Every time I watch Edie Falco on the Sopranos I think to myself that it isn't even worth it for any other actress to show up on Emmy night when the Sopranos has been airing--she will win because her acting is so good and her role is so superior to anything else on television.
But last night I watched the fourth episode of Big Love, and I think Edie may actually have some competition. I'm surprised to write this, after sitting through her performance as Tom Cruise's wife in The Firm, but Jeanne Tripplehorn is doing an amazing job with a really great part to play. In her performance as Barb, the first wife, Tripplehorn really shows the viewer how much she has lost and her conflicting emotions regarding wanting her old life back, her loyalties to the other women in her life and her resignation that the situation is too far gone to turn back.
Tripplehorn isn't the only standout in the cast--Chloe Sevigny has been receiving a lot of great press for her role as troublemaker Nikki. It is well-deserved: you really believe Sevigny has spent some part of her life conniving in a cultish religious compound that preaches modesty and obedience.
I know some junkettes did not enjoy the first episodes of Big Love, but I would recommend watching the third and fourth episodes of the season before giving up on the show. The last two episodes have revealed so much back story and have set up suspense for the future. The acting is great and the stories are getting exciting--definitely worth spot in my television lineup.