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30 Rock: Season 2
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Stills from Season Two of 30 Rock (click for larger image)
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Top Customer Reviews
Most comedy shows, when the writers get a funny joke or idea, they massage it and call attention to it, perhaps even taking a pause to allow everyone to notice and appreciate it. Not 30 ROCK. The jokes just tumbled out and sometimes they were only there if you looked hard for them. The humor came in waves, in layers. For instance, in one episode Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin) is watching Celeste Cunningham (Edie Falco), with whom he has just had a passionate romantic encounter, get interviewed on a news network. The main point in the scene is that the right-wing Republican Jack is horrified to learn that his flame is a left-wing Democrat, but if you look very carefully at the ticker tape along the bottom of the TV screen, you will see the words "Anne Heche leaves husband for pony" scroll across. And shot after shot during the season features in-jokes concerning the Shinehardt Wig Company ("NOT Polluting Rivers since 1997"), which somehow manages to be the parent company for GE. This is not to say that the main jokes aren't great as well (I mean, just how funny is the idea of the fake reality series MILF ISLAND?). The key point is that it isn't just that they jokes are plentiful and unrelenting; they are GOOD. It is humor with an edge, but it is never less than brilliant.
This year Alec Baldwin will almost certainly win what should have been his second Emmy for Best Actor in a Comedy series.Read more ›
Whereas the plotlines and randomly vanishing characters (any one of Rachel Dratch's appearances???) in Season 1 were out of left-field in that funny-but-almost-too-random kind of way, Season 2 was a different kind of animal.
"30 Rock" season 2 came from left-field, but this time, it pulled you over there with it. In the beginning, it held onto some of the pitfalls of Season 1 (i.e., Where was Jenna half the time???), but as episodes aired, the ensemble and the writing both grew into something much greater and more entertaining than Season 1 ever reached.
Even as many shows suffocated and failed the hiatus the writer's strike brought, "30 Rock" seemed immune. In fact, I would be so bold as to suggest the break fueled the creativity. Either those last handful of episodes were pure, unadulterated brilliance, or I was just desperate for more "30 Rock" after their lengthy sabbatical.
Some brilliant moments in Season 2: Carrie Fisher as a crazy ex-writer, EVERYTHING involving the Devon (Will Arnett) vs. Jack rivalry (including the Don Geiss coma), Jack's job at Homeland Security (can you say, "gay bomb"?), & Kenneth's House Party AND a special appearance by Al Gore satiring himself ("A whale is in trouble!") in one episode? Oh HECK yeah.
All in all, "30 Rock"'s sophomore season was a brilliant display that proved that comedy can be even better the second time around.
To make up for the shorted season, the producers are augmenting the strike-shortened season with many more extras than the S1 DVD set had. Check out the listings here: [...]
TEN of the fifteen episodes will have commentary tracks (compared to only six of S1's 22 episodes). Then there's a table-read, Tina hosting SNL, an ATAS evening, and the item I'm really dying to see: "30 Rock Live" at the UCB theater (an on-stage sneak-preview performance of Ep. 8, "Secrets and Lies" that occurred during the strike). Can't wait for this set's release on Oct. 7!
"30 Rock" is the kind of show you expect to see on HBO. It's well written, subversive, and chock full of the kind of talent that must be making the NBC accountants cry.
It's difficult to compare or classify comedy, but it's more "The Upright Citizen's Brigade" or "Arrested Development" then "Friends" or "How I Met your Mother." The excellent writing (some of it by Tina Fey who also plays Liz Lemon, the starring role) is both intelligent and absurd. It makes for a really interesting mix when the writers can combine a parody of "Amadeus" with the quest to create a video game based on pornography. This is only one example of the madness that lies in store when you watch "30 Rock."
Literally every actor in this amazing cast does a spectacular job. Alec Baldwin is the obvious big gun but that doesn't mean that he dominates the screen when Tracy Morgan or Tina Fey are on set. The characters the cast creates are equal parts SNL and Alice in Wonderland. Tracy Morgan's alter ego Tracy Jordan is mentally ill, (read: insane) Tina Fey's Liz Lemon is so comically flawed that you can't help but root for her, and Baldwin's Jack Donaghy is an iconic villian/mentor.
The "supporting" cast can barely be called that. These guys could easily hold up their own sitcom. Standouts are the incredibly naive Kenneth (played by Jack McBrayer) and the hilariously ditzy Jenna. (Jane Krakowski)
Do yourself a favor and pick up this DVD along with the first season. It's arguably the better season (it's definitely not in it's sophomore slump, at least) but it's most definitely even more absurd and insane then the first.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love this show, and this season is no exception! It's very funny, and I love Tina Fey. The only issue I had is that when the DVD shipped, the disc somehow popped out of its... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
Still one of the best shows ever on TV. Quirky, smart, even sometimes touching! And really gets into a groove in season 2.Published 7 months ago by e kaplan
love this show. the case was hard to open though. when I finally got it apart the plastic that holds the discs was unusable.Published 7 months ago by Eric P.
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|Trouble playing on Mac?||
Yes -- read my review...my DVD player would come to a halt during the Spanish disclaimer. Try clicking "Stop" on the DVD Player app, then click the "Title" button and it should get you straight to the menu.
May 11, 2009 by Sean C. Courtney | See all 2 posts