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Who's Set to Win the TV Awards at the 78th Golden Globes?

The Crown, Schitt's Creek, or something shiny and new? Here's who we think will win Sunday.
  • Queens Gambit, Ted Lasso and The Mandalorian. (Photos: Netflix, Apple TV+ and Disney+)
    Queens Gambit, Ted Lasso and The Mandalorian. (Photos: Netflix, Apple TV+ and Disney+)

    Joe Reid isn't just Primetimer's managing editor. He's also an awards expert and one half of the popular podcast, This Had Oscar Buzz. So who better to offer his predictions for who will take home the TV awards at Sunday's 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards?

    Sunday's Golden Globe Awards will at last kick off this year's delayed awards season, as the Hollywood Foreign Press Association fetes the best in film and TV from the past year. Although this year's virtual ceremony won't give us the chance to watch the intermingling of TV and movie stars like it usually does, the least predictable of the big awardcasts promises to still offer plenty in the way of spectacle.

    With a tendency to chase whatever is shiny and new instead of what's been critically lauded, the nominees and winners at the Globes are often a head-scratcher. (Exhibit A this year is the HFPA's failure to recognize HBO's I May Destroy You.) Still, there are some tea leaves to be read when it comes to making predictions. Here's our best attempt at making sense of the TV side a very tricky Globes ballot:

    Best Drama Series

    The Nominees:
    The Crown (Netflix)
    Lovecraft Country (HBO)
    The Mandalorian (Disney+)
    Ozark (Netflix)
    Ratched (Netflix)

    Again, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association's dominant tendency when it comes to TV is to reward the buzzy new object, often without regard for greater critical acclaim or widespread viewership. But as we've moved further and further into the streaming era, this has led to a kind of choice paralysis for Globe voters, with so many shiny new things arriving every week. Lovecraft Country, The Mandalorian, and Ratched are all popular, visually bold choices, even if the first two outweigh the third in visual acclaim. Ozark, meanwhile, remains popular, but not in a leveling-up way that helped Succession triumph last year.

    The Crown is very much the HFPA's kind of thing — as evidenced by its win last year — but given that there hasn't been a repeat winner in this category since Homeland won back-to-back in 2011 and 2012, the show faces an uphill battle unless all the new shows cancel each other out. Which I don't think they will. I'm currently flipping a coin between Lovecraft Country and The Mandalorian.

    Prediction: The Mandalorian

    Best Actor, Drama

    The Nominees:
    Jason Bateman, Ozark
    Josh O'Connor, The Crown
    Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
    Al Pacino, Hunters
    Matthew Rhys, Perry Mason

    Both Bateman and Odenkirk have both been nominated before and lost, which is a bad sign for future success at the Globes. Nobody was talking about Hunters even when it was new, and now it's been a full year, but don't underestimate Pacino, who's won four career Golden Globes plus the Cecil B. DeMille Award. And don't forget that the HFPA have gone for Amazon Prime shows that it seems like no one is watching before (Mozart in the Jungle). Still, it feels like the strongest contender could be Josh O'Connor, whose portrayal of Prince Charles was widely lauded, and who feels like an actor on the way up, much like Richard Madden when he won this category a few years ago for Bodyguard.

    Prediction: Josh O'Connor

    Best Actress, Drama

    The Nominees:
    Olivia Colman, The Crown
    Jodie Comer, Killing Eve
    Emma Corrin, The Crown
    Laura Linney, Ozark
    Sarah Paulson, Ratched

    Comer and Linney feel like pretty dusty options — which is nothing against the two actresses, who are excellent and legendary, respectively — and the HFPA has never been as gaga for Paulson as, say, the Emmys have been. Which puts this as a tossup between the two The Crown women. Colman won this category for this role just last year, which might give Corrin the edge as the new girl in town, but the Globes really love Olivia Colman. She's already won three Globes on her three previous nominations, and she's nominated twice this year, for The Crown and the feature film The Father. Betting against her seems foolish.

