05/18/2009 at 01:00 AM EDT
>He plays finicky physicist Sheldon Cooper on the CBS hit, but does the actor, 36, see himself as a role model for fans who might not identity with, say, 90210? "We do get a lot of viewers who enjoy Star Trek, but they get it—like, 'I see where I can be a dork, too'—as opposed to taking it too seriously." Here he salutes some of TV's other great square-peggers.
MR. FURLEY, THREE'S COMPANY Such a formative show for me! With the pantsuits and scarves, he reminded me of one of my grandmothers.
MORK, MORK & MINDY He's an alien—odd by definition—but I was obsessed with him as a child. My 5th birthday party was a Mork & Mindy party.
MRS. McCLUSKEY, DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES She's like the fool character in a Shakespeare play: She's disregarded, but has insights.
BENTLEY, THE JEFFERSONS He was childlike. Sometimes people didn't have the patience to deal with him. I don't blame them!
, AMERICAN IDOL I love her! You never know what she's going to say. If she was gone [from the show], we'd really suffer for it.