I know that 30 Rock
is basically one big inside joke that exists in a meta-universe, but this week's episode "Let's Stay Together," scored really high on the meta-scale. There were references to Outsourced
("It's the new Friends
("What's that black kids name?") and the confusing wisdom behind canceling Law & Order
("But it was a tent pole, A TENT POLE!"). The episode tackled a subject that has long plagued NBC (and the rest of network TV for that matter), its lack of diversity.
As I was watching this week's episode I started to wonder if 30 Rock
could have ever existed on another network. With the exception of FOX, I'm not sure any major network would devote such a high profile half hour of programming to a show constantly pokes fun of the brand. So good for you NBC; I'm still mad about Conan though.
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While often a solid show, it has had its rough moments (Angela Lansbury lawsuit notwithstanding), but for my money, this week's episode was a perfect example of what the show does best. Instead of spending too much time on character's love lives, the show just went for the satirical jugular. I don't really care about Jack and Avery or Liz and [insert handsome, buzzy, actor]. I want to watch 30 Rock
for their skewed angle on the pop culture of today. The series can get bogged down when they focus too much on the personal lives of the characters. Seriously, how many Tracy Jordan B-stories involving his family can we take?
Watch Kenneth mock NBC.
The show was at its best because it focused solely sticking it to NBC. The line that slayed me the most came courtesy of Congresswoman Regina Bookman (Queen Latifah) when she accused NBC of being racist by asking, "Tell me why NBC's lineup is as diverse as a Wilco concert." As someone who's been to a handful of Wilco concerts, she was spot on.
Other quick thoughts:
- Kenneth ending his NBC song and dace with the line "NBC ... a top 10 network" was particular cruel.
- Dotcom made a pitch a period piece TV show called "Let's Stay Together"
about 70s era Detroit and the American dream. Funny thing is, I would
probably watch that show. Without the talking dog of course.
- Rob Reiner was kind of useless in this episode but his excitement over the Sex and the City walking tour was pretty great. "Yes! Magnolia Cupcakes, Sorry hips."
As you can tell, I loved the episode and will probably be turning back
to it a couple more times this week. What did you think readers? Did you
like this week's brand of 30 Rock
or do you prefer the relationship
angled episodes? Let me know.
In the meantime, check out these videos where this week's 30 Rock
guest stars Queen Latifah and Rob Reiner(Image courtesy of NBC)