Emmys 2022: Let’s Talk About The Geek Stuff
The 2022 Emmys nominations list is out and, as predicted, our geeky stuff is well represented in the technical awards, but severely lacking in acting and writing noms.
Happy Emmys nomination day, everyone! There’s a lot of geek stuff represented, particularly in sound and visual effects categories. But we do have some writing and acting nominations as well. Stranger Things has 13 nominations and Squid Game has 14, which is impressive for genre shows. Over in the MCU, Moon Knight has 8, Loki has 3, and Hawkeye has 2. Star Trek: Picard is up for some technical awards and Star Wars is represented with both The Book of Boba Fett and Star Wars Visions.
I’ll be referring to the geek stuff as ‘genre media’ throughout the article. This typically encompasses science fiction, horror, fantasy, and occasionally certain period pieces (though some period pieces lean heavier on drama than genre). These shows are typically snubbed in categories such as acting and writing, but tend to make a big splash in the technical categories, which seems to be the case this year as well. There are a few surprises, however. So let’s take a look…
Emmys for Drama
Squid Game, Yellowjackets, and Stranger Things are nominated in this category. I’m only mildly surprised about Stranger Things, since it does weirdly draw the award-nominating crowd, unlike other blatantly genre shows. Squid Game and Yellowjackets lean more towards drama than genre, and thus slightly less surprising, but a delight nonetheless. I feel the award will ultimately go to either Succession or Euphoria, with a small chance of Ozark overtaking them since this was the final season.
Acting categories are less inclined to award genre media, and thus incredible performances like Sadie Sink’s in the latest season of Stranger Things get completely snubbed. Honestly, skipping her is such a crime, but I digress. At least the show was nominated for Outstanding Casting, so they’re being recognized in a roundabout way.
Squid Game has Lee Jung-jae nominated as a lead actor and Jung Ho-yeon and Oh Yeong-su as supporting actor and actress respectively. Lee You-mi was also nominated as a guest actress.
Yellowjackets has Melanie Lynskey nominated as a lead actress and Christina Ricci as supporting actress. I’m glad this show is getting recognition for their performances. The whole show was phenomenal, but it definitely leaned heavily on the actors for coherency. It wasn’t an easy plot to follow in the beginning with the time jumps, but the actors helped hold it together. It has also been nominated for Outstanding Casting.
Every other piece of genre media was snubbed in these categories. The awards will probably go to Succession and Euphoria nominees.
Incredibly sad that neither Tom Hiddleston nor Owen Wilson were nominated here. They were a huge part of Loki’s success. But I’m not at all surprised.
Outstanding Directing For A Drama Series
Once again, Squid Game and Yellowjackets are defying the genre media curse and getting nominated for something other than a design or sound award. I think they have a pretty good shot at taking this one home, but I’m not sure which one has the stronger shot. My personal preference when it comes to either show is Squid Game, but when it comes specifically to the director, I have no idea.
Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series
Squid Game and Yellowjackets are nominated here, and my support goes to Squid Game. The interesting premise and the execution of the story are definitely standout elements of the series.
Emmys for Comedy
What We Do In The Shadows is the only piece of genre media nominated here. Our Flag Means Death deserved a nomination, but it’s perhaps a bit too weird for the Emmys crowd. More traditional comedies such as Curb Your Enthusiasm, Barry, or Ted Lasso will probably take the prize, though Abbott Elementary has gotten a significant amount of buzz lately.
Genre shows were completely snubbed in the acting category here. My heart is with Rhys Darby and Taika Waititi. They deserved it. All other genre media, including What We Do In The Shadows, was snubbed here.
I’m rooting for Bowen Yang in the supporting actor category, even if SNL isn’t ‘genre media.’ He’s basically the only one from SNL that consistently makes me laugh, and that is worth an award. I think Henry Winkler will walk away with the prize though.
Outstanding Writing For A Comedy Series
What We Do In The Shadows is nominated here and I’m super happy for it, but oh many do I wish Our Flag Means Death was also nominated here. David Jenkins’ time will come eventually. He’s far too talented to be ignored for long.
Emmys for Limited Series
Moon Knight should have been nominated here, but it wasn’t. This opens the door for a season two announcement earlier than expected, but the buzz in leaker circles is that nobody involved in the show is actively working on a second season at this time. I predict Moon Knight will appear in Werewolf by Night in October, but that wasn’t reliant on Emmys to happen.
Oscar Isaac is nominated! But not for Moon Knight. If he was going to be nominated for anything here, Scenes From a Marriage makes the most sense, considering the Emmys aversion to geek stuff. It was my least favorite of the two shows, but I’m used to being out of step with awards show panels at this point.
Other geek favorites, such as Andrew Garfield and Sebastian Stan, have been nominated for their more serious non-genre shows – Under the Banner of Heaven and Pam and Tommy respectively. Between the three of them, Andrew Garfield had the most nuanced performance, but my heart is with Oscar Isaac. Chances are that none of them will take home the award though, so my opinion is moot. Michael Keaton and Colin Firth are in slightly more serious roles, so I feel this category leans heavily in their favor.
