Emmys 2013: ‘House of Cards,’ ‘Homeland’ nominated for drama series


Emmy continues to turn its back on broadcast dramas.

Just as it did last year, on Thursday the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences nominated perennial favorites “Breaking Bad,” “Mad Men” and “Game of Thrones” for drama series, but failed to recognize a single program from one of the four major networks.

And, in a further sign of Emmy’s drift away from traditional broadcasters, Netflix’s “House of Cards,” a series that doesn’t even air on television, was nominated for the first time.

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Adapted from a British series of the same name and executive produced by filmmaker David Fincher, the political thriller stars Kevin Spacey as a South Carolina congressman who brings new meaning to the word Machiavellian. Netflix’s first attempt at original programming, it unspooled on the subscription service in February.

Defending champ “Homeland” was nominated for an explosive second season that, according to some, included a few too many implausible plot twists. The Showtime series about a mentally unstable CIA officer and her complicated relationship with a Marine-turned-terrorist operative stars Emmy winners Claire Danes and Damian Lewis, and returns for a third season on Sept. 29.

The series it dethroned, four-time drama series honoree “Mad Men,” earned a nod for a season that also had its fair share of detractors. Despite the grumbles, the AMC drama set at a New York City ad agency in the 1960s ended its sixth season on a high note last month, with a moving finale that earned a record 2.7 million viewers.

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Fellow AMC antihero drama “Breaking Bad” also made the cut. The series, which returns Aug. 11 for the second half of its fifth and final season, stars multiple Emmy-winner Bryan Cranston as a high school chemistry teacher who transforms into a crystal meth kingpin. Though it’s been nominated three times in the category, it has yet to win.

The HBO fantasy series “Game of Thrones” earned its third straight nomination for drama series. Based on the epic novels by George R.R. Martin, the series wrapped up its third, spectacularly bloody season earlier this year. In 2012, it tired “Homeland” for the highest number of Emmy wins, with six in total.

Rounding out this year’s batch of nominees is the PBS costume drama, “Downton Abbey.” The British ensemble series, about a tragedy-prone aristocratic family and their bevy of servants, airs in the U.S. as part of the “Masterpiece” program. It has proved to be a ratings winner for the public broadcaster, with the third season finale earning 8.2 million viewers.

The Emmy Awards will be handed out on Sept. 22 and will air live on CBS.


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