Gold Derby has exclusively learned the episode submissions to Emmy Awards voters by all of the 2016 nominees for Best Variety Sketch Series. This is only the second year that this category has been in existence after breaking off from the variety talk contenders.
Every acting nominee (except for limited series leads) must submit one sample episode to Emmy voters. Programs competing for Best Drama and Comedy Series submit six. Voters are asked to watch these online before checking off their ballots, but enforcement is not strictly policed. It’s an honor system.
First-time contender “Documentary Now” is executive produced by Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, and Seth Meyers. For its only nomination, the show is submitting the episode “Sandy Passage.” According to the IFC description: “An in depth look at the daily lives of two aging socialites and their crumbling estate. This mother and daughter live in extreme squalor, but the documentarians find more than just dirt and clutter on the property.”
Contending for a second time, “Drunk History” is also nominated for production design and editing. The show’s premise is that it is the “liquored-up narration of our nation’s history.” According to the Comedy Central description for their episode “Spies” starring Will Ferrell and Octavia Spencer: “Virginia Hall works as a spy behind enemy lines in France during World War II; and intelligence officer Roald Dahl aids the British war effort against the Axis powers. Harriet Tubman supplies the Union army with information.”
Reigning champ “Inside Amy Schumer” is also nominated this year for Best Comedy Actress (Schumer), directing, and writing. The show’s episode submission is “Welcome to the Gun Show.” According to the Comedy Central description: “Amy hosts a home shopping show for gun enthusiasts, faces the wrath of a new Twitter feature and lands a role on ‘Game of Thrones’.”
Returning nominee “Key and Peele” is also nominated this year for supporting actor (Keegan-Michael Key), writing, editing, production design, makeup, and hairstyling. The show’s episode is “Y’all Ready for This.” According to the Comedy Central description: “A football team hypes up before a game; President Obama and Luther meet Hillary Clinton.”
Also returning is “Portlandia” starring its writers and producers Armisen and Carrie Brownstein. The show is also nominated for production design and writing. According to the IFC description for the episode “Going Gray”: “Fred wakes up with gray hair and sets out on a journey to find out how old he is. Carrie is faced with a life decision.”
“Saturday Night Live” increases its program record to 209 Emmy nominations during its run with 16 more this year. That includes supporting actress (Kate McKinnon) and guest hosts Larry David, Tracy Morgan, Melissa McCarthy, Schumer, and Tina Fey/Amy Poehler. They are submitting the David episode, in which some of the sketches included Ted Cruz, FBI Simulator, Bern Your Enthusiasm, Steam Ship, Sturdy Barbie, and Songwriting Class.
We will continue to reveal all other Emmy submissions this year for the series and acting races as they are provided to us by networks, studios, or personal reps. Click here for the full list of submissions in our forums as they have been announced so far.
Be sure to make your Emmy predictions right here. You’ll compete to win our contest prizes for best picks — $500 (first place), $300 (second place) and $200 (third place) in Amazon gift certificates — a place of honor on our leaderboard and a starring role in next year’s Top 24 Users (the two dozen folks who do the best predicting this year’s Emmy nominations). Be sure to read our contest rules.