Maya Rudolph wins 2nd guest Emmy for ‘SNL,’ becomes first person in 20 years to repeat in category

Surprising nobody, Maya Rudolph (“Saturday Night Live”) just won her second Emmy in Best Comedy Guest Actress thanks in part to her viral impersonation of Vice President Kamala Harris. By claiming the trophy during Sunday’s 2021 Creative Arts Emmy ceremony (see the winner’s list), Rudolph became the first person in 20 years to repeat in the category. Jean Smart (“Frasier”) was the last person to accomplish the feat in 2000 and 2001. In the two decades since, Cloris Leachman (“Malcolm in the Middle”), Kathryn Joosten (“Desperate Housewives”) and Tina Fey (“SNL”) all won twice in this category, but non-consecutively.

This year, Rudolph’s co-nominees were Jane Adams (“Hacks”), Yvette Nicole Brown (“A Black Lady Sketch Show”), Bernadette Peters (“Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist”), Issa Rae (“A Black Lady Sketch Show”) and Kristen Wiig (“Saturday Night Live”). Rudolph also won her second voice-over Emmy for “Big Mouth” earlier this evening.

Rudolph’s submission for “Saturday Night Live” was “Host: Maya Rudolph,” which aired March 27 on NBC as the 15th episode of Season 46. In her monologue, the funny lady remembered her early days at “SNL.” Sketches included Harris hosting a Unity Seder, Rudolph singing with the cast about boomers being vaccinated, and a parody of “The Shining.”

Adams’ submission for “Hacks” was “I Think She Will,” which streamed June 10 on HBO Max as the 10th episode of Season 1. Adams plays Nina Daniels, a recent widow who needs her daughter Ava (Hannah Einbinder) to help her with the funeral arrangements and so much more. She finally enjoys some relief when Ava’s famous boss, comedy legend Deborah Vance (Jean Smart), gave a stand-up eulogy/roast at her late husband’s funeral. This marked Adams’ first career Emmy nomination.

Rae’s submission for “A Black Lady Sketch Show” was “My Booty Look Juicy, Don’t It?,” which aired May 14 on HBO as the fourth episode of Season 2. In “Gang Retreat,” Rae was back as Jess, a wise-cracking gang member. Jess happily stopped the gang leader’s attempts to facilitate a corporate retreat by cracking jokes during every activity, eventually being banished to the juice bar. This marked Rae’s sixth career Emmy nomination after acting in “Insecure” (twice), producing “Insecure” and producing “A Black Lady Sketch Show” (twice).

Brown’s submission for “A Black Lady Sketch Show” was “But the Tilapias Are Fine Though, Right?,” which aired April 23 on HBO as the first episode of Season 2. In “Courtroom Kiki Pt. 2,” Brown reprised her role as Judge Harper, the leader of the infamous Black lady courtroom. When a stranger arrived and disrupted the celebration of Black womanhood, Judge Harper kindly dismissed him from court. This marked Brown’s first career Emmy nomination.

Peters’ submission for “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist” was “Zoey’s Extraordinary Girls’ Night,” which aired April 18 on NBC as the 10th episode of Season 2. In the episode, Zoey (Jane Levy) got more than she bargained for when she tried to help Emily (Alice Lee) with a problem. Meanwhile, Maggie (Mary Steenburgen) reconnected with her old friend Deb (Peters). This marked Peters’ third career Emmy nomination after “The Muppet Show” and “Ally McBeal.”

Wiig’s submission for “Saturday Night Live” was “Host: Kristen Wiig,” which aired December 19 on NBC as the ninth episode of Season 46. In her monologue, Wiig sang her own version of “My Favorite Things.” Sketches included Mike Pence getting vaccinated, a 1950s game show, “Home Alone,” a naughty Grinch and a Christmas morning film. This marked Wiig’s ninth career Emmy nomination after “SNL” (six times), “The Looney Tunes Show” and “The Spoils of Babylon.”

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