2024 Emmy Predictions: Outstanding Scripted Variety Series


We will update this article throughout the season, along with all our predictions, so make sure to keep checking IndieWire for the latest news from the 2024 Emmys race. The nomination round of voting takes place from June 13 to June 24, with the official Emmy nominations announced Wednesday, July 17. Afterwards, final voting commences on August 15 and ends the night of August 26. The 76th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards are set to take place on Sunday, September 15, and air live on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT.

See our previous thoughts on what to expect at the 76th Primetime Emmy Awards here.

More from IndieWire

The State of the Race

Out goes “John Mulaney Presents: Everybody’s in L.A.” in the Outstanding Scripted Variety Series race, and in comes “The Magic Prank Show with Justin Willman” (though the Netflix series not being on the streaming service’s own For Your Consideration webpage is not quite a vote of confidence.)

Let us be realistic though. The wins for the categories meant to honor talk and sketch shows have been so insular that they had to make new categories to stop a winning streak for either “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” or “Saturday Night Live.” Ultimately, it was the former that won the Emmy for Outstanding Scripted Variety Series — its eighth series win in a row — and continues to seem unstoppable.

For there to only be five anticipated submissions in a category that used to have five nominees is a crisis for the genre. Scripted variety series are going extinct. The one saving grace could be a jury determining that more than just “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” and “Saturday Night Live” deserve the spotlight that an Emmy nomination brings.

Basically, the rule is that when there are seven or fewer shows submitted into a category, each one needs nine-tenths approval from a jury consisting of the appropriate peers to receive the Emmy nomination. It is hard to imagine that will be a problem for the two aforementioned shows with dozens of Emmy wins apiece. And it would be really cool if all five submissions get nominated just as a gesture of importance for keeping this type of show alive. But if there is one show that has the best shot of being nominated against “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” and “Saturday Night Live,” it is the Taylor Tomlinson-hosted “After Midnight” — the variety categories are still where the production’s parent company Paramount has the most pull. And also the show is just fun, with plenty of celebrated comedian guests playing the game each night.

Current Contenders (In Alphabetical Order):
“After Midnight” (CBS)
“Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” (HBO)
“The Magic Prank Show with Justin Willman” (Netflix)
“Painting With John” (HBO)
“Saturday Night Live” (NBC)

More Category Predictions:
Outstanding Animated Program
Outstanding Talk Series
Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series
Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special

View IndieWire’s full set of predictions for the 76th Emmy Awards.

Last Year’s Winner: “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”
Still Eligible: Yes.
Hot Streak: Previously in the Variety Talk category, “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” has gone eight straight years winning an Emmy for the series as a whole. In terms of Variety series as a whole, its hot streak is only second to the 10 consecutive Emmys received by “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.”
Notable Ineligible Series: “A Black Lady Sketch Show” (ended)

Best of IndieWire

Sign up for Indiewire's Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.