To many viewers and critics, the 65th Annual Emmy Awards, broadcast live from L.A.'s Nokia Theatre on CBS Sunday, Sept. 22, were a dull affair -- but even though the mood of the show seemed listless and uneven, the actual awards handed out were anything but predictable. Although the victories of Best Comedy and Best Drama -- repeat winner Modern Family and better-than-ever Breaking Bad, respectively -- seemed pre-ordained, winners in many other categories took the crowd by surprise.
"No one in America is winning their office pool!" host Neil Patrick Harris joked. What were a few of the night's biggest surprises at the podium? Check out the roundup below.
Jeff Daniels of The Newsroom snagged the Outstanding Actor in a drama, besting frontrunners like Breaking Bad's Bryan Cranston, House of Cards' Kevin Spacey and Mad Men's Jon Hamm. In the Outstanding Supporting Actor, Drama category, Boardwalk Empire hunk Bobby Cannavale shockingly edged out Bad's Aaron Paul and Jonathan Banks plus Homeland fave Mandy Patinkin. Downton Abbey's Maggie Smith finally ended her winning streak in the Outstanding Supporting Actress, Drama category when Breaking Bad's Anna Gunn (the talked-about Skyler White) grabbed her first-ever individual trophy.
Another out-of-left-field victor: Political Animals' Ellen Burnstyn; the beloved veteran actress edged out American Horror Story: Asylum's Sarah Paulson, long considered a lock in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a TV-Movie or Miniseries category.
One of the night's most talked-abot award-winners, Merrit Wever ("I gotta go, bye!" was her acceptance speech) of Nurse Jackie beat the ladies of Modern Family and 30 Rock's Jane Krakowski, too, for Outstanding Actress in a Comedy. Although Julia Louis-Dreyfus' Outstanding Actress in a Comedy (Veep) wasn't much of a shocker, her podium-crashing costar Tony Hale's triumph in the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy certainly was; the Arrested Development star rose above the likes of Modern's Family's men as well as Saturday Night Live's Bill Hader.
Scandal fans were crestfallen when star Kerry Washington -- a first-ever nominee -- lost out to perennial Emmys favorite Claire Danes, picking up another gold statue in the Outstanding Actress in a Drama category for Homeland.
Tell Us: What were your biggest Emmys surprises among the winners and losers?