Emmy predictions: Who will, should and could win at Sunday night’s awards

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Los Angeles Times

If you were among the more than 1 million people who signed a petition asking HBO to remake the final season of "Game of Thrones," you might want to avoid watching the Emmys on Sunday.

Thrones" earned a record 32 nominations for its divisive farewell run and has already taken 10 prizes, presented at this past weekend's Creative Arts Emmys. (For those of us who felt lost in the darkness during the Battle of Winterfell, thankfully, cinematography was not among them.)

Expect plenty more bending of the knee when the main categories are presented during Sunday evening's telecast on Fox, culminating in a drama series win that will fill the stage with an army of cast members and creatives. (No CG needed!) Though a "Thrones'" coronation is a foregone conclusion, there's an unusual amount of Emmy intrigue in many other categories, setting the stage for some potential surprises. Here's a look at a few of the bigger categories.

Drama series

"Better Call Saul"

"Bodyguard"

"Game of Thrones"

"Killing Eve"

"Ozark"

"Pose"

"Succession"

"This Is Us"

Will win: "Game of Thrones"

Could win: Seriously. "Game of Thrones" has this locked.

Should win: "Game of Thrones" Wait ... what? "Game of Thrones" should win? The same show that scattered logic to the wind and wronged its female characters in a hurried final season, which delivered an anticlimactic head-scratcher of an ending (Bran???) that didn't satisfy anyone? Yes. For six weeks, for good and bad, "Game of Thrones" was all we could talk about. And since the year's two best dramas happened to be limited series ("When They See Us" and "Chernobyl"), there really isn't a compelling counterargument here. So let's forget about that disposable coffee cup, raise a glass of red wine and toast the glory days of this (often) remarkable show.

Comedy series

"Barry"

"Fleabag"

"The Good Place"

"The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"

"Russian Doll"

"Schitt's Creek"

"Veep"

Will win: "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"

Could win: "Veep"

Should win: "Fleabag"

"Maisel" won six Emmys over the weekend, including both comedy guest acting categories (Jane Lynch and Luke Kirby). It took the series Emmy for its first season (over "Atlanta," but I'm done fighting that battle) and earned the most nominations of any comedy (20) for its second. It's the safest choice to prevail, though picking it in a category containing the perfect encore of "Fleabag" and the daring "Barry" feels like an act of treason. Also looming is "Veep," which won the series Emmy for its last three eligible seasons. Voters might want to send it out in style.

Lead Actress (Drama)

Emilia Clarke, "Game of Thrones"

Jodie Comer, "Killing Eve"

Viola Davis, "How to Get Away With Murder"

Laura Linney, "Ozark"

Mandy Moore, "This Is Us"

Sandra Oh, "Killing Eve"

Robin Wright, "House of Cards"

Will win: Oh

Could win: Clarke

Should win: Comer

Oh would be the first actress of Asian descent to win this Emmy, providing the telecast with a nice historic moment. But her frequent scene partner Comer might be more deserving, as she shuttled effortlessly between personas and accents — one moment kooky, the next a killer. It's also possible that the night turns into a "Thrones" landslide, giving Clarke a reward for selling Daenerys' ridiculous character turns with aplomb.

Lead Actor (Drama)

Jason Bateman, "Ozark"

Sterling K. Brown, "This Is Us"

Kit Harington, "Game of Thrones"

Bob Odenkirk, "Better Call Saul"

Billy Porter, "Pose"

Milo Ventimiglia, "This Is Us"

Will win: Porter

Could win: Bateman

Should win: Porter Matthew

Rhys won this Emmy last year for the final season of "The Americans." Now that he's off making movies with Tom Hanks, it could be time for Odenkirk, nominated for all four seasons of "Better Call Saul," or Bateman, feted twice each for "Ozark" and "Arrested Development." But I'm going with Porter, the buzziest of the group, a Tony Award winner ("Kinky Boots") who would be halfway to his EGOT with this win.

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