Streaming Shows Are Dominating the Emmys — Is It Time for a Big Change? (POLL)

This Is Us Mare of Easttown The Mandalorian
Ron Batzdorff/NBC; Michele K. Short/HBO; Disney+

If you look at the 2021 Emmy nominations, there are the usual picks and the surprises, but one thing that’s clear is streaming is dominating this award show.

HBO and HBO Max (combined) lead all platforms with 130 nominations. Netflix is right behind them in second, with 129. Disney+ is in third with 71. Sure, NBC comes in fourth, but that’s with 46 nominations. Behind that is another streaming service, Apple TV+, with 34. CBS then has 26, only edging Hulu out by one.

Critic's Notebook: Few Surprises in the 2021 Emmy NominationsSee Also

Critic's Notebook: Few Surprises in the 2021 Emmy Nominations

But the races are tight in several categories, although there are some clear favorites. And the broadcast networks might as well stay home.

And when you look at the shows with the most nominations, seven of the top 10 are streaming (The Crown, The Mandalorian, WandaVision, The Handmaid’s Tale, Ted Lasso, The Queen’s Gambit, and Hacks). Of the other three, two are from HBO (Lovecraft Country and Mare of Easttown) while one is on NBC (Saturday Night Live).

There’s only one broadcast show up for each Outstanding Drama Series and Outstanding Comedy Series. Broadcast shows only received one nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, two each for Outstanding Lead Actress and Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, one for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, three for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series, and two for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.

In other words, something’s gotta give for broadcast and cable to be contenders for nominations. But the question is what? Should the Primetime Emmys be split into two shows, keeping broadcast and cable as one and streaming as its own? Should there be different sets of categories, leaving streaming shows to compete against one another and broadcast and cable to go head-to-head (i.e., Outstanding Streaming Drama, Outstanding Broadcast & Cable Drama)? Should nothing change and we instead look at the shows themselves?

Vote in our poll below.

73rd Emmy Awards, Sunday, September 19, 8/7c, CBS