The 2015 Emmy Nominations Signal Big Shifts In Television, And Big Snubs For ‘Broad City’

Abbi Jacobson reacted accordingly.

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Nominations for the 2015 Emmys have rolled in overnight and, between this and the torrential rain and/or snow you’re probably battling right now, you have my official permission to head home and nostalgically binge-watch your favourite shows. I’ll write your boss a note. I’ll tell your lecturer to stick it. It’s been a pretty great year for TV* and now’s the perfect time to show your love for it.

*All TV except The Simpsons.

Who’s Up For What?

Unsurprisingly, the main categories are stacked full of the usual suspects. Mad Men have capped off their final season with their eighth nomination for Outstanding Drama Series (an award they’ve previously taken out four times). Alongside them is Downton Abby, Game Of Thrones, Homeland, House of Cards, Better Call Saul and Orange Is The New Black. 

It’s a huge switch for OITNB which was last year nominated for Outstanding Comedy; in fact, this is the first time a show has ever swapped categories. Despite a considerable protest from Netflix, the change was passed after a new rule issued a blanket definition of half-hour shows as “comedies” and hour-long shows as “dramas”. It’s not ideal, but the show’s creator Jenji Kohan has since come to peace with it. “We’re proud to be the misfits who don’t fit in — comedy, drama, nobody knows what to do with us… and we like it that way,” she said in a statement this morning. “No matter what you call us, we’re honoured to be recognised by the Academy.”

In simpler news, this is Better Call Saul‘s debut year and, if our critic’s glowing endorsements are anything to go by, it may be poised to carry on Breaking Bad‘s stellar tradition of mercilessly crushing Mad Men at any given opportunity. And, after taking out the top prize at the Critics Choice Awards, Bob Odenkirk has also scored his first-ever Emmy nom as Outstanding Lead Actor. He’ll have pretty stiff competition going up against Jon Hamm and Kevin Spacey, but anyone familiar with Saul Goodman will know you should never rule out an underdog.

never change, bb

The field for Outstanding Comedy is just as strong with Louie, Parks and RecreationSilicon Valley, Transparent, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and Veep. (Modern Family is also there, but at this point it’s better for all our souls to just ignore that). With Parks and Rec wrapping up their final season in February, this will be their last chance to score an Emmy; an award they’ve never been able to bag in their full six years on air.


The show itself has only been nominated for the top award twice, losing out to Modern Family who have consistently won for half a fucking decade. Also, Amy Poehler’s yet to take out her well-deserved title of Outstanding Lead Actress despite being in the running every single year.

Screen Shot 2015-07-17 at 10.59.06 am

Interestingly, we’ll also see the introduction of a brand new category this year. To accommodate an increasingly diverse range of A+ offerings, the award for Outstanding Variety Show has been split in two: Outstanding Variety Talk Series and Outstanding Variety Sketch Series. The former will see a late-night battle royale between The Colbert Report, The Daily Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Late Show, The Tonight Show and Last Week Tonight — a tough competition considering the legacy of Letterman, the popularity of Fallon, the ingenuity of John Oliver and the departing work of both Colbert and Stewart. (Sorry Kimmel, you don’t stand a chance).

While the original category commonly featured these shows as well as the odd appearance from Saturday Night Live or Drunk History, the newly-created Sketch section has now made room for the wholly deserving work of Key & Peele, Portlandia and Inside Amy Schumer. With Tina Fey crowning her “the biggest deal in comedy right now”, this has been a huge year for Schumer and she’s capping it off with her first recognition as Leading Actress.

It’s hard to say if that makes her more deserving of the title than Poehler, but it’s pretty tough to root against her when she’s making faces like this:

Where To From Here?

With all this, it’s clear there’s been some huge shifts in television in the past year alone. Not only are Netflix and Amazon racking up well-deserved nominations for their work, but the series they produce are blending genres and seriously challenging the industry to accommodate them. The new arbitrary rule about show-length may be controversial in the fact it’s sorted OITNB into drama, but it’s also lopped Transparent (a witty and heartfelt take on a middle-aged transgender woman coming out to her family) into the same category as Modern Family (a loose tapestry of lukewarm one-liners centred upon the fact Al Bundy likes to grimace and Sofia Vergara has boobs).

Streaming services aren’t the only things changing the game. It’s likely the introduction of the new Variety category owes much to the power of social media with nominated shows like Last Week Tonight, Key & Peele and Inside Amy Schumer gaining much of their growing audience and popularity through short viral clips. Though it’s something to keep an eye on for the next couple of years, it’s by no means trumping the highly-coveted prestige series of big cable networks. John Oliver may have tens of millions of hits on YouTube, but this terrifying, not-so-humblebrag from HBO makes it pretty clear they’d like to keep all the credit.

The Snubs! The Cruel-Hearted Snubs!

Alas, with all this exciting news and well-deserved nominations there are also some that inevitably missed out. Adam Driver and Gaby Hoffman both scored a shoutout as supporting actors, but neither Girls nor Lena Dunham got any of the love they were showered with in previous years. And while Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt was nominated for Outstanding Comedy (alongside Jane Krakowski and Titus Burgess in supporting roles), the phenomenal Ellie Kemper was overlooked for Lead Actress. Worse still: its opening music which is probably still happily looping in your head didn’t even cop a mention in the stakes for Outstanding Main Title.

