30 Rock: Season 7, Episode 2 “Governor Dunston” (B+)
There’s something very exciting about having a direct political parody that’s extremely timely, airing right before the vice-presidential debate and replacing the Republican vice-presidential candidate with a comedic stand-in. Hearing that Ryan was resigning because it had been discovered that he was born in Kenya was hilarious, and though a Tracy look-alike was a bit of an easy way out, it did work well to create a fantastically difficult situation for Jack and Liz to discuss. I enjoyed seeing Matthew Broderick’s Cooter return, openly and awkwardly discussing his hopes for friendship with Jack while informing him that the Romney-Dunston campaign was pleased with Tracy’s mockery since it was painting Dunston in a funny way, which helped to distract from the fact that Dunston is actually really mean. The connection between Liz’s organizing and her sex life was put quite bluntly and overtly, and I’m not sure the sight of Liz pouring white-out on Criss’ bare chest is a sight I can ever unsee (and a horribly toxic idea at that). Liz’s complete lack of shame, however, is what keeps this show going, and I wouldn’t protest against that. Jenna meeting Kenneth’s parents was weird and unconnected as usual, and I most liked the casting of Catherine O’Hara and Bryan Cranston as Kenneth’s peculiar parents. His whole backstory is entirely odd and often disconcerting, but it’s nice to see him acting somewhat normally every once in a while, though I do wonder where Hazel was, since one would think that she would be merit an introduction to Kenneth’s parents.