March 17, 2011

Quick Thoughts: 30 ROCK, "Queen of Jordan"

I didn't love the last new episode of 30 Rock, "TGS Hates Women", because I didn't know about the real-life controversies that were addressed by the Liz story line. Part of me had a similar reaction to "Queen of Jordan" because I do not watch trashy reality TV, so most of the Real Housewives spoofs were lost on me.

With Tracy Morgan still M.I.A. do to his surgery, 30 Rock once again had to scramble to put together an episode, and what they gave us was "Queen of Jordan", which wasn't 100% horrible, but it wasn't all that great either due to a mish mash of underdeveloped plots.

The Jenna intervention was a giant waste of time mostly because her character has gotten more and more insufferable and I could careless if she had a problem or not. The fact that she was just milking it for attention was even more tragic than if she really was a drunk. Like all of the characters, Jenna's broadly drawn with very little sides, but unfortunately her one-dimension is grating, so dedicating a big chunk of time to her made "Queen of Jordan" a chore to watch.

Another useless story was Frank's reconnection with an old school teacher who apparently sexual abused him. Yes, that was an actual plot line. I get that the story had to be over the top since the episode was a spoof on reality TV, but it didn't bring many laughs and was a waste of Susan Sarandon (although I wasn't really bothered by her miscasting).

Even the Liz and Angie story about the former trying to convince the latter that she needs Tracy back was hit or miss. The scenes where Liz was failed to manipulate Angie didn't come off as funny as they were meant to be, but I do have to admit seeing Angie pull out Liz's "weave" was funny. Unlike the two aforementioned plot threads, at least the Liz/Angie stuff ended on a somewhat sweet tone as Angie admitted that she wanted Tracy back. Seeing Liz prepping for a fight was also a humorous sight gag.

The only story that was a home run of course belonged to Jack. His repeated attempts to avoid being depicted as a clumsy, gay flatulent was comedy gold, and Alec Baldwin brilliantly sold the bit without making it too cartoonish. Between Dot-Com tricking him into "coming out" and his gay chicken dance-off with D'Fuan, Jack was on fire and he single-handedly saved "Queen of Jordan".

I didn't think I'd say this, but 30 Rock's been on a slide ever since Tracy Morgan took time off. While his character can be extremely outlandish, it's the right kind of crazy that helps balance out the dynamic on the show. Without Tracy, the rest of the characters come off as weak because they don't have him to make them seem somewhat normal. Plus, it means we get way too much Jenna. Let's hope things shape up once he's back on set.


Anonymous said...

ok so i have a question: what was the music in the background that dj played during angie's single release party while jack was dancing with her gay friend?

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