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Whose nod shocked us and who was robbed?

Shaun Harrison
emmy-surprises-ladies2.jpg
1 of 14 Ron Tom/ABC, Katherine Bomboy-Thornton/ABC, A&E, Melinda Sue Gordon/ Netflix

Surprises: So much new blood

Or more specifically, "so much new blood in Best Drama Lead Actress." The category features three fresh faces — Vera Farmiga (Bates Motel), Kerry Washington (Scandal) and Robin Wright (House of Cards) — a refreshing sight since Emmy voters are notorious creatures of habit. Washington is only the fifth African-American actress to be nominated in this category and the first in 18 years, following Debbie Allen, Alfre Woodard, Regina Taylor and Cicely Tyson. Though she's not a new face, Connie Britton managed to land her fourth-straight nomination for her third different series (Nashville), a feat in and of itself. Other new faces include Jeff Daniels (The Newsroom), Adam Driver (Girls), Jonathan Banks (Breaking Bad), Bobby Cannavale (Boardwalk Empire) and Homeland's Morena Baccarin.
2 of 14 HBO

Surprises: Laura Dern

After being snubbed last year, following a Golden Globe win, the Enlightened star, who was on our Emmy wishlist, sneaks into the Best Comedy Lead Actress race — a small and very deserving consolation for the beloved, but little-seen and canceled show.
3 of 14 HBO

Surprises: Veep

Sophomore shows that made it on Emmy's radar their first year meet one of two fates the following year: Voters fall even more in love with them or they fall out of love (see: New Girl's snub). It was the latter for Veep, which collected acting nods for Tony Hale and Anna Chlumsky to go with the ones for Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Best Comedy Series. The political satire, one of our Emmy picks, surprised some last year when it made the series cut over Louie (they both made it this year). Lesson: Never underestimate it again.
4 of 14 Melinda Sue Gordon/Netflix

Surprises: House of Cards

How will the Emmys treat Netflix shows? Nicely — especially for House of Cards. Kevin Spacey was a favorite for a nomination, but the political drama scored nine nods total, including ones for Best Drama Series and for Robin Wright. It's the first online show to crack a series race since a rule change in 2008 made them eligible. Netflix's other shows, Arrested Development and Hemlock Grove, also earned nominations.
5 of 14 HBO

Surprises: Game of Thrones gets bigger and bigger

It's time to end the old narrative that the Emmys hate fantasy. While that was true, Game of Thrones' impressive nomination performance year after year proves that the academy has embraced it, or Thrones at least. While its fellow HBO prestige show Boardwalk Empire saw a decline in nods, Thrones actually went up in nominations, going from 12 to 16. This is the first time that people not named Peter Dinklage have gotten acting nods (Emilia Clarke in supporting and Diana Rigg in guest). With the buzz louder than ever (thanks, Red Wedding!), this is its best chance yet for a series win.
6 of 14 Ursula Coyote/AMC

Surprises: Breaking Bad's writing nominations

Believe it or not, Breaking Bad had never been up for writing until now, garnering not one, but two nods. Part of that futility was due to the show's insistence on sending a boatload of episode submissions (thus creating vote-splitting), but the fact that it managed to get two nods after entering seven episodes this year shows ever-growing support — not to mention, helps its case to win Best Drama Series for the first time. On the other end of the spectrum, its network-mate Mad Men, which once dominated the category with four of five nods, didn't make the cut.
7 of 14 Ali Goldstein/NBC

Surprises: 30 Rock

More often than not, the Emmys tend to give the cold shoulder, or very few nominations, to long-running series and former Emmy stalwarts that have ended (see: Desperate Housewives, House and The Office this year). 30 Rock, however, has managed to remain an Emmy favorite throughout its seven-year run, pocketing 13 nominations this year (same as last year) despite ending way back in January, including one for Jane Krakowski, who was unceremoniously dropped last year. (Our favorite: "The Rural Juror" is up for original music and lyrics — Emmy voters will never forget them!) The show hasn't won a single Emmy since its Best Comedy Series three-peat in 2009, but given voters' everlasting love and Modern Family's poorer showing this year (though 12 nods is nothing to complain about), it could become the third sitcom to win four comedy series trophies after All in the Family and Cheers.
8 of 14 Jeffrey Neira/CBS

Snubs: Julianna Margulies

You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who didn't predict a drama lead actress nomination for The Good Wife star. A nine-time nominee and two-time winner, including in this category two years ago, Margulies has been an Emmy favorite since her ER days, but she couldn't find room in a ballot that expanded to seven nominees.
9 of 14 Steve Wilkie/BBC America

Snubs: Tatiana Maslany

An underdog for a nod, but a strong contender for the win, the Orphan Black star, who could fill the category all by herself with the multitude of roles she plays, couldn't crack the drama lead actress shortlist. Was the buzz too late? Is it just the academy's sci-fi genre bias? Both are possible, but voters should prepare for a deafening backlash.
10 of 14 Justin Lubin/NBC

Snubs: Monica Potter

Despite a super-bait-y cancer story line and relentless campaigning, Potter missed the supporting drama actress cut. "Well, at least I get to stay in my PJs now! Huge congrats to Anna Gunn, Maggie Smith, Emilia Clarke, Christine Baranski, Morena Baccarin, & Christina Hendricks - you ladies knocked it out of the park this year!! Xoxoxo," she tweeted. Though Potter did tremendous work last season, she was always a longshot — Parenthood has only ever received one nomination, for Jason Ritter in guest actor last year.
11 of 14 Patrick McElhenney/FOX

Snubs: New Girl

Like we said, the Emmys can drop you like a bad habit after one year. The Fox sitcom was shut out completely this year after earning five nods last year, including ones for Zooey Deschanel and Max Greenfield. Adding insult to injury: Season 2 was far stronger than Season 1.
12 of 14 Craig Blankenhorn/FX

Snubs: The Americans

FX has never been an Emmy pet, but its '80s-set spy drama was perhaps its most palatable show to Emmy voters since Damages with two of the best performances of the year from Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys. And yet, it could only muster two nominations, including one in guest actress for former Emmy champ Margo Martindale.
13 of 14 Netflix

Snubs: Arrested Development

Arrested, which won Best Comedy Series nine years ago, underperformed with a mere three nominations, the only major one for Jason Bateman in Best Lead Comedy Actor. In hindsight, it's not that shocking after the mixed reaction to the Netflix revival's Rashomon-esque storytelling style, but given the hype and excitement over its return, it sure is disappointing.
14 of 14 Peter "Hopper" Stone/ABC; Monty Brinton/CBS

Snubs: Defending champs

If you groaned when Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men) won Best Comedy Lead Actor last year, rejoice! The two-time winner was dropped from the ballot, as was Best Comedy Supporting Actor reigning champ Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family), who has also won two statuettes. The last time a defending champ was dropped when they were eligible the next year was Kyra Sedgwick (The Closer) in 2011.