Wednesday, 7 January 2009

30 Rock: Or, Why Sitcoms From the UK Are Rubbish

Over the holidays (hope you had a lovely one guys!) I've been enjoying the re-runs of the first series of 30 Rock. And it's brilliant. At first I turned my nose slightly, but I'm in the habit of giving things a good go before I give up and didn't want to do it an injustice based on the pilot episode.

And guess what? I've fallen in love with its odd, completely weird storylines and quirky humour. Tina Fey, who also created the show, is great as Liz Lemon, the long-suffering head writer and producer of "TGS With Tracy Jordan", a late night comedy programme that is, so I've heard, a stab at Saturday Night Live... But you rarely get to see the show itself unless something goes disastrously wrong (normally involving fireworks - hilarity!) It tends to focus on what goes on behind the scenes, and to be honest there's not much work going on. For instance, Jenna, who used to be the star of the show before Tracy came in and took everything over, is focusing on her film acting debut in the "Rural Juror" or "Rerr Jerr" as it's referred to - no one seems to be able to understand what she's saying. But my favourite line comes from sex-crazed executive (of both this part of NBC and the microwave division) Jack Donoghy, who is trying to think of things to say during a speech. Cue the line: "squeezing the juice from his mind-grapes". Oh lordie, how I laughed!!

The bad thing is it's making me think of how stupidly awful most British comedy is. Okay, there must be trashy shows in the USA too but you never see them. All the American shows I've seen have had something positive going for them while all we can come up with is reality show after reality show, things about dysfunctional families (although I'll admit that Outnumbered is brilliant - catch it if you can) and the rest of the programming seems to be dedicated to sitcoms about people who are old enough to know better. What a bore! My UK viewing is restricted to University Challenge and documentaries, and I'm increasingly not watching TV at all! Please can someone in this country come up with something... you know... good?

Oh, and bring back 30 Rock sharpish!!


Brett said...

Good to have you back.

Rozella said...

I love 30 Rock. It's soooo funny!!!