The final season of the Canadian sitcom Schitt’s Creek has become the most successful comedy series in the history of the prestigious Emmy Awards, winning a total of nine trophies, across the main prime-time awards and the creative arts Emmys, which include technical categories such as casting and make-up.
After its first five seasons failed to secure it a single Emmy, America’s TV academy – and it’s more than 25,000 voting members – saw it off with a bang, as its creators – the father and son team Eugene and Dan Levy – were named the Best Actor in a Comedy and the Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy, while their co-stars Catherine O’Hara and Annie Murphy won the corresponding actress honours.
The show – about a wealthy family who end up moving into a motel in a run-down redneck town when they run into financial trouble – plays on family relationships and fish-out-of-water comedy, while normalising LGBT characters.
“Our show, at its core, is about the transformational effects of love and acceptance, and that is something we need more of now than we’ve ever needed before,” Dan Levy said, as he accepted the show’s highest profile prize, Best Comedy Series, from someone in a hazmat suit, at a ceremony where the host Jimmy Kimmel was at a Staples Center populated largely by cardboard cut-outs, as the nominees and winners dialled in from home.
The most successful drama series of the night was Succession, whose star Jeremy Strong was named the Best Actor in a Drama, beating contenders including his co-star Brian Cox. The show’s British creator Jesse Armstrong – accepting his honour in London – said it was sad not to be with the cast and crew to share it. At the age of 24, Zendaya become the youngest winner of the Emmy for Best Actress in a Drama Series, for the teen drama Euphoria. The corresponding supporting acting prizes went to Billy Crudup for The Morning Show and Julia Garner for Ozark.
Watchmen – based on the same graphic novel that inspired the 2009 film of the same name – was named the Best Limited Series, and took acting prizes for two of its leads Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Regina King, whose currently doing the (mostly virtual) festival circuit with her highly acclaimed first feature film as a director, One Night In Miami. Her film depicts a dramatised version of a key moment in the fight for civil rights in the US and she collected her trophy wearing a T-shirt bearing the image of Breonna Taylor, a black woman shot and killed by police during a failed drugs raid on her home in Kentucky in March.
Despite securing the most nominations and ending up with a healthy total of 7 wins, Watchmen has been dropped after only one series.
The other acting awards went to Mark Ruffalo, for his role in I Know This Much Is True and Uzo Aduba for Mrs. America.
And here is the full list of the main Emmy winners:
Outstanding comedy series
- WINNER: Schitt’s Creek
Outstanding drama series
- WINNER: Succession
Outstanding limited series
- WINNER: Watchmen
Lead actor in a comedy series
- WINNER: Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Lead actress in a comedy series
- WINNER: Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek
Supporting actor in a comedy series
- WINNER: Dan Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Supporting actress in a comedy series
- WINNER: Annie Murphy, Schitt’s Creek
Lead actor in a drama series
- WINNER: Jeremy Strong, Succession
Lead actress in a drama series
- WINNER: Zendaya, Euphoria
Supporting actor in a drama series
- WINNER: Billy Crudup, The Morning Show
Supporting actress in a drama series
- WINNER: Julia Garner, Ozark
Lead actor in a limited series or movie
- WINNER: Mark Ruffalo, I Know This Much Is True
Lead actress in a limited series or movie
- WINNER: Regina King, Watchmen
Supporting actor in a limited series or movie
- WINNER: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Watchmen
Supporting actress in a limited series or movie
- WINNER: Uzo Aduba, Mrs. America
Outstanding reality competition series
- WINNER: RuPaul’s Drag Race
Outstanding variety talk series
- WINNER: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Outstanding variety sketch series
- WINNER: Saturday Night Live
Outstanding television movie
- WINNER: Bad Education
Writing for a comedy series
- WINNER: Daniel Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Writing for a drama series
- WINNING: Jesse Armstrong, Succession
Writing for a limited series, movie or drama
- WINNER: Damon Lindelof and Cord Jefferson, Watchmen
Director for a comedy series
- WINNER: Andrew Cividino and Daniel Levy, Schitt’s Creek
Directing for a drama series
- WINNER: Andrij Parekh, Succession
Directing for a limited series
- WINNER: Maria Schrader, Unorthodox