Since its premiere in 2013, Ray Donovan has been a regular of TV awards season, with 18 total nominations and 3 total wins over the years, and once again finds itself as a contender for the 2017 Emmys.
Unlike most other years, however, Showtime’s hit drama has found itself with only two nominations, its least to date; only its star, Liev Schreiber is nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series and Hank Azaria was nominated for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series — he won for the same category last year for Ray Donovan but lost last night at the creative arts Emmys to Gerald McRaney, who guest starred on NBC’s freshman drama This Is Us.
Schreiber is a vet in the Outstanding Lead Actor category but his competition this year is stiffer than ever: Sterling K. Brown for This Is Us; Anthony Hopkins for Westworld; Bob Odenkirk for Better Call Saul; Matthew Rhys for The Americans; Kevin Spacey for House of Cards; and Milo Ventimiglia for This Is Us. This is basically a category of veterans vs newbies, and the newbies (This Is Us and Westworld) have the edge.
Schreiber plays the titular character who works for a powerful law firm in Los Angeles. Donovan does the dirty dealings of Hollywood; he arranges bribes, payoffs, threats and whatever else falls into the “needs fixing” category designated by the client. So, could this be a scenario where Hollywood loves watching itself so much that Schreiber finally wins his first Emmy for the role, or, perhaps, the Emmys academy will finally feel he’s earned his keep after four years. Either way, his biggest competition will undoubtedly be Sterling K. Brown and Milo Ventimiglia from critical darling This Is Us — Anthony Hopkins may find his way home with the statue but I think Westworld will more clearly find its place next year.
Ray Donovan is currently in its fifth season and will probably be picked up for more, so I doubt this is Schreiber’s last chance, but it would be nice to see him finally get a well-deserved Emmy.
Catch up on Ray Donovan on Showtime on-demand, and catch new episodes Sundays at 9pm ET.