Mr. Bates is a force to be reckoned with in Downton’s downstairs world, and Coyle brings a sense of kindness and mysterious darkness to his portrayal of Lord Grantham’s valet.
“The Good Wife”
Even without his character’s sudden death, it would have been a memorable season for Charles, who brings a wry intelligence to the role of Will Gardner.
A true actor’s actor, Emmerich has never been better than as conflicted FBI Agent Stan Beeman, who fell for his KGB informant.
“Game of Thrones”
He won an Emmy for the first season, and Tyrion Lannister, aka “The Imp,” has only grown in complexity. His searing speech delivered while on trial for murder was a season highlight.
Goldwyn makes for an irresistible and formidable commander-in-chief as he attempts to run the country and win the affections of Kerry Washington’s Olivia Pope.
“House of Cards”
A reliable character actor finally transcended “That Guy” status with the role of Doug Stamper, the loyal right-hand man to Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey).
The Tony winner is spectacular as the brilliant, sharp-tongued political strategist Eli Gold — a role that’s earned him two Emmy nods.
Perry’s Cyrus Beene suffered a tremendous loss this season, allowing Perry to showcase his incredible range as the manipulative yet emotional White House chief of staff.
For five seasons, Paul’s Jesse Pinkman was the heart of “Breaking Bad,” and never was he more wrenching than in the final episodes where he was held captive by white supremacist drug dealers.
Bob Odenkirk may be starring in “Better Call Saul,” but it’s a great alternate title for this political thriller, where Patinkin’s Saul Berenson proves to be the real brains at the CIA.
The inevitable but tragic death of his lovable DEA Agent and adoring husband was one of the toughest scenes to watch in a season full of them. Norris also has a key role in “Under the Dome.”
After being in prison for 20 years, Mickey Donovan arrived in L.A. wreaking havoc among the Donovan clan. Voight brings charm and appeal to the otherwise murderous character.
“The Walking Dead”
Volatile but loyal, Reedus’ charisma helped elevate zombie survivor Daryl Dixon from a recurring character to series regular — and fan favorite.
His deliciously named Dr. Valentin Narcisse took a wild ride, beginning the season as top dog before surviving an assassination attempt and turning FBI informant.