(WJLA) - Thursday's Emmy nominations reflect just how great TV has become in the age of the 1000-channel universe.
This year's buzz centers on favorites like "House of Cards," "Fargo," and "Game of Thrones."
"Game of Thrones" got the lion's share of Emmy nominations -19 - adding to the buzz about the sex- and violence-filled fantasy some call "the Sopranos in Middle Earth."
"Breaking Bad" competes again this year, along with "Mad Men," "House of Cards," "Downton Abbey," and "True Detective."
Matthew McConaughey, who won the Oscar for "The Dallas Buyers Club" this year, could win an Emmy for "True Detective" - another dark, violent mystery, entered as a series rather than a miniseries, even though it had a limited number of episodes.
"Fargo" leads the miniseries category with 18. Billy Bob Thornton plays a relentless hit man in a violent game of cat and mouse.
"Fargo" competes with gore-fest "American Horror Story: Coven," with 17 nominations.
Netflix' strong presence includes "Orange is the New Black,' up against four-time winner "Modern Family" for best comedy.
The Emmy nominations total more than 200 - an overwhelming number that reflects the number of good shows on TV these days.
Meantime, at the movies - "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" builds on the well-received original. Now, society has crumbled, the animals get smarter, and the humans get dumber, echoing "The Lion King" and "Jurassic Park."
Rate: 3 1/2 out of 4, a weekend best-bet along with "Begin Again" and "Life Itself."