    Prediction: Olivia Colman

    Best Comedy Series

    The Nominees:
    Emily in Paris (Netflix)
    The Flight Attendant (HBO Max)
    The Great (Hulu)
    Schitt's Creek (Pop TV)
    Ted Lasso (Apple TV+)

    Choice paralysis once again settles in, as Schitt's Creek — a show that ended its run but was never nominated here until now — goes up against four newcomers from four different streaming platforms. None of them feel like traditional comedies, although Ted Lasso with its kind and humble charms, comes the closest. Both Emily in Paris and The Flight Attendant attracted some attention this year for semi-dubious, campy reasons, while The Great was pretty low-profile, although it boasts a lot of things the HFPA tends to love, including costumes and historical figures. This is the closest to a five-way toss-up on the ballot, and while I'll look pretty foolish if I bet against Emmy juggernaut Schitt's Creek and lose, the Globes so rarely opt for farewell nods to shows that have already ended.

    Prediction: The Great

    Best Actor, Comedy

    The Nominees:
    Don Cheadle, Black Monday
    Nicholas Hoult, The Great
    Eugene Levy, Schitt's Creek
    Jason Sudeikis, Ted Lasso
    Ramy Youssef, Ramy

    Youssef won in this category last year, which probably sidelines his chances for winning this year, and the fact that Black Monday wasn't nominated for Best Comedy doesn't bode well for Cheadle. Eugene Levy always feels like the least buzzy of the Schitt's Creek-ers, although that didn't stop him from picking up the Emmy. If the HFPA goes for The Great in a big way, that could mean Hoult has a real shot here, but I'd place my bets on Sudeikis. Everybody who watches Ted Lasso seems to fall in love with it, and Sudeikis is the most loveable part of it. Plus, it's the Foreign Press, and the show is about soccer (or football, rather), the most international of pursuits.

    Prediction: Jason Sudeikis

    Best Actress, Comedy

    The Nominees:
    Lily Collins, Emily in Paris
    Kaley Cuoco, The Flight Attendant
    Elle Fanning, The Great
    Jane Levy, Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist
    Catherine O'Hara, Schitt's Creek

    Is it weird that we've all been going this long and neither Fanning sister has ever won a major award? Feels like a mistake. One which probably won't be corrected this year, but Elle definitely stands an outside chance. A better chance, I'd say, than Jane Levy and Kaley Cuoco, both of whom are representing shows that people seem to like for reasons evading my understanding. Perhaps the HFPA falls under that umbrella, and I'm underestimating their chances. But my guess is that this category will come down to the beloved comedic legend Catherine O'Hara and the beret-sporting Lily Collins. Again, the HFPA may want to get in on the Schitt's Creek bandwagon before it's boarded up for good, and in that case bet O'Hara. But a win for Lily Collins would be the absolute most chaotic choice that would send Twitter into an absolute tizzy, and honestly, that is often exactly what the Golden Globes do. Plus, we know the HFPA is weirdly into her because they nominated her film performance in Rules Don't Apply for 2016. (What's Rules Don't Apply? My point exactly!)

    Prediction: Lily Collins

    Best Miniseries/TV Movie

    The Nominees:
    Normal People (Hulu)
    The Queen's Gambit (Netflix)
    Small Axe (Prime Video)
    The Undoing (HBO)
    Unorthodox (Netflix)

    It's rare that anyone would look to the Golden Globes to be the definitive authority on anything, but in classifying director Steve McQueen's Small Axe anthology of five thematically-but-not-narratively connected films as a TV series rather than five movies, the Globes have set the template for further award shows. Whether TV or movies, Small Axe was one of the most critically hailed pieces of entertainment all year, and it has to be considered a major contender for that reason alone. But The Queen's Gambit was also critically acclaimed, did good (self-reported) numbers for Netflix, and has the Netflix awards machine behind it.

