Will ‘Game of Thrones’ break Emmy bias against fantasy shows?

Game of Thrones” may be red-hot in the ratings but it only ranks fourth on our chart of Best Drama Series contenders for the upcoming Emmys. Why is there this disconnect? 

While the epic series may be the most-watched in the history of HBO, our Experts, Editors, Top 24 and Users know that the Emmys have a long-standing bias against feting fantasy shows.

But what about that win for “Lost” back in 2005 you ask?  

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That was the exception to a rule that has held firm for more than six decades. And, remember, that first season of “Lost” was more supernatural in tone than fantasy. The two-hour pilot — the most expensive ever aired on ABC — was helmed by “Alias” wiz J.J. Abrams who won an Emmy for his efforts. When “Lost” veered off into the mystical rather than the mysterious in seasons two and three, it was snubbed in the top race. Only when it returned to its roots did it make a comeback in this category, reaping Best Drama Series bids for seasons four, five and six. 

Top 10 most amazing moments on ‘Game of Thrones’ this season

“Game of Thrones” has reaped series bids for each of its first three seasons and is all but certain to contend again this year. It is certainly on the upswing in terms of ratings, be it with viewers or critics. Indeed, this season it earned its highest score yet at Metacritic – 94. Compare that to 79 for its freshman season, 88 for the second and 90 for the third. 

However, last year, despite “Game of Thrones” winning Best Drama Series at the TCA Awards and tying for this prize at the Critics’ Choice TV Awards in 2013, it was “Breaking Bad” — which won Program of the Year at the TCAs and shared in the series award at the CCTA — that claimed the top Emmy. 

And while “Game of Thrones” has done well in its overall nominations tally at the Emmys, the majority of its wins have come on the Creative Arts side of the ledger as detailed below. 

Season one: 13 nominations, including Best Drama Series, Directing, Writing; two wins (Supporting Actor, Peter Dinklage; Main Title Design).

Season two: 12 nominations, including Best Drama Series, Supporting Actor; six wins (Art Direction, Costumes, Makeup, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects).

Season three: 17 nominations, including Best Drama Series, Writing, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Guest Actress; two wins (Makeup and Visual Effects)

What are the Top 10 Emmy hopes for ‘Game of Thrones’?

For “Game of Thrones” to be a viable contender for the Drama Series win this year, it needs to reap both directing and writing bids as well as at least one acting nomination.

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