“Game of Thrones”
Cersei Lannister slept with one brother and plotted to kill another, yet Headey also shows us the fierce, loving mother behind the Ice Queen.
Last year’s winner is sure to earn a nod for the show’s final season, in which Skyler White finally reached the breaking point.
More than a bombshell, Joan Harris repeatedly proves to be the real brains behind Sterling Cooper & Partners, running the place with a cool attitude.
“House of Cards”
As the congresswoman chosen to succeed Frank Underwood as majority whip when he becomes VP, Parker excels at loyalty and steely determination.
When it comes to TV matriarchs, Smith takes the (English tea) cake as the prim and proper dowager countess who delivers snide remarks with impeccable timing.
As first lady Mellie Grant, Young is equally parts classy and sassy as she contends with an unfaithful husband and her own ambition to stop at nothing to drive his political career.
Courtesy of ABC
The sexy, strong Monaghan more than held her own against leading men Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, romancing and wrangling both.
Anna Bates spends her days catering to the needs of Lady Mary, but Froggatt brought even more emotional depth to her character this season as Anna tried to keep a devastating secret from her husband.
Her mother of dragons Daenerys Targaryen conquered kingdoms and hearts as she inched closer to her rightful throne.
“The Good Wife”
There are few actresses who so effortlessly convey wicked intelligence and wit as Baranski, who’s been nominated four times for the role of Diane Lockhart.