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October 8, 2015

Cristin Milioti Shines on '30 Rock': Season 5, Episode 16 Recap

by Bob Sassone, posted Feb 25th 2011 1:15AM
30 Rock['30 Rock' - 'TGS Hates Women']

"Comedy's freshest female voice. Take that Courtney Thorne-Smith." - Jenna

The best episodes of '30 Rock' revolve around something that is happening at the studio, either a show crisis that Liz has to take care of or a plan Jack has to increase NBC's profits or get a better position at the network.

This one had a little of both.

Liz hired a new female writer because people were saying that 'TGS hates women,' and Jack tried to please Kabletown chief Hank Hooper's granddaughter since she might one day inherit the network. These aren't the most original plots the show has had -- they've had plots in the past that were very similar to these -- but they were both deeply satisfying tonight.

There are two reasons why the Abby Flynn plot worked. Oh, get your mind out of the gutter! I'm talking about the two different personalities that Cristin Milioti showed: Abby the buxom blonde with the baby voice and Abby the alternative comic with the razor wit. This was a great performance with a clever ending: Abby won't be sticking around because she has to come up with a new identity because Liz blew her older one. But God, how was Liz supposed to know that? Give her a break.

Speaking of great performances, Chloe Moretz's job as Hooper's granddaughter Kaley was truly kick-ass, and I'm not just saying that to reference the movie because I haven't seen it. She's like Don Geiss' daughter Kathy, only she can speak, she's smart and has just as many clever plans to control Kabletown/NBC as Jack does. It's as if Jack has to always battle someone to get ahead at NBC, whether it's Kathy, Devon Banks, or someone else.

Hopefully we'll see Kaley a lot more in the future. Having a 14 year-old rich girl as Jack's new nemesis has about 9 million great plot possibilities.

More thoughts:

• It's always interesting when a TV show decides to have an actor portray a real-life person instead of getting that person to cameo. I wonder if the show tried to get the real Robert Ballard to play himself? It's not like they haven't had a lot of guest stars playing themselves (Al Gore, Jerry Seinfeld, Oprah, to name a few).

• Lutz peeing his pants is one of the funniest two-second scenes I've seen on TV this season. Some might say 'TGS' hates women, but '30 Rock' loves to embarrass Lutz.

• This may seem trivial, but the scene with Liz talking to Abby in the park was well-done. It's great to see a show that really films on location in New York. Having the snow there made it feel more real, and showed that the episode was filmed fairly recently. You don't get that "current" feeling with too many shows.

• Idea for when Tracy Morgan comes back. His first line can be, "So, what did I miss?" Then have all the characters quickly summarize the plots of the episodes he missed. Then cut to the opening credits.


"I support women. I'm like a human bra." - Liz

"New blood is the life blood of every company's blood ... He's not a strong writer." - Jack, about Hank Hooper's book

"Hank Hooper. Isn't he the one who outbid no one for NBC?" - Liz

"Believe in yourself and you'll reach your goals. I read that on a bottle of women's exercise water." - Liz, about Aqua-Fem

"I don't know. How long does it take to see something?" - Cerie, on how long it takes for women to find out what the 'TGS' men are like

"Sir Ian McKellan? That dude must be knee-deep in boob." - Lutz

"You may have heard of J. Fred Muggs, a monkey that was on 'The Today Show' in the 50s. What you might not know is that NBC is still a network." - Kenneth

"I even tried to get it chosen as our school's mascot, but I was out-voted. So our mascot is a slut." - Kaley

"OK, please follow me to Brian Williams' bathroom, which is also J. Fred Muggs' skull." - Kenneth

"I'm talkin' 'bout a fem-olution. Tracy Chapman. She's a woman, right?" - Liz

"When I first started working here, an 8-year-old Shirley Temple taught me how to roll a cigarette ..." - Kenneth

"When I was a kid, I got to meet the 'Where's the Beef?' lady." - Liz

"She should be careful around the crew. New York gives us a tax break for employing sex offenders. It's a terrible program." - Jack, about Abby

"Yes, the scientific term for that is 'marriage'." - Robert Ballard, about fish that die after mating

"No, does this look like the make-up room at a clown academy?" - Liz, about the park not being where she lost her virginity

"Hey, remember Jack Donaghy. He wore a lot of suits and went to a lot of meetings. Now power down, conversation robot." - Jack, on how he'll be remembered in the future

"I hope my legacy is a 'Sesame Street' type TV show that promotes illiteracy in girls." - Kenneth

"You know, as somehow who speaks nat-ur-al-ly, I'm offended." - Jenna

"Well, that's understandable. It is kind of bagel-y." - Jenna, about Abby changing her real name

"Quiet chalk hands, a real man is talking." - Jack, to a teacher

"You better pick up your books and get to class." - Jack
"This is a free period." - Kaley
"Well played." - Jack

"The only thing that cures ice cream headaches is having sex on a motorcycle." - Ballard, correcting some of the bad science in the episode

'30 Rock' airs Thursdays at 9PM ET on NBC.

[Follow Bob on Twitter.]

Watch the full episode here:

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Matt Marquissee

Yeah, bizarre unfunny episode with a few high points in Jack's plot. I usually chuckle the whole 21 minutes.

February 27 2011 at 4:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Trevor Reece

"I could ask you the same thing...but that wouldn't make sense." - Jack

February 25 2011 at 6:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Al K

What shocked me was when Robert D Ballard, who i am a fan off appeared, it looked nothing like him at all. Now im reading here it was an actor...wonder why they couldent get him. Guess he was out to sea or somthing

February 25 2011 at 2:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Love this series.

February 25 2011 at 2:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike Siroky

Absolutely the worst, crassest episode ever. The Lutz gharacter is not worthy of another line of dialogue. The swerve on why the bimbo was a bimbo was interesting, but who hides in the national spotlight. The only saving grace was the Jack interaction with a teeny rival. They are hiding the pregnancy of Jenna by shooting her from the waist up or sitting behind something. They have hidden the fact Tracy is away for his kidney transplant. Why didn't they just take a hiatus until everyone was ready to work and the plots could be rewritten . . . this is the worst episode ever. The shark is circling, waiting to be jumped.

February 25 2011 at 12:54 AM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Mike Siroky's comment

Why do I feel you'd be the guy complaining about too much Tracy if he was around?
I thought this was a perfectly fine episode. I wasn't actually that much of a fan of the Liz side of the story this week and felt it could have been condensed a bit, but not because of its "crassness". I would like to have seen more of the Kabletown heir's side of the story though. I also hope to see her again.

February 25 2011 at 3:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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