Road to the Emmys 2012: The Writer - Drama

Julian Fellowes
“Downton Abbey” (PBS)
Episode: “Episode 7″
Highlight: Lord Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) takes the stand in the murder trial against Bates (Brendan Coyle) with every intention of helping his trusted valet, only to cinch the case against him with an explosive admission about Bates’ view of his late wife.
Sidelight: Daisy (Sophie McShera) achieves a measure of peace regarding her guilt about William the footman by striking up a touching relationship with William’s father.

Alex Gansa, Howard Gordon & Gideon Raff
“Homeland” (Showtime)
Episode: “Pilot”
Highlight: Despondent that her spy mentor (Mandy Patinkin) isn’t on board for her secret surveillance of prisoner-of-war returnee Brody (Damian Lewis), bipolar CIA agent Carrie Mathison (Claire Danes) heads to a bar to find a one-night stand, and notices on a TV screen the clue to Brody’s suspiciousness that will finally get her boss’ attention.
Sidelight: The series was inspired by Raff’s Israeli drama “Prisoners of War,” which examined the psychological effects of Israeli soldiers re-entering society after many years in enemy captivity.

Semi Chellas & Matthew Weiner
“Mad Men” (AMC)
Episode: “The Other Woman”
Highlight: Joan (Christina Hendricks) listens politely as the advertising agency partners — whose business she’s nurtured for years as a loyal employee — suggest she take money to sleep with a client whose account they desperately want.
Sidelight: As a subtle thematic reminder of how often powerful historical female figures are enveloped in notions of beauty and sexuality, Cleopatra, Helen of Troy and Lady Godiva are all referenced at separate points in the episode.

Andre Jacquemetton & Maria Jacquemetton
“Mad Men” (AMC)
Episode: “Commissions and Fees”
Highlight: In a moment of starkly funny irony in the face of impending tragedy, Lane Pryce (Jared Harris) tries to commit suicide with the exhaust of his Jaguar, only to find that the car’s notoriously suspect engine won’t start.
Sidelight: Alongslide the story of shame relating Lane’s death is one relating to the beginning of life, namely Sally Draper (Kiernan Shipka) starting her first menstrual cycle on a “date” with longtime friend Glen.

Matthew Weiner & Semi Chellas
“Mad Men” (AMC)
Episode: “Far Away Places”
B>Highlight: Roger Sterling (John Slattery) takes LSD on a night out with wife Jane and after some hallucinations, including watching the 1919 World Series, achieves emotional peace about her recognizing the end of their marriage.
Sidelight: The episode’s three stories — about Peggy, Don and Roger and different modes of literal and figurative escape — are told sequentially, but each happens in the same span of time, and were inspired by anthology films that operated from a unifying theme.

Road to the Emmys 2012: The Writer
Where the gags write themselves?
And the nominees are:
Drama | Comedy | Miniseries & Movies | Variety | Nonfiction
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