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Sometimes it's not hard to wonder what the Emmy voters were thinking.
But for all the worthy nominees, there are plenty of shocking omissions from the list. This year is no different when it comes to snubs, as critically acclaimed and fan-favorite series and actors were left off the list, from Nicole Kidman in HBO's "The Undoing" to Peacock's delightful musical comedy, "Girls5Eva."
And they're not the only big names missing from the list. Because of production delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, some favorites from last year's ceremony aren't eligible because they didn't air new episodes in the June 1, 2020 – May 31, 2021, eligibility window. So while fans may be wondering where nominations are for "Succession," "Ozark," "Stranger Things," "Better Call Saul," "Killing Eve," "The Morning Show" and "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," they simply didn't have anything to put up for contention.
Cedric the Entertainer will host the Emmys on Sunday, Sept. 19 on CBS (8 EDT/5 PDT) with a more traditional in-person ceremony than we saw last year when Jimmy Kimmel helmed a virtual awards show on ABC. Until then, here are the most shocking, egregious and saddening snubs on the 2021 Emmy nominations list:
Nicole Kidman for 'The Undoing'
Despite earning an Emmy for her first season of HBO's "Big Little Lies," the Oscar-winning actress was overlooked for her performance in the premium cable network's buzzy crime drama "The Undoing." Her co-star, Hugh Grant, managed to make the list.
'Girls5Eva' and Renée Elise Goldsberry
Despite mountains of critical acclaim, an addictive soundtrack and power producer Tina Fey behind it, this Peacock sitcom about a 1990s girl pop group reuniting couldn't break through in the comedy category. Even more outrageously, Goldsberry didn't make it into the comedy actress category (although she did get a nod for supporting actress in a limited series or movie for Disney+'s "Hamilton").
Phoebe Dynevor for 'Bridgerton'
Netflix's sexy, beloved Regency-era drama from producer Shonda Rhimes managed a nod for drama series and lead actor in a drama series (Regé-Jean Page), but lead actress Dynevor will not be joining her Duke in the nominees' circle.
Ethan Hawke for 'The Good Lord Bird'
Hawke had a powerhouse performance as abolitionist John Brown in Showtime's miniseries "The Good Lord Bird," but he didn't make it into the lead actor in a limited series or TV movie category, which was stacked with two actors from Disney+'s "Hamilton": Lin-Manuel Miranda and Leslie Odom Jr.
Jeff Daniels and Brendan Gleeson, 'Comey Rule'
The veteran actors played James Comey and former President Donald Trump, respectively, in Showtime's political thriller "The Comey Rule." The TV Academy usually loves topical limited series, so it's a big surprise that both actors were left out in the acting categories, although each received Golden Globe nominations early this year.
'Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist' and Jane Levy
The canceled-too-soon musical comedy and two-time winner of USA TODAY’s Save Our Shows poll was forecasted by some Emmy experts to ride the wave of fan support (and grief) for the show to nominations for best comedy and lead actress for star Jane Levy. Unfortunately, all the great dance routines and jukebox hits in the world couldn't help “Zoey’s” stay alive or capture Emmy gold.
The “Cheers” and “The Good Place” actor is no stranger to the Emmy awards, so many thought his turn as the freewheeling mayor of Los Angeles in NBC’s “Mr. Mayor” might see him showing up on the red carpet in a tuxedo once again. But Emmy voters weren’t charmed by his fictional mayor nearly as much as LA was.
'Late Night with Seth Meyers'
Despite doing some of his best work during a pandemic year that forced late-night hosts to go home and do shows without studio audiences, Seth Meyers and his NBC series were left out of the variety talk category yet again.
Thuso Mbedu, 'Underground Railroad'
Amazon's brutal and gorgeous limited series "The Underground Railroad," from director Barry Jenkins, managed a nod in the overall limited series category. But it seems slightly counterintuitive to honor the show without honoring Mbedu, the lead actress who shepherded it to success. With a less capable lead, "Underground" could have been a mess.
'Ziwe,' 'The Amber Ruffin Show' and 'How to with John Wilson'
According to the Emmy voters, only two variety sketch series were worthy of a nomination: "Saturday Night Live" and "A Black Lady Sketch Show." As great as both are, this limited number of nominations shut out great work in this genre, from Showtime's deliriously funny "Ziwe" to Peacock's smart and salty "Amber Ruffin" to HBO's irreverent "How to." All three were deserving of nominations.
'It's A Sin'
HBO Max's British import was a long shot for the limited series category, but it doesn't mean its exclusion is any less infuriating. The drama followed a group of young friends in London at the height of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s and received a great deal of critical acclaim, including from this critic.
'For All Mankind'
Apple TV+ received a truckload of nominations (20) for cheery soccer comedy "Ted Lasso," but the streamer's best drama didn't manage to rocket into the major categories. An alternate history story about what would have happened if the Soviet Union beat the U.S. to the moon, the series is ambitious and stirring, but perhaps not loud enough to be an Emmy contender.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Emmy snubs 2021: Nicole Kidman, Ethan Hawke, Girls5Eva, more