Editors comedy predictions: Will ‘Abbott Elementary’ dethrone ‘Ted Lasso’?

The Primetime Emmys will take place Monday, September 12 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and air live on NBC at 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT. Gold Derby editors Denton Davidson, Daniel Montgomery and Marcus James Dixon recently got together to battle over their predictions for many of these races, including the anxiety-inducing comedy categories. Watch the editors’ Emmy predictions video slugfest for comedy above.

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For Best Comedy Series, our staffers are split over last year’s winner “Ted Lasso” and ABC’s breakout hit “Abbott Elementary.” The latter won Best Casting for a Comedy at the Creative Arts ceremony last weekend, an award that has matched up with the top series prize for the past seven years. “The problem with the Creative Arts Emmys is that ‘Abbott Elementary’ only had the one category, and that was casting, and it won,” Daniel says. “But it’s also a new show up against second or third season shows that already cast most of their ensembles. So that could be an anomaly. We saw ‘Stranger Things’ win casting and not win drama series. We saw ‘When They See Us’ win casting and not win limited series a couple years ago. There are occasional anomalies there. The trouble is ‘Hacks’ did well. And ‘Barry’ did well. And ‘Only Murders in the Building’ did well. So with ‘Ted Lasso’ on those 20 nominations, including all the nominations it really needed, it’s hard for me to pick one alternative.”

Continuing the discussion about the Creative Arts Emmys, Marcus adds, “Just because ‘Ted Lasso’ got shut out doesn’t mean it’s over and done with. I still think it could win series, although I did switch. I switched from ‘Ted Lasso’ to ‘Abbott Elementary’ because of the casting win.” Denton then points out that the last time two new shows won back-to-back was almost 40 years ago when the first season of “The Golden Girls” claimed Best Comedy Series one year after the inaugural season of “The Cosby Show.”

“‘Abbott Elementary’ was kind of a late-breaker,” Marcus asserts. “I wonder how many of the Emmy voters that voted for the nominations had seen ‘Abbott’ at that point compared to how many have seen it now. It reminded me of ‘CODA’ and how ‘CODA’ only got those three Oscar nominations, but then it really broke after that. I think it’s a similar situation with ‘Abbott.’ If more people had seen it when they were voting on noms, it probably would have gotten more Creative Arts Emmys. It probably would have gotten a directing nom.”

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Denton remains conflicted, but says “Abbott Elementary” winning casting only helped him determine one thing. “I feel like ‘Only Murders’ won’t beat ‘Abbott’ after that, as the other new show,” he says. “But I think ‘Hacks’ is right there. ‘Ted Lasso’ is right there. It’s going to be a fun race.”

The other categories discussed in our slugfest are Best Comedy Actress, Best Comedy Actor, Best Comedy Supporting Actress, Best Comedy Supporting Actor, Best Comedy Directing and Best Comedy Writing. By the end Denton admits, “Comedy categories are giving me anxiety. As I look at them I could go zero or one-for-seven if things just go really bad for me.”

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UPLOADED Sep 8, 2022 5:46 pm