Black Women Nominees for the Best Actress in a Television Series — Comedy or Musical Golden Globe: By The Numbers

Tracee Ellis Ross with her Golden Globe award, 2017 (Wbli)

Tracee Ellis Ross with her Golden Globe award, 2017 (Wbli)

At the 2017 Golden Globe Awards, actress Tracee Ellis Ross won the Best Actress Television Series Musical or Comedy (BATSMC) for her role of Bow Johnson on the ABC comedy “Blackish.” Ross is only the second Black woman to win in this particular category.

If that doesn’t impress you enough, here are some numbers that put Ross’s win in the larger context (with Best Actress Television Series Musical or Comedy noted as BATSMC):

Number of total Black nominees for BATSMC: 14

Number of unique* Black nominees for BATSMC: 7

*I’m defining unique as actresses who’ve been nominated at least once.

Total nominees for BATSMC, 1963-2017: 54

Percentage of total Black nominees to total overall nominees, 1963-2017: 25.96%

Percentage of total Black winners to total overall winners, 1963-2017: 3.70%

Number of Black actresses who’ve won BTMSC: 2

  • Debbie Allen for “Fame,” 1983
  • Tracee Ellis Ross for “Blackish,” 2017

Number of Years between the first Black winner and second Black winner: 34

Year of the first Black nominee: 1970

  • Diahann Carroll for “Julia”

Number of TV Shows with more than one Black actress nominations:

  • “The Jeffersons:” 5 nominations – 1977, 1978, 1983, 1984, 1985
  • “Fame:” 3 nominations – 1983, 1984, 1985
  • “Gimme a Break!:” 2 nominations – 1983, 1985

Highest number of Black nominees in a single year: 3

  • 1983: Isabel Sanford, “The Jeffersons;” Nell Carter, “Gimme a Break!;” Debbie Allen, “Fame”
  • 1985: Isabel Sanford, “The Jeffersons;” Nell Carter, “Gimme a Break!;” Debbie Allen, “Fame” (No, this isn’t a typo; the exact same three actresses were all nominated again two years later.)

 Number of Black nominees, 2017: 2

  • Tracee Ellis Ross, “Blackish”
  • Issa Rae, “Insecure”

*Sources: Wikipedia’s list of black Golden Globe Award winners and nominees and Golden Globe Award for Best Actress page.

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