The Television Academy just announced that it will no longer consider American Horror Story: Apocalypse, and second seasons of The Sinner and American Vandal as Limited Series for this year’s Emmy competition.
They will be re-categorized as either Drama Series (Apocalypse, Sinner) or Comedy Series (Vandal) due to continuing story threads, characters and actors reprising those same character roles from previous seasons. The Academy says the re-categorization is effective for the 71st Emmy Awards competition only.
American Horror Story ushered in the current proliferation of limited series. This is the first time in the FX horror anthology’s eight years on the air that it has been ruled ineligible for the limited series category, likely because of Apocalypse‘s ties to previous installments of the series..
AHS: Apocalypse features the return of the witches from Coven as they battle the Antichrist from Murder House, Michael Langdon, and attempt to prevent the apocalypse.
While tackling different cases, the two seasons of USA’s Sinner shared a lead character, Detective Harry Ambrose, played by Bill Pullman.
Netflix’s mockumentary American Vandal, which has been canceled after two seasons, also had different stories and supporting cast in each season but the same main characters, Peter Maldonado (Tyler Alvarez) and Sam Ecklund (Griffin Gluck).
The line between limited and regular series has been blurry, leading to occasional controversy. There were calls early on for AHS to be considered drama series since it produces multiple seasons and often features the same main cast season-to-season. Then there were protests when the first installment of HBO’s Big Little Lies continued to compete as a limited series after HBO had picked up a second season to continue the story with the same characters. On the flip side, True Detective proactively submitted its first season as a drama and not limited series, which may have cost it in the overall Emmy haul.