Who will triumph during Sunday’s 71st Annual Emmy Awards isn’t nearly as consequential as who ended up ruling the Seven Kingdoms — but just try telling that to the nervous nominees. Here are the key categories to keep an eye on:
Nominees: “Better Call Saul,” “Bodyguard,” “Game of Thrones,” “Killing Eve,” “Ozark,” “Pose,” “Succession,” “This Is Us.”
Who will and should win: Despite significant fan backlash, “GOT’s” final season should earn the show its fourth victory, tying it with “Mad Men,” “The West Wing,” “L.A. Law” and “Hill Street Blues.”
Why it matters: “GOT” already is the most awarded drama in TV history. Sunday is all about padding the numbers.
Nominees: “Barry,” “Fleabag,” “The Good Place,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Russian Doll,” “Schitt’s Creek,” “Veep.”
Who will and should win: I was all ready to root for “Barry,” but “Veep’s” brutally funny finale convinced me to switch my vote.
Why it matters: A fourth win for President Meyer would be impressive, but her show would still fall short of the five-time record set by “Frasier” and “Modern Family.”
Outstanding limited series
Nominees: “Chernobyl,” “Escape at Dannemora,” “Fosse/Verdon,” “Sharp Objects,” “When They See Us.”
Who will and should win: The night’s tightest race. In a weaker year, any of these contenders could have earned the title. I’m going with “When They See Us.”
Why it matters: U.S. history has been a popular theme in this category, but the last winner to focus squarely on civil rights issues was 1991’s “Separate But Equal.”
Nominees: Christina Applegate, “Dead to Me”; Rachel Brosnahan, “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”; Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “Veep”; Natasha Lyonne, “Russian Doll”; Catherine O’Hara, “Schitt’s Creek”; Phoebe Waller-Bridge, “Fleabag.”
Who will win: The love for Louis-Dreyfus is undeniable.
Who should win: Waller-Bridge, who also played a key role in launching “Killing Eve,” deserves to be belle of the ball.
Why it matters: Louis-Dreyfus has eight Emmys as a performer, tying her with Cloris Leachman.
Actress, limited series or movie
Nominees: Amy Adams, “Sharp Objects”; Patricia Arquette, “Escape”; Aunjanue Ellis, “When They See Us”; Joey King, “The Act”; Niecy Nash, “When They See Us”; Michelle Williams, “Fosse/Verdon.”
Who should and will win: Nash would have been a serious contender — if she had been competing in the supporting category. Expect Williams to step up.
Why it matters: Williams and Adams have a total of 10 Oscar nominations — and no wins. This would be the first Emmy for either of them.
Nominees: Emilia Clarke, “GOT”; Jodie Comer, “Killing Eve”; Viola Davis, “How to Get Away With Murder”: Laura Linney, “Ozark”; Mandy Moore, “This Is Us”; Sandra Oh, “Killing Eve”; Robin Wright, “House of Cards.”
Who should and will win: Clarke may ride a “GOT” wave, but Oh will most likely pick up the hardware she deserved last year.
Why it matters: Oh would become the first person of Asian descent to triumph in this category.
The 71st Annual Emmy Awards
When: 7 p.m. Sun. Where: KMSP, Ch. 9
For complete Emmy coverage, visit startribune.com and follow @nealjustin on Twitter.