NBC's freshman White House drama The West Wing won the equivalent of a major political primary this morning, nabbing 18 Emmy nominations, tying HBO's mob drama The Sopranos as Emmy's most nominated series. In addition to vying for the Outstanding Drama Series prize, West Wing cast members singled out include Lead Actor Martin Sheen and supporting players Richard Schiff, John Spencer, Stockard Channing and Allison Janney. The Peacock Network also was having a gay ol' time celebrating Will & Grace's 11 nominations, including nods for its four performers. Also on the comedy side, HBO's Sex and the City seduced voters, nailing down nine nods including one for star Sarah Jessica Parker. WB's critically acclaimed yet criminally ignored Buffy the Vampire Slayer won its first major nomination for Drama Series Writing (ironically for the Joss Whedon-penned episode "Hush," in which the residents of Sunnydale are robbed of their ability to speak). Other notable nominees: Friends star Jennifer Aniston (who'll compete with co-star and previous winner Lisa Kudrow), Once and Again's Sela Ward, late Sopranos actress Nancy Marchand, Malcolm in the Middle leading lady Jane Kaczmarek and Everybody Loves Raymond co-star Brad Garrett who last year was the only member of the show's cast to get snubbed. Leading the list of notable omissions was Fox's rapidly declining Ally McBeal, which after taking home the Comedy Series prize in '99, received just one major nomination (for Supporting Actor Peter MacNicol). Also absent from the list were Friends's Courteney Cox Arquette, the entire cast of Buffy as well as the canceled Freaks and Geeks, The Practice's Dylan McDermott, Once and Again's Billy Campbell, The West Wing's Bradley Whitford and NYPD Blue in the Drama category. For a complete Emmy wrap-up, including reaction, check out tomorrow's Insider.
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