By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist July 18, 2012 at 1:16PM
Giancarlo Esposito - "Breaking Bad"
Aaron Paul - "Breaking Bad"
Peter Dinklage - "Game Of Thrones"
Mandy Patinkin - "Homeland"
Walton Goggins - "Justified"
John Slattery - "Mad Men"
Although Dinklage took this last year, and was even better in season two, we think this category comes down between the two "Breaking Bad" boys, and our money's on Mr. Gus Fring, given season four was his best-ever showcase. Elsewhere, John Slattery (who gets funnier with every passing season) will likely repeat, and Mandy Patinkin is a lock for "Homeland." As for the sixth slot, we think Walton Goggins will return, but Alan Cumming for "The Good Wife" has an equally good shot, while Jared Harris or Nick Nolte (for "Luck") could surprise.
Best Supporting Actress - Drama
Kelly MacDonald - "Boardwalk Empire"
Maggie Smith - "Downton Abbey"
Christine Baranski - "The Good Wife"
Archie Panjabi - "The Good Wife"
Morena Baccarin - "Homeland"
Christina Hendricks - "Mad Men"
A move into the series category means that Maggie Smith is all over this category, while previous favorites Kelly MacDonald, Christina Hendricks, Christine Baranski and Archie Panjabi are likely lagging some way behind. Some have pegged this as the year "Breaking Bad"'s Anna Gunn finally makes the cut, but we suspect that Morena Baccarin from "Homeland" has a better chance. Angelica Huston, of "Smash," and Rose Byrne, of "Damages," could also be contenders.
Steve Buscemi - "Boardwalk Empire"
Kelsey Grammer - "Boss"
Bryan Cranston - "Breaking Bad"
Hugh Laurie - "House"
Damian Lewis - "Homeland"
Jon Hamm - "Mad Men"
Once again, there's a Hamm vs. Cranston battle at the top, but they face new competition in the shame of Damian Lewis, who could well sneak in for the victory. Kelsey Grammer got the Golden Globe for "Boss," but will probably have to settle for the nomination here. Any of Michael C. Hall, Timothy Olyphant, Hugh Bonneville and Dustin Hoffman might get nominations, but we think that Steve Buscemi and one final go-round for Hugh Laurie as "House" are more likely.
Best Actress - Drama
Glenn Close - "Damages"
Michelle Dockery - "Downton Abbey"
Elizabeth McGovern - Downton Abbey"
Claire Danes - "Homeland"
Julianna Marguiles - "The Good Wife"
Elisabeth Moss - "Mad Men"
The category's theoretically competitive, but in reality, this is all about Claire Danes for "Homeland," who should walk away with it, leaving closest competition Elisabeth Moss and Julianna Marguilles in the dust. The "Downton Abbey" mother and daughter look good for nods, and though the show doesn't have the profile it once did, Glenn Close in "Damages" is a solid bet. But Mireille Enos, Debra Messing, Kathy Bates, Mariska Hargaty and Jessica Pare could all surprise.
"Game Of Thrones"
"The Good Wife"
For the most part, the big hitters should all be back, with "Homeland" joining them, and it should make a real play for the win. "The Good Wife" is our best bet for the final slot, but "Boardwalk Empire" could theoretically push it out.