Viola Davis shattered long-standing barriers at Sunday’s Emmy Awards as she became the first non-white actress to claim top drama series acting honors. An emotional Davis, who won outstanding actress for her lead role of a ruthless lawyer in “How to Get Away With Murder,” quoted the 19th-century African-American abolitionist Harriet Tubman by saying:
“The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity,” Davis added. “You cannot win Emmys with roles that are simply not there.”
Another black nominee in the category “Empire” star Tariji P. Henson stood and applauded Davis’ win. Other African-American actresses who reigned victorious Sunday were Uzo Aduba (Orange is the New Black) and Regina King (American Crimes), who won for supporting performances.
Jon Hamm finally won the best drama actor Emmy for “Mad Men,” and “Game of Thrones” snagged the most trophies ever in a season. With a total of 26 Emmys since it became eligible to compete in 2011, “Game of Thrones” is tied with “Hill Street Blues” and “The West Wing” as the most-honored drama series ever.
However the sitcom “Frasier” remains the overall winner with 37 awards. Peter Dinklage received the best supporting drama actor award for “Game of Thrones,” which also won writing and directing trophies.
The actor-comedian seriously injured last year in a car accident, Tracy Morgan made a triumphant return to reveal “Game of Thrones” as the best drama series. In the comedy category, political satire “Veep” claimed the top series award which had gone to “Modern Family” for five consecutive years.
Jon Stewart is gone from “The Daily Show” but Emmy voters gave the late-night show the best variety talk series award. “Olive Kitteridge,” based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Elizabeth Strout, won an astounding six trophies including the top award and lead acting honors for Frances McDormand and Richard Jenkins and a supporting award for Bill Murray.
King of “American Crime” won supporting actress honors for a limited series and “Inside Amy Schumer” won for best variety sketch series. “The Voice” also won a best reality series trophy.
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