TV's new 'golden age' bodes well for exciting Emmy Awards

Thu Sep 17, 2015 8:05am EDT
 
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By Jill Serjeant

(Reuters) - Egotistical politicians, conflicted advertising executives, a prison full of devious women and the bloodthirsty nobles of warring kingdoms.

Welcome to the Primetime Emmy Awards, the biggest honors in television, and a ceremony on Sunday that holds the promise of a history-making evening and a winner's podium packed with new faces.

"Television right now is chock-a-block with great stories and performances so there is almost too much great TV to pick winners," said Mary McNamara, TV critic for the Los Angeles Times.

"The question is, are we going to see the expanded universe of television better reflected in the winners?" McNamara added.

Will voters embrace transgender drama series "Transparent," and give Amazon Studios its first ever Emmy statuette? Can HBO's Washington political satire "Veep" get a bump from the 2016 White House campaign, now in full swing, to take the comedy series crown?

Awards pundits say nothing is predictable this year due to a rule change that mandates online voting for the first time and expands voting in some top categories to all 18,000 members of the Television Academy.

"It is a complete game changer. It really is anything can happen and that was instituted so that there would be change and a wider selection of winners on Emmy night," said Debra Birnbaum, executive editor of television at Variety.

The Television Academy may finally name the first African-American actress in the best drama category where Viola Davis (ABC's,"How to get Away with Murder") and Taraji P. Henson (Fox's "Empire") are favorites.   Continued...

 
Cast members (from L-R) Sophie Turner, Natalie Dormer, Liam Cunningham and Carice van Houten from the television series "Game of Thrones", pose during the 2015 Comic-Con International Convention in San Diego, California July 10, 2015. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni