We live in a world where the Breaking Bad prequel series Better Call Saul has zero wins at the Emmys. Each year the AMC series was nominated it lost. This includes 2022 when many thought the show stood a chance thanks to the final season. However, that wasn’t the case and we need to talk about why, plus the sliver of hope that remains for Better Call Saul to win at the Emmys.
‘Better Call Saul’ has been nominated for 46 Emmy Awards total and won zero
Leading man Bob Odenkirk and his co-star Rhea Seehorn were nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2022. The AMC series was also up for the following categories at the 74th Primetime Emmy Awards:
- Outstanding Drama Series
- Outstanding Sound Editing for a Comedy Or Drama Series (One Hour)
- Outstanding Sound Mixing for a Comedy Or Drama Series (One Hour)
- Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series
- Outstanding Music Supervision
It’s not like the Television Academy has anything against Vince Gilligan and Peter Gould. The AMC series won 17 Emmys previously for categories like Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series and Outstanding Drama Series. But there’s something about Better Call Saul that cannot stand up to the competition, no matter what the year.
‘Better Call Saul’ isn’t flashy enough for an Emmy Award
The last season of Better Call Saul had us thinking Odenkirk and Seehorn stood a chance in their respective categories. Moreover, we thought the show would take home the win for Outstanding Drama Series at the 2022 Emmys.
However, Succession won that category. Seehorn and Odenkirk were beaten out by Julia Garner (Ozark) and Lee Jung-jae (Squid Game) for their categories, respectively.
Garner was outstanding in the series finale of Ozark. However, Seehorn’s bus scene in “Waterworks” — a moment of release after six seasons of built-up tension — was worthy of the Emmy. I only wish Garner took her Emmy and broke off a piece of it to give to Seehorn a la Cady Heron in Mean Girls (“it’s just plastic!”).
Considering the winners of the past — Game of Thrones won Outstanding Drama in 2015, 2016, and 2019; The Handmaid’s Tale won in 2017 — we can only assume the Television Academy awards shows that are considered ground-breaking. Better Call Saul was not that, necessarily.
When compared to Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul was nuanced in its delivery. There were rarely, if any, flashy fight scenes or dramatic twists and turns. But what Better Call Saul lacked in those areas it made up for with complex callbacks, beautiful camera work, and superior character acting, among other things.
The storytelling in Better Call Saul is subtle, unlike the sex and violence in the Emmy award-winning Euphoria or the back-stabbing drama in Succession. And that’s not something everyone — including the Television Academy — can appreciate.
2023 Emmys could be ‘Better Call Saul’s year
There’s still a chance for Better Call Saul to win an Emmy Award in 2023. The entry deadline for the 2022 Emmys was May 12, which means more than half of Better Call Saul Season 6 was ineligible for entry (via the Television Academy). AMC took a mid-season break and aired the remaining episodes of the final season in July and August 2022, which means the show can be submitted for consideration at the 2023 Emmys.
See a full list of the 2022 Emmy Award winners.