So today I arrived back in the UK, where I will be spending the next several weeks on band business. The flight was pretty good - special thanks to the cool flight attendant who kept giving me bottles of wine, even as we were being served our breakfast danish and yogurt. I never knew his name, but damnit, I will never forget that man. Besides getting inappropriately drunk, I also spent a good chunk of the 6 hours it took to get here catching up on the new season of 30 Rock, and in an effort to remain relevant as a blogger despite the fact that I'm going to be pretty busy over the next little while with my real job, I thought I would weigh in with my thoughts on that.
I've mentioned before that 30 Rock is easily one of the best shows on television, and up until now, has gone largely unnoticed by the large audiences that it needs to attract in order to remain on the air. However, the show has been racking up Emmy awards, and over the summer Tina Fey became a bit of a culural sensation with her Sarah Palin impression on the resurgent SNL, so it seems like 3o Rock is poised to finally attract the huge audience numbers that it deserves. Yet its clear that this is something that is weighing heavily on Fey and the rest of the writers on the show, as it seems to me that the first few episodes have been designed to introduce the show's characters and unique brand of humour to new viewers. While I understand the need to do this, this is just a bit frustrating to people like me who have been watching and loving the show from the very beginning. This is not to say that the first few episodes haven't been solid, I just sometimes wish the show could return to the simplicity that made it so great in the first season (which if you haven't seen it, is an utter comedic masterpiece. I recently rewatched it and was consistently shocked at how often I was reduced to fits teary-eyed hysterics.) For instance, I definitely enjoyed Oprah's cameo as herself in episode 2, and Jennifer Aniston's turn as a crazy, hat designing, sexual deviant in episode 3 was also pretty great, but I feel like over the last 2 seasons the show has relied way too much on stunt casting in order to drive in ratings, while some of the weekly characters, specifically Scott Adsit's depressed producer Pete, or Lonny Ross's hilarious Josh Girard, are being criminally underused.
Anyways, I'm not claiming that 30 Rock has jumped the shark or anything, I just wish that more people watched the show so it didn't have to try so hard to get people to watch it. That being said, a flawed 30 Rock is still better than 98% of what is on television these days, and despite my trepidation, I am still really excited to see what the rest of this season has in store. So if you don't watch it already, I give this show my highest possible recommendation, please start watching it so it doesn't get cancelled and replaced with a show starring Jim Belushi whose main theme is that men = stupid. We already know that, Jim. Let's move on.