Great news for sketch shows: THR reports that the Television Academy has switched up some rules for Emmy categories to address the genre ambiguity that’s blurred the line between comedy and drama in recent years, and going forward, sketch comedy shows will finally be able to compete in their own category.
In terms of comedy-related changes, the Academy made a weird move by changing the definition of a comedy as a series with episodes that run 30 minutes or less, which will bump recent comedy category mainstay Orange Is the New Black to the drama category next round, while an extra nominee (7 total) will be added to the Drama and Comedy Series categories. There are a few other changes – “miniseries” will now be called “limited series,” Guest Actor nominees can’t appear in more than 50% of an episode – but the biggest change for comedy fans comes with the new approach to the Variety Series category, which used to include both late night shows and sketch shows. Variety will be split into separate categories for each now, a move Scott Aukerman called for last year in The Hollywood Reporter. Finally, the recent sketch show boom will get the recognition it deserves.