MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:
And winter is coming to the Emmy Awards one last time.
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KELLY: "Game Of Thrones" earned a record 32 Emmy nominations today, but NPR TV critic Eric Deggans says the television academy also recognized some critics' favorites and some surprising new shows.
ERIC DEGGANS, BYLINE: It's true. Emmy voters seem to have loved "Game Of Thrones'" last season a lot more than many critics, handing HBO's fantasy show the most nominations of any TV series in a single year. But there were also surprise nominations for shows that critics loved, including the amazing second season of Amazon's comedy "Fleabag" and the pop TV series "Schitt's Creek" - that's spelled S-C-H-I-T-T-S. It earned four nominations, including a best actress in comedy nod for star Catherine O'Hara, playing the clueless matriarch in a wealthy family, which lost their fortune.
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DAN LEVY: (As David) Didn't you once take the wrong baby home from preschool?
CATHERINE O'HARA: (As Moira) Alexis looked Chinese as an infant. How many times must I defend myself?
DEGGANS: Amazon's "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" earned the most nominations for comedy at 20, and HBO set a record for the most nominations by any TV outlet with a total 137. Julia Louis-Dreyfus has already tied the record for most Emmy wins at eight, but she just might break that tie following her nomination today as best actress in a comedy for "Veep's" final season. Director/producer Ava DuVernay's Netflix series on the Central Park Five called "When They See Us" drew 16 nominations in an unusually competitive category - best limited series. One standout there is Jharrel Jerome, nominated as best actor in a limited series for his heartbreaking portrayal of Korey Wise, a young black man who spent a dozen years in prison after police coerced him into this false confession for rape.
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JHARREL JEROME: (As Korey Wise) This is my first extreme I did to any kind of female. This is my first rape. This is my first experience. This will be my last.
DEGGANS: A look at first-time Emmy nominees brought other surprises. How did "This Is Us'" Mandy Moore go without an Emmy nomination before earning today's nod as best actress in a drama? Other stars who joined the first-timers club include Amy Adams, Hugh Grant and Billy Porter, who's the heart and soul of "Pose," FX's drama about gay and transgender characters in New York's 1990s-era underground ballroom scene.
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BILLY PORTER: (As Pray Tell) I didn't tell them what it was like in 1980 when we danced all summer to that song. There wasn't none of this AIDS mess going on. They'll never know that feeling; what it's like to love without worrying that you're going to die or, worse yet, that you're going to kill somebody.
DEGGANS: But just as notable were some of the snubs. Julia Roberts went unnominated for Amazon's drama "Homecoming," and CBS' highly rated "Big Bang Theory" wasn't nominated for best comedy series in its final season. Jimmy Fallon's "Tonight Show" was overlooked in the variety talk category for the third year in a row. In past years, I've complained because Jodie Comer, co-star of BBC's America's "Killing Eve," and "Better Call Saul's" Michael McKean were criminally overlooked. And they both got nominations this year. So my new crusade is for D'Arcy Carden from NBC's excellent "The Good Place." The show was nominated as best comedy, but she wasn't, despite several standout episodes. So listen up, Emmy Academy. Just because you did a good job with nominations this year doesn't mean there isn't room for a little improvement next time.
I'm Eric Deggans. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.