Writing Emmys Offer A Much Richer Portrait Of TV Comedy Than The Big Prize

Senior Pop Culture Editor
09.18.17

Fox / Netflix

For the last three years, the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series has gone to Veep. Before that, Modern Family went on a (record-tying) five-year run of dominance. And before that, 30 Rock won three years in a row. The last time the Outstanding Comedy Series Emmy went to a non-repeat winner was in 2006, for season two of The Office. To put that into perspective: other nominees that year include Two and a Half Men, The Sopranos, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus… for The New Adventures of Old Christine. In the immortal words of Staind (who were still popular in 2006), it’s been awhile since anything other than Veep, Modern Family, or 30 Rock won.

This is not a complaint, at least not entirely. Veep turns curse words into poetry (also, Splett); 30 Rock is one of the funniest shows ever; and Modern Family, well, Modern Family was pretty good in season one. But their supremacy over Outstanding Comedy Series ironically robs the Emmys of drama. Veep was the odds on favorite, despite Atlanta‘s stellar debut season, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt‘s rapid-fire punchlines, and Master of None‘s “Vengabus” episode.

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