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50 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best comedy on TV just gets better
Watching 30 ROCK during its second season was a completely exhilarating experience. It had in its rookie year quickly established itself as the funniest show on TV, but during its sophomore campaign the writing and acting got sharper and sharper with each episode. Next to ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT, I honestly believe that this is the funniest American comedy series ever...
Published on July 27, 2008 by Robert Moore

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Loved season 1 but not season 2.
Season one kicks off with strong characters, and the characters come as much from the writing as they do from the actors that play the parts. There's no mistaking where any character stands, and the conflicts between their personalities make the humor. It's so funny you can watch each episode several times and find a new joke in it every time!

I cannot say the...
Published on June 6, 2008 by K. Holtz


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50 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best comedy on TV just gets better, July 27, 2008
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This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
Watching 30 ROCK during its second season was a completely exhilarating experience. It had in its rookie year quickly established itself as the funniest show on TV, but during its sophomore campaign the writing and acting got sharper and sharper with each episode. Next to ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT, I honestly believe that this is the funniest American comedy series ever.

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. Last year news broke about an abusive message he left on his daughter's phone mail service. It unquestionably cost him the Emmy he deserved. But there is simply no question that he is the most outstanding lead actor on a comedy series today. And Tina Fey not only matches him scene for scene in her self-effacing portrayal of GIRLIE SHOW head writer Liz Lemon, but gets additional major kudos for serving as head writer on the show itself. The two of them are backed by a deep and talented cast, from Tracy Morgan in his inspired role as the literally insane Tracy Jordan to Jack McBrayer in his scene stealing role as Kenneth the page (I would love to see him get an Emmy nomination). And in addition to the regular cast there was an endless string of wonderful guest appearances, including return visits from Dean Winters as Liz's horrid (but very, very funny) ex-boyfriend Dennis and Will Arnett as Jack's company rival Devon Banks. But there were some great one-time guest appearances as well, perhaps none as delightful as Tim Conway's portrayal of a TV veteran who shatters all of Kenneth's illusions about the Golden Age of TV. Oddly enough, the one guest appearance that misfired was that by Jerry Seinfeld. It was as if the show ceased doing what makes it so brilliant to accommodate Jerry's guest spot.

The lone mystery about 30 ROCK is why it doesn't attract a larger audience. I won't name names, but there are hosts of truly lousy series that get far larger audiences than 30 ROCK. This show gets the critical acclaim and wins the awards, but it simply doesn't pull in the large ratings. This distresses me. It makes me wonder if America is clueless about great comedy. I don't get it. Never have and perhaps never will. But trust me: this is as brilliant, as funny as TV can get.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No "Sophomore Slump" here., July 30, 2008
By 
J. Kennedy (KS United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
Season 1 of "30 Rock" was a landmark of television, if you ask me. Finally a sitcom that was original, refreshing, and, most of all, hilarious. When Season 2 began, my expectations were high. To say that my expectations were surpassed would be an understatement of grand proportions.

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.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Didn't lose a step in S2, July 22, 2008
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This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
Despite the momentum-threatening writers strike that gave us a 3-month break between the 10th and 15th episodes, "30 Rock" suffered no sophomore slump. Many of the S2 episodes were instant classics, including "Rosemary's Baby" with Carrie Fisher as Liz Lemon's one-time comedy idol -- a once-edgy but now just whacked-out writer; the "Somebody to Love", "Secrets and Lies," "Coffee and TV" trilogy featuring Jack's doomed but oh-so-hot romance with congresswoman C.C. Cunningham (Edie Falco); and a finale that hilariously nails the attitudes of Bush-era D.C. ("Cooter"). Marvelous turns by guest-stars abound, including a reprise of Jack's mother by the astonishing Elaine Stritch; the return of Will Arnett as Jack's G.E. nemesis, Devin Banks, and of Dean Winters and Jason Sudeikis as Liz's former boyfriends, Dennis "the Beeper King" Duffy and Floyd, former G.E. attorney now relocated to "the Cleve"; Fred Armisen as a suspicious neighbor in Liz's apartment building; and Buck Henry, Anita Gillette, and Andy Richter as Liz's parents and brother.

