Jenna's mother Verna is one of the most vile characters on television. With her trailer-park attitude , greedy ways, sleazy demeanor and breasts that don't match each other, she's a hard character to take. Which I guess is a compliment to Jan Hooks. So congrats, Jan Hooks, you're doing a great job!
Jack, played by Alec Baldwin, has a lot more to contend with than just his mom, as he's trying to juggle relationships with the challenging Avery and the comfortable Nancy. Having to deal with Colleen in the middle of all that should make for a fun episode.
The always-outspoken Stritch sat with me earlier this week to talk about being on the '30 Rock' set, how she got the energy to do her Stephen Sondheim-based cabaret show at New York's Carlyle Hotel, what it's like to play Alec Baldwin's mom and what she would do if she were hosting 'SNL' this week instead of fellow octogenarian Betty White.
Oh, come on. There's no way that Liz Lemon would be that incompetent when it comes to replacing a water bottle. It was like she was a mixture of Steve Urkel and Barney Fife, dropping the bottle, getting herself soaked. I mean, she could have at least known that you take the empty jug off before you attempt to put the new one on. That whole scene was odd. It went on a lot longer and was more slapstick-oriented than most 30 Rock gags.
Isn't it interesting how a funny, fast-paced, irreverent, sometimes surreal comedy like 30 Rock can also somehow grab you emotionally? Maybe it's because it's funny and irreverent 98% of the time the emotional parts hit you a little bit harder. They're unexpected and really welcome. Like the end of tonight's episode. Who could have expected the show would end with a piano duet between Jack and his mother? I've always liked Jack's mom, and it was really nice to see their relationship get better amidst all the usual TGS craziness. Some shows just have a Christmas show that isn't much different than their regular episodes, only with more lights and tinsel. Good to see this show actually make the holiday count.
I'm a sucker for Christmas episodes.
Every Christmas I look forward to the new slate of holiday episodes. Since I have seen most holiday specials more than enough times, I always enjoy a new holiday themed episode of a current show.
Last year, it was The Office. Michael's hilarious trip to Benihana was a delightful addition to the collection of classic episodes that TV Land will eventually show every year at this time. While I was also happy to see it repeated again this year, the feelings were bittersweet because I knew that if it weren't for the current WGA strike, there would have probably been another great one.
(S02E09) "That's not a Christmas tree. It's a way to lure tourists into the basement for $20 salads." - Kenneth, about the Rockefeller Center tree
I'm a sucker for Christmas episodes. The plots, the lessons learned, the music. And it doesn't matter if it's a corny, traditional type of holiday episode or a modern, irreverent look at the holiday. This 30 Rock episode is more the latter, but it doesn't mean that there isn't some crazy traditional aspects to it too. These characters - even the ones who get on each others nerves - care about each other in their own way. When Jenna sings "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and you see a montage of people arguing and Guatemalan kids destroying their Christmas gifts, that's a nice mix of the old and the odd, and the capper of having Jack and his pain in the ass mom wish each other a Merry Christmas just fits so perfectly.
This past Saturday, the 59th Annual Creative Emmy Awards were given out and aside from a few exceptions, the winners were no surprise.
The biggest event of the night came when American Idol won its first Emmy ever for "Outstanding Technical Direction." The spectacular "Idol Gives Back" episode was responsible for the Emmy, specifically the duet between Celine Dion and the late Elvis Presley. The honor is of particular interest because it gives AI a break in the second biggest losing streak in Emmy history, 22 losses. The record of 25 nominations without a win is still held by Newhart.
Edie Falco has been tapped to guest star on three episodes of NBC's 30 Rock. With the success of the new sitcom reaching epic proportions, NBC is doing everything they can to increase the ratings in the second season. Falco is one of many celebrities who are making appearances on 30 Rock including Jerry Seinfeld.
Last season Nathan Lane, Will Arnett, Molly Shannon and Hollywood legend Elaine Stritch all made guest appearances on the sitcom. Arnett will return this season along with Rip Torn and Sherri Shepherd.
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