Monday, April 18, 2011

What I’m Watching: 30 Rock

30 Rock: Season 5, Episode 19 “I Heart Connecticut” (B-)

Some of the stuff this show does is so off the wall that it’s hard to imagine where it could possibly have come from. Some of it works, and some doesn’t. It seems as if this show is trying to pull off more and more in the 10pm slot, and its effectiveness varies as well. What’s less than effective is the Pete stuff, which starts out stupidly with the “your wife in the shower” jokes, then improves moderately with his shocking arm-wrestling skills, goes back to being pointless with an unnecessary shift to dramatics, and then ends with a quick cut to Pete losing to Frank. The search for Tracy wasn’t anywhere near as funny as Liz and Kenneth seemed to think, though it was moderately amusing. The revelation that he was in Liz’s apartment is so ridiculous that it sort of has to be hilarious, and I loved the quickly fired-off anecdote about the NAACP having once hired someone to kill Tracy. The trajectory of the “Take My Hand” production was entertaining as detailed by Jack, and my favorite bit was about the first-class flights for the drill. I’m glad that Jenna’s being put to some productive use here, and her interactions with Jack (“I’m an 11, but continue”) were fun. It was enjoyable watching this Connecticut-focused episode while aboard a train passing through Connecticut. It’s hard not to laugh when the characters applaud themselves for a joke, and “we produce more failed pilots than the French Air Force” was definitely a winner.

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