Hugh Laurie (‘Veep’) is the Emmy frontrunner for Best Comedy Guest Actor, but our readers prefer Tom Hanks (‘SNL’)

This weekend’s Creative Arts Emmys will decide races for the best in nonfiction, reality, animation, crafts, and more, but the TV academy will also hand out prizes for guest actors and dramas and comedies. Hugh Laurie earned a Comedy Guest Actor nomination for his appearance in “Veep” as Tom James, and he’s long overdue for a win, having lost all nine of his previous Emmy bids. We’re predicting the Emmys will finally make it up to him — he gets leading odds of 6/5 — but is he the most deserving winner among this year’s crop of contenders? We asked our readers, and they don’t think he quite has the best episode submission, but it’s close. So who does? Check out our complete poll results below.

The Emmys determine their acting winners by evaluating sample episodes. Those used to be of paramount importance under the old system when academy members were limited in the number of categories they could judge and thus races were decided by small judging panels. But voting expanded in 2015, allowing all eligible acting branch members to vote in all acting categories; it’s unlikely that voters will watch all the submissions if they choose to vote in every contest. But this system is still too new to determine definitively whether episode submissions are moot, so it’s worth paying attention to who really has the best episode. And according to our readers, that’s Tom Hanks (“Saturday Night Live”).

Hanks is an Emmy darling with seven victories out of his 15 previous nominations, but he’s never actually been nominated for acting before now. He hosted “SNL” last fall, and his episode included viral sketches like the absurd “David S. Pumpkins” and a politically pointed installment of “Black Jeopardy” ahead of the November presidential election. 31% of readers think that’s the best episode in this race.

But it’s not a blowout. Laurie is close behind with support from 27% of respondents for his episode “Blurb,” in which Tom James and Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) face off over revealing their illicit affair in their respective memoirs. And close behind both of them is Matthew Rhys with 20% of the vote for his guest turn in the “Girls” episode “American Bitch,” in which he plays a shady author once admired by Hannah (Lena Dunham).

Do you agree with our readers. Does Hanks really have the best submission in the category? And could that lead to an upset against frontrunner Laurie?

emmy comedy best actor poll results tom hanks hugh laurie

Be sure to make your Emmy predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our Emmy odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on September 9. And join in the fierce debate over the 2017 Emmys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our TV forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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