Primetime Emmys 2019: Matt Roush’s Predictions & Wish List of Nominees

Roush Emmy wish list
Courtesy of HBO; Colleen Hayes/HBO

Gone but not forgotten. That’s likely to be the case with former Emmy champs Game of Thrones — yes, even after that controversial final season — and Veep, whose endgames on HBO are almost certain to dominate their respective fields when the Emmy nominations are announced July 16.

And yet with so much TV, there’s always hope that new shows and stars will break through.

Here’s a partial wish list.


With Atlanta, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Silicon Valley not eligible this year, there are openings for such deserving series as Netflix’s The Kominsky Method (from creator and exec producer Chuck Lorre), a wry comedy about aging with expert performances from Golden Globe winner Michael Douglas and Alan Arkin. (But can Lorre’s top-rated The Big Bang Theory make the cut for its final year? A longer shot.)

The Kominsky Method (Mike Yarish/Netflix)

Look for another buzzy Netflix comedy, the surreal Russian Doll, to make noise, and maybe Prime Video’s Fleabag, starring the remarkable Phoebe Waller-Bridge. Plus, after five seasons, it’s time for Pop’s cult sensation Schitt’s Creek to get some love.


While the epic Thrones remains the show to beat, four of last year’s contenders are MIA, leaving room for newer blood. Most likely to join former nominees This Is Us, The Handmaid’s Tale, and Better Call Saul: BBC America’s electrifying thriller Killing Eve, with Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer both also worthy of lead actress nods; FX’s celebratory Pose, with its wonderfully diverse cast led by the spectacular Billy Porter; HBO’s cynically entertaining family saga Succession; and the nail-biting Bodyguard from Netflix.

Don’t count out the second season of Netflix’s Ozark, with Jason Bateman and Laura Linney, and Prime Video’s mysterious Homecoming, starring Julia Roberts. Emmy voters’ general disregard for network TV will probably work against The Good Doctor‘s Freddie Highmore getting noticed again as lead actor, and that’s a shame. And why is Starz’s deluxe Outlander such an outlier? No clue.

Limited Series/Movie

One of the strongest fields in years, with the toughest battle among lead actresses, where award-worthy work from Amy Adams (HBO’s Sharp Objects), Patricia Arquette (Showtime’s Escape at Dannemora), and Michelle Williams (FX’s Fosse/Verdon) makes for a real toss-up. Arquette could also be up for her supporting role in Hulu’s disturbing The Act (opposite likely lead contender Joey King).

Patricia Arquette, Escape at Dannemora (Christopher Saunders/SHOWTIME)

The lead actor ranks are just as impressive, with Mahershala Ali (HBO’s True Detective) favored against the likes of Hugh Grant (Prime Video’s A Very English Scandal), Benicio del Toro (Dannemora), Sam Rockwell (Fosse/Verdon), Anthony Hopkins (Prime Video’s King Lear), Ian McShane (HBO’s Deadwood: The Movie), and Jared Harris (HBO’s Chernobyl).

And while not star-driven, Netflix’s shattering docudrama When They See Us, about the Central Park Five, could end up a front-runner for best limited series.