Final Primetime Emmy Predictions: ‘Abbott Elementary’ and ‘Squid Game’ Set to Make History, ‘The White Lotus’ Projected to Lead

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Abbott Elementary” just might do it. After winning for casting, the ABC hit freshman sitcom could make history in many significant ways. After Quinta Brunson made history by becoming the first Black woman to be nominated for comedy series, acting and writing categories in the same year, she would be only the second Black person ever to win as a producer in the comedy series. The first was Winifred Hervey for “The Golden Girls” back in 1987. Also, forecast to go along with the top category a win for writing (Brunson would be the third Black person after Larry Wilmore for “The Bernie Mac Show” in 2002 and Lena Waithe for “Master of None” in 2017) and Sheryl Lee Ralph in supporting actress (she would be the second Black woman to win the category after Jackee Harry for “227” in 1987).

Let’s be clear, I’m aware I may be “overthinking much of this, and there are more “safe picks” to make as we barrel towards the ceremony. “Ted Lasso” winning comedy would not be shocking, along with its three stars Jason Sudeikis, Brett Goldstein and Hannah Waddingham, matching once again.

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The race for drama series remains as open as ever with “Squid Game” asserting itself with four huge wins including guest actress drama for Lee You-mi.  With 25 nominations, HBO’s “Succession” leads overall but so far, it’s only walked away with one Creative Art category for casting (which is no small feat). The casting and drama series categories have matched the last six of the last 10 years, including the last four consecutively.

However, after much internal debate, Netflix might just squeak it out and make history as the first non-English program to win the category. The show is predicted to also win directing for Hwang Dong-hyuk, who would be the first Asian winner ever.

It might be foolish to not predict Lee Jung-jae, but the momentum for AMC’s “Better Call Saul” really picked up during the voting window. Feeling like a packaged deal, Rhea Seehorn is also projected to win in supporting actress over SAG winner Jung Ho-yeon.

HBO’s “Euphoria” does currently lead the tally with Creative Arts wins, alongside Netflix’s “Stranger Things” and its HBO counterpart “The White Lotus.” Even though Zendaya would be the youngest producer ever to win, it seems too high of an obstacle to getting over. While she’s the favorite in lead actress drama, we felt a surge of support for Melanie Lynskey from Showtime’s “Yellowjackets,” which is the best way to reward the show.

“The White Lotus” feels just fine to walk away with a multitude of awards including limited or anthology series, directing and writing. Hulu’s “Dopesick” and “The Dropout” may just have to make do with wins for Michael Keaton and Amanda Seyfried.

Other potential surprises include HBO’s “A Black Lady Sketch Show” besting NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” in variety sketch series and Amazon Prime Video’s “Watch Out for the Big Grrrls” getting past VH1’s “RuPaul’s Drag Race” for competition program.

Down below are the final picks for who will win, could win and should win ahead of Monday’s ceremony.

2022 Emmys Predictions - Lead Actor Drama - Bob Odenkirk, Adam Scott, Jeremy Strong
2022 Emmys Predictions - Lead Actor Drama - Bob Odenkirk, Adam Scott, Jeremy Strong

Outstanding Drama Series

Will Win: “Squid Game” (Netflix) – Kim Ji-yeon and Hwang Dong-hyuk, executive producers

Could Win: “Succession” (HBO)

Should Win: “Severance” (Apple TV+)

Outstanding Comedy Series

Will Win: “Abbott Elementary” (ABC)
Quinta Brunson, Justin Halpern, Patrick Schumacker and Randall Einhorn (executive producers); Brian Rubenstein (co-executive producer); Scott Sites and Jordan Temple (producers)

Could Win: “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu)

Should Win: “Abbott Elementary”

Outstanding Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: “The White Lotus” (HBO) – Mike White, David Bernad and Nick Hall, executive producers; Mark Kamine, co-executive producer

Could Win: “Dopesick” (Hulu) – Danny Strong, John Goldwyn, Warren Littlefield, Karen Rosenfelt, Barry Levinson, Beth Macy and Michael Keaton, executive producers; Jane Bartelme, Mandy Safavi, Eoghan O’Donnell, Jessica Mecklenburg, Ann Johnson and Graham Littlefield, co-executive producers

Should Win: “Dopesick” (Hulu)

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Will Win: Bob Odenkirk, “Better Call Saul” (AMC) – “Plan and Execution”

Could Win: Lee Jung-jae, “Squid Game” (Netflix) – “Gganbu”

Should Win: Jeremy Strong, “Succession” (HBO) – “Too Much Birthday”

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Will Win: Martin Short, “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu) – “How Well Do You Know Your Neighbors?”

Could Win: Bill Hader, “Barry” (HBO) – “starting now”

Should Win: Martin Short, “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu) – “How Well Do You Know Your Neighbors?”

