In the days leading up to the 2019 Emmy Awards, we're pitting the 26 shows with the most nominations against each other to determine Primetimer readers' favorite Emmy-nominated series of the year. Full details in our kick-off post.
On to the next set of match-ups in round two... (Seed number appears before show title)
Nominations: 17, including Outstanding Comedy Series
It's almost too bad that Barry has to overlap with the final season of Veep like this, because in terms of prestige and ambition, it's absolutely ready to take the mantle of HBO's premier comedy series. At some point we're going to have to reckon with Bill Hader as one of the most talented and prolific Saturday Night Live alums of all time. His work as actor, producer, writer and star on Barry rivals only Phoebe Waller-Bridge on this Emmy ballot, and the show itself — about a war veteran turned assassin trying to give up his life of crime to become an actor (who then must draw upon his experiences in war and assassination for his roles) — finds so many angles to get to Hollywood's various sweet spots, i.e. troubled men, violence, and Hollywood itself.
Network: BBC America
Nominations: 9, including Outstanding Drama Series
What, is Sandra Oh’s mere divine presence not enough for you? In Killing Eve’s second season, Emmy has decided it was more than Oh, after season one arrived with nominations just for her and now-departed Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s writing. And now that the series has fully arrived by Emmy standards, take a look at most of its competition — we can’t let the boys have this one so easy! Of all of Killing Eve’s nine nominations this season, the majority of them (from its cast to its writers and producers) are women. -- Chris Feil
The Matchup: This should be very interesting: Killing Eve survived round one in what could've been a tricky matchup with Season 1 of Succession, and did so with some ease (besting it 2:1). That shows that the less-well-received second season of Eve hasn't dampened enthusiasm for Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer's cat-and-mouse game. Will Barry be yet another HBO Sunday-night offering to fall at their feet?
Primetimer Ultimate Emmys Bracket Round 2, Match 3— Primetimer (@primetimercom) September 16, 2019
'Barry' vs. 'Killing Eve'
Nominations: 17, including Outstanding Limited Series
After some initial skepticism that Fosse/Verdon could tell a balanced and insightful story about celebrated director/choreographer Bob Fosse, actress/dancer/choreographer Gwen Verdon, and their personal and professional marriage to each other, the series really came together, offering more than just a gossipy tell-all about their lives and loves and legendary productions. Seventeen Emmy nominations encompass all corners of performance, design, and presentation; this is one of the most well-put-together TV programs of the year.
Nominations: 4, including Outstanding Comedy Series
Nominees Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara have previously only won Emmys for writing (both for SCTV), but now they are both recognized for their roles as Johnny and Moira Rose. Awards is Moira’s favorite season and while her movie, The Crows Have Eyes III: The Crowening got unceremoniously shelved at the end of the season, O’Hara could win for this role within a role. Despite this failed comeback for the Rose matriarch, Season 5 is one featuring a number of personal triumphs, not to mention a Bob Fosse-worthy production of Cabaret. -- Emma Fraser
The Matchup: The ace production design of Fosse/Verdon will face a strong challenge from Schitt's Creek, a show with far less of a sheen to it, but what it lacks in polish it makes up for in fervent fan support. The same people who flood your social media feed with Moira Rose memes aren't going to let their sweet, hilarious Canadian comedy go down to expensive FX product without a fight.
Primetimer Ultimate Emmys Bracket Round 2, Match 4— Primetimer (@primetimercom) September 16, 2019
'Fosse/Verdon' vs. 'Schitt's Creek'
Joe Reid is the Managing Editor at Primetimer and co-host of the This Had Oscar Buzz podcast. His work has appeared in Decider, NPR, HuffPost, The Atlantic, Slate, Polygon, Vanity Fair, The Herald Sun, Vulture, The A.V. Club and more.