The Supporting Actor in a Drama Series Emmy category is routinely one of the hardest categories to predict, especially in this golden age of television. Basically, you have a pool of around 50 or so people who are all worthy, and only six spots to put them in. That of course leads to controversial decisions, and no matter where the Emmys go with their list, there are going to be snubs.
Even with our list, we’ve got a number of people who just barely missed out on having performances in this group, including Aaron Paul (“Breaking Bad”), Alan Cumming (“The Good Wife”), Matthew Lillard (“The Bridge”), Thomas Sadoski (“The Newsroom”), and Peter Sarsgaard (“The Killing”). We could almost double the field and feel almost as good about every single nomination that is on there.
Of course, we’ve still been forced to come up with our six names who we feel are the most worthy of some love in this category.
Peter Dinklage, “Game of Thrones” (HBO) – Probably the favorite right now alongside Paul for the actual Emmys, thanks largely to his scenes at the trial when Shae and so many others turn on him. We understand that there are moments this season that have been controversial, but they have never involved Peter’s performance.
Walton Goggins, “Justified” (FX) – Somehow, this was Walton Goggins’ best year on the show, and this comes after many other outstanding years. If we were just talking about favorite TV characters of the past decade, Boyd Crowder would be in the top 10 just for his eccentricities and general demeanor.
Vincent Kartheiser, “Mad Men” (AMC) – We loathe Pete Campbell at times for some of his behavior, but absolutely love him as a character. He’s smarmy, temperamental, extremely judgmental, and also hilarious and even sympathetic at times. Even a season like this one with less Pete is still a great season.
Dean Norris, “Breaking Bad” (AMC) – We know that Jesse is the flashier “Breaking Bad” supporting role, but Norris really did some great work in the final season as we saw Hank’s world and his life completely fall apart. This role was a slow burn, but he burned bright within his final moments.
Mads Mikkelsen, “Hannibal” (NBC) – Mads could probably submit for lead if he really wanted to, though separating him and Hugh Dancy (who is currently cleaning up in our fan voting for lead) is probably a better move to keep them from splitting a vote. The performance here as Hannibal is just magnificent. There is an element of Anthony Hopkins to it, but also a Benjamin Linus-like quality where you want to find yourself believing in him, only to be snapped out of reality every time you witness just how truly terrible he is. Yet another deserving nominee for the most underrated show on TV.
Chandler Riggs, “The Walking Dead” (AMC) – The biggest surprise of the year from our estimation. Honestly, Chandler was not even on our radar going into season 4, but the strength and layers that he put into this performance this year was outstanding. You saw a kid who was coming of age in dire circumstances, and struggle to balance taking care of his father and also needing to be cared for. He, along with Sophie Turner right now for “Game of Thrones,” are proving that young actors can be just as professional and accomplished as ones with an extra decade or two on them.
This is where you come into play. Vote in the poll below, and be sure to head over here to see some of the other nominees that we’ve lined up for the Emmys. Also, sign up now if you want to grab some additional TV updates via our CarterMatt Newsletter.