominated, and the room was so quiet when his name was read aloud you could hear a pin drop (even “The Disaster Artist” star James Franco, who’s also been accused of sexual misconduct, received some applause at the SAGs). Ansari isn’t the only writer on his show, so it wouldn’t be fair to punish the rest of his team — including Alan Yang and Lena Waithe with whom he shared the last two comedy writing Emmys — for his alleged indiscretions.
On the other side, “Veep” star Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who’s not a writer on her show, has been battling breast cancer, which has delayed the seventh and final season until next year. The sympathy vote could’ve been what propelled “Veep” to its first comedy ensemble win at SAG, along with a record-breaking individual win for Louis-Dreyfus. “Veep”’s strong performance at the major guilds includes a third straight Directors Guild Award last weekend. It’s only faltered at the Producers Guild Awards, which it’s strangely never won.