2015 Emmys announce changes; ‘Orange is the New Black,’ ‘American Horror Story’ among shows affected

The latest -Have the Emmys just made a problem into an even BIGGER problem? That is what we are wondering following the latest announcement from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences today. There are quite a few changes to get to with the awards this year, and we start with this:

1. There will now be seven nominees rather than six in the drama / comedy categories. We understand that there are more contenders and shows out there now, but at a certain point you want to make sure that an Emmy nomination still feels special. There were times when we thought that even six was pushing it, especially for comedy during an off year.

2. Comedies are now restricted to shows that have a run time of 30 minutes or less, though this can be protested in given situations. This move seems to be a way to stop shows like “Shameless” or “Orange is the New Black” from submitting in the field, simply because they have funny moments. The big loser here may be “Jane the Virgin,” since its tone is far too light for a drama, but it runs for an hour.

3. The miniseries category is now being called “Limited Series,” and it must contain a complete story that runs for at least two episodes and 150 minutes. Also, it cannot continue any storylines or feature characters from one season to the next. Given on the interpretation of the rules, this could keep “American Horror Story” from being submitted, given that you did have Pepper on multiple seasons and this was clearly in that same universe.

For the most part, it is difficult to have any enormous objections over these rules, but we do worry about some individual cases. Take, for example, “True Detective.” Can it still be a limited series? Also, this does hurt some of the dramedies out there in that it would be very hard for “Shameless” to compete with “Mad Men” or “House of Cards.” This idea may be a slight improvement, but there is no way to have everyone win.

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