Monday, April 26, 2010

What I’m Watching: 30 Rock

30 Rock: Season 4, Episodes 17 & 18 “Lee Marvin vs. Derek Jeter” & “Khonani” (B-/C)

After an entire month off the air, it doesn’t quite feel too good to have this show back. This double dose of Liz, Jack, and the cast and crew of TGS provides nothing but inanity, random references, and only occasionally funny plotlines marred by stupidity and preposterousness. The return of Jack’s Boston love Nancy might be good if her accent weren’t so horrific and grating, essentially negating anything that comes out of her mouth. The more amusing parts of the two episodes were the subtler happenings going on in the background, like Jack’s comparison tally of Avery versus Nancy. It would also be a little bit better if either of them had any sort of a clue that there might be another woman in Jack’s life. Nancy may not be the sharpest tool in the box, but Avery seems like a smart cookie who wants to be on top of her man and his affairs. The janitor subplot in the second episode wasn’t anywhere near as interesting or entertaining as it could have been, and relegating it to something that Jack did to take his mind off more important matters made it seem just that: unimportant and only to be considered if nothing else valid or crucial was occurring or available. Tracy’s failure as a husband is too off-the-wall, and Jenna’s insatiable desire to get attention and embarrass herself proves only distracting and not enjoyable at all. This is the feeling I’m getting with this entire season: it’s occasionally funny, even more sparsely hilarious, and altogether just too all over the place and disorganized to be great.


Jorge Rodrigues said...

You're right. This double episode was subpar. A LOT of ridiculous plotlines, weak one-liners and although I really enjoyed the Derek Jeter/Lee Marvin debocle, the second episode felt so forced and so out of touch (come on, the Conan O'Brien scandal was months ago, why bringing it up NOW?!) that the episode as a whole did not work out. Of course this also has to do with the usual, boring Tracy/Jenna/Liz shananigans.

I think this is really shaping out to be a very weak Comedy line-up at the Emmys with a lot of shows underwhelming...

30 Rock, How I Met Your Mother, Flight of the Conchords, The Big Bang Theory, The United States of Tara, Nurse Jackie, Two and a Half Men... All of them are going through terrible seasons.

Dare I say Modern Family will clinch the Comedy Emmy or will the night pave the way for a Glee fest?

Right now I can see no frontrunners for any Comedy category...

Actor: With all this mess, it's probably time for Carell, no? Or Sheen, since it will be his last season?

Actress: Colette won for last year, in the first season of Tara, but this season has been so bad so far and this is really a one-note plot, it could be Edie Falco's turn (but I'm not so sure Nurse Jackie is considered a real comedy), Tina Fey is totally out... I'm betting Courteney Cox is left underappreciated again (meh, maybe not). So, Lea Michele? Or Colette collects #2?

Sup. Actor and Actress: if these trophies don't go BOTH for Modern Family I will be pissed. Eric Stonestreet and Sofia Vergara FTW please! Meh, I can still pray for Neil Patrick Harris but it won't happen. Like Piven, he's the only thing worth watching in their messy shows... And I can be contempt with a Jane Lynch win.

I don't know... What do you think?

Movies with Abe said...

Glad to see you're already thinking about the Emmys! As soon as most of this season's shows end, I'm going to devote multiple posts a week to early Emmy predictions. For now, I'll take a quick shot at it.

Keep in mind that "Flight of the Conchords" is ineligible this year since its second and final season was recognized last time. Modern Family and Glee are probably deadlocked for the win, but watch out for Curb Your Enthusiasm also, which has never won. Don't count of Sheen, but I wouldn't count on Carrell either - more likely Shalhoub for his final season or Baldwin again (I'd personally prefer the former). Collette or Falco for Actress, hopefully Ty Burrell for Supporting Actor, and Jane Lynch for Supporting Actress. Unfortunately, I feel like the supporting categories may not go that way, but we'll see. Stay tuned in late May and early June - I'll be writing a lot about this. Keep reading until then, though, and post your thoughts on how the race is shaping up!