The Moth Chase

Elevating the Art of Procrastanalysis – Academics wasting time on pop culture

How Low Can You Go? 30 Rock explores the dark crevasse

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30 Rock Lemon at book store

Any episode that includes Will Arnett is bound to make me laugh – especially when his new rise to power is accomplished through a chatty relationship with the Obama girls (“what?! you have to invite everyone to your party? Even Zach S.?”). In general, this episode kept me laughing pretty consistently: Jack’s laser shield, Tina’s retainer, the exchange between Jack and Devon during the ‘weaked’ public hearing,Jack’s story about mountain climbing with Connie Chung, Jenna’s supernatural wearwolf Icelandic thriller with a nod to Twilight and True Blood… and that is without even getting into Tracy’s subsidized erotica habits.

Compared to last week’s episode, this was a marathon of witty banter and a return to the fast-paced, watch-that-again-so-you-don’t-miss-anything humor that makes 30 Rock some of the smartest comedy on TV. But compared to earlier seasons, it still fell a little flat to me. There isn’t anything particularly new about this humor and the characters are starting to live out the same repetitive patterns, which, while funny, start to feel a little tired – kind of like the microwave. You can add four doors and a transistor radio design, but no one’s going to buy it anymore.

And let’s not forget the running gag throughtout the entire episode – the plot line that connects it all – Liz’s long awaited book Dealbreakers. Did anyone else find it a little disconcerting that Liz is forced to write herself into a porno simply because she made some hilarious and pretty obvious observations about the unattractiveness of borishness? The show can take jabs at just about everything sacrosanct, but proto-feminist critique, that is just a joke that deserves to be punished. Even Liz doesn’t really defend herself, just proving once again that she is exactly the butt of all angry man-repellent feminist jokes she is set up to be. A woman who says the obvious about juvenile male behavior? That’s a dealbreaker.

Still, kind of like Jenna who only needs to be portrayed by the more attractive porn star to come back to Liz with open arms, it doesn’t take that much to keep me coming back.

posted by Kathryn.

Read the entire 30 Rock conversation from start to finish.

Written by themothchase

October 23, 2009 at 9:03 am

Posted in 30 Rock

Tagged with , ,

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