Why This Year's Emmy Nominees Could Go Down In History Books

Summer may be over, but forget the beach and vacations and judgment-free weekday margaritas — at least we have the 2018 Emmys! (We’re reaching, yes, but whatcha gonna do.) It may seem like last year’s show is a stone’s throw away, but Colin Jost and Michael Che are revving up for the Academy’s 70th installment — and for new records to be broken.

With the list of nominees out, we’re well aware of who to watch during the Emmy Awards, but when we paid extra attention, it became clear that there is more at stake in 2018 than meets the eye. There are 6 nominees who will take home more than just an Emmy if they win — they’ll also set a whole new standard. 

VIDEO: Emmy Awards by the Numbers

Scroll through the nominees you should keep an extra close eye on during the September 17 show.


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Sandra Oh

Much has rightfully been said about the importance of Oh’s nomination to begin with, as she is the first Asian woman ever nominated for Best Lead Actress in a Drama, but if she wins, she’ll smash yet another record. Naturally, if she wins the Emmy for Killing Eve, she could become the first Asian woman to ever take it home. We’ve got our fingers firmly crossed for her. 


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John Legend

Legend is known primarily as a musician, but his role in Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert just might net him an Emmy for his acting work. The accomplishment is all the more important because it is the last piece of the prestigious EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony) puzzle Legend needs before joining 12 others, including Audrey Hepburn and Whoopi Goldberg, as EGOT winners. Game on. 


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Kate McKinnon

The Emmys seem to have found a favorite in Saturday Night Live‘s McKinnon. She’s been nominated for Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her work on the show every single year since 2014, and has swept it the last two years. If two becomes three during the 2018 Emmys, McKinnon will become the most decorated SNL cast member to be recognized the Emmy Awards ever. With the über talented SNL alumnae roster, that’s worth just as much as the Emmy itself. 


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Tracee Ellis Ross

Playing the black-ish matriarch, Rainbow, Ross has garnered an Emmy nomination before, but this is her second shot at taking home the trophy. If she achieves it, she will become the first black woman to win Best Actress in a Comedy Series since the early ’80s when The Jeffersons‘ actress Isabel Sanford took it home. That was almost 40 years ago. Clearly this record is long overdue to be broken. 


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Issa Rae

Rae was nominated for the very first time this year for her performance in Insecure, but she’s left her mark on previous Emmys before. On last year’s red carpet, she made headlines when she told an interviewer that she was “rooting for everybody black.” This year, if she takes home the trophy for Best Lead Actress in a Comedy, she (like Tracee Ellis Ross) will become the first black woman to win it since 1981. 


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Allison Janney

If Kate McKinnon is an Emmy favorite, Allison Janney is the absolute belle of the Emmys ball. The show can’t seem to get enough of her (really, who can?), and she garnered yet another nomination this year for her work on Mom. If the 7-time Emmy winner manages to take home Best Actress in a Comedy Series this year, it’ll tie her with Cloris Leachman and Julia Louis-Dreyfus for being the most awarded performer ever in Emmys history. Not to mention, she’d score an “Emmy Grand Slam,” since she’s already won Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy, Best Actress in a Drama, and Best Supporting Actress in a Drama. 

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