On a day so many of us are so shaken by James Gandolfini’s sudden death, it’s sadly appropriate that my Emmy focus turns to the category that the “Sopranos” star towered over, a category still dominated by characters and performances that never would have been possible without Tony Soprano.
Like love, the Lead Actor in a Drama category at the Emmys is a battlefield. All six nominees from last year return, including four actors who have been nominated for multiple Emmys for their current roles. So this category should actually be a breeze, right? Everybody repeats, right? You tell that to Kevin Spacey and Matthew Rhys and Jeff Daniels. At least one or two of those guys will surely hear their names announced on July 18. But even that means that entirely worthy candidates like Hugh Dancy and Aden Young don’t even an iota of a chance. It’s a battlefield.
Check out the full gallery below: