For a year brimming with new quality TV, particularly on the drama side, newcomers were shut out. The likes of "Masters of Sex," "The Americans," "House of Cards" (though Kevin Spacey did receive an acting nomination) and "Orphan Black" were absent from the list of nominees. And perhaps no exclusion was more glaring than that of "Orange is the New Black," a show adored by critics and one that seemed to be the definition of an ensemble drama with its varied cast and equally varied performances.
Instead, familiar players (with just as great of a buzz) such as "Downton Abbey," "Boardwalk Empire" and "Breaking Bad" strengthened their grip in the annals.
That's not to say old chums on the awards block can rest on their laurels. "Mad Men," for the first time in its history, was left out of the running--not even Jon Hamm could scrounge up an acting lead. And "The Good Wife," after generating a lot of chatter with its all-cylinders season, didn't get recognized. Nor did "Girls," causing a bit of a breakoff just as it was steadily building its awards prestige.
A show running around with an asterisk--is it old or is it new?--is "Arrested Development." The show in its previous incarnation was nominated twice back in its Fox days. Seven years after it went off the air, its revival on Netflix scored a comedy nomination.