Though AMC’s horror series “The Walking Dead” has never been nominated for Best Drama Series at the Emmys, it has consistently contended in craft categories at the Creative Arts Awards, winning twice for Best Prosthetic Makeup (2011, 2012). This year the hit show achieved a new high with four nominations for its fifth season. How many do you think it will win? Let’s consider each category.
Best Prosthetic Makeup
It’s no surprise “The Walking Dead” has won this race twice; the series uses extensive makeup effects to create its horrifying zombie hordes. This year TV academy members judged the episode “Strangers,” the second episode from season five, which featured gooey water zombies and cannibals feasting on a man’s leg. Will the series prevail for the first time in three years?
Its rival nominees in this race are the “American Horror Story: Freak Show” miniseries, “Boardwalk Empire” (episode “The Good Listener”), “Game of Thrones” (episode “Hardhome“), “The Knick” (episode “Crutchfield”) and “Penny Dreadful” (episode “Grand Guignol”).
Best Sound Editing (Series)
“The Walking Dead” has been nominated in this category four times in the last five years, only missing out in 2013. But it lost to “Boardwalk Empire” (2011), “Game of Thrones” (2012) and “Black Sails” (2014). Will it finally win? It contends for the season-five finale, titled “Conquer,” in which the characters faced an onslaught of enemies from terrifying walkers to gun-wielding Alexandria residents.
Rival Emmy nominees in this year’s race are “Black Sails” (episode “XVIII”), “Boardwalk Empire” (episode “The Good Listener”), “Game of Thrones” (episode “Hardhome”), “Gotham” (episode “All Happy Families Are Alike”) and “Daredevil” (episode “Speak Of The Devil”).
Best Supporting Visual Effects
As with Best Sound Editing, “The Walking Dead” has been nominated four times for its visual effects without winning. In 2011 and 2012 it was up for the combined Visual Effects award, losing out to “Boardwalk Empire” and the “Game of Thrones.” In 2014 it was nominated in the new Supporting Visual Effects category, but that award went to “Black Sails.” Coincidentally, those are the same three shows that beat “Walking Dead” for Sound Editing, and in the exact same years.
Voters in this category also judged “The Walking Dead’s” season finale episode, “Conquer.” Its rival Emmy nominees this year are “American Horror Story: Freak Show” (episode “Edward Mordrake, Part 2”), “Boardwalk Empire” (episode “Golden Days for Boys and Girls”), “Gotham” (episode “Lovecraft”) and “Daredevil” (episode “Speak Of The Devil”).
Best Stunt Coordination
Despite years of action-packed storytelling and three straight SAG Award nominations for Best Stunt Ensemble, this is the show’s first bid in this category at the Emmys, and it’s the first ever nomination for the show’s stunt coordinator Monty Simons.
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Photo: Norman Reedus in “The Walking Dead.” Credit: Gene Page/AMC