Surprisingly, Station Eleven has a nomination for Himesh Patel here. I didn’t finish the series because I just wasn’t vibing with it, but I’m proud of them nonetheless. It’s so hard to get acting nominations for genre stuff, but they pulled it off. Congratulations to them!
Outstanding Writing For A Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie
Station Eleven is nominated here, too. Again, I just didn’t vibe with the show, so it’s hard for me to judge it accordingly. I’m happy to see genre media represented in the writing category, though.
Outstanding Directing For A Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie
I’m totally bummed for Moon Knight here, but congratulations to Station Eleven for getting on this list.
Emmys for Animation
Outstanding Animated Program
I’m incredibly happy to see What If…? nominated here. Fan reaction to the series was mixed. I fell on the side that enjoyed the hell out of it, but a lot of people didn’t. Somehow the Emmys actually agree with me for a change, so who am I to argue? Looking at the competition, I’m really not sure how strong of a chance it has. But I’m not as well versed on historical wins for animation so don’t rely on anything I say here as a bellwether in this category.
Outstanding Short Form Animated Program
Star Wars Visions: The Duel has been nominated in this category. Again, I’m not as well versed on what the Emmys tend to favor when it comes to animation, so I have no idea how strong of a shot it has.
The Boys Presents: Diabolical has also been nominated, though I’m ashamed to admit I didn’t even realize that was a thing until now. I’m not hugely into The Boys fandom though. This one slipped under my radar.
Outstanding Production Design For A Narrative Contemporary Program (One Hour Or More)
Squid Game is once again nominated among the serious competitors and I’m rooting for it hard. The design of this show was iconic. It was eerily bright and colorful while also being off-putting and disturbing. It’s no easy task to balance those two things, but it pulled it off.
Outstanding Production Design For A Narrative Period Or Fantasy Program (One Hour Or More)
Production design splits off our fantasy and period pieces from the contemporary stuff, which makes sense. In this case, we have Loki and Stranger Things going up against several period pieces. Both of these shows were absolutely gorgeous and I have a hard time deciding which one I love more. Please don’t make me choose. I simply can’t. It’ll probably be neither though. The period pieces will come in and snatch an award.
Arguably, though, both Stranger Things and Loki can fit into a ‘period piece’ descriptor. I mean, Loki travels through time and Stranger Things is in the ’80s. Maybe this will confuse the judges and one of them will get to take the award home. We can dream, right?
Outstanding Cinematography For A Single-Camera Series (One Hour)
Congratulations to Loki once again! The show was visually very beautiful and I’m glad it’s being recognized for it. In this case, the beautiful work in Lamentis is being recognized. It was certainly one of the more visually stunning episodes.
Squid Game has also been nominated here and I think both of them have a solid shot. My personal preference leans towards Loki, but it could go to literally anybody.
Outstanding Cinematography For A Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie
Moon Knight has been nominated here, which could impact a second season announcement to a degree. It won’t be as obvious as an acting nomination would be, but it could still hold it back. ‘Asylum’ is the episode earning the nomination. It was my absolutely favorite episode of the show so I’m totally thrilled about this. Oscar Isaac deserved to be recognized for playing against himself – sometimes three different versions of him at once (Marc, Steven, and then flashbacks of Marc or Steven). But hey, it is what it is.
Station Eleven also has a nomination here. This is slightly less surprising than its acting nomination, but I’m happy for the show nonetheless.
Outstanding Fantasy/Sci-Fi Costumes
The Book of Boba Fett, Loki, Moon Knight, Star Trek, What We Do In The Shadows, and The Witcher are all nominated. Huge thanks to the Emmys for giving us our own category here, but huge ‘damn you’ to them, too because now I’m conflicted about who should win. I think Moon Knight is probably my favorite here. The details on Moon Knight, Mr. Knight, and the Scarlet Scarab’s costumes were all absolutely phenomenal. But other aspects of it, such as Jake Lockley’s scarf, were designed with an incredible amount of care.
Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Drama Series
Stranger Things and Squid Game are both nominated here. I’m throwing my full support behind Stranger Things here, even above the other non-genre media nominations. The episode nominated here is ‘Dear Billy’, which featured the iconic Running Up That Hill sequence. The editing during that specific sequence was beyond amazing. Please, Emmys, do the right thing and give it to them.
Outstanding Period And/Or Character Hairstyling
Hairstyles from the 1980s are complicated and the work on Stranger Things deserves recognition. I’m particularly enamored by Steve and Nancy’s hair. The amount of product it takes to keep those looks fresh has got to be immense.
Outstanding Main Title Design
Cowboy Bebop’s one and only award nomination is in this category. And it definitely makes sense. The series was lackluster in many ways, but everyone loved the main title sequence. I honestly can’t think of any other opening title sequence, except for maybe Succession, that stands out. But Succession has enough nominations. Let them have this one.
Outstanding Contemporary Makeup (Non-Prosthetic)
American Horror Story has been nominated twice in this category. I haven’t seen the latest season of the show so I can’t adequately judge it, but I do know that it’s a very beautifully designed series. If the makeup is as good as everything else looks, it deserves to be here.
