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2018 Emmys Odds: Will Donald Glover Make History Again?

Donald Glover in "Atlanta" (FX)
  • The 70th Primetime Emmy Awards are set to air September 17th, on NBC
  • Hosted by SNL‘s Colin Jost and Michael Che, the Emmy’s will broadcast live from the Microsoft Theatre, in LA

Though it will still be a few months before the 70th Primetime Emmy Awards are officially here, preparations for television’s big night are already well under way. Members of the voting academy are currently in the process of casting their first round of votes, determining who amongst their peers will make it to that coveted nominee position.

Nominations won’t be announced till mid-July, but we’ve got some early picks.

Which Comedy Will Have the Last Laugh?

Potential Outstanding Comedy Series Nominees Odds on Winning
Atlanta 4/1
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel 4/1
Black-ish 5/1
Will and Grace 6/1
Barry 9/1
GLOW 9/1
Silicon Valley 20/1
OTHER 19/3

Atlanta, created by and starring Donald Glover, won last year’s Outstanding Comedy Series and stands a great chance at a repeat this year. Writer-producer-actor Glover is having a serious moment right now,  with his show boasting a solid 97% on Rotten Tomatoes — the second season premiere bringing in the best ratings of any cable-based comedy in the past year.

Not to be overshadowed or underestimated is Barry

Then, there is The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, which struck gold at the Globes earlier this year. Amy Sherman-Palladino’s comedy about a 1950’s housewife with a knack for stand-up comedy is a critical hit, becoming Amazon’s most acclaimed show since Transparent.

Not to be overshadowed or underestimated is Barry, which aired its first season just this spring. Starring Bill Hader, Barry has the kind of chops Emmy voters tend to crave. The edgy comedy not only stars one of SNL’s brightest alums, it is centred around the “biz” itself. And, what do Hollywood’s elite find more interesting than their very own?

Just How Marvelous is The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel?

Potential Outstanding Comedy Actress Nominees Odds on Winning
Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel 3/1
Tracee Ellis Ross, Black-ish 4/1
Allison Janney, Mom 4/1
Pamela Adlon, Better Things 9/1
Alison Brie, GLOW 10/1
Lily Tomlin, Grace and Frankie 20/1
Debra Messing, Will and Grace 20/1
OTHER 15/1

Rachel Brosnahan plays the titular character in a show about stand-up comedy — meaning, the lady must deliver, and deliver she does. Already walking away with this year’s Golden Globe for the same category, Brosnahan is likely to enjoy repeated success in September.

Two-time winner Tracee Ellis Ross isn’t sitting too far behind, however.

Donald Glover, Outstanding Funny-Man

Potential Outstanding Comedy Actor Nominees Odds on Winning
Donald Glover, Atlanta 4/1
William H. Macy, Shameless 5/1
Eric McCormack, Will and Grace 6/1
Zach Galifianakis, Baskets 7/1
Ted Danson, The Good Place 7/1
Anthony Anderson, Black-ish 9/1
Bill Hader, Barry 20/1
OTHER 10/1

Didn’t we say Donald Glover is having a serious moment? Making Emmy history last year, he took home both awards for Best Actor and Best Director. This year could easily be a repeat, at least in the acting category.

He won’t give up his spot at the top easily, but if he does our money is on either William H. Macy or Eric McCormack to take his place. Macy has been nominated four times thus far for his role on Shameless, and McCormack’s revival of his best-known character, Will Truman, has been incredibly well-received.

Can Kate McKinnon Keep it Up?

Potential Outstanding Supp. Comedy Actress Nominees Odds on Winning
Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live 3/1
Megan Mullaly, Will & Grace 4/1
Rita Moreno, One Day at a Time 9/1
Leslie Jones, Saturday Night Live 9/1
Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel 10/1
Jessica Walter, Arrested Development 20/1
Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek 20/1
OTHER 50/1

It’s a fair question to ask, though the answer seems obvious: Yes. Ask just about anyone, and you will get the same answer. Kate McKinnon is a tour-de-force. But, is a three-year streak too much to ask for? Only time will tell, but for now we’re siding with not at all.

A win may not be in the books for O’Hara, but a nomination snub would be a huge mistake.

Worth noting is long-shot Catherine O’Hara, who, as Moira Rose, in Canadian comedy Schitt’s Creek deserves every bit of applause she can get, and more. A win may not be in the books for O’Hara, but a nomination snub would be a huge mistake.

