30 Rock: Generalissimo
When I saw the promos for this episode, I audibly groaned. A subplot with an actor on a Telemundo soap opera who just happens to be a dead ringer for Jack? Alec Baldwin wearing a uniform and doing an accent? Ugh, I didn't think it would work at all, and with all of the over-the-top surreal subplots that have been on the show this season, I thought this would be the worst one of all.
But you know what? The subplot worked.
I think the reasons it worked are because a) it had some moments that were laugh-out-loud funny (the whole meeting between Jack and Hector the actor had a lot of in-jokes about TV shows with twins), and b) it tied in nicely with Jack's romance of the nurse and had a throwback to Liz eating those knock-off nacho chips. I love it when a show like this trusts the audience to get a quick joke like that. And the whole montage of scenes from the soap that appealed to grandmothers, from loving their cooking and family photos to the scratching of lottery tickets? Very great.
But this episode was really all about Don Draper coming into Liz's life. OK, he 's not Don, but Drew, the sensitive doctor who loves to cook and isn't gay who lives in her building. Seeing Jon Hamm on the floor all confused about the open mail and the fake dog being missing and the roofies and Liz saying "I'm the Generalissimo" was hysterical. "I don't even know what that means!" Hamm is only going to be on the show for a few episodes, so we still have to see how the relationship is going to get screwed up, but Fey and Hamm together are quite good. I like how this plot tied in with Jack's because of what Hector did on the show mirroring what Liz was doing. Sometimes Jack's office TV is one of the most important characters on this show.
I also didn't mind the third plot this week, Tracy and the Wall Street interns going out drinking. It didn't get too goofy or over-the-top, and it easily could have. It was nicely underplayed. And I loved Tracy telling the intern that he shouldn't end sentences with a proposition. When and why did we first start saying that awful phrase "come with?"
Josh sighting: negative. But none of the writing staff made an appearance in this episode. I really hope they get back to them (I find myself saying that a lot this season). Matt Lauer sightings: two. He seems to be everywhere these days, including a Land of the Lost preview during this episode.
"You haven't seen Dr. Baird. He looks like a cartoon pilot!" - Liz
"They're all former investment bankers who were laid off in that economic crisis Nancy Pelosi started." - Jack, about the interns
"It's like I said in my hit comedy Cruise Boat ... I'm too old for this ship." - Tracy
"Do you really want me to play Arthur Ashe?" - Tracy
"A yard like a lawn? Yes, I have." - Tracy, after one of the interns asked if he's ever drank a yard of beer
"Here's today's scripts. I edited it and took out all of the Star Wars references." - Elisa, to Liz
"Oh Lemon, don't start it unless you've got something." - Jack, about Liz's joke
"Having been on both sides of that, I can tell you it's not a good idea." - Jenna, about drugging Drew
"I'm gonna say it: women should not deliver the mail." - Liz
"He's a pediatrician so you know he likes kids. Or feet. No, kids. - Jenna, about Drew
"I don't think you should come to my cousin's police academy graduation or my other cousin's parole party. I hope those two don't eventually have a showdown that pits family against justice." - Elisa, to Jack
"I am super-gay, and I would totally switch for her." - Hector, about Elisa
"Only the special tours get to see Conan without his wig." - Jack