Outstanding Period And/Or Character Makeup (Non-Prosthetic) and Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup
Both Stranger Things and Star Trek Picard have been nominated in both of these categories. I’m not sure who has the better non-prosthetic makeup, but when it comes to prosthetics, I’m throwing my support behind Stranger Things. The episode nominated here is ‘Dear Billy’, so I assume it’s primarily Vecna that’s getting the attention here (feel free to point out other prosthetics I may have missed!).
Yes, this is once again the Running Up That Hill sequence, just like in the editing category. This sequence deserves to take home every award it’s associated with. What an absolute tragedy that Sadie Sink was snubbed here. The editing and makeup is nice, but she was the centerpiece and she didn’t get anything. What a crime!
Outstanding Music Composition For A Series (Original Dramatic Score)
GIVE THE AWARD TO NATALIE HOLT FOR LOKI. I don’t care what else is in this category. Natalie Holt is phenomenal. Just give it to her now.
Outstanding Music Composition For A Limited Or Anthology Series, Movie Or Special (Original Dramatic Score)
Both Moon Knight and Station Eleven are nominated here. The music of Moon Knight is incredibly unique, mixing both classical and contemporary Egyptian elements along with more traditional music score compositions. I’ve never heard anything else quite like this and it has my full support.
Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music
Squid Game is nominated here, but Natalie Holt’s theme for Loki is on my daily playlist. I’m not even kidding. I listen to it every single day. I hope she gets one of the two things she’s nominated for here.
Outstanding Music Supervision
Once again, the episode ‘Dear Billy’ from Stranger Things has been nominated. Considering how much buzz Running Up That Hill has received, I think it’d be hard to argue that anything else deserves it more. The song is still topping charts many weeks after the fact.
Outstanding Character Voice-Over Performance
This category is causing me some inner turmoil. Murray Abraham is nominated for Khonshu in Moon Knight and Jeffrey Wright is nominated for The Watcher in What If…? Both of these are deserving, but I’m throwing my support behind Chadwick Boseman for What If…? This is probably the last award he’s eligible for anywhere. As much as I love both Khonshu and The Watcher, I really need the universe to give Chadwick Boseman an award posthumously.
Outstanding Sound Editing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (One Hour) and Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Comedy Or Drama Series (One Hour)
Stranger Things should win both of these awards. It’s surprisingly nominated for ‘The Massacre at Hawkins Lab’ and not for ‘The Piggyback’, which I thought was the most interesting use of sound editing in the entire series so far, but I’m not going to complain. The sound in the entire show is solid, so I’ll back it even for this episode. Star Trek and Loki have also been nominated, but I’m sorry, I’m with Stranger Things here.
Outstanding Sound Editing For A Limited Or Anthology Series, Movie Or Special and Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie
Once again, Moon Knight being nominated here will probably push back a second season, announcement, but I’m coming to terms with this. The episode nominated in both these categories is ‘Gods and Monsters’, which was the final episode of the series. I can’t think of any particular sounds from that episode that grabbed my attention, but the entire series is a treat to the ears (and eyes) so I’m very happy for it. It’s once again up against Station Eleven here, along with the non-genre dramas.
Outstanding Special Visual Effects In A Season Or A Movie
The Book of Boba Fett and Stranger Things are both up for a nomination here. I think Stranger Things had by far the most interesting visual effects, especially in ‘Dear Billy’ and ‘The Piggyback’. The Witcher and Lost in Space are also nominated here.
Outstanding Special Visual Effects In A Single Episode
The Squid Game episode ‘VIPs’ is nominated here. This episode featured the VIPs watching the players hop across the glass structures, which caused many of them to fall to their deaths. I can see why this particular episode was nominated because it’s no easy task to make shattering glass look realistic.
Outstanding Stunt Coordination For A Comedy Series Or Variety Program
Hawkeye has been nominated here, which makes a lot of sense. The car chase scene was particularly stunning, though I could easily rattle off a half dozen other stunt scenes that stand out as well. What We Do In The Shadows is also nominated here.
Outstanding Stunt Coordination For A Drama Series, Limited Or Anthology Series Or Movie
The Book of Boba Fett, Moon Knight, Stranger Things, and The Witcher are all nominated here. This is a tough one, but I’m leaning towards either Book of Boba Fett or Moon Knight. The action sequences in both were compelling and complex, and I can imagine the stunt coordinators didn’t have an easy go of it with either of them.
Outstanding Stunt Performance
Hawkeye, Moon Knight, Stranger Things, and Squid Game are all nominated here. I genuinely do not know who to choose here. They were all great as far as I’m concerned.
Who are you rooting for at the Emmys 2022?
Author: Angel Wilson
Angel is the admin of The Geekiary and a geek culture commentator. They earned a BA in Film & Digital Media from UC Santa Cruz. They have contributed to various podcasts and webcasts including An Englishman in San Diego, Free to Be Radio, and Genre TV for All. They’ve also written for Friends of Comic Con and is a 2019 Hugo Award winner for contributing fanfic on AO3. They identify as queer.
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