Grogu vs. The Queen: Can ‘The Mandalorian’ topple ‘The Crown’ at 2021 Emmys?

Despite its grasp on the entertainment industry, Netflix has never won a series trophy at the Emmy Awards — not drama, not comedy, not limited. That is likely to change this year as “The Crown” tops Gold Derby’s Emmy predictions for Best Drama Series following its recent triumphs at the Golden Globes, Critics Choice Awards and SAG Awards. However, it’s not a done deal yet as “The Mandalorian” is hot on its heels thanks to a little guy named Baby Yoda.

The second season of the Disney Plus series was even more buzzy than its first, thanks in part to the reveal of the egg-eating, big-eared creature’s real name: Grogu. Several high-profile guest stars, including Rosario Dawson and Katee Sackhoff, helped to keep the series fresh as Pedro Pascal‘s Mando explored the galaxy searching for more information on the youngling. Season 2 also aired smack-dab during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, becoming a worthy and fun distraction at the end of the 2020 calendar year.

“The Mandalorian” is clearly an Emmy favorite as it won a whopping seven trophies last year for the first season: production design, sound editing, music composition, stunt coordination, sound mixing, cinematography and visual effects. It also received high-profile bids for Best Drama Series, Best Drama Guest Actor for Giancarlo Esposito and Character Voice-Over Performance for Taika Waititi.

Gold Derby’s odds leader to win Best Drama Series is “The Crown,” which notably shifted focus in Season 4 from the main trifecta of Queen Elizabeth II (Olivia Colman), Prince Philip (Tobias Menzies) and Princess Margaret (Helena Bonham Carter) in favor of juicy storylines involving Prince Charles (Josh O’Connor), Princess Diana (Emma Corrin) and Margaret Thatcher (Gillian Anderson). Indeed, that latter trio took home trophies at the Globes and Critics Choice in lead actor, lead actress and supporting actress, respectively.

Over its first three seasons, the regal drama has had a rather successful Emmy history. Season 1 took home trophies for Best Supporting Actor (John Lithgow), production design and costumes, Season 2 prevailed for Best Drama Actress (Claire Foy), Best Drama Directing (Stephen Daldry), casting, cinematography and costumes, and Season 3 succeeded for its production design and costumes.

Looking ahead to the Emmys, “The Crown” and “The Mandalorian” are predicted to face off against “Bridgerton,” “Lovecraft Country,” “Pose,” “The Handmaid’s Tale,” “This Is Us” and “The Boys.” Of this septet, only “Handmaid’s” has won Best Drama Series before; it prevailed for its first season in 2017. Reigning champion “Succession” won’t be returning in time to be eligible at this year’s Emmys.

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