- The 2019 Emmy nominations were announced earlier this week and not everyone is pleased with them.
- Shows like “Who Is America?” are nominated for Emmys even though they received many negative reviews from critics.
- “Game of Thrones” may have received a record-breaking number of nominations, but most critics hated its final season.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The 2019 Emmy-Award nominations were announced earlier this week and a handful of programs that have received negative or very mixed critical responses pulled through to earn a spot on the list.
Here are some programs that are nominated for an Emmy this year even though many critics didn’t like them.
Note: The scores from Rotten Tomatoes were accurate at the time of publication but are subject to change.
Critics really didn’t love this final season of “Game of Thrones.”
With critical scores of 49% on Rotten Tomatoes, the final two episodes of the show, “The Bells” and “The Iron Throne,” are tied for lowest-rated “GOT” episodes of all time.
On The Verge‘s review of “The Bells” critic Tasha Robinson wrote that the episode “is full of characters being their dumbest, most ill-considered selves, solely in the pursuit of momentary conflicts and payoffs.”
A number of critics really didn’t love the most recent season of “House of Cards.”
Although it didn’t receive any writing-related nominations, Netflix’s “House of Cards” picked up two acting nominations this year. The show’s already won seven Emmys – but its most recent season was its lowest-rated one yet.
With a 69% critical score on Rotten Tomatoes, “House of Cards” season six is still “certified fresh,” but plenty of critics disagree.
In his review for Observer, Brandon Katz wrote: “We sort of wish House of Cards would embrace a CSPAN-like, just-the-facts approach rather than pummel us with all of its twisty-turny hashtagable moments.”
In his review for The Atlantic, Spencer Kornhaber wrote, “Cards has always been a show whose plot contortions could confuse and whose incremental intrigue could bore, and those problems are worse now that everyone seems to be whispering.”
Notably, audiences liked this season even less than critics did, giving it just a 22% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Season 44 of “Saturday Night Live” did not impress some critics.
“Saturday Night Live” was nominated for 18 Emmys this year including one for best variety sketch series.
Although the series already has 62 Emmy wins and it seems to have recovered from its previous season (which was the lowest-rated one in “SNL” history), season 44 still has six rotten episodes – with one being scored as low as 15%.
At 70% overall, this season of “Saturday Night Live” is still considered to be fresh, not rotten, but plenty of critics have become disenchanted with the show.
Critic LaToya Ferguson of IndieWire gave the season’s lowest-rated episode featuring Awkwafina and Travis Scott a D+ grade, writing, “The crowd’s laughter for most of this episode is so forced that it feels obligatory – like they know they have to laugh because it’s ‘SNL,’ even though they can’t find the joke.”
And critic Ryan McGee of Rolling Stone pointed out issues with a few sketches, writing, “The world has changed. SNL has not. At times, this is a source of comfort. At other times, it’s a source of immense frustration.”
Not all critics are on board with comedian Sacha Baron Cohen’s recent work, “Who Is America?”
Sacha Baron Cohen’s return to television “Who is America?” was nominated for an Emmy for best variety sketch series this year even though the hidden-camera show was met with poor critic reviews, holding a 57% on Rotten Tomatoes.
As critic Emily Nussbaum wrote for The New Yorker, “It’s a smart sketch that will convince no one and change nothing. That’s the problem with contempt. If Baron Cohen’s act, even its cleverest bits, feels sour, that’s because it’s just one shard in a kaleidoscope of modern gotchas and just-kiddings, of heart-hardening stunts.”
Notably, audiences disagreed with critics, giving the show an 84% on Rotten Tomatoes.
A lot of critics liked “The Twilight Zone” reboot — but many ripped it apart.
For this year’s Emmys, Kumail Nanjiani was nominated for guest actor in a drama series for his episode of Jordan Peele’s “Twilight Zone” reboot.
That said, the show itself was met with mixed critical reviews and it ended up with a 74% on Rotten Tomatoes. And although that’s not exactly a low score, a lot of critics really didn’t like it – and neither did audiences, who gave it a 42%.
In her review for The Atlantic, Sophie Gilbert concluded her thoughts on the series by writing, “Nothing feels sinister. Everything feels safe. In a world so weird that it’s frequently likened to a bad computer simulation, this Twilight Zone is blandness stretched into an hour-long format, storytelling that feels oddly neutered before it even begins.”
“Black Mirror: Bandersnatch” had a lot of mixed reviews.
The “Black Mirror” interactive movie “Bandersnatch” was nominated for best TV movie at this year’s Emmys. And even though it scored a 72% on Rotten Tomatoes, it was not a hit with many critics.
For example, New York Times critics Maureen Ryan and Margaret Lyons both seemed to find “Bandersnatch” to be pretty pointless.
As Ryan wrote, “Like social-media companies, ‘Bandersnatch’ outsources decision-making and curation to its customers and then apparently expects to be congratulated for its dereliction of duty.”
Lyons added, “I like a good story, and none of the versions of ‘Bandersnatch’ I watched – made? enabled? chose? – had quite enough.”
Audiences liked season one of “Black Monday,” but most critics didn’t.
“Black Monday” is a comedy series following a Wall-Street firm in the late ’80s and it has one season so far. The series itself doesn’t have an Emmy nomination, though its star Don Cheadle was nominated for outstanding lead actor in a comedy series.
Although audiences gave this show an 83% score on Rotten Tomatoes, critics gave it a 55%. But Cheadle’s nomination might not be too far off – critics may not have loved the series, many still enjoyed the actor’s performance.
“The series generates some laughs out its own self-awareness, as well as the sheer energy of stars Don Cheadle, Hall and Andrew Rannells. But those jokes ultimately undercut any attempt to take the characters and their story seriously,” wrote Alan Sepinwall for Rolling Stone.