Frankie Shaw’s auteur Showtime series “SMILF” was a standout in television comedy categories as the 75th Annual Golden Globe Award nominations were announced Monday.
The premium cable comedy, which premiered in November and renewed just a few weeks later, was nominated for best television series, musical comedy; creator and star Frankie Shaw was also nominated for actress in a musical or comedy series.
In the series category, “SMILF” — about a single mother, played by Shaw, living in South Boston — was nominated alongside ABC’s “Black-ish,” Netflix’s “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” Netflix’s “Master of None,” and NBC’s “Will & Grace.” Shaw was nominated alongside Pamela Adlon of FX’s “Better Things,” Alison Brie of Netflix’s “Glow,” Rachel Brosnahan of Netflix’s “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” and Issa Rae of HBO’s “Insecure.”
Named one of Variety‘s 10 TV Writers to Watch earlier this year, Shaw says she initially started writing in order to “hang out” with her husband, who used to write for a feature animation company.
“He would be writing at his desk and they made me a little desk at his company, which is when I started writing. So the first draft [of ‘SMILF’] was all the way back then. It’s just wild to think about now having it out in the public and having it be recognized in this way. It’s unbelievable,” she explains.
“SMILF” started as a short film that won the Grand Jury prize at Sundance before being adapted for an ongoing series and bought by Showtime.
“I think that we’re in this era of auteur TV and filmmaking. It’s hard to talk about in terms of women and TV. It’s an evolving process constantly,” Shaw continues. “We had only women directors on our show and I will continue that on Season 2.”
“SMILF” was renewed for a second season last month. Season 1, which premiered Nov. 5, averaged 4.4 million viewers per week across multiple platforms. Executive producing alongside Shaw are Michael London, Lee Eisenberg and Scott King. The series is produced by ABC Signature Studios as a co-production with Showtime.
“SMILF” delivers two of Showtime’s five Golden Globe nominations this year (“Twin Peaks,” “Ray Donovan,” and “Shameless” each also delivered one each in acting categories). Showtime last pulled out a Golden Globe series win in 2015 with drama “The Affair.” “SMILF” could mark a first time series win in comedy for the premium cabler, whose last nomination in that category was in 2013 the Matt LeBlanc-starrer “Episodes.”
While the premium cabler used to rival HBO in numbers and critical acclaim, long-running series such as “Homeland” have not been garnering that same attention as they once did, with many newer offerings (including “SMILF’s” time slot follower “White Famous”) failing to break big. Instead, streaming services are dominating, but these nods for “SMILF” provide a strong chance at climbing back to the top.