'30 Rock': The great state of Connecticut
Jack Donaghy has found a plan to fix NBC: Only do shows that work. Which, as Lemon pointed out, was complete nonsense, but I think it’s a stroke of genius. The current business model is to create 10 shows and hope that one of them works. But since NBC produces “more failed pilots then the French air force,” Jacky D was willing to try anything. Including something as nonsensical as only doing shows that work.
Enter blonde actress Jenna Maroney. She’s a blonde actress, and thus perfect for a role in Take My Hand, a horror/torture/porno-esque film set in Stamford, Connecticut. So when her movie got put on hiatus because of tax/funding issues, she took it upon herself to keep the project afloat. Once Jack realized NBC had a stake in the film, he offered to help. Using the world’s greatest encyclopedia (Jack’s mind) they set out to create a Connecticut-friendly film. Oddly enough, they succeeded. Apparently, horror + torture + love for Connecticut + family values + Walmart endorsement + a Muppet + Everybody Loves Raymond‘s Phil Rosenthal + text voting = profitable movie. I never understood math.
Meanwhile, Elizabeth Lemon reached a breaking point. With Tracy Jordan still missing, her show faced a certain demise. So with the help of Kenneth, she set to work to bring Tracy out of Africa and back to the real world. As already established, Tracy was just hiding out somewhere in New York. But no one, not even besties Grizz, Dot Com, Charles Barkley, or an Edward James Olmos lookalike could find him. To save the show, Lemon and Kenneth had to rely on their very best sleuthing skills. And make no mistake, Kenneth, who wields a knife, had a way of getting people to talk. By cutting fresh apple slices, of course!
After a trip to a pizzeria, Lemon and Kenneth thought they were one doorway away from finding Tracy. But all they found were some TJ remains: his signature pizza order, a Rubik’s cube smashed out of anger, and a copy of Black Yachts magazine. It was just a dead-end. Lemon and Kenneth, or Klemon for short, spent the rest of the day thinking like Tracy to find him. That didn’t work out so well either. Liz ate a swordfish dinner at a strip club, and Kenneth grabbed a cop’s gun and shot a blimp. Their only hope was for Tracy to Skype his pet lizard, Jeremy, for his birthday. As expected, Tracy did. And even though he cut the call short, Liz recognized her futon with its trademark absence of sex stains. Yes, Tracy Jordan was living in her apartment the whole time.
Turns out, TJ was just worried about disappointing everyone. The pressure of EGOTing was just too much to handle. So with a rousing speech, LL encouraged Tracy to remove the leash and run free. So we can now expect Tracy Jordan to be the idiot he’s meant to be. Yay for happy endings, right?
Other “I Heart Connecticut” highlights:
++ Jenna’s Jenna dolls turned out to be a part of a cocaine-smuggling ring. Children high on coke in real life = not a good situation. On 30 Rock it’s hilarious.
++ Tracy’s signature pizza order: “A large cheese pizza, one slice taken out, so I can pretend like I’m eating Pacman like my hero Blinky the ghost.”
++ “Me, my ass double, and a drill that once appeared on Home Improvement are featured in Take My Hand.” –Jenna
++ The Take My Hand rewrite history: It was first a romantic comedy with Reese Witherspoon and Patrick Dempsey. Then, it was a buddy comedy with Dempsey and Josh Hartnett. Next, Telemundo took over and tried to make it a variety show hosted by a supermodel and a soccer ball with a mustache. And when that didn’t work, it became the horror movie starring any blonde actress.
++ Liz admitting to punching LeVar Burton after some confusion at the wax museum (Sidenote: Although he’s done other things, I will always associate LeVar with this. You’re welcome.)
++ “Darnnit I thought we had him!” –Kenneth thinking he caught a “black statue” and not the real Tracy Jordan
++ “It’s red, and it says ‘ketchup.’ Uhh I hear it. That’s on me.” –Tracy trying to find the right mustard
++ Tracy’s reference to Temple Grandin’s hugging machine
++ Learning Tracy wore a penis hat to Princess Diana’s wedding AND funeral
++ The obvious hiding of Jane Krakowski’s pregnancy with a big purse and that prop from her movie
What did you think of last night’s episode? I thought there were some good one-liners, but I was a bit disappointed with “I Heart Connecticut.” Notice I didn’t even mention Pete’s arm wrestling escapades. Yawn. What were your favorite moments? And if Tracy and Jenna are the problem solvers, what team name should Jack and Jenna have? Let me know in the comments.
Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, and Tracy Morgan star in the Emmy-winning comedy. You want to go to there.