Emmys 2013: Who will win best supporting actress and actor in a drama series?

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emmys-2013-drama-supporting-actors.jpgIf it's Thursday, it must be time to look at another two major categories in the upcoming 2013 Primetime Emmy Awards here at Zap2it. Last week, we looked at the supporting actor/actress categories for comedy. This week? We'll look at their drama counterparts.

As established last week, we'll look at three things when analyzing each category: Who Will Win, Who Should Win, and What Show Would Benefit Most From Winning. There may be overlap in some cases. Maybe there will be a three-way split. Who knows? Only one way to find out.

SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA

Bobby Cannavale as Gyp Rosetti, "Boardwalk Empire"
Jonathan Banks as Mike Ehrmantraut, "Breaking Bad"
Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman, "Breaking Bad"
Jim Carter as Mr. Carson, "Downton Abbey"
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister, "Game Of Thrones"
Mandy Patinkin as Saul Berenson, "Homeland"

Who Will Win?

The supporting drama categories are often murderer's row, filled to the brim with solid competitors. This year, it would be easy to come up with a secondary list that is filled with equally outstanding performances. Let me get on my soapbox and wonder aloud why Walton Goggins ("Justified"), Jeff Perry ("Scandal"), and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau ("Game Of Thrones") are absent. OK, got that off my chest. Moving along.

Picking this comes down to preference versus clear winner. In terms of ones we can immediately write off, Cannavale and Carter leap to the forefront. "Boardwalk Empire" historically has received more technical awards than acting ones, and Carter's inclusion is curious given the lack of strong material for his character. I can see huge things for his character next year, but he mainly existed to interrupt conversations between more interesting members of the help staff this past year. (If anyone from "Downton Abbey" should have received a nomination, it probably should have been Allen Leech as the perpetually put-upon Tom Branson.)

Dinklage is awesome as Tyrion, but Season 2 of "Game of Thrones" was really that character's season, not this past one. (He has been nominated every season, winning two years ago before losing to Paul in 2012.) And while Patinkin held "Homeland" down as it constantly threatened to go off the rails, there's enough backlash against that show to probably rule him out. If the two "Breaking Bad" actors split enough votes between them, it's Patinkin's to take. Still, I can't see Paul not taking home the trophy, then securing another next year for his work on this past Sunday's episode of the show.

Who Should Win?

Banks' portrayal of Mike Ehrmantraut was a quiet cornerstone of "Breaking Bad's" later seasons, a man who mastered the art of doing more with less. We know Paul will win next season. Is it so wrong to reward Banks in his last opportunity in this category for this show with this, his only nomination for his stellar work? As good as this final installment of the show has been, there's still something missing now that Mike is no longer around.

Which Show Would Benefit Most From Winning?

With "House Of Cards" sliding into the best drama category this year, "Boardwalk Empire" was the odd man out. If the Emmys reward Cannavale's larger-than-life portrayal of Gyp Rosetti, it might put heat back onto a show that gives HBO prestige but not much in the way of real buzz.

So who's it going to be? ( Note: Zap2it published polls for these categories earlier in the month; they're duplicated here, hence the vote totals present at publication time.)



SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA


Anna Gunn as Skyler White, "Breaking Bad"
Maggie Smith as Violet, the Dowager Countess, "Downton Abbey"
Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen, "Game of Thrones"
Christine Baranski as Diane Lockhart, "The Good Wife"
Morena Baccarin as Jessica Brody, "Homeland"
Christina Hendricks as Joan Harris, "Mad Men"

Who Will Win?

Who wants to topple the Dowager Countess? That's the question heading into the awards ceremony. Baranski and Baccarin probably have the longest shots: While both are great, Baranski's submission episode ("The Seven Day Rule") isn't her strongest, and "Homeland" is really the Carrie/Brody show at this point. One might think the Mother Of Dragons has a shot: while her overall screen time this season was limited, Clarke's submission episode ("And Now His Watch Is Ended") features her most bad-ass moment of the season. Hendricks was similarly sidelined this year, but "A Tale Of Two Cities" gives her a great scene with Peggy in addition to progressing her character's place within the firm. Gunn turned in her finest work to date as Skyler's moral compass tilted towards Heisenberg. But will Emmy voters be able to resist re-rewarding Smith? I just can't see it happening, even if "Downton" managed to utterly botch the Dowager's encounters with Shirley MacLaine's Martha Levinson. (Seriously: HOW did they screw that up so badly?)

Who Should Win?

Anna Gunn. Putting aside all the external hoopla about reaction to her character, Skyler White took The Leap last year, which demonstrated that the show's writers were finally able to deliver material worthy of the actress' talents.

Which Show Would Benefit Most From Winning?

Even while holding down ratings that make rival networks drool, it seems like "The Good Wife" is always perpetually on the bubble for renewal. A win here gives CBS a great message to deliver while it tells its older-skewing viewers how to properly program their DVRs on Sunday nights in case of football runovers.

Which actress is your pick?



Now that you've voted in our polls, defend your choice in the comments below!

Photo/Video credit: AMC, HBO, Showtime, PBS