The 2017 Television Critics Association award nominees have now been officially announced. As the Peak TV Era continues apace, the voices of the nation’s TV critics have become more important than ever. Not only have certain TV critics successfully championed some of the most acclaimed series of the last ten years, but these critics, from Alan Sepinwall to Matt Zoller Seitz to Emily Nussbaum, have produced some of the most vital criticism and analysis, episode by episode, of the most important TV series of the day, while also leading illuminating discussions.

The organization to which many of those critics belong, the Television Critics Association (TCA), has existed since 1978, with awards presented since 1985, but more recently the TCA’s awards have functioned as a sort of preview of Emmy season. And now, TCA has started the process with its nominees for the 2016-’17 season.

The TCA nominated  six series for Program of the Year: FX’s Atlanta, HBO’s Big Little Lies, Netflix’s Stranger Things, Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, HBO’s The Leftovers, and NBC’s This is Us. HBO earned the most nominations for a single network (12), followed by FX (11), Netflix (10), NBC (7) and Hulu (4.) Atlanta, This is Us and The Handmaid’s Tale had the most nominations with 4, followed by five different programs with 3 each.

In the acting categories, Carrie Coon was nominated for Individual Achievement in Drama for her work on both The Leftovers and Fargo, a category in which she will go up against Sterling K. Brown for This is Us, Claire Foy for The Crown, Nicole Kidman for Big Little Lies, Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon of Feud: Bette and Joan and Elizabeth Moss of The Handmaid’s Tale. For Individual Achievement in Comedy, the nominees were Pamela Adlon of Better Things, Aziz Ansari of Master of None, Kristen Bell of The Good Place, Donald Glover of Atlanta, Julia Louis-Dreyfus of Veep, Issa Rae of Insecure and Phoebe Waller-Bridge of Fleabag.

Elisabeth Moss as Offred in The Handmaids Tale Atlanta & The Handmaids Tale Lead TCA Award Nominees

It’s certainly welcoming to see such talents as Coon getting recognition for their efforts, as well as outstanding first-year TV shows like Atlanta, The Handmaid’s Tale and This is Us. Even The Leftovers, which never received a single Emmy nomination for its first two seasons, got some well-deserved love from the TCA. However, Game of Thrones didn’t get any nominations this year for a simple reason: its most recent season, season 6, didn’t air during the eligibility period.

There are notable exclusions from the TCA nominees roster (critical comedy favorites Silicon Valley and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend both missed out on some of the bigger categories), but the TCA has given us a pretty accurate snapshot of what the organization feels the most important TV shows are for this year.

NEXT: The Handmaid’s Tale Season 1 Finale Recap

The TCA Award winners will be announced August 5, 2017.

Source: Television Critics Association

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