Critics’ Choice Awards 2020: Our Picks for the TV Categories

Critics' Choice Awards Trophy
Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Critics' Choice Television Awards

The Golden Globes aren’t the only awards show honoring the best of film and television. The Critics’ Choice Awards also recognize the top talent of the big and small screen, and the awards show is back for its 25th year with a ceremony airing live on The CW starting at 7/6c.

“This has been a truly great year for television and movies,” CCA CEO Joey Berlin said in a statement. “In every genre, from every viewpoint and distribution platform, brilliant storytellers are challenging and delighting us.”

Scroll down to see which shows and stars we’d love to see win in CCA’s 18 television categories.

The 25th Critics’ Choice Awards, Sunday, January 12, 7/6c, The CW

Best Drama Series

Macall Polay/FX

The Crown (Netflix)

David Makes Man (OWN)

Game of Thrones (HBO)

The Good Fight (CBS All Access)

Pose (FX)

Succession (HBO)

This Is Us (NBC)

Watchmen (HBO)

The FX drama became more streamlined in its second season, focusing less on ancillary characters and more on the core ball performers’ fight for acceptance and even survival. 10, 10, 10s across the board!

Best Actor in a Drama Series

Sterling K. Brown – This Is Us (NBC)

Mike Colter – Evil (CBS)

Paul Giamatti – Billions (Showtime)

Kit Harington – Game of Thrones (HBO)

Freddie Highmore – The Good Doctor (ABC)

Tobias Menzies – The Crown (Netflix)

Billy Porter – Pose (FX)

Jeremy Strong – Succession (HBO)

Embarrassing dad, concerned son, headstrong husband, idealistic city councilman, anxiety-prone human being — Brown toggles between all of Randall Pearson’s identities with ease on This Is Us.

Best Actress in a Drama Series

Christine Baranski – The Good Fight (CBS All Access)

Olivia Colman – The Crown (Netflix)

Jodie Comer – Killing Eve (BBC America)

Nicole Kidman – Big Little Lies (HBO)

Regina King – Watchmen (HBO)

Mj Rodriguez – Pose (FX)

Sarah Snook – Succession (HBO)

Zendaya – Euphoria (HBO)

Now that she has earned six Emmy nominations and five Critics’ Choice nods for her role as Diane Lockhart in The Good Wife and The Good Fight, it’s time to give #QueenBaranski her crown.

Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Asante Blackk – This Is Us (NBC)

Billy Crudup – The Morning Show (Apple)

Asia Kate Dillon – Billions (Showtime)

Peter Dinklage – Game of Thrones (HBO)

Justin Hartley – This Is Us (NBC)

Delroy Lindo – The Good Fight (CBS All Access)

Tim Blake Nelson – Watchmen (HBO)

Dinklage, on the other hand, has been honored time and again for his role as Tyrion Lannister on Game of Thrones, but he should also be commended for a performance that was one of the few joys of the HBO hit’s final season.

Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Big Little Lies - Laura Dern


Helena Bonham Carter – The Crown (Netflix)

Gwendoline Christie – Game of Thrones (HBO)

Laura Dern – Big Little Lies (HBO)

Audra McDonald – The Good Fight (CBS All Access)

Jean Smart – Watchmen (HBO)

Meryl Streep – Big Little Lies (HBO)

Susan Kelechi Watson – This Is Us (NBC)

No one does tantrums like Dern as Renata Klein on Big Little Lies, and her rage alone would have been enough to justify this HBO limited series’ second season.

Best Comedy Series

Barry (HBO)

Fleabag (Amazon)

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)

Mom (CBS)

One Day at a Time (Netflix)

PEN15 (Hulu)

Schitt’s Creek (Pop)

Even though it’s still flying under many viewers’ radars, this Canadian import has irresistible viral appeal, inspiring memes, quotes, pop songs, and even pop-up experiences. The Critics’ Choice Awards better not RSVP as “pending.”

Best Actor in a Comedy Series

Ted Danson – The Good Place (NBC)

Walton Goggins – The Unicorn (CBS)

Bill Hader – Barry (HBO)

Eugene Levy – Schitt’s Creek (Pop)

Paul Rudd – Living with Yourself (Netflix)

Bashir Salahuddin – Sherman’s Showcase (IFC)

Ramy Youssef – Ramy (Hulu)

Salahuddin is the co-creator and star of a TV series unlike any other on television: a comedy about the decades-long history of a fictitious, Soul Train-like variety show.

Best Actress in a Comedy Series

Christina Applegate – Dead to Me (Netflix)

Alison Brie – GLOW (Netflix)

Rachel Brosnahan – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)

Kirsten Dunst – On Becoming a God in Central Florida (Showtime)

Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Veep (HBO)

Catherine O’Hara – Schitt’s Creek (Pop)

Phoebe Waller-Bridge – Fleabag (Amazon)

O’Hara has played a lot of mothers in her career — in Beetlejuice, Home Alone, and For Your Consideration — but Rose family matriarch (and wig connoisseur) Moira is the mom she was born to play.

Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Amazon Prime Video

Andre Braugher – Brooklyn Nine-Nine (NBC)

Anthony Carrigan – Barry (HBO)

William Jackson Harper – The Good Place (NBC)

Daniel Levy – Schitt’s Creek (Pop)

Nico Santos – Superstore (NBC)

Andrew Scott – Fleabag (Amazon)

Henry Winkler – Barry (HBO)

By now, you’ve surely heard of the “Hot Priest” from Fleabag. Scott brought new meaning to the phrase “hot under the collar” with his portrayal of a clergyman torn between his celibacy and romance.

Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Alex Borstein – The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon)

D’Arcy Carden – The Good Place (NBC)

Sian Clifford – Fleabag (Amazon)

Betty Gilpin – GLOW (Netflix)

Rita Moreno – One Day at a Time (Netflix)

Annie Murphy – Schitt’s Creek (Pop)

Molly Shannon – The Other Two (Comedy Central)

Borstein has been an MVP on MADtv, Family Guy, and Getting On, but she’s an absolute scene-stealer as comedy manager Susie Myerson in The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.

Best Limited Series

Catch-22 (Hulu)

Chernobyl (HBO)

Fosse/Verdon (FX)

The Loudest Voice (Showtime)

Unbelievable (Netflix)

When They See Us (Netflix)

Years and Years (HBO)

Amid the Black Lives Matter movement, the calls for prison reform, and the ongoing slew of wrongful convictions, Ava DuVernay’s powerhouse Netflix limited series about the Central Park Five is all too relevant.

Best Movie Made for Television

Deadwood - Ian McShane

Doug Hyun/HBO

Brexit (HBO)

Deadwood: The Movie (HBO)

El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (Netflix)

Guava Island (Amazon)

Native Son (HBO)

Patsy & Loretta (Lifetime)

Deadwood devotees finally got closure — 13 years after the HBO western’s abrupt cancellation — with a two-hour movie that provided not just fan service but virile storytelling.

Best Actor in a Limited Series or Movie Made for Television

Christopher Abbott – Catch-22 (Hulu)

Mahershala Ali – True Detective (HBO)

Russell Crowe – The Loudest Voice (Showtime)

Jared Harris – Chernobyl (HBO)

Jharrel Jerome – When They See Us (Netflix)

Sam Rockwell – Fosse/Verdon (FX)

Noah Wyle – The Red Line (CBS)

As a chemist investigating the Chernobyl explosion — at great physical and psychological cost — Harris conveys the horror of the real-life disaster in the HBO limited series.

Best Actress in a Limited Series or Movie Made for Television

Kaitlyn Dever – Unbelievable (Netflix)

Anne Hathaway – Modern Love (Amazon)

Megan Hilty – Patsy & Loretta (Lifetime)

Joey King – The Act (Hulu)

Jessie Mueller – Patsy & Loretta (Lifetime)

Merritt Wever – Unbelievable (Netflix)

Michelle Williams – Fosse/Verdon (FX)

The same year Dever lit up the screen as one half of the Booksmart duo, she also gave a heartbreaking performance as Marie Adler, a teen coerced into recanting her rape accusations in Netflix’s ripped-from-the-headlines limited series.

Best Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie Made for Television


Asante Blackk – When They See Us (Netflix)

George Clooney – Catch-22 (Hulu)

John Leguizamo – When They See Us (Netflix)

Dev Patel – Modern Love (Amazon)

Jesse Plemons – El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (Netflix)

Stellan Skarsgård – Chernobyl (HBO)

Russell Tovey – Years and Years (HBO)

Blackk, who now appears on This Is Us, became 2019’s youngest Emmy nominee for his performance as Kevin Richardson in When They See Us, and for good reason. A Critic’s Choice Award would only be right.

Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie Made for Television

Patricia Arquette – The Act (Hulu)

Marsha Stephanie Blake – When They See Us (Netflix)

Toni Collette – Unbelievable (Netflix)

Niecy Nash – When They See Us (Netflix)

Margaret Qualley – Fosse/Verdon (FX)

Emma Thompson – Years and Years (HBO)

Emily Watson – Chernobyl (HBO)

With her usual gusto, Thompson portrays the archetypical outsider, outspoken, populist politician in a BBC-HBO drama that depicts a dark and very possible future.

Best Talk Show

Desus & Mero (Showtime)

Full Frontal With Samantha Bee (TBS)

The Kelly Clarkson Show (NBC)

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver (HBO)

The Late Late Show With James Corden (CBS)

Late Night With Seth Meyers (NBC)

Between Carpool Karaoke, Crosswalk Concerts, Spill Your Guts, and other recurring segments, Corden’s late-night talk show is a workhorse of YouTube-ready comedy.

Best Comedy Special

Eric McCandless/ABC

Amy Schumer: Growing (Netflix)

Jenny Slate: Stage Fright (Netflix)

Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s All in the Family and The Jeffersons (ABC)

Ramy Youssef: Feelings (HBO)

Seth Meyers: Lobby Baby (Netflix)

Trevor Noah: Son of Patricia (Netflix)

Wanda Sykes: Not Normal (Netflix)

More of a one-night encore than a reboot or a revival, Live in Front of a Studio Audience kept the scripts from two episodes of seminal Norman Lear sitcoms and recruited an all-star cast to play the parts live on TV. A blast from the past in the best possible way.