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The Emmys-Who Won, Who Lost, & Why You Should Care

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

The 74th Emmys took place on September 12, 2022. Here’s a recap of who won, who lost and why you should care. 

Drama

The big winner of the night in the drama category was HBO’s Succession. The show was nominated for a grand total of 25 Emmys, 14 of which were for acting (the most ever for a single TV show). Succession took home the awards for Best Drama, Best Writing for Jesse Armstrong on the episode “All the Bells Sing,” and Best Supporting Actor in Matthew Macfadyen. MacFadyen, who may seem familiar even to some who haven’t seen Succession, is also Mr. Darcy in the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice, where he stars opposite Keira Knightley in one of the most gorgeous and beloved films in recent memory. 

Squid Game also made history at this year’s Emmy’s, taking home awards for Best Actor with Lee Jung-jae, and Best Directing for a Drama Series with Hwang Dong-hyuk for the episode “Red Light, Green Light.” Jung-jae, who portrayed Seong Gi-hun, was the first Asian and the first native Korean to win in the Lead Actor, Drama category (People). Meanwhile, Dong-hyuk was the first South Korean to win for Directing for a Drama Series (People). Overall, Netflix’s smash hit proved to be as award worthy as it was captivating, all while making history in the process. 

Meanwhile, the awards for Best Actress in Drama and Best Supporting Actress in Drama went to Zendaya and Julia Garner respectively. Zendaya, who won for her portrayal of Rue Bennett in HBO’s Euphoria, became the youngest actress to win the Outstanding Lead Actress Emmy twice, and for being the first black woman to win Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series twice (People). Zendaya, who is only 26, is already one of the most beloved and talented actresses of her generation. Additionally, Julia Garner’s win marked her 3rd Emmy for her role of Ruth Langmore in Netflix’s Ozark

Comedy

At the 74th Emmys, one show quickly rose to the top in the comedy category: Ted Lasso. The Apple TV series, which has been beloved by viewers since 2020, took home the awards for Best Comedy, Best Actor for Jason Sudeikis, Best Supporting Actor for Brett Goldstein, and Best Directing on the part of MJ Delaney for the episode “No Weddings and a Funeral.” 

However, while Ted Lasso may have won 4 Emmys for comedy, there was another heavy hitter in this category: ABC’s Abbott Elementary. Abbott Elementary, whose first season premiered in December 2021 (and whose second season just began airing), is a school-based comedy that quickly won the hearts of its audience. The show took home awards for Best Supporting Actress with Sheryl Lee Ralph, and Best Writing for a Comedy Series for Quinta Brunson on the episode “Pilot.” Sheryl Lee Ralph, whose breakthrough role was as Deena Jones in Dreamgirls on Broadway in 1981, made history as the second black actress to win Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy (People). Quinta Brunson made history, too, as she was the first black woman to earn three nominations in the comedy category in the same year (People). Brunson, whose career has moved from Buzzfeed to Emmy Award winning writer, is a quickly rising and greatly beloved star on the move. The outlier in the comedy category was Jean Smart, who won Best Actress for her role as Deborah Vance in HBO’s Hacks

Limited Series/Anthologies

The show that proved to be the most dominant force at this year’s Emmys was HBO’s The White Lotus. The limited series took home awards for Outstanding Limited Series, Best Supporting Actor for Murray Bartlett, Best Supporting Actress for Jennifer Coolidge, and Best Writing and Best Directing both for Mike White. The only awards that The White Lotus missed out on in its category were Best Lead Actor and Best Lead Actress. Michael Keaton took home the award for Best Lead Actor in Hulu’s Dopesick while Amanda Seyfried won Best Lead Actress for her portrayal of Elizabeth Holmes in Hulu’s The Dropout

Other Special Moments

In an incredibly spectacular moment, Lizzo won Outstanding Reality Competition Series for her show Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls, which tracked the search for her backup dancers. Lizzo accepted her award, saying, “THIS is for the big girls.” In a viral TikTok she was also seen dancing around with joy, and yelling, “I got the E and mfing G in the EGOT.” In other words, Lizzo is just getting started. 

The Biggest Losers

Amongst all of these spectacular wins, there were also a few who missed out– some who were nominated but overtaken by other winners, and some who were simply not nominated at all. In terms of individuals, Sydney Sweeney was one of the biggest losers of the night (although she was definitely one of the best dressed). Sweeney lost both of her nominations, one for Best Supporting Actress, Drama for her role as Cassie Howard in Euphoria, and another for Best Supporting Actress, Limited Series for her role in The White Lotus. Sweeney might have missed out on awards this year, but it’s almost certain there are some ahead for her. Andrew Garfield also missed out this year. He did not secure the win for Best Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Anthology for his role in Under the Banner of Heaven, but he did continue to steal America’s hearts with his classy white suit look. Selena Gomez, too, had a rough time at the 74th Emmys; she was overlooked in the nominations for Best Actress, Comedy for her role as Mabel Mora in Only Murders in the Building (meanwhile, both of her male costars were nominated). However, Gomez did make history as the second Latina nominated as a producer, via the Only Murders in the Building Best Comedy nomination (People). Mandy Moore, who has previously been nominated for an Emmy for her role as Rebecca Pearson in NBC’s This is Us, did not receive a nomination for her performance in the final season. 

There were also a handful of shows that, although nominated for multiple Emmys, did not secure any wins. AMC’s Better Call Saul continued its streak of not winning any Emmys (MSN), while Showtime’s sleeper hit Yellowjackets did not win any of the 7 awards for which it was nominated. However, both of these shows are anchored by talented casts and incredible writers, so don’t count them out for future awards. FX’s Atlanta also secured a few nominations for its third season, but no wins. However, it is still more than worth the watch for its social commentary, visual details, and incredible performances. 

So, What?

Overall, the 74th Emmys (as the Emmys often are) were a mixed bag. However, they marked lots of history and progress towards better representation. The Emmys are not a determinant for what everyone will love; they are awards chosen by a select group of people with specific interests. Winning an Emmy is exciting and important, but there are important and incredible shows that often get overlooked. The Emmys can be a starting place for finding a new show to watch, but they are not the end all be all.

Lauren is an English literature & communications major at the University of Pittsburgh. She loves all things coming of age, reading, and iced coffee related.
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