“Mad Men’s” domination was no surprise to critics and viewers, though — its hot streak was expected to continue, as were many other frequently-acclaimed shows. Among them:
• “Downton Abbey” earned nominations for many of its cast members, as well as for art direction, casting, costumes, directing, editing, hair, musical score, sound mixing and writing. Celebritology’s Jen Chaney imagined how the cast was celebrating its 16 nominations:
“Anna and Mr. Bates of ‘Downton Abbey,’ also known as the actors Joanne Froggatt and Brendan Coyle, finally got some much deserved good news this morning: They were nominated for Emmy Awards. I like to imagine that they commemorated the moment in classic Anna/Mr. Bates fashion: by making adorable, demure faces at each other, then celebrating their love with a chaste but deeply satisfying kiss.
“Downton” also made the transition from miniseries to full-fledged drama this year, which puts it amid steeper competition — it’s up against “Mad Men.” Wrote DeMoraes: “It may be small consolation for ‘Downton’” and PBS, but the elegant soap is considered by many to have the best chance of toppling ‘Mad Men.’
• “American Horror Story’s” decision to place itself in the miniseries category paid off, with the show tying ”Mad Men” at 17 nominations. It earned nods for best miniseries, best actress (Connie Britton), supporting actress (Jessica Lange and Frances Conroy) and the technical categories of editing, make-up, prosthetic make-up, hair, casting, opening titles, art direction (two in this category), costumes, sound editing, sound mixing and stunt coordination.
Wrote Chaney: “Their argument: As an ‘anthology’ series, one that will reboot itself in season two with all new characters, it could be considered a miniseries and a drama. Emmy bought that argument, allowing ‘AHS’ to compete in a (slightly) less competitive field than the best drama race.”
• “Breaking Bad’s” Bryan Cranston is back in the game, after missing last year’s Emmy Awards due to the show not having aired during the eligibility period. Wrote DeMoraes: “Cranston has won this derby every year he’s been eligible” — which does not bode well for Jon Hamm’s chances for an acting award for “Mad Men.”
• “Game Change,” the dramatization of the 2008 presidential election and Sen. John McCain’s decision to choose Sarah Palin as his running mate, earned nods for Julianne Moore as Palin, as well as best miniseries.
You can see the full list of Emmy nominations in the TV Column.
Among the surprises: