After final night time’s Emmy Awards ceremony, Higher Name Saul can lay declare to a outstanding achievement: 46 Emmy nominations and 0 wins over the course of its six-season run. Forty. Six. 46 probabilities to acknowledge among the finest exhibits on tv for its outstanding achievements, and 46 failures to take action.
It feels imply to maintain harping on that quantity, however 46 is staggering. This TVLine listing showcases 25 nice exhibits that additionally by no means received an Emmy, however many of the exhibits on that listing solely obtained a couple of token nods throughout their run — they weren’t taking part in the sport as onerous as Saul has completed over the previous six years. And but 46 losses. It’s quite a bit!
Upon its preliminary premiere, the genre-defying crime drama could have been a direct a part of the Emmys race as a by-product of Breaking Unhealthy, which had a way more spectacular Emmys run over its 5 seasons (58 nominations and 16 wins). However even when that leg up might be thought-about a bizarre type of awards present nepotism, the saying about nepotism is that it may get you within the door — however expertise is what retains you there. And even the Emmys can’t deny that Peter Gould and Vince Gilligan’s singular TV achievement, constructing upon what got here earlier than to create a full-circle narrative not like another, deserves recognition. (Why else would they hold nominating it?)
Higher Name Saul nonetheless has yet another yr to win large, and as with AMC’s Mad Males, that last-chance vitality could be the bump it must at least get Bob Odenkirk or Rhea Seehorn or the goddamn writers extra recognition. However by splitting Saul‘s remaining season into two elements, leaving the present’s remaining six episodes to battle for consideration subsequent yr, did AMC damage the present’s probabilities this yr? Or will Saul have a a lot better probability at lastly successful when not up in opposition to zeitgeist favorites like Squid Sport or established gamers like Succession?
None of those questions should do with the precise high quality of Saul compared to different exhibits, as a result of one thing it will get simpler to embrace with age is the concept that awards exhibits are as a lot a recreation as the rest on this world.
And also you all the time need the winner on this situation to be essentially the most deserving, however then you definately get into questions of what is essentially the most deserving. Did the actor who put themselves by excessive bodily transformations to recreate a well-known determine obtain one thing artistically extra worthwhile than the actor who bore their soul for a stripped down character research? Is the daring and nuanced sci-fi sequence extra deserving of recognition than the stately well-told interval drama?
Asking questions like that is the purpose at which it actually turns into obligatory to consider this complete factor as a recreation, lest the existential sinkhole of pitting numerous creative achievements in opposition to one another and declaring one the “finest” threaten to eat us all completely.
As an alternative, consider it like this: Awards exhibits are sports activities. That’s to not say you shouldn’t get invested in a movie or TV present’s probabilities — like sports activities, heartbreak is all the time attainable, particularly once you’ve spent all yr watching your workforce play their rattling hearts out, solely to lose within the final moments of the season.
There’s a distinction, after all: When your favourite sports activities workforce doesn’t win the large recreation, you normally can level to a cause why — a fumble within the third quarter or a penalty within the second interval, or the opposite workforce’s miracle three-pointer or grand slam on the backside of the ninth. Or generally, you watch the sport and it’s clear that one workforce simply outplayed the opposite.