Honestly, there are a million articles out there detailing the various snubs that have left the world — read: small subsections of fans — shocked and appalled, but there’s only one that really matters. Broad City wasn’t mentioned once. Not for Outstanding Comedy. Not for Outstanding Actress. Not for Most Outstanding Nude Dance Number. Nothing.

Abbi Jacobson has responded accordingly:

Here’s a full breakdown of the categories:

Outstanding Comedy Series

Modern Family
Parks and Recreation
Silicon Valley
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Outstanding Drama Series

Better Call Saul
Downton Abby
Game of Thrones
House of Cards
Mad Men
Orange Is The New Black

Outstanding Variety Talk Series

The Colbert Report
The Daily Show
Jimmy Kimmel Live
Last Week Tonight
Late Show
Tonight Show

Outstanding Variety Sketch Series

Drunk History
Inside Amy Schumer
Key & Peele
Saturday Night Live

Outstanding Limited Series

American Crime
American Horror Story Freak Show
Olive Kitteridge
The Honorable Woman
Wolf Hall

Outstanding Reality Competition Program

The Voice
Top Chef
Dancing With the Stars
The Amazing Race
So You Think You Can Dance
Project Runway

Outstanding Animated Program

Bob’s Burgers
Over the Garden Wall
The Simpsons
South Park

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Kyle Chandler, Bloodline
Jeff Daniels, The Newsroom
Jon Hamm, Mad Men
Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul
Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan
Kevin Spacey, House of Cards

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Claire Danes, Homeland
Viola Davis, How to Get Away With Murder
Taraji P. Henson, Empire
Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black
Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men
Robin Wright, House of Cards

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Jonathan Banks, Better Call Saul
Ben Mendelsohn, Bloodline
Jim Carter, Downton Abbey
Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones
Alan Cumming, The Good Wife
Michael Kelly, House of Cards

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Joanne Froggatt, Downton Abbey
Lena Headey, Game of Thrones
Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones
Christine Baranski, The Good Wife
Christina Hendricks, Mad Men
Uzo Aduba, Orange Is The New Black

Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series

Alan Alda, The Blacklist
Michael J Fox, The Good Wife
F. Murray Abraham, Homeland
Reg E. Cathey, House of Cards
Beau Bridges, Masters of Sex
Pablo Schreiber, Orange Is the New Black

Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series

Diana Rigg, Game of Thrones
Rachel Brosnahan, House of Cards
Cicely Tyson, How to Get Away With Murder
Allison Janney, Masters of Sex
Khandi Alexander, Scandal
Margo Martindale, The Americans

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Anthony Anderson, Black-ish
Louis C.K., Louis
Don Cheadle, House of Lies
Will Forte, Last Man on Earth
Matt LeBlanc, Episodes
William H. Macy, Shameless
Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
Lisa Kudrow, The Comeback
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation
Amy Schumer, Inside Amy Schumer
Lily Tomlin, Grace and Frankie

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Andre Braugher, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Adam Driver, Girls
Keegan-Michael Key, Key & Peele
Ty Burrell, Modern Family
Tituss Burgess, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Tony Hale, Veep

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Niecy Nash, Getting On
Julie Bowen, Modern Family
Allison Janney, Mom
Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live
Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory
Gaby Hoffmann, Transparent
Jane Krakowski, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Anna Chlumsky, Veep

Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series

Mel Brooks, The Comedians
Paul Giamatti, Inside Amy Schumer
Bill Hader, Saturday Night Live
Louis C.K., Saturday Night Live
Bradley Whitford, Transparent
Jon Hamm, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series

Gaby Hoffmann, Girls
Pamela Adlon, Louie
Elizabeth Banks, Modern Family
Joan Cusack, Shameless
Christine Baranski, The Big Bang Theory
Tina Fey, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Adrien Brody
Ricky Gervais
Timothy Hutton
Richard Jenkins
David Oyelowo
Mark Rylance

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Maggie Gyllenhaal, The Honorable Woman
Felicity Huffman, American Crime Story
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Queen Latifah, Bessie
Frances McDormand, Olive Kitteridge
Emma Thompson, Sweeney Todd

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Richard Cabral, American Crime
Denis O’Hare, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Finn Wittrock, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Michael Kenneth Williams, Bessie
Bill Murray, Olive Kitteridge
Damian Lewis, Wolf Hall

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Regina King, American Crime
Sarah Paulson, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Angela Bassett, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Kathy Bates, American Horror Story: Freak Show
Mo’Nique, Bessie
Zoe Kazan, Olive Kitteridge

Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series

The Americans, “Do Mail Robots Dream Of Electric Sheep?”
Better Call Saul, “Five-O”
Game of Thrones, “Mother’s Mercy”
Mad Men, “Lost Horizon”
Mad Men, “Person to Person”

Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series

Episodes, “Episode 409″
The Last Man On Earth, “Alive In Tucson (Pilot)”
Louie, “Bobby’s House”
Silicon Valley, “Two Days of the Condor”
Transparent, “Pilot”
Veep, “Election Night”

See the full list here.