    Prediction: The Queen's Gambit

    Best Actor, Miniseries/TV Movie

    The Nominees:
    Bryan Cranston, Your Honor
    Jeff Daniels, The Comey Rule
    Hugh Grant, The Undoing
    Ethan Hawke, The Good Lord Bird
    Mark Ruffalo, I Know This Much Is True

    Ruffalo took the Emmy back in September, but the other four nominees are from shows that released after that, so my guess is Ruffalo stays content with the nomination. Cranston and Daniels are both major Emmy faves who haven't fared as well at the Globes and whose respective miniseries — both for Showtime — weren't all that well-received by critics. Meanwhile, even the people who griped about The Undoing acknowledged that Grant was doing fantastic work. And Hawke's performance in The Good Lord Bird is one of those acclaimed-but-under-the-radar nominations that might turn out to be more formidable than we initially thought. I think it's a coin flip between Grant and Hawke.

    Prediction: Ethan Hawke

    Best Actress, Miniseries/TV Movie

    Cate Blanchett, Mrs. America
    Daisy Edgar-Jones, Normal People
    Shira Haas, Unorthodox
    Nicole Kidman, The Undoing
    Anya Taylor-Joy, The Queen's Gambit

    The rule of thumb that says to never bet against the biggest star in the category at the Globes is in effect here, which is why both Cate Blanchett and Nicole Kidman ought to be considered major contenders. Blanchett is on her 11th nomination (3 wins), and Kidman is on her 15th nomination (4 wins), so the HFPA clearly loves them. And yet… they also love crowning the new young star, and considering the raves that fell upon Anya Taylor-Joy's performance as an unlikely chess master in The Queen's Gambit, and given that she's also nominated on the film side for her performance in Emma, she stands a great chance at prevailing here.

    Prediction: Anya Taylor-Joy

    Best Supporting Actor

    The Nominees:
    John Boyega, Small Axe
    Brendan Gleeson, The Comey Rule
    Dan Levy, Schitt's Creek
    Jim Parsons, Hollywood
    Donald Sutherland, The Undoing

    Here's a fun stat: Donald Sutherland has somehow never been nominated for an Academy Award, despite having starred in such Oscar faves as M*A*S*H and Ordinary People. Meanwhile, he's been nominated for the Golden Globe nine times, with four of those nominations — and both of his wins — coming in the Supporting Actor in a TV Series category (he won for the HBO made-for-TV movies Citizen X and Path to War). He's by far the most Globes-favored actor in this category. Even four-time Emmy winner Jim Parsons has only been nominated a small handful of times at the Globes. The HFPA's tendency in these catch-all TV supporting categories — which blend comedies, dramas, miniseries, and TV movies — is to opt for the oldest and/or Britishiest options, and since the Globes seem less thirsty than the Emmys to stick it to Donald Trump for clout, I'd say Sutherland could pick up his third win.

    Prediction: Donald Sutherland

    Best Supporting Actress

    The Nominees:
    Gillian Anderson, The Crown
    Helena Bonham Carter, The Crown
    Julia Garner, Ozark
    Annie Murphy, Schitt's Creek
    Cynthia Nixon, Ratched

    I was so certain that Helena Bonham-Carter would win this category last year for her delicious performance as Princess Margaret, but she ended up getting flattened by the awards-season steamroller that was Patricia Arquette in The Act. This year HBO is poised to get flattened again, this time by the steamroller that is her own co-star. Gillian Anderson's performance as Margaret Thatcher was both praised and reviled in near-equal measure, but it's exactly the kind of awards-season bigness that the Globes love.

    Prediction: Gillian Anderson

    The 78th annual Golden Globes air on NBC February 28th at 8:00 PM ET/5:00 PM PT.

    Joe Reid is the senior writer 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, Vulture, The A.V. Club and more.

    TOPICS: Golden Globe Awards, The Crown, Emily in Paris, The Great, The Queen's Gambit, Schitt's Creek, Small Axe, Star Wars: The Mandalorian, Ted Lasso, The Undoing, Anya Taylor-Joy, Donald Sutherland, Ethan Hawke, Gillian Anderson, Josh O'Connor, Olivia Colman