Emmys 2019 Predictions: Best Actress in a Comedy Series

Updated June 9, 2019
7 min read

The race for the Emmys is on, and the category for the best actress in a comedy series is especially wide open. One look at the sheer number of actresses that boast of strong chances at nomination and it won’t take another glance from you to guess it to be easily the most overcrowded category this year, and by that very definition with so much formidable talent, that much difficult to predict. Although we have zeroed in on six names that we predict will land the nominations, it was an increasingly difficult task even sifting through the accomplishments of each actress. Notably so, this is also probably the only category wherein all the nominees from last year are still in the running, all of them somehow miraculously making it to the finish lines for submission of nominations.

Along with recurring veterans, the arrival of some serious new talent that no one foresaw also threw in quite an interesting mix. However, I must admit that even despite such overwhelming variety, the race is shaping up to be pretty one-sided. A reigning queen battles it out marvelously with a veeping queen back for her crown. Has a nice ring to it, and certainly sets the stage for things to come. Read on to find out our predictions for the best actress nominations in a Comedy series at the Emmys 2019.

7. Natasha Lyonne, Russian Doll

The only newcomer this year that I feel will breakthrough in the nominations for the category like a gushing storm, based on the show’s strong critical suite, Natasha Lyonne seems all set to garner her second Emmy nomination after her ‘Orange is the New Black’ guest starring role. She has already surprised critics and audiences with a perseverant performance in the breakout series ‘Russian Doll’, belonging to the ‘Groundhog Day’ subgenre of films and TV shows. If the predictions stand true, with a number of other experts pitching in the same direction, it will be the show’s first nomination and has the power to propel the Netflix original’s popularity through the roof. Got to watch out for this surprise entrant.

6. Pamela Adlon, Better Things

Seriously underrated, this show! While Adlon also serves as writer and director for majority of the series, it blows my mind how she can turn in an inspiringly raw performance as a single mother working in Hollywood AND land laurels for the same. What a powerhouse, since I am genuinely all praises for her work. She has been nominated for the Emmys twice before for the last two seasons, and has a golden globe nom in her kitty too. At this point, a nomination won’t seem farfetched at all.

5. Lily Tomlin, Grace and Frankie

Grace and Frankie’ recently aired its fifth season, and while I strongly felt it was nowhere near the glory of its previous seasons, the one thing that remains unchanged is the magic that Jane Fonda and Tomlin have created on the screen for close to five years now. Infact, the bang on casting is one of the foremost things that the show can be credited for, and Tomlin beyond excels in her role. For her performance as Frankie Bergstein, she has already been nominated four years in the running, but when it comes to competing with Julia-Louis Dreyfus who has already lifted the trophy six consecutive times now, not many have claimed to emerge victorious on the other side. While I can certainly predict a nomination for the veteran actress, a win would seem highly unlikely: given the top contenders for the prize and a dwindling fifth season.

4. Allison Janney, Mom

Another recurring veteran of a series, and another recurring veteran of an actress, ‘Mom’ just got done airing its sixth season and has already been renewed for a seventh and eighth one consecutively, and Alison Janney continues to rock it as she has over five seasons already. Janney has been in the running for this show for five years now, every year the show has aired. She is also one of the rare actresses to have made the jump from the best supporting actress category to the best lead actress category for the same show, with her first two nominations being as the former, even winning one, and the three as the latter. While the drop in quality over the years for ‘Mom’ has been a little more than negligible yet consistent, Alison Janney’s popularity and credibiiity as Bonnie continues to be on the rise. Expect her to repeat the nominations story.

3. Phoebe Waller Bridge, Fleabag

Image result for fleabag

What a formidable force of talent, this woman. She is one of the few women on the planet who can claim to be the writing force behind two of the best shows on television right now, ‘Killing Eve‘ and this one, ‘Fleabag‘. However, this is about her acting, and Waller-Bridge is an absolute delight to watch in the comedic and tragic bits. Ofcourse, the magic is all in the writing for which too she is to be credited, but Fleabag seems to have been written for her, and she does it full justice. The fourth wall breaking rants are especially fun, and the best thing about any character, so to say, is that it’s done in exceedingly grey shades, and not simply be a caricature of black and white. Boy, we all know Fleabag to have her share of greys, even the blacks. It is those bits that Waller Bridge nails. Serious contender, guaranteed nomination.

2. Rachel Brosnahan, ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’

The currently reigning champion will be defending her title against some serious contenders, but none perhaps are going to prove as serious a threat as my predicted top contender. That’s right, Brosnahan is indeed marvelously charming as Miriam ‘Midge’ Maisel, but her reign as the best actress in the comedy category might be short lived as Julia-Louis Dreyfus returns with the final season of ‘Veep’ this year. The series’ second season was a resounding success, and it has already been renewed for a third, testament to the show’s popularity. In fact, where global figures are concerned, Mrs. Maisel may just top ‘Veep’ when it comes to overall popularity, whereas awards are a completely different ballgame altogether. A nomination isn’t even a question really, but when it comes to who’ll take it home, it really comes down to these two, eventhough we kind of know the scales would tip in whose favour.

1. Julia-Louis Dreyfus, Veep

Just give her the crown back already! Dreyfus won six years in a row for her iconic political comedy ‘Veep’, and I would not be too wrong in saying that her ineligibility last year opened doors for Rachel Brosnahan to bag her first win for ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’. Even though she will be in serious running for the race, the moment ‘Veep’ decided to return for its seventh and final season within the eligibility period, that seriously hurt her chances. She is one of only four actresses who have been nominated for consecutive Emmys for two shows, and I’m in no way understating Brosnahan’s awesomeness as Mrs. Maisel, but this is Dreyfus we are talking about. There is no way the Emmy Academy doesn’t honor her final performance in the role of a lifetime. Considering her nomination would simply be an abomination to the legend that she is, I am just considering how long her acceptance speech is going to be.

Read More in Emmys Predictions:

Best Actor in Drama Series | Best Actress in Drama Series | Best Comedy Series

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