Everyone knows that the Emmys loves repeat winners (see: Julia Louis-Dreyfus‘ six consecutive wins for “Veep”), but the TV academy did a different type of rubber-stamping at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards over the weekend: choosing the same show but different performers in the guest acting categories. Might this spread-the-wealth mindset translate to the main Emmy ceremony?
First, let’s be clear, it’s difficult and rare to repeat in the guest category for the same show, let alone get nominated again unless you do another eligible guest stint. Last year’s Best Drama Guest Actor champ Gerald McRaney (“This Is Us”) was trying to be the first to win the category twice for the same role, but he lost to his co-star Ron Cephas Jones, who was nominated in supporting last year. On the actress side, Samira Wiley (“The Handmaid’s Tale”), who was also up in supporting last year, prevailed, a year after her co-star Alexis Bledel, now nominated in supporting, triumphed. (Tiffany Haddish also won Best Comedy Guest Actress for “Saturday Night Live” following Melissa McCarthy last year, but since “SNL” is a different type of beast, we’ll focus on narrative shows here.)
We already know the Emmys adore “This Is Us” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” actors — the former won two statuettes last year for McRaney and Sterling K. Brown, respectively, and the latter, as of now, has never lost an acting race, having gone four-for-four (Wiley, Bledel, Elisabeth Moss and Ann Dowd). Given their notorious laziness, voters could’ve easily checked off McRaney again. Instead, they opted to honor someone else from the show. And in the absence of Bledel in Best Drama Guest Actress, they went with another performer from the same show.
If that “everyone gets an Emmy” pattern holds, that would be good news for Milo Ventimiglia and Yvonne Strahovski. Ventimiglia is up against Brown once again in Best Drama Actor, but his character, Jack, is arguably equally if not more as beloved as Brown’s Randall and Brown himself. Currently in third place behind Matthew Rhys (“The Americans”) and Brown, Ventimiglia was a surprise nominee last year, so the love is already there for him. He also had the better season with one of the most talked-about episodes, the post-Super Bowl hour in which we finally learn how Jack died. If could be a make-up win of sorts: “Sorry we couldn’t give it to you last year, but we love you, so here you go.”
Like Ventimiglia, Strahovski also had the most buzz of her “Handmaid’s” rivals in Best Drama Supporting Actress, Bledel and reigning champ Dowd, for Season 2. This could also be her “turn” since they both already have Emmys at home. She’s in second place in our odds behind Dowd.
If we subscribe to this trend, it could also apply to Matt Smith (“The Crown”), who’s nominated in Best Drama Supporting Actor, which was won by his co-star John Lithgow last year. Lithgow was the lockiest of locks, so it’s hard to say how much voters really care for “The Crown,” which won no other major awards last year. But “The Crown” did just pull off upsets for casting and cinematography at the Creative Arts. Plus, Smith is in a very open category that seems to have defaulted to David Harbour (“Stranger Things”) as the favorite, while Smith is in third behind Peter Dinklage (“Game of Thrones”) as well.
This co-star win rotation is not unheard of in Emmys history; “The West Wing” stars Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitford and John Spencer won Best Drama Supporting Actor back-to-back-to-back. And the academy gave Emmys to “L.A. Law”‘s supporting men Larry Drake, Jimmy Smits and Richard Dysart as well.
Be sure to make your Emmy predictions today so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before winners are announced on September 17. Be sure to also predict winners for the Creative Arts ceremonies slated for September 8 and 9. And join in the fun debate over the 2018 Emmy taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our television forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.