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!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Squeezed from the Finest Mind Grapes..., November 25, 2008
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
I can only wonder how this show manages to stay on network TV with it's amazing writing and high quality acting. If that's not enough of an endorsement, then let me elaborate:

"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.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great show gets even better., July 23, 2008
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
After viewing the first season of 30 Rock, I was worried that it could become one of those shows that wins awards, but still fails to find a big audience until well after it's been cancelled - basically what happened to Arrested Development. It just seemed a little too good to last. Fortunately, it seems that 30 Rock is flourishing and will be around for quite a while.

I'm sure many people who are considering this purchase are already familiar with the show, so I won't bother to describe it or give away any plot points for this season. I think season 2 is even stronger than season 1, even if it has been truncated to 15 episodes. The characters are sharper, the dialogue is hilarious, and the episodes are all pretty topical. I'm not sure how this topical material will hold up in twenty years when the Clinton/Obama references begin to require explanation, but for now, it's hilarious, cutting, and usually right on target.

Tina Fey's Lemon is a nearly perfect character, someone almost everyone can either identify with, or pretend to identify with. Don't we all see ourselves as sensible, but struggling underdogs just looking for a little happiness and success? As perfect a character as Lemon is, my favorite is Jack who forced me to completely reevaluate my feels about Alec Baldwin. Everything about his performance is so hilarious that I have to chuckle every time he's on screen. Tracey Morgan's character occasionally annoyed me in the first season because he was so loud all the time, but by season 2, his character is much more developed and his craziness is funny rather than an unfortunate by-product of a one-dimensional character.

While I am tired of reviewers using this space to complain that the shows are full price for less than one season, I suppose it's worth discussing since the majority seems to care about it. The writers strike was an unfortunate, but necessary event that won writers compensation that at least begins to approach "fair". It cost the industry millions and, to anyone that wasn't born yesterday, the industry doesn't like to absorb costs like this when it can pass it along to the consumer. That's exactly what is happening here. You can boycott this season's TV DVDs, but there will be so many that don't care, that I doubt it will send a message. I'd advise people to just buy the show if you like it.

The one minor complaint I have is that the show sometimes comes off as preachy. I know Tina Fey is an activist with strong political feelings, but I don't enjoy being hit over the head with them again and again. It's not that I don't agree with her on issues, but rather that it sometimes comes off as forced and unnecessary. However, as soon as I write this comment, I'm reminded of a few instances where she pokes fun at opinionated individuals such as herself.

The main reason that I bring up the politics of the show is that conservatives may have a difficult time dealing with Fey's ideology. It's not like there are a lot of shows that actually cater to a conservative audience, but this one especially does not. Some may be questioning this line of thought altogether. It is, after all, a comedy show. This is true, and I'm sure many will just enjoy the clever writing and hilarious gags. However, with our increasingly polarized political climate, it seems worth mentioning.

Overall, 30 Rock is an excellent show and one that most people should check out, if they haven't already. Maybe some will think the price is unjustified, especially with all the episodes available online. To me, it's worth it to have access to the episodes anytime and without commercials. I beg your indulgence as I end with the cheesiest of lines - the season may be short, but it's not short on laughs.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best show on TV, July 24, 2008
By 
Tyler (New York, NY) - See all my reviews
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
When the studio charges full price for this second season set, I thought this set will come in 3 discs, comprising all 15 episodes in the shortened season and tons of extras to justify its price. Then I read the description and it says this set has only 2 dics!!!
Still, because of the quality of the show, I'm giving it all 5 stars. Even though there are only 15 episodes, I find it has lots more laughter than first season's offering. My favs of the second season are Seinfeld Vision, Rosemary's Baby, LudaChristmas, Untitled hiatus episode, NILF island, Subway Hero, Succession, and Sandwich Day. I guess I should have said I enjoy pretty much every episode. Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin are the obvious stars but there are plenty of guest stars that made this show the best on TV such as the legendary Rip Torn.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Season Two is a better but a shorter season, September 8, 2008
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
"30 Rock" season two will be remembered as the time when this TV sitcom really got into it's stride. Season two is much better than Season one. Newcomers should probably start with Series Two, or maybe half way through Series One, and go back to the early episodes later.

