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30 Rock

30 Rock is a comedy about "TGS with Tracy Jordan" a sketch show (based on Saturday Night Live) run out of 30 Rockefeller Centre in New York. Head writer Liz Lemon has to deal with temperamental stars Tracy Jordan and Jenna Maroney while also appeasing her boss Jack Donaghy. NBC 2006-???


Episode 1 - The Fabian Strategy

22 March 2012

Synopsis: Jack decides to use delaying tactics to stop Avery seizing control of their relationship. He also encourages Liz to take the next step in her relationship with Carol but she is reluctant. Tracy misses Kenneth badly and begins hallucinating him everywhere.

The Good: Let me tell you something about Fabius Maximus. We might not be here if it weren't for him.

Jack's relationship stories are almost always interesting. Not funny but interesting. By including a Roman General's strategy in his attempts to keep control over Avery he definitely entertained me. More than just that though his long explanations of how his tactics were unfolding were pretty entertaining. The running battle between him and Liz over their relationships also helped her story become more interesting.

Tracy's hallucinations and the inevitable return of Kenneth didn't particularly interest me. But the occasional line still gets me, like Kenneth assuring Tracy that it really was him by saying "Would an imaginary me know that you have a mole on your...list of pets to get?"  

The Bad: Liz' relationship with Carol is passably interesting. They move forward here in a believable enough way. But I don't like Matt Damon playing Carol. Something about famous film actors just doesn't translate to sitcoms. Perhaps it's too obvious that it's really him, perhaps the role just isn't convincing or maybe it's his delivery. I certainly didn't like his emotional tears which were far from convincing. I guess it's still hard to take Liz' relationships seriously when she is so constantly the butt of the show's jokes.

Jenna being a ruthless cost cutting producer was a nice idea. But in the end it didn't fit her selfish character to put the show ahead of her own producer credit. As ever with the D story on a sit com it didn't have enough time to develop. The joke about Pete having sex with his wife while asleep bothered me. Aside from being creepy I just don't understand who the writers think is laughing at Pete having a bad family life. When all you hear about someone is so negative there is no comic value. Comedy needs truth and pain, all we hear from Pete is pain.

Comic Highlight: Avery sends her gay interior designer friend James to talk to Jack about wallpaper samples. Jack thinks he has won this battle because gay men adore him and after some flirtation he will be able to get his way over the wallpaper choices. What follows was a lot of fun as Jack managed to very directly flirt with James but not in the broadest unsubtle way you might imagine.

The Bottom Line: Mildly entertaining.



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