When “Veep” won Best Comedy Series at the 2015 Emmys, Tony Hale went along for the ride as Best Comedy Supporting Actor. That was his second win, following a victory in 2013; he had contended in 2014 as well but lost to Ty Burrell (“Modern Family”) who picked up a bookend to his 2011 trophy. If Hale wins again this year, he’ll be tied with Ed Asner (“The Mary Tyler Moore Show”), Art Carney (“The Jackie Gleason Show”/”The Honeymooners”), Brad Garrett, (“Everybody Loves Raymond”), Jeremy Piven (“Entourage”) and Michael Richards (“Seinfeld”) at three apiece. Don Knotts (“The Andy Griffith Show”) is the all-time champ in this category at five.
Twelve out of the 20 expert TV journalists we’ve polled expect Hale to repeat, giving him 2/9 odds: Robert Bianco (USA Today), Joyce Eng (TV Guide), Richard Lawson (Vanity Fair), Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Lynette Rice (Entertainment Weekly), Robert Rorke (New York Post), Paul Sheehan (Gold Derby), Anne Thompson (Indiewire), Ken Tucker (Yahoo), Adnan Virk (ESPN), Glenn Whipp (LA Times) and Jarett Wieselman (Buzzfeed).
But Hale should beware of Tituss Burgess (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”), who was nominated last year and is a threat this year. He gives exactly the kind of outlandish, scene-stealing performance that often wins this category; consider the aforementioned Piven and Richards, as well as Sean Hayes (“Will and Grace”) and Eric Stonestreet (“Modern Family”). Four experts think Burgess will prevail, giving him 4/5 odds: Debra Birnbaum (Variety), Matthew Jacobs (Huffington Post), Don Kaplan (NY Daily News) and Matt Roush (TV Guide Magazine).
But Burgess isn’t the only challenger who could pull off an upset. Louie Anderson‘s stand-out performance as Zach Galifianakis‘s mother in “Baskets” is predicted to win by Eric Deggans (NPR) and Kerr Lordygan (Rotten Tomatoes), giving him 11/10 odds. A veteran comedian, Anderson doesn’t have any previous Primetime Emmy nominations, but he’s a two-time Daytime Emmy-winner for his voice performance in the animated series “Life with Louie” (1997-1998).
Our last two experts are going out on a limb. Lynn Elber (Associated Press) says Malcolm McDowell (“Mozart in the Jungle”) will win, while Pete Hammond (Deadline Hollywood) favors Jay Duplass (“Transparent”). But McDowell and Duplass are each only predicted to be nominated by two out of 20 experts, so they’re relative underdogs with 3/1 odds.
In addition to Hale and Burgess, last year’s nominees included Andre Braugher (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”), Ty Burrell (“Modern Family”), Adam Driver (“Girls”) and Keegan-Michael Key (“Key and Peele”). All six are eligible to return, but with Anderson primed to enter the race for the first time and Hugh Laurie (“Veep”) hoping to finally end his Emmy losing streak after seven nominations as the star and producer of “House,” this is one of the year’s most competitive contests.
Below, current odds set by the experts’ picks. Make your predictions here and compete against these experts and your friends.
BEST COMEDY SUPPORTING ACTOR
1. Tony Hale, “Veep” – 2/9
2. Tituss Burgess, “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” – 4/5
3. Louie Anderson, “Baskets” – 11/10
4. Ty Burrell, “Modern Family” – 5/4
5. Andre Braugher, “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” – 11/5
6. Hugh Laurie, “Veep” – 9/4
7. Keegan-Michael Key, “Key and Peele” – 12/5
8. Laurence Fishburne, “Black-ish” – 12/5
9. Jay Duplass, “Transparent” – 3/1
10. Malcolm McDowell, “Mozart in the Jungle” – 3/1
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.