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: Michael Keaton, “Dopesick” (Hulu)

Could Win: Himesh Patel, “Station Eleven” (HBO)

Should Win: Michael Keaton, “Dopesick” (Hulu)

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Will Win: Melanie Lynskey, “Yellowjackets” (Showtime) – “Doomcoming”

Could Win: Zendaya, “Euphoria” (HBO) – “Stand Still Like the Hummingbird”

Should Win: Zendaya, “Euphoria” (HBO)

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Will Win: Jean Smart, “Hacks” (HBO Max) – “The Click”

Could Win: Quinta Brunson, “Abbott Elementary” (ABC) – “Pilot”

Should Win: Jean Smart, “Hacks” (HBO Max)

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: Amanda Seyfried, “The Dropout” (Hulu)

Could Win: Sarah Paulson, “Impeachment: American Crime Story” (FX)

Should Win: Toni Collette, “The Staircase” (HBO)

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Will Win: Matthew Macfadyen, “Succession” (HBO) – “All the Bells Say”

Could Win: Billy Crudup, “The Morning Show” (Apple TV+) – “My Least Favorite Year”

Should Win: John Turturro, “Severance” (Apple TV+) – “Defiant Jazz”

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Will Win: Brett Goldstein, “Ted Lasso” (Apple TV+) – “Rainbow”

Could Win: Henry Winkler, “Barry” (HBO)

Should Win: Anthony Carrigan, “Barry” (HBO)

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: Murray Bartlett, “The White Lotus” (HBO)

Could Win: Seth Rogen, “Pam & Tommy” (Hulu)

Should Win: Murray Bartlett, “The White Lotus”

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Will Win: Rhea Seehorn, “Better Call Saul” (AMC) – “Hit and Run”

Could Win: Jung Ho-yeon, “Squid Game” (Netflix) – “Gganbu”

Should Win: Christina Ricci, “Yellowjackets” (Showtime) – “Sic Transit Gloria Mundi”

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Will Win: Sheryl Lee Ralph, “Abbott Elementary” (ABC) – “New Tech”

Could Win: Hannah Waddingham, “Ted Lasso” (Apple TV+) – “No Weddings and a Funeral”

Should Win: Janelle James, “Abbott Elementary” (ABC) – “Ava vs. Superintendent”

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: Jennifer Coolidge, “The White Lotus” (HBO)

Could Win: Mare Winningham, “Dopesick” (Hulu)

Should Win: Natasha Rothwell, “The White Lotus” (HBO)

Outstanding Variety Sketch Series

Will Win: “A Black Lady Sketch Show” (HBO)

Robin Thede, Issa Rae, Tony Hernandez, Brooke Posch, Dave Becky and Jonathan Berry, executive producers; Tracey Ashley and Bridget Stokes, co-executive producers; Chloé Hilliard, Deniese Davis, Montrel McKay and John Skidmore, producers; Linda Morel, produced by

Could Win: “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)

Should Win: “A Black Lady Sketch Show”

Outstanding Variety Talk Series

Will Win: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” (HBO)

John Oliver, Tim Carvell and Liz Stanton, executive producers; Jeremy Tchaban, co-executive producer; Catherine Owens and Christopher Werner, supervising producers; Laura L. Griffin, Kate Mullaney, Matt Passet, Marian Wang and Charles Wilson, producers

Could Win: “Late Night with Seth Meyers” (NBC)

Should Win: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” (HBO)

Outstanding Competition Program

Will Win: “Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls” (Amazon Prime Video)

Could Win: “RuPaul’s Drag Race” (VH1)

Should Win: “Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrls”

Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series

Will Win: “Squid Game” (Netflix) – Hwang Dong-hyuk, “Red Light, Green Light”

Could Win: “Succession” (HBO) – Mark Mylod, “All the Bells Say”

Should Win: “Severance” (Apple TV+) – Ben Stiller, “The We We Are”

Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series

Will Win: “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu) – Cherien Dabis, “The Boy from 6B”

Could Win: “Hacks” (HBO Max) – Lucia Aniello, “There Will Be Blood”

Should Win: “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu) – Cherien Dabis, “The Boy from 6B”

Outstanding Directing for a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: “The White Lotus” (HBO) – Mike White

Could Win: “Dopesick” (Hulu) – Danny Strong, “The People vs. Purdue Pharma”

Should Win: “Dopesick” (Hulu) – Danny Strong, “The People vs. Purdue Pharma”

Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series

Will Win: “Succession” (HBO) – “All the Bells Say” by Jesse Armstrong

Could Win: “Squid Game” (Netflix) – “One Lucky Day” by Hwang Dong-hyuk

Should Win: “Severance” (Apple TV+) – “The We We Are” by Dan Erickson

Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series

Will Win: “Abbott Elementary” (ABC) – “Pilot” by Quinta Brunson

Could Win: “Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu) – “True Crime” by Steve Martin and John Hoffman

Should Win: “Abbott Elementary” (ABC)

Outstanding Writing for a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie

Will Win: “The White Lotus” (HBO) – Series by Mike White

Could Win: “Dopesick” (Hulu) – “The People vs. Purdue Pharma” by Danny Strong

Should Win: “The White Lotus” (HBO)

Outstanding Writing for a Variety Special

Will Win: “Jerrod Carmichael: Rothaniel” (HBO) – Jerrod Carmichael

Could Win: “Norm Macdonald: Nothing Special” (Netflix) – Norm Macdonald

Should Win: “Jerrod Carmichael: Rothaniel” (HBO) – Jerrod Carmichael

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