- Last Year’s Winner: “Veep”
- Was It an Upset? Kind of. Most experts believed “Modern Family’s” five-year win streak would end, but disagreed over whether “Veep,” “Transparent” or “Louie” would defeat it.
- Still Eligible? Yes
- Hot Streak: Though “Modern Family” lost its winning streak last year, it could still become the most awarded program ever in this category with just one more win. It’s currently tied with “Frasier” at five trophies.
- Fun Fact: The last time the highest-rated show nominated won was in 2012 (“Modern Family”). The last time the lowest-rated show won was most likely in 2004, when “Arrested Development” took home the prize over “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “Will and Grace” (though lack of ratings for certain HBO programs makes it hard to tell for sure).
“Veep” is looking to extend its reign, and it may be tough for anyone to stop it. The comedy with the second most nominations, “Silicon Valley,” is on the same network, and it would be odd for HBO to back anything other than its established winner. Not that it won’t give Mike Judge’s increasingly popular comedy a good push, but “Veep” has a better track record with the TV Academy (if only by a bit).
“Modern Family” seems to be on the decline, so despite its record-tying run in this category, odds aren’t great for a return to the top. “Transparent” has a better shot, as Amazon has been pulling out all the stops in promoting its critically-beloved series. Heck, Norman Lear himself spoke on the show’s behalf at an FYC event. You better believe there will be more of the same from Amazon during the coming months. Netflix will attempt to match their efforts for “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” getting Tina Fey out there front and center to shill for votes. (The “30 Rock” star remains a favorite among voters.)
But it could be “Black-ish” and “Master of None” that stand the best shot at unseating “Veep.” It’s the first year both have been nominated, but each have tapped into the zeitgeist in unique ways — in addition to being funny as hell. Aziz Ansari’s comedy has an edge in reviews and boasts a particularly cinematic look. Plus, fans are fervent to get its topical content out there, and that discussion could elevate the series above the rest.
Below are IndieWire TV Critic Ben Travers’ predictions for Outstanding Comedy Series, which will be updated throughout the awards season. Make sure to keep checking IndieWire for all the latest buzz and highlights from the 2016 race, and read the rest of the predictions in all the categories, as well.
- “Master of None”
- “Modern Family”
- “Silicon Valley”
- “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
Will Win: “Veep”
Could Win: “Black-ish”
Should Win: “Veep”