Danny Strong’s sobering and kaleidoscopic take on the opioid crisis earned 14 nominations, including directing, writing and six for acting, and boasts a degree of social significance that its competitors cannot. It has already won a Peabody Award and a SAG Award for Michael Keaton, who serves as Dr. Samuel Finnix seems unstoppable in the race of protagonist-in-a-limited series.
the outage (Hoera)
Elizabeth Meriwether’s show about Theranos founder and CEO, Elizabeth Holmes (played by Amanda Seyfried) rolled out more recently than any of its competitors (March-April 2022) and equals the highest Rotten Tomatoes score of the lot (89 percent ). Its six nominations include two for directing and one for writing, but it only earned one acting nomination (for Seyfried).
invent Anna (Netflix)
Another article that has made headlines is this account of the misdeeds of Anna Delvey, aka Anna Sorokin, whose scam was discovered by a New York magazine presentation. The three nominations (the others are for star Julia Garner and casting) are a category low, as is the Rotten Tomatoes score (64 percent). But perhaps it has been seen by most voters.
Pam & Tommy (Hoera)
A third Hulu candidate is Robert Siegel and DV DeVincentis’ look back at the theft of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee’s sex tape in the mid-’90s and its impact on the stars’ careers. It feels a little light, but it earned a formidable 10 nominations, including mentions for stars Lily James and Sebastian Stan (who play Anderson and Lee), though none for directing or writing.
The white lotus (HBO)
Mike White’s quirky take on class and racial tensions at a Hawaiian resort — where guests (and employees) experience vacations from hell — was released the longest (Summer 2021) but is by far the most nominated (20, including eight acting nominations) and stands tied for the highest Rotten Tomatoes score (89 percent). A second term has already been announced.
Chip ‘n’ Dale: Rescue Rangers (Disney+)
Director Akiva Schaffer’s mix of live action and animation, with the title characters voiced by John Mulaney and Andy Samberg, evokes comparisons to Who framed Roger Rabbit?, another PG-rated, self-referential comedy. Released on May 20 (more recently than any other nominee), it sits at a solid 80 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
Ray Donovan: the movie (showtime)
The story that would have been told in the eighth and final season of the Showtime drama series, had the show not unexpectedly been canceled in February 2020, was summarized by showrunner David Hollander in this film, which reunited the original cast, led by Liev Schreiber. and ranks at a category-high 87 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
Reno 911!: The Hunt for QAnon (paramount+)
The Police parody that ran on Comedy Central from 2003 to 2009, and shortly after on Quibi and The Roku Channel, returns for another off-the-wall tale of hapless law enforcement officers, this time on an alt-right booze cruise. It wasn’t rated widely enough to get a Rotten Tomatoes rating, but it was rated horribly by viewers.
The survivor (HBO)
Barry Levinson directed Ben Foster in this drama – not a real TV movie, but an asset to the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival – about an Auschwitz inmate who literally had to fight for his life to survive the Holocaust. It’s at 85 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, but Foster, who lost 62 pounds for the role, was not nominated for his lead role.
Zoey’s Extraordinary Christmas (Roku)
The single entry of this category with multiple noms (it’s also for choreography) revived a series canceled by NBC in June 2021 after two seasons and answered the central question: how did Zoey get her special powers? It fell on December 1, longer than any of its competitors, but delighted fans (who rated it 91 percent on Rotten Tomatoes).
This story first appeared in a standalone August issue of News Kidda magazine.