Unfortunately the writers strike meant that series 2 is only fifteen episodes long, not the usual twenty two or so. But don't be discouraged all fifteen episodes in this series are excellent zany fun.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Suck it monkeys! I'm going Corporate!, October 15, 2010
By 
Craig MACKINNON (Thunder Bay, Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
30 Rock is by far the funniest show on television. I know it's not for everyone. It's not a question of whether you "get" the in-jokes, or if you're off-put by the editting style (it is single-camera, not 3-camera like a typical sitcom), or the political leaning of the viewer. But if you appreciate absurdity, or have banged your head against corporate silliness (and worse, had the silliness turn out to be the correct course of action), this is the sitcom for you. Its closest relations are the Dilbert comic strip and M*A*S*H (especially if you watch the DVDs with the laugh track turned off). Of course, given that this is the second season of the show, anyone reading this review is likely to enjoy the show and is more interested in knowing if this is a DVD worth buying.

One warning to the viewer: this is the Writer's Guild-strike-shortened season, so there are only 15 episodes. The producers of this DVD make a valiant attempt to give the buyer value for the money, though, with numerous extras, and a break in the cost (on Amazon, at least, this season is priced a few buck less than Season 3). The best extras include a table read for one episode and a stage reading before a live audience at a rep theatre (which includes most of the cast). The latter was a fundraiser for the productions assistants who were forced out of work by the writers' strike, and it is at least as funny as the actual episode that aired live (but then, I think live theatre is always funnier than TV). Not all the extras are as good - there are MANY commentaries, each featuring one or two actors/producers of the show, with most of the cast getting the opportunity of doing at least one. The best, for my money, are those with Tina Fey herself (presumably because she brings multiple angles to the table as actress, producer, writer, and creator). Another highlight is the commentary by the peerless Tim Conway, who has a guest turn as a former sitcom star touring the studio.

This last point serves to highlight one of the defining characteristics of this season (and, I think, all the seasons). Following the fine precedent of Season 1, where we had guest stars LL Cool J, Isabella Rossallini, and Nathan Lane, Season 2 has yet more stars: Jerry Sienfeld (Jack attempts to insert Seinfeld into other sitcoms through Forrest Gump-style computer effects), Edie Falco as Jack's girlfriend (and Democratic Congresswoman), the aforementioned Tim Conway, David Schwimmer as NBC's environmentally friendly spokesman "Greenzo", Matthew Broderick as a member of George W. Bush's government ("He named me 'Burger' because he saw me eating a burger one time.... and it wasn't even a burger, it was a sandwich!"), and Carrie Fisher's Emmy-nominated performance as Liz's hero (a former comedy writer from "Laugh In" who now lives in anarchic poverty).

Topping them all is the semi-regular appearance of Rip Torn as the G.E. chairman who is planning to retire and is looking hard at Jack (Alec Baldwin's character) as a replacement. This is the thread that drives the plot through much of the season, and leads Liz Lemon (Fey) to utter the memorable phrase I use as the title for my review.

Unfortunately, there's only 15 episodes (instead of the usual 22 or so for a regular sitcom season). I guess if the biggest complaint is that I wanted more of the same, that's a pretty strong endorsement on how good the material is!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Best Shows Currently on Television!, July 18, 2008
By 
Ashley E. Kress (Milwaukee, WI USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
Of course this season was shorter due to the writer's strike, as were the seasons of many other shows this year. This is unfortunate, but has no effect on the quality of the episodes that were created before the strike. In my opinion this continues to be one of the best shows on television. It is consistently hilarious and smart and it is well worth watching, whatever the duration.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BRILLANT, March 22, 2009
By 
Peggy "pab920" (Norfolk, VA United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: 30 Rock: Season 2 (DVD)
I was not familiar w/ this show until I recently watched it on Netflix streaming and became an instant fan. I haven't enjoyed an intelligent comedy show for adults this much since Will & Grace, 3rd Rock From The Sun and the old SNL (think Dana Carvey as the Church Lady, Bill Murray, etc.). The show is quick paced and sharp. I laugh out loud again! Sometimes I do get a bit bored with Tracy's (Morgan) Jordan's over the top behavior, but that is about the harshest criticism I can muster. Tina Fey really is a genius with her great writing and acting skills. I was amazed she was also the executive producer. How does she do all of this and then do it so incredibly well??? The cast is exceptional, although if the actors portraying the show's writers were replaced I wouldn't miss them. Alec Baldwin and Jack McBrayer are sooooo believable and funny! I love this show and hope it has a very long run at least for the 100 or so episodes needed for syndication. Kudos to NBC for this show and Heroes!!! I think it's wonderful NBC and AMC's Mad Men show prove that non-cable TV can be have EXCEPTIONAL QUALITY.
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30 Rock: Season 2
30 Rock: Season 2 by Tina Fey (DVD - 2008)
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