The first appearance of Cheyenne Jackson's little-used but always-funny TGS character in a long time was only one of the many highlights of the first episode of "30 Rock" of the new year. His story, in which he was forced to share a dressing room with Jenna, leading them to argue like a married couple, with Kenneth as their surrogate child, was great, but only comes in third among the episode's plots.
The episode, "Mrs. Donaghy" drew its title from a mix-up on Jack and Avery's marriage license, leading to Jack legally being married to Liz Lemon. The interplay between the two of them -- each one trying to blackmail the other to get what they wanted -- was beyond perfect, and I loved the way the show used this silly plot to both acknowledge and permanently shoot down the fan clamor for Jack and Liz to get together. My favorite moment had to be Liz's press conference (pictured above, as Jack watched) in which she used an accent she described as her imitation of Drew Barrymore in "Grey Gardens."
As for Tracy Jordan, he and Angie were worried because Dr. Spaceman said Tracy was going to die (though he didn't exactly give a time frame) and Angie was worried about her financial safety after Tracy's death. This first led to Jack making Angie an intern for Liz (as part of their back-and-forth), then eventually giving Angie her own reality TV show. Check out this promo, which pretty much covers everything that's wrong with TV today:
OK, now for the top 10 lines from Thursday's episode:
Tracy: Liz Lemon, I want it to be noted that I'm here on time. This is a new year, and a fresh start for me. Now I gotta go.
Tracy: I'm hosting the International Pornography Awards and I have to go get an insurance physical so I can fly into the arena in a penis-shaped parachute.
[There's a 50% chance that this is just something Tracy Morgan said on set and they caught on film, and decided to splice into the episode.]
Liz: One of my New Year's resolutions is to say "yes." Yes to love! Yes to life! Yes to staying in more!
Jack: Who wears shoes on a beach?!
Liz: Only Rocky and Apollo Creed during the training montage!
Liz: It's not REAL. We're getting a divorce.
Jeffrey Weinerslav: That's what Ann Curry and Subas the Janitor tried to tell me. That was five years ago.
Jack: Let me show you something, Lemon. This is our NBC priority pie chart. The big red part, you can see, is "The Biggest Loser." The yellow slice, our number two priority, "Make it 1997 again, through science or magic." And the little green part, is everything else.
Danny: Hey! What happened to my poster of the Montreal Alouettes?! It's signed by Marc Trestman!
[I always love cheap Canada jokes]
Tracy: Thanks Jack for coming to this emergency meeting. I'm sorry I'm four hours late, but my alarm clock didn't go off because it died in a cockfight last night.
[see above statement re: things Tracy Morgan may have just randomly said on set]
Liz: Angie, an intern's job is to do things like make copies and run errands.
Angie: So I'm like your servant?
Liz: Nope, because you're not being paid. You're really more like... oh boy.
Liz: Jack taught me not to wear tan slacks with a tan turtleneck. I thought it looked nice, but he rightly pointed out that it made me look like a giant condom.
For more coverage of the 2010-11 television season, visit the AdamReisinger.com TV Reviews home page.