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The Emmy Nominees Show Us What Women Do for TV

Emmy nominations were released in mid-July and the variety of talent is monumental. Women in TV did especially well this year, dominating some categories and being recognized for their exceptional work on the small screen. These are the women in TV who shined and the reasons why they deserve the Emmys win.


Outstanding Drama Series is arguably the most notable award of the Emmys ceremony, often being saved for the end of the show. Two of this year’s nominees are Marti Noxon’s Sharp Objects and Ava DuVernay’s When They See Us. Sharp Objects tells the story of a journalist turned heroine, who Noxon brings to life through actress Amy Adams. DuVernay’s When They See Us garnered critical acclaim earlier this summer for its impactful re-telling of the 1989 Central Park jogger case. The case is notable for the wrongful conviction of five innocent black teenagers. After spending 6-12 years in prison, the men, now called the Exonerated Five, are advocates for change in the criminal justice system.


Cinematography can change the entire scope of how viewers experience the story they’re being told. Some of the most amazing shots in this year’s pool of TV entertainment are thanks to excellent women in photography. Cinematographers Zoe White and Sophie Darlington were the women responsible for the stunning images we’ve seen this year, from the re-imagined dystopian world of The Handmaid’s Tale to the jaw dropping animal kingdom in Netflix’s Our Planet.


Women dominated the Writing for a Comedy Series category, outnumbering men 7 to 5. Among these writers are famously funny Amy Poehler alongside newcomers Maya Erskine and Anna Konkole, creators and stars of the Hulu original, PEN15. The Television Academy also welcomes actress Natasha Lyonne, who is known for her role as Nicky Nichols on Orange is the New Black. Her nomination in this category is certainly impressive, as her work on Netflix’s Russian Doll marks her writing debut.


Impressive casting work results in actors who seem perfectly-suited to lpay their characters. Many characters on Game of Thrones and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel are brought to life by women like Nina Gold and Cindy Tolan. Each nomination in this category highlights the women responsible for such an important job. Casting is a crucial component of storytelling  –– especially when it involves the portrayal of real people, like the very-much-still-alive Exonerated Five in Netflix’s When They See Us.


Being in front of the camera is no easy task, but this year’s nominees for Lead Actress in a Drama Series make it look easy. Among them is the mother of dragons, Emilia Clarke, and TV’s fictional lawyer//professor/all-around badass Viola Davis. The list rounds up to 7 nominees, which is one more than the male leads list. They play some of the strongest, most outstanding characters in modern TV, including Robin Wright’s portrayal as the first woman President of the United States.

Was your favorite TV show nominated for an Emmy this year? Let us know in the comments!

Featured Image by Gage Skidmore on Flickr

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