Emmy surprises: ‘Squid Game,’ Dave Chappelle, ‘This Is Us’

“Severance,” Apple TV+’s vicious satire of office culture, managed to charm Emmy voters with 14 nominations.

“Severance” is set in a shadowy corporate headquarters where employees have agreed to get a chip implanted in their brains that separates the personal life from office life. Though conceived before the pandemic, it arrived just as many white-collar workers were making their first tentative steps back to the office — and questioning why.

The show — written by newcomer Dan Erickson, with all episodes directed by Ben Stiller and Aoife McArdle — is drenched in paranoia about what corporate work does to people and became one of the most acclaimed series of the year.

Adam Scott stars as the leader of a group who work under bright florescent lights and wander down endless antiseptic corridors, cut off from the world outside. In Season One, the series morphs from satire to thriller as some employees start questioning what is happening to them.

Among the show’s nominations are a berth in top drama series and a best writing honor. Scott earned a lead actor nod, Patricia Arquette got one as a supporting actor and Stiller for directing the episode “The We We Are.”


*Dan Erickson is a WWU alum with a degree in English who also studied screenwriting and was active in the theater department and the improv group known as the Dead Parrots Society.