Friday, December 1, 2023

HBO’s Dilemma With Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Drama Series

Most television networks would love to be in HBO’s position for this year’s Emmy season. “The Last of Us,” “Succession,” “The White Lotus,” and “House Of The Dragon” are just a few of the hit series that will win the hearts of voters in the Television Academy. To say that HBO has an abundance of riches this year is an understatement. It wouldn’t be surprising to see most acting categories predominantly filled with nominees from HBO shows. However, they could face one interesting dilemma: vote-splitting, especially in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series category. Having both Jennifer Coolidge and Sarah Snook duke it out in this category would be a bit of a misstep for a network that usually has excellent results at the Emmys. Both performances are worthy, so the possibility of moving one of these actresses to the lead category has never sounded better. Here are the pros and cons of moving either Snook or Coolidge to Lead Actress in a Drama Series.

Coolidge has never been more adored in her career than she is now. After a career-best performance in the first season of “The White Lotus,” Coolidge went on to win the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Television Movie. The show as a whole reached new heights in season two, becoming an even more significant presence in popular culture. In addition, the love for Coolidge has only grown since “The White Lotus: Sicily,” She has swept every precursor on the road to this year’s Emmys (Globe, CCA, and SAG). Even being campaigned in the Drama section instead of in Limited Series hasn’t slowed Coolidge down one bit. Every time she delivers a speech, the crowd adores her. The momentum currently swings in her favor, as she is primed to take home another Emmy. If anything, HBO probably would take little consideration in moving Coolidge to Lead Actress in a Drama Series.

“The White Lotus: Sicily” as a whole will most likely overperform on nomination morning. The Television Academy tends to over-nominate series they adore or have watched from start to finish. The first season of “The White Lotus” dominated the Limited Series categories last year, winning 10 Emmys (including Outstanding Limited Series, Directing, Writing, Supporting Actress, and Supporting Actor). “The White Lotus: Sicily” could score up to four nominations for Supporting Actress in a Drama Series alone. Vote-splitting for “The White Lotus“‘ nominees wouldn’t be a genuine concern for HBO’s campaign focus either, as Coolidge is clearly the fan favorite. Her is a slam-dunk win at this moment of the season. If anyone were to benefit more from being switched to Lead Actress in a Drama Series, it would be Snook.

Snook has received recognition from the Television Academy, having been nominated for two previous seasons of “Succession.” Unfortunately for Snook, both times, she lost to Emmy darling Julia Garner for “Ozark” (who won all three nominations for the series). Now that “Ozark” has ended, the competition for Outstanding Supporting Actress has weakened a bit this year. Still, having Coolidge (and even Rhea Seehorn of “Better Call Saul“) as your competition doesn’t exactly make it an easy road to victory. HBO could wait it out and see if the momentum shifts toward Snook as the final season of “Succession” airs. Would they want to risk this category change, though? Considering this is the last chance that Snook could win for playing the popular character of Shiv Roy, moving Snook’s campaign to Lead Actress is an intelligent decision.

The only real problem for Snook (or even Coolidge) is that she would have to go up against Melanie Lynskey for “Yellowjackets.” Lynskey, who received an Emmy nomination for the highly raved debut season of the Showtime drama (which earned seven Emmy nominations), was a likable personality during the last season. Season 2 of “Yellowjackets” is also currently airing. If the premiere was any indication of what’s to come, Snook winning against Lynskey in this category won’t be a walk in the park. Another actor in the conversation for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series is Bella Ramsey. “The Last Of Us” took the world by storm, becoming one of the biggest debut seasons of television ever. Ramsey’s performance was praised by many, and the show will surely have a strong presence at the Emmys. Besides Lynskey and Ramsey, other contenders floating around aren’t really vying for a win and are more so just in the conversation for the nomination. A few names include Emma D’Arcy of “House Of The Dragon,” Imelda Staunton of “The Crown,” and Lyskey’s co-star Juliette Lewis.

Snook not only consistently delivers a terrific performance on “Succession,” but the show as a whole could potentially win big at this year’s Emmys. Snook’s performance is so incredibly layered, so it would be a shame to see her go without a win throughout the series run. The season four premiere alone has an Emmy-worthy performance from Snook, and we still have nine more episodes to go. The potential for her to give a series-best performance has never been more possible.

Should Sarah Snook be moved to campaign as Lead Actress in a Drama Series? Should Jennifer Coolidge stay in the Supporting Actress in a Drama Series category? Who do you think would fare better in the Lead Actress category? Please let us know in the comments below or over on our Twitter account.

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Giovanni Lago
Giovanni Lago
Devoted believer in all things cinema and television. Awards Season obsessive and aspiring filmmaker.

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