Conclusion: Best Limited Series/Movie et Al
We come last to Limited Series/TV Movie. This is a category where the Broadcast Critics more often than not adhere to the Emmys. But there can be exceptions; just last year, they passed over the Chernobyl juggernaut to recognize When They See Us. And considering some of the nominated series, there’s a lot of room for differences. So here goes.
OUTSTANDING LIMITED SERIES
I don’t think Small Axe has enough momentum. Unorthodox and Normal People have been coming up short in the award shows. The Plot Against America deserves recognition, but considering it was ignored before here, I’m inclined to say they’ll be ignored. (No luck for David Simon.) The Undoing came up empty in the Golden Globes, but I think it’s a dark horse.
The Queen’s Gambit would appear to be the early favorite, but I think there’s just as much a chance for either I May Destroy You or Mrs. America. I’m going to give the barest of edges to I May Destroy You.
Should Win: The Queen’s Gambit.
Will Win: The Queen’s Gambit/I May Destroy You.
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTOR IN A LIMITED SERIES/MOVIE.
John Boyega and Mark Ruffalo both triumphed at the Golden Globes, but I think the odds are against them; the former because he was listed as a Supporting Actor at the Globes, the latter because no other nominations. Morgan Spector is a relative unknown and Paul Mescal hasn’t had much luck.
I think that it comes down to a choice between Hugh Grant for The Undoing or Chris Rock for Fargo. Grant still deserves to win, but I think Rock will prevail. He’s one of the most gifted performers, his snub by the Globes was one of their most egregious omission (and there were a quite a few) and Fargo has a good history with the Broadcast Critics; they’ve honored at least one actor from every previous season.
Should Win/Will Win: Rock.
OUTSTANDING LEAD ACTRESS IN A LIMITED SERIES OR MOVIE
The only one with no real chance is Tessa Thompson. Daisy Edgar-Jones and Shira Haas haven’t had much luck this awards season. Cate Blanchett has her best chance of winning with the Critics. Taylor-Joy triumphed at the Globes and I think has a good chance here.
That said, I think the likely winner is Michaela Coel for I May Destroy You. It was one of the most buzzed about series of 2020, considering it dealt with one of the hardest topics for any series to deal with. Coel has become a breakout because of it and I was stunned the Globes ignored her. I think that Coel begins her long streaks towards at least one Emmy here.
Should Win: Taylor-Joy.
Will Win: Coel.
OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A LIMITED SERIES OR MOVIE
Dylan McDermott is the only nominee with no real chance. Daveed Diggs and Joshua Caleb Johnson were each brilliant in The Good Lord Bird, and Johnson in particular deserves recognition. John Turturro’s being ignored by the Emmys last year for his role in The Plot Against America was a stunner. The argument for Donald Sutherland is just as good as it was last week.
That said, I think the most likely winner is Glynn Turman for his exceptional performance as Dr. Senator, Loy’s right hand man in Fargo. Leaving aside that there were so many good possibilities for this category that were left out, Turman’s work as the world-weary veteran who has the best advice and yet becomes one of the earliest victims of the war was one of the best performances from a great cast. I think Turman has an edge in this very crowded category.
Should Win: Johnson.
Will Win: Turman.
OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A LIMITED SERIES OR MOVIE
As good as Marielle Heller is in The Queen’s Gambit, I think that this category will come down to one of the three very talented actresses in Mrs. America. Margo Martindale, Tracey Ullman and Uzo Aduba all gave master classes in acting in three of the most brilliant yet forgotten political figures.
For once, I’m going to guess that the Critics will follow the Emmys and go with Uzo Aduba for her work as Shirley Chisholm. It was a great performance and besides, the Critics have been ahead of the Emmys when it came to recognizing Aduba. (She won her first award for Orange is the New Black from this group in 2014.)
Should Win/Will Win: Aduba.
One last note: last year the Critics tied when it came to recognizing the Best Talk Show between Seth Meyers and James Corden, and I couldn’t have been happier. So this year, why not tie again and honor Desus & Mero and Full Frontal with Samantha Bee. Both shows are jolts to the way late night variety is done, and both shows are more than deserving. But once again, there are no bad choices in this category.
See you Monday with my reactions.