Emmy comedy series contenders


HBO (Leverage and Closest to the Hole Prods. in association with HBO Entertainment)
Pro: An insidery show about people in the business will always be a contender.
Con: Many consider it an aging starlet, creatively; Jeremy Piven shut out this year.

Family Guy
Fox (Fox Television Animation)
Pro: The historic choice; a vote for "Family Guy" is a vote for smart animation on TV.
Con: Emmy voters have shown they don't care that much about smart animation.

Flight of the Conchords
HBO (Dakota Pictures and Comedy Arts in association with HBO Entertainment)
Pro: Voters can impress their hip children by checking the "Conchords" box.
Con: Certainly the least-seen of the nominees; humor is an acquired taste.

How I Met Your Mother
CBS (20th Century Fox Television)
Pro: Highest-rated, most traditional (and often most clever) nominee of the bunch.
Con: Which could hurt it if the temptation is to reward a show that needs attention.

The Office
NBC (Deedle-Dee Prods. and Reveille in association with Universal Media Studios)
Pro: Third nom in a row (it won in 2006); still sharp in its fifth supersized season.
Con: "30 Rock" snagged a whopping four of the writing nominations.

30 Rock
NBC (Broadway Video, Little Stranger in association with Universal Media Studios)
Pro: Universally praised; won the past two years; voters believe Tina Fey cures cancer.
Con: The love train can't chug along forever.

Showtime (Showtime presents, in association with Lionsgate Television and Tilted Prods.)
Pro: First-timer might finally get its due.
Con: Subject matter might still be too taboo for voters to endorse with a win.