Natasia Demetriou (‘What We Do in the Shadows’): From BAFTAs to Emmys?

“What We Do in the Shadows” delighted its fans for a continued fourth season last year as the hit vampire comedy reached new heights in terms of critical success and straight-up laugh-out-loud moments.

Jermaine Clement‘s series, adapted from his and Taika Waititi‘s 2014 movie of the same name, follows four vampire roommates living in modern-day New York: Matt Berry‘s Laszlo, Kayvan Novak‘s Nandor, Mark Proksch‘s Colin Robinson, and Natasia Demetriou‘s Nadja. All four comedians have their own style and brand of comedy that combine to create a brilliant show.

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As Nadja, Demetriou is the only female lead and takes full advantage of this spotlight — her pitch-perfect accent blending brilliantly with her skills as a physical comedy actress. Demetriou is also, clearly, an intelligent, natural performer — as Nadja, she knows when to ramp it up, when to dial it down, and fulfills the potential of each of her scenes to maximum comedic effect, as critics observed.

Tony Sokol (Den of Geek) noted: “Nadja has a new power, and it may prove to be far more effective than vampire hypnosis. Natasia Demetriou has an almost operatically trained range of funny voices, but she shatters the glass ceiling this season.”

George Chrysostomou (Screen Rant) claimed that “Demetriou as Nadja was an inspired choice,” writing: “The English and Greek-Cypriot Natasia Demetriou has thrived as Nadja… Eccentric, firm, quick-witted, and absolutely charismatic, it’s arguable that it’s Nadja that keeps the household together.”

And Chris Evangelista (The Wrap) observed: “The real MVP of the series remains Demetriou, whose unhinged, frequently oblivious Nadja gets the biggest laughs.”

Season four has been such a critical success that it has landed a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes, following in season three’s footsteps. Emmy voters seem to admire the show in a similar fashion, too, nominating it for 17 Emmys in total, including two bids for Best Comedy Series (it lost in 2020 to “Schitt’s Creek” and in 2022 to “Ted Lasso”). It won in 2022 for Best

Demetriou may not have received any Emmys recognition just yet, but she does have substantial awards credentials. She was nominated twice for Best Comedy Actress at the TV BAFTAs — first in 2022 for “Stath Lets Flats” (losing to Sophie Willan for “Alma’s Not Normal”) and then again earlier this year for “Ellie & Natasia” (losing to Siobhán McSweeney for “Derry Girls”). Those are two recent nominations for two different projects from a major awards group, demonstrating that Demetriou has plenty of admirers for her work as a comic.

Plus, she has received a bunch of nominations for her performance as Nadja in “What We Do in the Shadows,” including a 2021 Critics Choice Award for Best Comedy Actress (losing to Catherine O’Hara for “Schitt’s Creek”). Again, this shows that awards bodies like Demetriou’s work and her performance in this show.

That could lead to a first-ever Emmy bid this year, although she is currently outside of our predicted six nominees for Best Comedy Actress: Selena Gomez (“Only Murders in the Building”), Natasha Lyonne (“Poker Face”), Rachel Brosnahan (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”), Christina Applegate (“Dead to Me”), Jenna Ortega (“Wednesday”), and Quinta Brunson (“Abbott Elementary”).

However, both Ortega and Lyonne are hoping for an Emmy bid for the first season of their respective TV shows. In the last five years, only six of 29 nominations have gone to performances in debut seasons of TV shows. They were: Brosnahan for “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” in 2018 (winner), Applegate for “Dead to Me” in 2019, Lyonne herself for “Russian Doll” in 2019, Jean Smart for “Hacks” in 2021 (winner), Kaley Cuoco for “The Flight Attendant” in 2021, and Brunson for “Abbott Elementary” in 2022.

That track record could spell trouble for either Ortega or Lyonne, which is where a more tried-and-tested performance could benefit, such as Demetriou, who has now received rave reviews in four seasons of playing Nadja. Don’t count her out.

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