Late last year, comedian Aziz Ansari impressed everyone with his approachably funny and, at times, poignantly serious debut series “Master of None,” in which he created, stars, executive-produces and, occasionally, wrote and directed. The show, which premiered on Netflix in November, made headlines for Ansari’s – who co-created the show with his “Parks and Recreation” executive-producer Alan Yang – inclusion of a diverse cast, its hairline attention to issues concerning minorities, the growing division between familial generations of various cultural backgrounds and the media’s inequitable treatment of Indian characters and actors in film and TV. “Master of None” has become a part of a growing number of comedy shows like “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” and “Transparent” that deal with social issues that have gained traction in the press in the last few years, but manage to deliver their messages in accessible forms through comedy. “Master of None” is insightful, clever and undeniably heartfelt entertainment that deserves more recognition but faces competition from “Transparent” and last year’s winner “Veep” in the comedy category.
Earlier this year, Ansari lost out at the Golden Globes to “Transparent” star Jeffrey Tambor for Best Actor – the only category “Master of None” was nominated in. It should procure more nominations at this year’s Emmy’s, where it deserves a shot at Outstanding Comedy Series even if it’ll likely lose out to previous winners like “Veep,” “Transparent” and “Modern Family.” I don’t see any other actors having a shot at a nomination, maybe Noël Wells for her role as Rachel, Ansari’s energetically fun girlfriend. The other main actors, an awesome squad of diverse voices and attitudes – all given weight and gravitas in each situation – will likely only get recognized as an ensemble in the series category. The show should, however, be nominated for its writing and directing, especially for the episodes “Parents,” a touching and personal homage to cultural roots and parental appreciation, and for “Indians on TV” which is elucidating, even humorous, without ever feeling didactic. The Emmy’s might show Ansari more love than the Golden Globes, but a win in any category still feels like a long shot.
Possible Emmy Nominations in the Comedy Series Category
- Outstanding Comedy Series
- Outstanding Comedy Actor – Aziz Ansari
- Outstanding Comedy Actress –
- Outstanding Supporting Comedy Actress – Lena Waithe, Noël Wells
- Outstanding Supporting Comedy Actor – Kelvin Yu; Eric Wareheim
- Outstanding Directing
- Outstanding Writing