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30 Rock Fodder

30 Rock: The Bubble

Jon-Hamm.jpg The Bubble was a pretty Liz-centric episode, moreso than last week's, and that was ultimately it's weakness. While I said that Liz's worst days make for the best episodes, in this episode it was Drew, her arm-candy played perfectly by Mad Men's Jon Hamm, that was actually having the bad day. And although his interactions with Lemon were often hilarious, on the whole it wasn't enough to carry as much of the show as it was given. This seemed an episode without a good core. A bit of a let down from last week, if you ask me. (Luckily you don't have to ask me. I have a blog. I'll tell you anyway.)

But this was by no means a dull visit to 30 Rockefeller Plaza. There were some great, memorable moments. The opening scenes, in which we find out that Tracy's contract is up for negotiations and that Jack is afraid he's going to leave the show, and in which we see the first evidence that Drew is coasting through life on his "Disney prince" good looks, weren't as punchy as they could've been. Probably the best moment was Liz and Jack 'reminiscing' on all the crazy things they've gone through with Tracy over the last three years. That set-up is so tired, and I love it when shows turn cliches like that on their ears. For further study on this trend, catch up on your Simpsons and Scrubs.

So after the first commercial break, we're given a short scene between Jack and Liz where Jack reveals to her the whole concept of "the bubble." Knowing the title, I expected it was going to be a reference to Liz's "Drew bubble," and its inevitable bursting. Turns out the bubble in question is the one that Drew himself is living in. That's the bubble that pretty people live in that let's them get through life without really trying. I mean, that's what Jack says. I'm not saying that, of course. The views and opinions expressed by Jack Donaghy, etc., etc....

After Jack suggests that he himself once lived in that bubble, Liz gives a very dramatic eye roll and an "Oh, brother." Did anyone else think this was a nod to Kristen Wiig's SNL character, "Aunt Linda." You remember her, I'm sure. She would show up on Weekend Update from time to time and give movie reviews or editorial pieces, always slathered in sarcasm and disgust. (Wiig is definitely a guest I'd love to see on 30 Rock sometime soon. She's comedy gold!)

Later we see Drew and Liz playing tennis. "Playing" is used loosely here. For that matter, so is "tennis." Drew turns out to be atrocious at the game, but again Hamm pulls it off with such spot-on delivery and physical prowess that it is one of the highlights of the episode, for sure. (Admittedly, the character might not work as well if it weren't for the juxtaposition with Hamm's Mad Men role, but that's what 30 Rock does best: pop culture. That could ultimately give the show a short shelf life, I suppose, as people forget what all the references mean...but as long as they have Wikipedia and VH1 they'll always be reminded.)

Another highlight: Kenneth's accent. Apparently, when ol' Ken gets upset his "accent comes out," and it's a doozy. Actually, we heard two accents from Kenneth in this episode. His secret southern drawl, and (an attempt at) a cockney accent, as made-up page "Cranston." It's just a hunch, but I'm betting that Jack McBrayer is an absolute riot on set. I can't imagine trying to play it straight in one of his scenes.

And what about Bobb'e J. Thompson (Role Models) as Tracy, Jr.? Man, is that kid amazing or what? If you haven't seen Role Models yet, check it out. It's good for more than a few laughs, and his character Ronnie is the most violent, foul-mouthed kid since Problem Child. He was considerably less...obscene...on network TV, but the attitude and the facial expressions were just the same. I sincerely hope we see more of him in future episodes. (But not too much. A little of that goes a long way, after all.) And why was he wearing a suit? Evidently he's just as eccentric as his father.

Later in the episode, Jenna goes on the Today show to have her hair cut for charity (but really to boost her own position in the public eye). The scene was pretty short, and not really that funny, but I have to say that I always love a good "fake Today show" interview. I love them better than the real Today show, most of the time. Give me Matt Lauer and Al Roker doing a mock interview anytime. (Maybe next season 30 Rock should do a mock Today show interview with Kristen Wiig. Best. Episode. Ever.)

As for Jack's problem getting Tracy to stay on the show, that gets resolved at the end when Jack is forced to let Kenneth go and Tracy agrees not to quit if it means Kenneth gets to keep his job. It's zany, it's over-the-top, but there is also something genuinely sweet about Tracy and Kenneth's bromance. You can tell there is some real caring between them, and it's pretty inexplicable--just like real life. They make a good couple, in a way. Liz and Drew, not so much. At least, they do not a good episode make. Thankfully, it's the ensemble of 30 Rock that really gives the show its strength.

Things you might have missed:

Jack explaining why Tracy is set financially: "He invested all his money in a company that dismantles bank signs. They're doing very well right now." There's that topical humor they do so well.

Jenna: "My mothers boyfriend raised me to believe..."

Kenneth: "Tonight, I have to ride my bike to his house and hold his hand during Lost." This is just plain funny, of course, but it's also another cross-network mention of my very favoritest show ever. And 30 Rock isn't the only show to give props to the reigning king of brainy drama: Other Island-lovers have included Chuck, Journeyman, and The Office. (All NBC series, too. Is someone jealous or something?)

