Sep 13, 2022 - Economy

HBO's "Succession" wins Emmy for best drama series, again

Jesse Armstrong accepts the Outstanding Drama Series award for "Succession" along with the cast and crew on stage during the 74th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards held at Microsoft Theater on Monday. Photo: Chris Haston/NBC via Getty Images

The most-nominated program of this year's Emmy Awards may not have picked up the most prizes, but HBO's "Succession" ultimately proved its status as the hottest TV show of the year by winning the top award on Monday evening.

Why it matters: The 74th Primetime Emmy Awards on NBC saw a slew of historic firsts, proving that award shows can still create important cultural moments, even though viewership is declining.

  • Lee Jung-jae became the first Asian actor ever to win the award for best lead actor in a drama series Monday for his role in Netflix's "Squid Game."
  • Zendaya became the youngest actor to win the award for outstanding lead actress in a drama series twice, both times for her role in HBO's hit drama "Euphoria." She is also the first Black woman to win the award twice.
  • “Abbott Elementary" star Sheryl Lee Ralph, 65, received a standing ovation for singing Dianne Reeves' "Endangered Species" while accepting her award at the podium. It's been more than three decades since a Black woman won the award in the Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series category.

Details: Following a historic best picture win at The Oscars this year, Apple TV+ proved again on Monday that its content ambitions are serious.

  • Apple TV+'s popular comedy series "Ted Lasso" took home the prize for the best outstanding comedy series for the second year in a row.
  • The show's lead actor Jason Sudeikis also won the award for lead actor in a comedy series again after winning the same prize last year.
  • Brett Goldstein won best supporting actor in a comedy series for his role in "Ted Lasso" after winning the same award last year.

Between the lines: Despite winning the top prize, only one of the "Succession" actors took home a top acting award.

  • Matthew Macfadyen, who plays Tom Wambsgans — the husband of media heiress Shiv Roy —won the outstanding supporting actor in a drama series award.
  • The series won best drama for its third season, which debuted last fall. It won best drama for its second season in 2020.

Yes, but: HBO still had a record evening.

  • HBO's "White Lotus" took home five trophies — the most awards of the evening — for awards including best limited series, best supporting actress and best supporting actor.

The big picture: Unlike The Oscars earlier this year, the event didn't have any major hiccups or points of drama. But with a few exceptions, it mostly lacked memorable moments.

  • The show, hosted by “Saturday Night Live” comedian and actor Kenan Thompson, featured a mix of tributes to longtime TV classics like Law & Order and The Brady Bunch, and lighthearted digs at Netflix and Leonardo DiCaprio.
  • As The New York Times' Mike Hale noted in his review of the show, "For one more year, we got the weird spectacle of broadcast TV nervously proclaiming its relevance as if it wouldn’t have the chance to do so much longer."

What to watch: Whether Monday night's telecast sees further viewership declines, following pandemic-era declines.

  • Viewership of the 72nd Emmy Awards in 2020 fell to an all-time low before rebounding slightly in 2021.

Go deeper: Full list of winners, via Variety

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