A review of last night's "30 Rock" coming up just as soon as the pervert community gets wind of morning jogging...
Better. Not great (and still suffering in comparison to "Community" and "Parks and Recreation"), but better.
"Future Husband" had the show dealing with a couple of unavoidable real-life events: Comcast's pending acquisition of NBC/Universal, and Rip Torn's ongoing problems with substance abuse and the law. So in "30 Rock" world, Don Geiss is now dead, and GE is selling the network(*) to the Philadelphia-based "Kable Town," much to Jack's horror.
(*) Somebody want to remind me where Sheinhardt wigs fits into the corporate hierarchy? Do they own NBC outright, or do they own GE outright? I always forget.
The comic highlights were, as they often are, on the margins of the episode: Tracy never giving the same take twice on the set of "A Blaffair to Rememblack," Kenneth's donkey spells, the Jamaican dental hygienist living up to Liz's stereotypical impersonation by using "bobsled" in casual conversation.
But I thought the storytelling was better than it's been in recent weeks, particularly Jack's struggle to accept the Kable Town deal and Geiss's irrelevance (and, then, death), and the way his spirits returned after Avery created the rumor about Jack being the leading candidate to run the new company. I watch "30 Rock" to laugh, but I also need to feel at least vaguely invested in what's happening with the plot and characters, and Alec Baldwin and Elizabeth Banks had a nice moment at the end there (even while not in the same room).
On the other hand, Liz's meeting with the titular Future Husband, played by Michael Sheen(*), fell a little flatter. I couldn't tell if they were aiming for "catastrophe" and instead landed on "slightly uncomfortable," or if Sheen's just too charming to be believable as a guy who wouldn't in any way click with Liz. But it seemed like things should have gone much worse than they actually did.
(*) If you like sports movies at all, I cannot recommend Sheen's turn in "The Damned United" highly enough. I neither know nor care about English football, but I loved every minute of this, thanks largely to Sheen's cocky performance as overly-ambitious coach Brian Clough.
Glad to see Tracy's EGOT quest hasn't been abandoned like so many "30 Rock" running plots before it (wherefore art thou, Liz's baby fever?), and to see someone finally act out the old "I would watch him read the telephone book" cliche.
What did everybody else think?