Emmys 2022: What shows are out front?

Selena Gomez, Steve Martin and Martin Short stand together in a scene from "Only Murders in the Building."
Selena Gomez, Steve Martin and Martin Short in “Only Murders in the Building,” a likely Emmy nominee for comedy series.
(Craig Blankenhorn / HULU)

I’m looking to get into a summer groove, and if the price is right — free! — all the better. (Alternate title for my colleague Christopher Reynolds’ list of California bargain experiences: Stop and smell the tri-tip.)

Also, Emmy nominations voting begins next week, just in time for me to stop watching TV and start catching up on that stack of books on my nightstand. I’m Glenn Whipp, awards columnist for the Los Angeles Times and host of The Envelope’s Friday newsletter.

A close look at the drama and comedy series races

As mentioned, Emmy voting is upon us, bringing to an end all the pop-up promo installations (if Netflix needs a place to stash that creepy robot doll, there’s room in my backyard) and restoring a measure of sanity to conscientious Television Academy members who have been diligently watching, watching and watching (and probably never quite finishing) the hundreds of eligible shows vying for their attention.

What series will emerge when Emmy nominations are announced July 12? I broke down the races for comedy and drama series in a recent column, probably omitting your favorite show because there’s just too much TV and I need to find the time to make this lemonade infused with black sage. Summer is upon us! Priorities, people!

Rhea Seehorn and Bob Odenkirk of "Better Call Saul."
Rhea Seehorn and Bob Odenkirk of “Better Call Saul.” Perhaps they’re comparing their Emmy choices?
(Greg Lewis / AMC / Sony Pictures Television)

Scott and Stiller break down ‘Severance’

I had the unsettling Apple TV+ series “Severance” among my predicted nominees for drama series, and Times contributor Robert Abele recently spoke with Ben Stiller, the show’s executive producer and director, and lead actor Adam Scott about the claustrophobia of the set and, of course, Innies and Outies. (Outie Glenn is ready to wrap this newsletter and get to that lemonade recipe.)

“Putting my trust in other people, letting go a bit to focus on the task at hand,” Scott told Robert, talking about what he learned from making the acclaimed show. “Perseverance is important too. Because the whole thing was a big swing. That was another [lesson] — big swings only. Making a TV show is hard, so why not make it a big swing every time, you know?”

The good news: They’ll be taking another big swing, as “Severance” will be returning for a second season.

"Severance" key players Adam Scott and Ben Stiller.
“Severance” key players Adam Scott and Ben Stiller.
(Devin Oktar Yalkin / For The Times)

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Amy Schumer shares origins of ‘Life & Beth’

My pal Margy Rochlin had a fun conversation — how could she not? — with Amy Schumer about her Hulu series, “Life & Beth,” a quasi-autobiographical, moving comedy about Beth (Schumer), a depressed, Manhattan-based wine rep who moves back to her hometown of Long Island after the sudden death of her mother.

The show pulls no punches in describing Beth’s mom as a woman with issues. Schumer’s own mom read every script. Did she offer notes?

“When I wrote my book [‘The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo’], the things she took umbrage to were very specific,” Schumer told Margy. “It’d be like, ‘Make sure that [people know] you went to Hebrew school on Sundays.’ Things that made you think, [incredulously] ‘That’s what you have a problem with? What about [me writing about] your affair with my best friend’s dad?’ Because of having already gone through that process, I wasn’t surprised. But she was so great about it. I was like, ‘I’m happy to take out anything you’re not OK with.’ But she was like, ‘No, tell your story.’”

Amy Schumer, star and creator of "Life & Beth."
(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)


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