Monday, September 24, 2007
30 Rock, yes, rocks
I was one of the millions upon millions of people who didn't watch this year's Emmy's Awards. I find it highly suspicious that I didn't even know they were on, and I live in Los Angeles. Something seems awry with the media placement on that bad boy. Hello—street banners, anyone?
Anyhow. The reason I'm bringing it up is that I couldn't agree more with the Emmy Committee or whoever it is that votes on these things. 30 Rock is totally, completely, absolutely the most outstanding comedy series on TV.
I didn't know that as a fact until recently, while watching season one on DVD. Holy crap, is it a whipsmart funny oasis in a simmering crockpot of sitcom mediocrity. Sure, we are in the midst of a new golden age of comedy with shows like Curb Your Enthusiasm, Weeds and Entourage (some might include The Office—OK, I'll allow it, although it's veering into cloying Ross/Rachel marshlands, and, oh how we miss you Arrested Development), but only one of those other terrific shows is on network TV like 30 Rock is (with the inherent creative roadblocks that involves) and none of those shows can quite match 30 Rock in delivering guaranteed, intelligent laughs per minute or in conveying such underlying tenderness towards its characters (an oft-missing ingredient in comedy—I'm talking to you, The Comeback).
I now offically crown Tina Fey as one of my comedy heroines. To pull off a successful chemistry experiment of this magnitude is a once-in-a-lifetime achievement. She is a triple-threat stunner, with her dead-on delivery, brainy good looks and bulletproof producer chops. Alec Baldwin is absolutely delicious in every word and deed. And the rest of the cast delivers right on down the line.
While almost every episode is guaranteed to pack a Hawaiian punch of wry humor about human foibles, my personal favorite of season one is entitled "The Break-Up," starring Dean Winters as the delightfully self-deluded Dennis, Liz Lemon's menace of a boyfriend. Dude, that guy deserves his own series. Hysterical.
A special shout-out to co-writers of "The Break-Up" episode, Dave Finkel and Brett Baer. It is among my favorite TV comedy episodes of all time. I've watched it over and over and still find genius within its symphonic precision. Romantic relations, race relations, international relations (Condi Rice! OMG). It's got it all.
Comedy is back, America, and Fey & Co. should be proud as a peacock.