Amazon’s Comedy Fleabag Dominates TCA Awards With 3 Wins

Better Call Saul, Chernobyl and Russian Doll were also honored

A screengrab from the show Fleabag of the woman Fleabag and the character Hot Priest looking skeptically at each other
Fleabag is honored as hottest comedy in Adweek's 2019 Hot List. Amazon Prime Video
Headshot of Jason Lynch

The second season of Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s Fleabag was the big winner at Saturday night’s Television Critics Association (TCA) Awards.

At the L.A. ceremony, the Amazon comedy, which is nominated for 11 Emmys, won three awards: program of the year (the evening’s top award), oustanding achievement in comedy and individual achievement in comedy, which went to Waller-Bridge.

AMC’s Better Call Saul was honored for outstanding achievement in drama, while HBO’s Chernobyl was recognized for outstanding achievement in movie or miniseries. Netflix’s freshman breakout Russian Doll was named outstanding new program.

Many of the evening’s winners, including the honorees mentioned above like Michelle Williams (honored for individual achievement in drama for FX’s Fosse/Verdon) and the HBO Michael Jackson documentary Leaving Neverland (awarded for outstanding achievement in news and information), will also be competing for Emmys next month.

This year’s honorees included two shows that also won their respective categories last year: Netflix’s Queer Eye for outstanding achievement in reality programming and HBO’s Last Week Tonight With John Oliver was again awarded for outstanding achievement in sketch/variety shows.

Each year, the TCA also recognizes a classic television series with its heritage award, which is its version of a lifetime achievement award for TV shows. This year’s award went to Deadwood, the HBO drama that ran for three seasons until 2006 and returned in May with a two-hour feature that helped bring closure to the story.

Deadwood creator David Milch, who also co-created NYPD Blue and wrote for Hill Street Blues, won this year’s career achievement award.

Desus and Mero, who host their own Showtime late-night series and recently appeared on Adweek’s cover, emceed the ceremony for the 35th annual TCA Awards. The awards are voted on by the more than 200 critics and journalists (including this writer) from the U.S. and Canada and make up the Television Critics Association.

The event at L.A.’s Beverly Hilton hotel isn’t televised and does not have a red carpet, which results in a more laid-back atmosphere than most TV awards shows.

The complete list of 2019 TCA Award winners:

  • Individual Achievement in Drama: Michelle Williams (Fosse/Verdon, FX)
  • Individual Achievement in Comedy: Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag, Amazon)
  • Outstanding Achievement in News and Information: Leaving Neverland (HBO)
  • Outstanding Achievement in Reality Programming: Queer Eye (Netflix)
  • Outstanding Achievement in Youth Programming: Arthur (PBS Kids)
  • Outstanding Achievement in Sketch/Variety Shows: Last Week Tonight With John Oliver (HBO)
  • Outstanding New Program: Russian Doll (Netflix)
  • Outstanding Achievement in Movies and Miniseries: Chernobyl (HBO)
  • Outstanding Achievement in Drama: Better Call Saul (AMC)
  • Outstanding Achievement in Comedy: Fleabag (Amazon)
  • Lifetime Achievement Honoree: David Milch
  • Heritage Award: Deadwood (HBO)
  • Program of the Year: Fleabag (Amazon)

@jasonlynch Jason Lynch is TV Editor at Adweek, overseeing trends, technology, personalities and programming across broadcast, cable and streaming video.