Relive the second season of the Primetime Emmy Award-winning comedy 30 Rock, the show that the guy who writes stuff on DVD boxes calls “my current assignment” and that Gillian Flynn of Entertainment Weekly has named “simply the best TV.” Created by Golden Globe and SAG Award winner Tina Fey, 30 Rock features Fey (as TV writer Liz Lemon), Golden Globe and SAG Award winner Alec Baldwin (as corporate executive Jack Donaghy), Tracy Morgan and Jane Krakowski (as Lemon’s unpredictable stars, Tracy Jordan and Jenna Maroney) and Jack McBrayer (as the naive NBC page Kenneth Parcell). Co-workers and friends, they are all trying to balance work and life, with the inevitable result of failed relationships, disastrous parties, at-work drunkenness, hard-core coffee addiction, world-class sandwich eating and occasional attempts to chop down Christmas trees. Join in the behind-the-scenes fun with lots of exclusive content and all fifteen episodes of the acclaimed second season of 30 Rock from executive producer Lorne Michaels.
"I really feel like this is going to be my year," an uncharacteristically optimistic Liz Lemmon proclaims in 30 Rock's season two opener. Reality quickly intrudes on the hapless Liz, but for Tina Fey and 30 Rock, the year couldn't be better. Nominated for 17 Emmys, the series repeated for Outstanding Comedy Series and earned Outstanding Actress and Actor honors for Fey and co-star Alec Baldwin as GM CEO-in-waiting Jack Donaghy. TV icon Tim Conway was also honored as Outstanding Guest Actor as Bucky Bright in "Subway Hero"--just one of the strike-shortened season's benchmark episodes--as a faded TV star from the 1940s and '50s who shatters the illusions of television-loving NBC page Kenneth (Jack McBrayer) with appalling (and unprintable) stories about "the good old days." If you're going to make a television show, Bucky tells him, "things are going to get weird." And from one of Kenneth's lame parties that turns dark and twisted to the "Page Off" between Kenneth and his nemesis (Human Giant's Paul Scheer) things get really weird behind the scenes of TGS, the SNL-ish sketch show where Liz oversees a motley crew of writers and her tempermental, demanding stars, insecure diva Jenna Maroney (Jane Krakowski) and all kinds of crazy Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan). 30 Rock is rarefied television, each episode brimming with quotable dialogue ("Never go with a hippie to a second location"), brilliantly absurd bits (Tracy Jordan's novelty hit, "Werewolf Bar Mitzvah," the TV series "MILF Island," Liz's Cathy moment), and edge of the frame silliness that rewards close attention ("Anne Heche Leaves Husband for Pony," reads a network news scroll in the episode, "Somebody to Love"). Stellar guest stars rise to the occasion. Edie Falco was an Emmy nominee for her recurring role as "C.C.", the liberal Democratic Congresswoman who becomes conservative Republican Jack's "hippie dippy mama," as was Carrie Fisher as former Laugh-In writer Rosemary in the instant classic episode, "Rosemary's Baby." It's this episode which features Tracy's therapy session during which Jack channels Fred Sanford and J.J. from Good Times. Making welcome returns this season are Will Arnett as Jack's corporate rival, Devon Banks, Chris Parnell as unethical Dr. Spaceman, Elaine Stritch as Jack's castrating mother, and Dean Winters as Dennis Duffy, Liz's sleazy former boyfriend and New York's unlikeliest hero. But the real muffin top on this two disc set are the awesome bonus features, including a revelatory table read of the season finale, "Cooter," the benefit live performance of the episode "Secrets and Lies" (complete with an improvised commercial), a 30 Rock panel discussion with cast and creators moderated by Brian Williams, and a backstage look at Fey's Saturday Night Live homecoming last season. Most sitcoms are as bad for you as the offbrand Mexican Cheetos that Liz gorges herself on, and as Jenna tells Liz at one point, employing "a weak metaphor," you deserve a good meal. 30 Rock is a feast. --Donald Liebenson
Stills from Season Two of 30 Rock (click for larger image)