Watch our Editors’ Emmy predictions slugfest: Is Billy Porter (‘Pose’) really out front to win Best Drama Actor? [VIDEO & AUDIO PODCAST]

“I told you so! I’ve had Billy Porter out front to win this thing for a while now,” declares Gold Derby editor-in-chief Tom O’Neil as the “Pose” star rises to the top in our official Emmy odds for Best Drama Actor. “Joel Grey won for the equivalent emcee role in ‘Cabaret’ at the Oscars, and I think he’s the man of the hour.” Watch O’Neil duke it out with senior editors Marcus James Dixon, Joyce Eng and Daniel Montgomery above, or scroll down for the podcast version below.

“The more I think about it, the more Billy Porter makes sense,” Montgomery says. His top Emmy rivals appear to be Bob Odenkirk (“Better Call Saul“) and Jason Bateman (“Ozark“). All three of their shows aired their eligible seasons a year ago, but “Pose” is the only one that returned with new episodes this summer during Emmy voting. On top of that, Porter has been a regular pop culture presence in 2019: “He had the big Oscar tuxedo gown moment. He was in Taylor Swift‘s video for gay rights, ‘You Need to Calm Down,'” so Montgomery agrees with O’Neil that Porter is “the man of the moment.”

Eng notes that “Pose” will end its telecast of the current new TV season on August 13, just two days before Emmy voters start picking the winners. If Porter gets material that’s “big and splashy, there’s going to be a lot of coverage for the finale, so that could help him too if people are watching and are like, ‘Oh, Billy Porter is the only “Pose” actor I can vote for, so there you go.'” However, Eng is currently predicting Odenkirk to win, although she admits that’s partly wishful thinking: “I want ‘Better Call Saul’ to win an Emmy.”

Dixon admits that “no one’s bigger than Billy Porter right now, but the one actor who stands out to me is Jason Bateman because he’s essentially playing the Bryan Cranston role from ‘Breaking Bad.'” Let’s not forget that Cranston won a record-tying four Emmy victories in this Best Drama Actor category for his role as a mild-mannered teacher-turned-drug-kingpin, so Bateman’s mild-mannered financial advisor-turned-money-launderer could prove just as impressive to voters. “Yeah, he didn’t win last year,” Dixon concedes, “but sometimes they’re a year behind.” However, Dixon just ditched Bateman as his prediction in favor of Porter in the past few days.

BELOW: Listen to the audio podcast version of our chat. Or listen at iTunes, Spotify, Libsyn, Google Play or Stitcher where you can subscribe to our channel.

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 22. And join in the fun debate over the 2019 Emmys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our television forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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