I think 30 Rock is destined for a cable existence on par with Seinfeld, which is to say…forever. It’s amusing, it has an effortlessly like-able lead, a perfectly complimentary cast, and it’s sort of pointless. It doesn’t ask you to be smart to watch, only to have a sense of humor.
- Director: Don Scardino
- Written By: Robert Carlock, Tina Fey
- Cast: Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan, Jack McBrayer, Jane Krakowski, Judah Friedlander, Scott Adsit
- Episode Title: ‘When It Rains, it Pours’
When Liz starts to catch men taking more notice of her, Jenna tells her that she comes off as more confident because of her new relationship, a confidence she uses to help Pete deal with a jerk-off editor. Meanwhile, Jack decides to use the power of technology to teach his unborn son life lessons before he’s too old to do so. Tracy, determined not to miss the birth of his third child, runs through an unexpected gauntlet to make it to the hospital.
- Tina Fey, Jane Krakowski. Fey is still every bit as irresistibly self-deprecating as she was the first episode, and Krakowski is as lovable as ever as the dumb-yet-sincere and surprisingly insightful blonde. Few women in Hollywood have aged better than Krakowski. Few shows on television, regardless of genre, feature as many truly funny and effective women scampering about than this one.
- Elizabeth Banks. Trophy wives don’t get funnier than Banks, especially in one of the beginning scenes when Jack breaks the news of his impending fatherhood to Liz, and she interjects by claiming that as the measuring stick of all her son’s future girlfriends, they will surely be left wanting. It’s creepy, and hilarious how much she cares about her looks.
- Video training sessions. Jack’s attempts at teaching his not-yet-born son the facts of life is priceless. He goes through nearly everything of pertinent value, including the keys to being athletic (the backflip is 90% confidence), and the secrets of love-making (which he enacts with an unwitting assistant).
- Guestspots, guestspots, guestspots. Brian Williams and Kelly O’Donnell gave this episode a ringing sense of playful authenticity in the one memorable scene they were in. Paul Giamatti – playing the jerk-off editor in question – is one of Hollywood’s most consummate pros, and pulls off being a asshole with a heart of gold without breaking a sweat.
- Not enough Elizabeth Banks or Jane Krakowski. Then again, there are only so many lines and spots for a 30 minute show.
- Tracy’s baby odyssey. It’s pretty rare that anything regarding Tracy Morgan on 30 Rock fizzles, but Morgan’s cab ride to get to his wife while she’s in labor comes of as flat and distracting. His cab ride is actually a game show where the cab patrons either get to keep riding or get kicked out based on a series of trivia questions that they have to answer. Tracy, being the loud, brash, black guy, of course knows his history enough to make it to the hospital. Subverting the stereotype. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover. We all make the colors of the rainbow. Narf, narf, narf. Blah, blah, blah. Booooooooooring.
‘When it Rains, It Pours’ was par for the 30 Rock course – a decent and memorable show thanks mostly to Giamatti and Baldwin. It was impishly funny and – as always – remarkably insightful about the machinations of producing a sketch-comedy show, especially when Pete laments about how much power the editors have over everybody else.
The Show Airs every Thursday night! Check back next week for our review every Friday morning!