Emmys: Showtime Caps Big Night with 'Homeland's Best Drama Win

9/23/2012 7:00 PM Eastern

The 64th Annual Primetime Emmys was an event for Showtime executives to remember as Homeland was honored as the top drama, ending Mad Men's run at a five-peat and TV history in the process.

In notching the premium programmer's inaugural series win, the Emmy for the terrorist series dethroned AMC’s series after four consecutive triumphs, detonating Matt Weiner's retro advertising show's attempt to move past Hill Street Blues (1981-84) and The West Wing (2000-03), both of which also claimed a quartet of best drama wins in row. LA Law also recorded four drama Emmys, but not in succession.

Showtime’s series, which also garnered statues for writing for its pilot and lead actor and lead actress trophies for Damian Lewis and Claire Danes as adversaries Nicholas Brody and Carrie Mathison, not only topped Mad Men, but fellow AMC series, crystal-meth saga Breaking Bad; the HBO pair of prohibition-era skein Boardwalk Empire and fantasy epic Game of Thrones; and PBS’s classic Downton Abbey.

Homeland, which returns for its sophomore-season debut on Sept. 30 at 10 p.m., thus completes a freshman campaign that also saw it place a Golden Globe, Peabody, Television Critics Association, AFI and Critics' Choice Awards on the mantle.

ABC's Modern Family kept its own streak alive, concluding the event in Los Angeles by nabbing its third-straight win as outstanding comedy. The show also scored for Eric Stonestreet, who won his second outstanding supporting actor for his role as Cam Tucker, while Julie Bowen repeated  as the Dunphy family matriarch.

HBO poliical telefilm Game Change received the most votes in miniseries/movie category, counting four awards, for outstanding miniseries, writing, directing and star Julianne Moore, who was saluted for her portrayal of vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin during the 2008 election.

Game Change's statue haul came at the expense of the most-watched entertainment program in cable history, History's miniseries Hatfields & McCoys. The work, though, did no go unrecognized --Tom Berenger took the supporting actor nod for the clashing clan story, while costar Kevin Costner was lauded as lead actor in a miniseries or TV movie.

Comedy veteran Julia Louis-Dreyfus won for lead actress in a comedy series for her role as a female vice president on HBO's Veep, which added a sixth Emmy, the most for any network on the Sept. 23 telecast, as Tim Van Patten won outstanding director for Boardwalk Empire's "To The Lost" episode.

For its part, FX also picked up a funny statue as Louis C.K., who was nominated for a record seven Emmys this year, for outstanding writing in the comedy series, Louie. The comic added a second for variety special for his stand-up show Louis C.K.: Live at the Beacon Theater.

Two and a Half Men's Jon Cryer, who previously won in the supporting actor category in 2009, received lead actor laurels this time around, beating out last year's honoree, The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons, as well as 30 Rock's Alec Baldwin, House of Lies' Don Cheadle, Louie's Louis C.K. and Curb Your Enthusiasm's Larry David.

Aaron Paul cooked up a second win in three Emmy tries for his portrayal of Walter White's meth-making sidekick Jesse Pinkman in AMC's Breaking Bad.

Downton Abbey's Maggie Smith, who won last year in the miniseries category, repeated for supporting actress in a drama series for her turn as the Dowager Countess.

In another repeat victory, CBS's The Amazing Race took its ninth Emmy for outstanding reality-competition program, over ABC's Dancing With the Stars, Lifetime's Project Runway, Fox's So You Think You Can Dance, Bravo's Top Chef and NBC's The Voice.

But in the first year in category history sans Survivor's Jeff Probst, who was not nominated, Dancing With the Stars' Tom Bergeron had the beat on the outstanding reality host statue, hoofing past So You Think You Can Dance's Cat Deeley, The Amazing Race's Phil Keoghan, American Idol's Ryan Seacrest and Betty White of Betty White's Off Their Rockers.

Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart did all of the nominees one better, receiving its 10th consecutive statue for outstanding variety, music or comedy series, this time ahead of The Colbert Report, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, Real Time With Bill Maher, and Saturday Night Live.

Check out the complete list of winners here.


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