No Big Bang Theory?! No Scandal?! No Laverne Cox or John Slattery? Some of the major-category shut-outs – plus a few unexpected noms

By Patrick Gomez
Updated July 16, 2015 03:30 PM
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Credit: JB Lacroix/WireImage; Kevin Winter/Getty; Marc Andrew Deley/WireImage; Neilson Barnard/Getty

The Emmy nominations are in, which means there were some happily surprised (we’re looking at you, Orphan Black‘s Tatiana Maslany) and others undoubtedly disappointed (maybe next year, Big Bang Theory?).

Here’s a look at the biggest snubs and surprises of the 2015 nominations:

Outstanding Drama Series
Breaking Bad spin-off Better Call Saul debuted to rave reviews this year, but some felt voters would overlook the freshman series in favor of ratings darlings like Empire or Scandal or critics’ favorite The Good Wife, which has now gone two seasons without a nomination.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Maslany’s long-overdue nominations (she plays multiple characters on her BBC America series) meant other actresses, like Scandal‘s Kerry Washington, were left off the list of contenders.

Perhaps the most shocking snub in this category was The Affair‘s Ruth Wilson, who won a Golden Globe for her work earlier this year.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Liev Schreiber has been nominated for two Golden Globes for his work on Showtime’s Ray Donovan, but after being snubbed last year, the actor was a bit of a surprise nominee Thursday morning.

Names that critics had speculated would get a nod over Schreiber included Empire‘s Terrence Howard, The Knick‘s Clive Owen and The Affair‘s Dominic West.

Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
While it would be hard to argue that any of the women nominated in this category aren’t deserving, that doesn’t mean there wasn’t a long list of actresses who also would have fit right in alongside them.

Eight-time nominee (and three-time winner) Dame Maggie Smith ultimately may have lost her spot to her Downton Abbey costar Joanne Froggatt. Similarly, Orange Is the New Black‘s Kate Mulgrew and Laverne Cox may have lost votes to Uzo "Crazy Eyes" Aduba.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Michael Kelly has done spectacular work on Netflix’s House of Cards, but the nomination of his quiet performance meant some seemingly sure-bet nominees were left out Thursday.

Ray Donovan‘s Jon Voight and Homeland‘s Mandy Patinkin were both previously nominated for their work on their premium cable shows, and many thought John Slattery would be rewarded for his work on the final season of Mad Men.

RELATED VIDEO: Emmy Nominations Revealed: Will Winners Make History?

Outstanding Comedy Series

There was talk that Parks and Recreation might get a nomination for its strong and delightful final season, but what was surprising was which show it ostensibly knocked out of the running: The Big Bang Theory.

While it could be argued that Jane the Virgin and The Comeback also deserved noms, Big Bang‘s exclusion is particularly noteworthy since the CBS show had been nominated the four previous years and is still TV’s highest-rated comedy.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
This category traditionally has six nominees, but this year there were seven!

Why?

Well, when the the nominations race is too close to call, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences will increase the number of nominees in that category.

But the extra seat at the table didn’t mean there wasn’t room for some shockers.

Perennial nominee (and last year’s winner!) Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) was left off the list. So was Billy Crystal, whose star power was expected to garner him a nomination for his work on the new FX series The Comedians.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series
While the extra nominee in the lead actor category may have been a surprise, the shocker in this category is that there wasn’t a seventh spot made available.

Lisa Kudrow got a much-deserved nomination for her work on The Comeback, but there was a long bench of women who could have also heard their names called: Jane the Virgin‘s Gina Rodriguez, Mike & Molly‘s Melissa McCarthy, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt‘s Ellie Kemper, Black-ish‘s Tracee Ellis Ross and Grace and Frankie‘s Jane Fonda (whose costar/partner-in-peyote Lily Tomlin did secure a nod).

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series
Key & Peele‘s Keegan-Michael Key may have stolen the show as President Barack Obama’s "anger translator" at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner earlier this year, but that didn’t make his nomination Thursday any less of a surprise.

Key is a talented comedian, but his inclusion on the list of nominees meant there wasn’t room for any of the Modern Family men aside from last year’s winner, Ty Burrell. A lack of nods for Parks and Recreation star (and Everyone’s Current Boyfriend) Chris Pratt and perennial snub-ee Nick "Ron Swanson" Offerman also especially stung since the single-cam sitcom finally scored a series nom.

Portlandia‘s Fred Armisen was a surprise nominee in 2014 but didn’t make the cut this year. Neither did Jane the Virgin‘s Jaime Camil.

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
There were so many viable contenders in this category, the Academy had to expand the field from six to eight nominees!

That meant there was room for surprise nominees Niecy Nash (who is the heart, soul and constant source of laughter on HBO’s Getting On) and ‘s Gaby Hoffmann.

But with two extra spots available, many were surprised Hoffmann’s costar Judith Light didn’t get a nod. Jane Lynch and Betty White were also expected to be in the running for their work on the final seasons of Glee and Hot in Cleveland, respectively.

RELATED VIDEO: See Who Scored 2015 Emmy Nominations!

The 2015 Emmys, hosted by Andy Samberg, air Sept. 20 on Fox.