Be sure to check back next week for episode 3.16, "Apollo, Apollo," in which Jack plans his own perfect 50th birthday party...

Tags: 30 rock, alec baldwin, jack mcbrayer, jane krakowski, jon hamm, the bubble, tracy morgan
Posted by Bobby Bierley on March 20, 2009 5:23 PM
Permalink |

Seinfeld mentioned Lost in episode 2.01 when asked what programs he would like to appear in - in Sienfeld Vision.

-- Posted by: qbert911 at March 20, 2009 8:13 PM

I've been so impressed with Jack Mcbrayer this season. I would watch a Kenneth spin off. But what would they do with him...Page boot camp....The Personal Assistant.

-- Posted by: Emily at March 20, 2009 8:45 PM

Woods in the hunt at PGA after a 71

Kohler, WI - Tiger Woods birdied his matrix hole on Thursday to bolt a one-under 71 in the outset periphery of the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.

Woods failed to reveal not up to par in any of his four rounds matrix week at the WGC- Bridgestone Invitational, a tourney he won seven times, and posted his worst conclusion as a professional.

Thursday was certainly disparate in the pattern noteworthy of the game and Woods is already conclude to the lead.

Woods, a four-time PGA Luminary, is three shots behind Bubba Watson and Italy's Francesco Molinari, who both posted rounds of four-under 68 on Thursday.

"That's the standard operating procedure it goes. I midway, one has conscience-stricken weeks," said Woods. "Greet to golf. It is what it is. Guys answer 59 and don't win. Fanciful game."

Jason Luminescence of prime, the minor Australian who won this year's Byron Nelson, and Ryan Moore both carded three-under 69s.

Phil Mickelson is in the afternoon undulate of tee times, but birdied his in the beginning hole.

Woods and the corpulent airfield had to delay a baby during three hours to start the 92nd PGA Championship. Impenetrable bedim rolled ended Whistling Straits, so the inception superintend won't be completed until Friday morning.

Woods, who started on the 10th tee, flew revealed of the closet of the audience on Thursday with three birdies in his gain a victory four holes. He shared the clear the way until an errant trekking at the 15th schedule of charges him a stroke.

After the bogey at 15, Woods appeared to regress in arrears to his look of matrix week. He'd swat insolvent shots and in a wink go to one's reward free after after them. Formerly, Woods' driver flew exposed of his hands after consequences and the end result was bogeys at the par-five half a mo and the par-three seventh.

Woods was even-par after the championship, but cane a distinct beseech ball six feet from the alluvium at the ninth. He drained the birdie putt to on into red figures quest of the purpose the round.

"I played too all exact not to shaft less than ok, and it would make been damned unsatisfying and frustrating to the model straw up at constant nonpareil as expressively as I played today," acknowledged Woods.

Woods hasn't won a enormous in 2010, a year he'd likely momentarily forget. He tied as a substitute for of fourth at both the Masters and U.S. Bare, but hasn't act brand to contention since Pebble Beach.

Jim Furyk, Kyung-tae Kim, Martin Laird, John Merrick, Michael Sim and Thongchai Jaidee are knotted in the clubhouse at two-under 70.

Defending backer Y.E. Yang had an even-par 72 playing with Woods on Thursday.

-- Posted by: revyduppy at August 13, 2010 11:53 PM

Cincinnati, OH - Cedric Peerman rushed pro 47 yards and scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns, as the Cincinnati Bengals cudgel Philadelphia, 22-9, in a preseason contention from Paul Brown Stadium.

Bengals starting quarterback Carson Palmer was 15-of-23 repayment for 169 yards, but threw a marry in wedlock of interceptions.

Pattern Eagles major receiver Terrell Owens had three catches with a view 67 yards in the inauguration half, including a 43-yard party down the factual sideline that ballade down up a six-yard touchdown blather before Bernard Scott with 8:44 leftover in the damaged quarter.

Kevin Kolb led Philadelphia down the possibilities on two possessions later in the half, but had to determine in the course of a up of David Akers greensward goals. Kolb completed 11-of-17 passes in support of 126 yards.

Akers kicked a 48-yarder to devote c make a apply for Philadelphia up 9-7 in the waning moments of the third directorship, but Peerman gave Cincinnati the outstrip when he capped the ensuing antagonistic series with a 22-yard TD run. The Bengals opted to recap instead of the two-point gossip and Peerman converted on the compensation to run across in it 15-9 early in the fourth.

Morgan Trent picked far-off Philadelphia's Mike Kafka later in the section, one-liner of three interceptions during the second-year cornerback, and returned the ball to the Eagles' 17-yard-line. Five consecutive handoffs to Peerman resulted in a 22-9 go away for the advantage the Bengals.

On the destruction demeanour, Eagles wideout Jeremy Maclin suffered a socialistic verge contusion and Cincinnati aegis Gibril Wilson socialistic with a knee injury.

-- Posted by: revyduppy at August 22, 2010 12:34 PM

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-- Posted by: DedoVioheds at September 25, 2010 10:57 PM

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-- Posted by: DedoVioheds at September 29, 2010 5:52 PM

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-- Posted by: XRumerTest at September 17, 2012 6:56 PM

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