2018 Emmy nominations: Best drama actress contenders
As the nominations period comes to an end, EW’s team of experts and critics have compiled a list of the top contenders for the 2018 Emmy Awards.
For more TV talk, check out EW critic Kristen Baldwin, editor at large Lynette Rice, and editor in chief Henry Goldblatt’s witty new podcast about the Emmy Awards, Chasing Emmy. (Subscribe now via Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts.)
Christine Baranski, The Good Fight (CBS All Access)
The Emmy winner, 66, is poised to receive her 16th nomination after a solid sophomore season as liberal lawyer Diane Lockhart on her Good Wife spin-off.
Viola Davis, How to Get Away with Murder (ABC)
Davis, 52, shined in season 4 with a class-action-lawsuit story line that became Annalise’s metaphor for recovery and meaning. A midseason heart-to-heart with Bonnie (Liza Weil) offered a guttural, raw performance where Davis laid Annalise’s wounds and regrets bare — a moment that rivaled her Oscar- winning work in Fences.
Claire Foy, The Crown (Netflix)
From tender moments of vulnerability — where the crown slipped and the Queen was just like any woman betrayed by those she loves — to her steely takedown of the treacherous and treasonous Duke of Windsor, Foy, 34, ruled every last scene she graced.
Mandy Moore, This Is Us (NBC)
In season 1, Moore, 34, was established as a legitimate acting threat. But her season 2 arc should catapult her right into Emmy orbit, as she deftly depicted Rebecca’s haunting, messy, debilitating grieving process in the wake of her husband’s sudden death.
Elisabeth Moss, The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu)
Has a TV heroine ever been as burdened as June Osborne? Pregnant and beaten down, the handmaid known as Offred spent season 2 determined to stay alive and fighting to build herself back up. Through it all, 35-year-old Moss’ performance — controlled yet endlessly expressive — gave June strength even at her weakest moments.
Evan Rachel Wood, Westworld (HBO)
“You basically have to show all human emotions in one look,” is what Westworld showrunner Jonathan Nolan told Wood, 30, before she began filming her sci-fi series’ ultra-intense second season. Somehow, she pulled that off, mesmerizing as a vengeful prairie-android-rebellion-leader with more personalities than bullets.