Thursday, October 9, 2014

AFT Awards: Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series

This is the second category of the 8th Annual AFT Television Awards, my personal choices for the best in television during the 2013-2014 seasons. Finalists and semi-finalists are included to recognize more of the impressive work done on television today. Nominees are pictured in the order I’ve ranked them.

Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Last year’s nominees: Claire Danes, Julianna Margulies, Tatiana Maslany, Dominique McElligott, Emily Mortimer

Emmy nominees: Lizzy Caplan, Claire Danes, Michelle Dockery, Julianna Margulies, Kerry Washington, Robin Wright

Semi-finalists: Gabrielle Anwar (Burn Notice), Michelle Dockery (Downton Abbey), Mireille Enos (The Killing), Lauren Graham (Parenthood) Br />
Finalists: Robin Wright (House of Cards) stepped into the limelight, just as calculating as her husband and as infuriated by incompetence and stupidity. Emmy Rossum (Shameless) watched her life fall apart, powerless to do anything about it and utterly addicted to making the situation worse. Lucy Liu (Elementary) kept Watson relevant and prominent as she got the chance to expand her story separate from Sherlock. Katey Sagal (Sons of Anarchy) was as on fire and brutal as ever, though it was clear that what she’s become is something close to a monster. Emily Mortimer (The Newsroom) kept her quips going and tried to keep the ship afloat when it was sinking in a big way.

The nominees:

Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife) kept Alicia strong as she faced the toughest developments of her life, both professionally and personally. Lizzy Caplan (Masters of Sex) was precise and poignant in her portrayal of an avant-garde sex researcher determined to see her ideas to fruition. Diane Kruger (The Bridge) was an interesting choice to play an American cop with Asperger’s, but turned out to be a fantastic choice, giving her character a productive, mesmerizing vibe all her own. Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) tried to stay afloat despite the walls closing in on her from all sides, and ended up finding surprising support in a sea of disapproval and disappointment.

The winner:

Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) followed up her show’s debut season with extremely commendably dedication, embellishing those characters whose parts were more minor in season one and staying true to those favorites who had even more clone-centric antics to endure.

Next up: Best Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

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