The Unbreakable Tituss Burgess

Potential Outstanding  Supp. Comedy Actor Nominees Odds on Winning
Tituss Burgess, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt 4/1
Sean Hayes, Will & Grace 9/2
Louie Anderson, Baskets 16/3
Brian Tyree Henry, Atlanta 6/1
Marc Maron, GLOW 10/1
Alec Baldwin, Saturday Night Live 10/1
Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel 20/1
OTHER 12/1

The only thing from keeping The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt from falling apart at this point is the perfectly-timed comedic charm of star, Tituss Burgess.

Kimmy Schmidt may take camp to an extreme, but Burgess never manages to feel tired or contrived.  He may not seem the obvious choice for an Emmy nod, especially with peers Anderson, Maron and Baldwin in the running, but the man sure knows how to make us laugh.

It’s a Tight Race for Best Drama

Potential Outstanding Drama Series Nominees Odds on Winning
The Americans 3/1
The Handmaid’s Tale 4/1
Stranger Things 14/3
This is Us 14/3
Game of Thrones 9/1
Westworld 50/1
The Chi 50/1
OTHER 17/1

It could be a photo finish between The Americans and The Handmaid’s Tale this year. On one hand, The Americans six-season run has finally come to an end, and it was a good one. On the other, The Handmaid’s Tale — the harrowing, and at times all-too-familiar, dystopian tale from Margaret Atwood.

Both have been critically and publicly well-received; both deserve accolades. The Handmaid’s Tale won for Outstanding Drama Series last year, but this time around we are giving The Americans the winning edge.

Keri Russell is Outstanding as Russian Spy

Potential Outstanding Drama Actress Nominees Odds on Winning
Keri Russell, The Americans 9/2
Elisabeth Moss, The Handmaid’s Tale 5/1
Claire Foy, The Crown 5/1
Evan Rachel Wood, Westworld 6/1
Sandra Oh, Killing Eve 6/1
Laura Linney, Ozark 19/1
Mandy Moore, This is Us 20/1
OTHER 9/1

Again, it’s a close one between The Americans and The Handmaid’s Tale, but Keri Russell is sitting favorably at the top. Russell reinvented herself through The Americans, and her swansong season was arguably her best yet.

Another Win for Sterling K. Brown?

Potential Outstanding Drama Actor Nominees Odds on Winning
Sterling K. Brown, This is Us 5/2
Matthew Rhys, The Americans 4/1
Jeffrey Wright, Westworld 6/1
Freddie Highmore, The Good Doctor 6/1
Jason Bateman, Ozark 9/1
Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us 19/2
Liev Schrieber, Ray Donovan 50/1
OTHER 100/1

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, this is another category likely to see a repeat-win. Sterling K. Brown is phenomenal in This is Us (not to mention anything else we’ve seen him in). Not that his co-star Milo Ventimiglia isn’t, nor any of the other contenders, but Brown has a keen ability to truly make us feel.

And, perhaps this year he will get to finish his speech.

Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Potential Outstanding Supp. Drama Actress Nominees Odds on Winning
Thandie Newton, Westworld 9/2
Ann Dowd, The Handmaid’s Tale 15/3
Alexis Bledel, The Handmaid’s Tale 11/2
Lena Headey, Game of Thrones 13/2
Chrissy Metz, This is Us 13/2
Mille Bobbie Brown, Stranger Things 9/1
Vanessa Kirby, The Crown 10/1
OTHER 24/1

Thandie Newton was nominated last year for her work on Westworld, but just as her role on the show expanded, so has her shot at an Emmy win.

…Newton’s turn of character on Westworld was one of the strongest points on one of TV’s strongest shows this season

The category for Outstanding Supporting Actress is actually quite a tough one to call this year, with Ann Dowd, Lena Headey and Chrissy Metz in the mix, but Newton’s turn of character on Westworld was one of the strongest points on one of TV’s strongest shows this season.

Make That Three for Dinklage

Potential Outstanding Supp. Drama Actor Nominees Odds on Winning
Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones 4/1
David Harbour, Stranger Things 5/1
Mandy Patinkin, Homeland 6/1
Anthony Hopkins, Westworld 6/1
Noah Schnapp, Stranger Things 9/1
Asia Kate Dillon, Billions 9/1
Brendan Fraser, Trust 11/1
OTHER 15/1

HBO’s Game of Thrones used to dominate the Emmys. Things have changed a bit, with extended season breaks and other shows taking up precious dramatic space in our viewing schedules, however some things about the fantasy series remain just as strong as ever — and, Peter Dinklage is one. Nominated six times, Dinklage has won for Outstanding Supporting Actor twice. A third is not far out of reach.

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An unabashed interest in the lives of other people and all things pop culture makes analyzing the world of entertainment an easy fit for Kaela. One of SBD's resident experts since 2017, she keeps her finger on the pulse so you can feel confident, and have fun, making informed wagers.