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Emmy battle over best drama actor: Michael C. Hall vs. Bryan Cranston?

April 10, 2010 |  5:00 pm

Forecasting the Emmy race for best drama actor, our forum moderators Chris "Boomer" Beachum and Robert "Rob L" Licuria ( agree on five contenders for the six nomination spots: Simon Baker ("The Mentalist"), Michael C. Hall ("Dexter"), Jon Hamm ("Mad Men"), Hugh Laurie ("House M.D.") and the winner for the last two years Bryan Cranston ("Breaking Bad"). Boomer picks Wendell Pierce ("Treme") for the last spot; Rob opts for Bill Paxton ("Big Love"). Both agree that newcomer Timothy Olyphant ("Justified") poses a serious threat, but he can't count on an Emmy bid.

Also check out Rob and Boomer's predix for best drama series and comedy series.

Dexter Breaking Bad TV news

1. Michael C. Hall ("Dexter")
2. Bryan Cranston ("Breaking Bad")
3. Jon Hamm ("Mad Men")
4. Hugh Laurie ("House")
5. Simon Baker ("The Mentalist")
6. Wendell Pierce ("Treme")

Alternates -- Bill Paxton ("Big Love"), Timothy Olyphant ("Justified")

BOOMER'S COMMENTARY: I can't imagine a scenario where Michael C. Hall, Bryan Cranston, Jon Hamm and Hugh Laurie are snubbed this year. In fact, if Hall submits correctly he is probably the front-runner to win based on the best-reviewed season of "Dexter" yet and recent Golden Globe and SAG wins.  Simon Baker continues to headline one of the highest-rated dramas on TV, so he should be safe. It is that tricky sixth slot that is hardest to predict since 2009 nominee Gabriel Byrne did not have episodes airing this season. The best bet is most likely Bill Paxton, a very popular actor on one of last year's drama series nominees ("Big Love"), but I will go out on a limb and say that "Treme" from HBO is going to be a major player this year in many categories.  Wendell Pierce could be part of that awards wave.

1. Bryan Cranston ("Breaking Bad")
2. Jon Hamm ("Mad Men")
3. Michael C. Hall ("Dexter")
4. Hugh Laurie ("House")
5. Simon Baker ("The Mentalist")
6. Bill Paxton ("Big Love")

Alternates: Kiefer Sutherland ("24"), Timothy Olyphant ("Justified")

ROB'S COMMENTARY: The top four above appear to be almost guaranteed a slot at this point, with last year's surprise newcomer (Simon Baker) poised to make a return appearance. The sixth contender is a bit of a toss-up, and I'm banking on Bill Paxton to finally break through the pack. He'll have to get past multiple past nominee (and swan song contender) Kiefer Sutherland, as well as Timothy Olyphant for his raved-about performance in the FX freshman series "Justified." Outside shots include Denis Leary ("Rescue Me") and perhaps even Matthew Fox ("Lost"). We are still not sure about where the "Parenthood" cast will submit, so Emmy fave Peter Krause remains on the sidelines for now.

Photos: Michael C. Hall (Showtime), Bryan Cranston (AMC)


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