Peter Dinklage tries to defend Emmy's toughest category
John Slattery of 'Mad Men'
John Slattery, "Mad Men"
Nomination Status: Four straight nominations and well-deserving of a fifth.
In His Favor: John Slattery's work as Roger Sterling on "Mad Men" has now earned him four straight nods. Unlike the two guys above him in this gallery, Slattery isn't a lead masquerading as a supporting actor. He's a true and consummate supporting actor, capable of making the most of one or two scenes per episode -- like the running joke in which employees keep forcing Roger to empty his wallet, or his interactions with Sally in "At the Codfish Ball" -- or capable of running with a primary plotline whenever required. Slattery's work in "Far Away Places," in which the very sad demise of his marriage was set against a very funny LSD trip, was some of his finest work to date. And it wasn't just fine work. It was work that was simultaneously showy and subtle. Emmy voters love showy. Slattery has also become a valuable part of the "Mad Men" directing machinery, helming his third episode this season. Realistically, that doesn't help his acting award chances, but it's a reminder of how versatile and important a part he has on one of TV's best dramas.
Working Against Him: Very little. Emmy voters have rewarded Slattery for seasons in which he mostly was used for periodic one-liners and spectacular stone-faced patrician reaction shots. This year, Roger had a well-earned share of standout episodes and Slattery made the most of all of them.