Emmy Spotlight: HBO’s Insecure

Megan looks at the Emmy potential for HBO’s critically acclaimed Insecure

One quibble with the show Insecure is its title, the fact that implies that its heroine, Issa Rae (or in the show’s case, Issa Dee), is hesitant or scared, when what we see onscreen is a strong woman, mining her way through relationships and career decisions. But there’s a reason for that.

“There’s this idea [on TV] that black women can’t be as insecure as white women or any other women,” Insecure showrunner Prentice Penny explained in an interview with AwardsDaily TV. And that makes sense. When you think of Viola Davis or Kerry Washington, you don’t think of their characters getting to let their hair down and mess things up. They’re simply not getting the opportunity to rap “Broken Pussy” to themselves in the mirror.

Which is where Rae comes in, arriving at a point in television when voices like hers are need to be heard. The Golden Globes certainly have fallen in love with Rae, giving her a shot at the beloved Ingenue award (aka Best Actress Comedy or Musical). But will the Emmys feel the same?

Maybe. Julia Louis-Dreyfus is probably another guaranteed nomination in this category in 2017, especially when it will be Veep‘s final season. Tracee Ellis Ross will probably get in again for Black-ish, too. While slated for Season 5, Inside Amy Schumer may not be coming back in 2017, which could leave that spot open. Ellie Kemper could get in for Season 3 of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, but this isn’t a guarantee since she didn’t get in for Season 1. Getting On is over, so Laurie Metcalf won’t be getting in in 2017.  Finally, Lily Tomlin could likely get in for Grace & Frankie, since she’s been nominated for each season of the series so far.

That leaves three available spots. Who will she be competing with? Sarah Jessica Parker for Divorce (who’s a big threat); Rachel Bloom for Crazy Ex-Girlfriend; and Gina Rodriguez for Jane the Virgin.

In the Comedy Series categories, including writing and direction, it’s pretty crowded. Insecure would be competing against VeepBlack-ish, Silicon Valley, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Transparent, Master of None, and Divorce. 

Although what if Insecure got a nod for Outstanding Original Music for “Broken Pussy”? That’d be cool AF.

Final Verdict

Insecure’s best bet for a nomination is Outstanding Actress in a Comedy Series. Here’s how the Emmy nominations could end up in that category. One thing Insecure has going for it that some other shows like Crazy Ex-Girlfriend don’t have going for it is that it’s on HBO (the Emmys rarely recognize CW).

Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Veep

Sarah Jessica Parker – Divorce

Issa Rae – Insecure

Lily Tomlin – Grace & Frankie

Tracee Ellis Ross – Black-ish



Most Likely Nominations
Actress – Comedy

Possible Nominations
Comedy Series
Original Music

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