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The 2010 Emmys: Handicapping the Lead Actor In a Comedy Race

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    NEWSLETTERS

    In the days leading up to Sunday night's Emmy awards, PopcornBiz will be sizing up the nominees in the 10 biggest categories. Disclaimer: Don't try this at home.

    Larry David, "Curb Your Enthusiasm"
    Perhaps no one in history has helped produce more quality TV and had so few Emmys to show for it than David, who's been playing himself with acerbic, selfish, mean-spirited precision for eight seasons, after spending nine years at the helm of "Seinfeld." After more than 250 episodes between the two series, the man has won just two Emmys. Not much will change this year as voters tend not to recognize people for playing themselves -- just ask Jerry Seinfeld. Odds of winning: 12 to 1.

    Matthew Morrison, "Glee"
    It's a great show, but Matthew Morrison is not doing comedy. This is not to say that he isn't a fine actor or singer, but shouldn't the award go to someone who actually makes people laugh? Odds of winning: 10 to 1.

    Tony Shalhoub, "Monk"
    Nominated for the eighth season in a row, Shalhoub has already won this award three times. He's good, very good, but he's been doing the same thing for so long, it seems unlikely that the the voters will suddenly swing back to him. But then again, the farewell episode of "Monk" scored the biggest ratings in scripted episodic cable TV history, so maybe... Odds of winning: 8 to 1.

    Steve Carell, "The Office"
    He's been nominated five times for his role as the buffoonish Michale Scott and has somehow never won. With his announcement that he'll be leaving the show after this season, voters might take the opportunity to make sure he at least gets one. Odds of winning: 5 to 1.

    Jim Parsons, "The Big Bang Theory"
    Sheldon Cooper is definitely a unique presence on TV and Parsons plays him to the hilt, with unabashed annoyingness. His rubber face and atonal voice help him craft an uber-nerd the likes of which would make you recoil in real-life. If it weren't for the cache of the reigning champ and his show, this would be Parson's rac e to lose. Odds of winning: 4 to 1.

    Alec Baldwin, "30 Rock"
    The two-time defending champion goes for a three-peat with his role as GE exec Jack Donaghy. As funny as you may think this show is, trust us, it's way funnier if you actually work here -- all those corporate-speak jokes are straight out of the in-house playbook. That Baldwin manages to play the part without laughing maniacally is a testament to his greatness. Odds of winning: 3 to 1.