Michael C Hall won for best actor in a TV drama and John Lithgow won a supporting actor award for their work in Dexter, where they play murderers matching wits.
Toni Collette won the award for best actress in a TV musical or comedy for US Of Tara, while Mad Men won for best TV drama.
Dexter star Hall, who is undergoing treatment for Hodgkin's lymphoma, wore a wool cap as he accepted his award. He did not mention his illness.
"It's really a hell of a thing to go to work in a place where everybody gives a damn. That's really the case with Dexter," Hall said. "It's a dream job. I'm so grateful."
Julianna Margulies won for best actress in a drama for her performance as a lawyer fighting back from the humiliation of her disgraced politician husband in The Good Wife.
HBO's Grey Gardens, about two sisters played by Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange, was judged the best movie or miniseries made for TV, and Drew took the prize for best actress in a miniseries or TV movie for her role as the eccentric "Little Edie" Bouvier Beale, cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.
A nervous Drew accepted the award, thanking producers for taking a chance on her for the role even though she's known to have a goofy reputation.