‘Big Little Lies’: 86% of readers say Nicole Kidman was the MVP of episode 5, ‘Once Bitten’ [Poll Results]

We asked you who gave the best performance last week in the fifth episode of HBO’s “Big Little Lies,” titled “Once Bitten” (you can still vote in the poll here). For the second week in a row it was a landslide for Nicole Kidman, who won for the third time after prevailing last week and in week two before that. Tied for second place were Reese Witherspoon and Shailene Woodley with 4% of the vote. There was a three-way tie for fourth with Santiago Cabrera, Laura Dern and Alexander Skarsgard each receiving 2%.

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Kidman may very well have clinched the MVP title for the entire limited series with her third win in our weekly polling. But unlike the previous week when her best scenes were opposite Witherspoon, this week she did her most powerful work with her psychologist (Robin Weigert). Kidman again gave a subtle performance as she struggled with the love Celeste feels for her husband Perry (Skarsgard), while her fear of his abuse was intercut with some intense flashbacks.

Kidman is a past Emmy nominee for “Hemingway & Gellhorn” (Best Movie/Mini Actress, 2012) and could be positioning herself as the one to beat in that same race this year. Meanwhile, Skarsgard is definitely giving both Witherspoon and Dern a run for their money as the most unlikable character, but of the men in this cast he’s made an impression on our readers every week and could be in a good position to score his first Emmy nomination.

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Witherspoon’s character, Madeline, was discussing her relationship with theater director Joseph Bachman (Cabrera), with whom she once had an affair, when they were involved in a car crash caused by a teenager texting while driving. While neither was permanently injured, the incident prompted them to finally let each other go. Madeline can be somewhat unlikable given her past misdeeds and occasionally petty, competitive nature. That could be the reason Witherspoon has yet to top one of our reader polls. And this might’ve been the end of Cabrera’s storyline, which could account for his lower vote total.

Woodley had another strong episode as her character, Jane, continued to cope with her past sexual abuse, but the episode seemed more like a setup for dramatic developments to come in the last two episodes of the series. Renata (Dern) rightly freaked out upon seeing that her quiet daughter had been bitten by another student, but she was still fairly unlikable as she continued to vilify Jane and her son Ziggy (Iain Armitage). However, Dern is an admired industry veteran and a five-time Emmy nominee, so it might just be her turn to win some Emmy hardware this year.

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Be sure to make your Emmy predictionsWeigh in now with your picks so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our Emmy odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on July 13. And join in the fierce debate over the 2017 Emmys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our TV forums.

big little lies once bitten poll results nicole kidman

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