BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS, DRAMA
Technically speaking, this should be Allison Janney's award to lose, as her work in Masters of Sex was one of the greatest performances I've seen in awhile. But just as with her co-star Bridges, Janney will probably be relegated to the Guest Actress category. Still, we shouldn't feel too sad for her (stay tuned to why) With her out, this may come to a showdown between two leading ladies from Deadwood: Anna Gunn and Molly Parker. (In a lesser year, there would probably be room for a third lady Paula Malcolmson on Ray Donavan. Nevertheless, keep your eyes open.
Christine Baranski, The Good Wife
Diane had a pretty good series of character arcs--- she starting the season by getting married and being named to the State Supreme Court, she was betrayed by the two people she cared for the most, and in addition to the huge loss of Will, she was completely undercut by the people from the firm she had poured her life into (and Michael J. Fox, who's looking like a lock for his third straight Emmy nod) Looks like an easy choice for this year.
Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad
There are all sorts of moments that Gunn could use for the episode she'll submit -- the scene between Skyler and Marie, where her sister finally learned the depth of her involvement in her husband's actions, the scene she commits the ultimate betrayal to her brother-in-law, or the scene where she finally turns on her husband after thinking he had done the one thing she could never forgive. All of them illustrate why she was more than the equal of any of the actors on this series, and establishes that she is one of TV's greatest actresses.
Annet Mehenndru, The Americans
Playing a woman stuck between the boulders of the KGB and the FBI, forced into degrading situation after humiliation, with a knowledge of a betrayal last season hanging over her head like the sword of Damocles, Mehennrdu's descent into a maelstrom--- which ended when her lover failed to betray his country--- featured some truly painful moments. Her fate on the show is uncertain (few make it back from Communist trials), but she deserves recognition for her work as much as Rhys and Russell do.
Molly Parker, House of Cards
This is a bit of a leap for me, but I've always admired Parker's work as women who will not play the role society deems for them. Here, as Francis Underwood's protege, and a successor to his position, she proved that she was more than capable of staring down .D.C., the press, and most frightening of all, the Underwoods. I look forward to seeing more of her work.
Monica Potter, Parenthood
I've all but given up hope that this series and it's brilliant cast will ever be recognized by any awards show for any reason. Still, the fact that the Golden Globes nominated her earlier this year does give me the faintest of hopes. And seriously, considering her body of work this season as she battled to help her son struggle through high school, meet with another cancer patient who wasn't as lucky as her, and run for political office --- how can they just ignore her?
Bellamy Young, Scandal
She comes closest to holding the title 'woman we love to hate' by some people--- until this season, when we finally got a look at the real reason the Grants marriage crumbled. There were many explosive moment this year---- the faceoff between her and her husband was just one--- but the one where she finally confessed to Olivia the horror she'd gone through is definitely the kind of thing Emmy voters recognize. The fact that she won Best Supporting Actress from the Broadcast Critics will probably put her over the top--- though it didn't help Potter much last year.