15 August 2013 8:00 AM, PDT | Variety - TV News | See recent Variety - TV News news »

Can we still call them antiheroes if antiheroes are all that seem to exist anymore?

Up and down the line of roles played by the lead actor Emmy nominees in drama and comedy, deeply flawed characters are truly the norm. Charles “I am not a role model” Barkley had nothing on this crew.

For all the emphasis on darkness, however, the reason that these 12 thesps have been nominated for Emmys is that they have been able to convey the humanity in men of quite questionable character. While it’s their dark sides that keep us riveted, it’s their redemptive qualities that keep us invested.

Several actors are tested by playing antiheroes, perhaps none more severely than Jon Hamm of “Mad Men.” You could argue Bryan Cranston, unapologetic as meth mastermind Walter White on “Breaking Bad,” has the most difficult battle to stay in an audience’s good graces, but »


- Jon Weisman

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