Critics and fanboys rejoice! "Battlestar Galactica" star Mary McDonnell is nominated for an Emmy! Except, of course, she isn't conteding for that lauded sci-fi drama which ended its four-year run in 2009. McDonnell is vying for Guest Drama Actress for her recurring role as Captain Sharon Raydor, a meddlesome internal affairs investigator who makes life difficult for Deputy Chief Brenda Johnson (Kyra Sedgwick), on "The Closer." McDonnell was up for this award in 2002 for her guest role as Noah Wyle's mother on "ER"; she lost to Patricia Clarkson ("Six Feet Under").
McDonnell is not the only guest acting nominee who was snubbed by the Emmys for better-known roles. Paul McCrane is contending for Guest Drama Actor for playing a quirky prosecutor on David E. Kelley's legal drama "Harry's Law" He was never nominated for "ER," on which he played the ruthless Dr. Romano from 1997 to 2003; in his last episode of the medical drama, the character was written out in spectacular fashion as a helicopter dropped on his head.
Among McCrane's competitors is Jeremy Davies who is nominated for playing one of Margo Martindale's ne'er-do-well sons on "Justified." Like McCrane, this is his first Emmy nomination. For two seasons, Davies appeared as offbeat scientist Daniel Faraday on "Lost." He's not the first "Lost" star to earn a make-up nod in a guest category. Elizabeth Mitchell was a regular on that series for three seasons, but wasn't recognized for the role until after her character was killed off; she earned a guest-acting bid for her blink-and-you-miss-it cameo in the series finale.
Over the years, the guest-acting races have produced other interesting Emmy anomalies. After two decades of TV work, including lead roles on "Wings" and "The Fugitive," Tim Daly earned his only career nomination in 2007 for a guest appearance on "The Sopranos." Though Matthew Perry only received a single nomination (2002) in ten years of playing Chandler Bing on "Friends," he earned two nominations (2003, 2004) for his guest-starring work in a total of just three episodes of "The West Wing." And while Will Arnett is best-known as "Arrested Development's" Gob Bluth, that role only earned him one of his four career Emmy bids (in 2006). The other three have come in the Guest Comedy Actor category for his recurring role as Alec Baldwin's business rival Devon Banks on "30 Rock" (2008, 2010, 2011).
Are Emmy voters using the guest-acting races to make up for past slights? If so, will they give McDonnell the Emmy she never won for "Battlestar Galactica"? She's a long-shot according to the early votes of GoldDerby editors and users. But our editors Chris Beachum and Rob Licuria believe either McCrane or Davies will prevail in the Guest Drama Actor race, despite strong competition from 5-time Emmy champ Michael J. Fox ("The Good Wife"). Click here to find out which sample episodes will decide the guest-acting winners, and then enter your predictions here.
Every actor submits only one sample episode, which will be judged by other actors (ranging from 25 to 75 per category jury) between July 28 and August 14. TV series submit six, which will be split into three pairs to be distributed randomly to about 300 voters. We now have uncovered every single title submitted for the 2014 races. CLICK HERE FOR THE EPISODES
We analyze the pros and cons
of episodes submitted by actors
to Emmy judges
Who submitted well? Click links below to read our in-depth analysis of each actor's episode entry.
DRAMA GUEST ACTRESS
Kate Burton ("Scandal")
Jane Fonda ("The Newsroom")
Allison Janney ("Masters of Sex")
Kate Mara ("House of Cards")
Margo Martindale ("The Americans")
Diana Rigg ("Game of Thrones")