Thursday, April 21, 2011

Notes on Pop Culture: '30 Rock' Cartoon, Bossypants, 'Parenthood' Finale

30 Rock/Jack Donaghy Cartoon

What do you get when you combine 30 Rock’s Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin), when he's jonesing for a frozen yogurt, with Brian Williams who has taken the last of the frozen treat? Well if you give Donaghy Superman-like powers, you’d get the snarky video above.

I love the fact that Williams – who's the reason why I watch the NBC Nightly News, along with all the senior citizens who need the denture cream that’s always advertised during the broadcast – is willing to put himself out there to look like a buffoon so often, like on late night shows and on Saturday Night Live.


As soon as I got my hands on the award-winning and overall awesome Tina Fey’s new memoir, Bossypants, I whipped through that book in short order, adoring her just a wee bit more with each new self-deprecating comment. I particularly loved how she included delightfully awkward photos of herself as a child because I too have awkward elementary and middle school photos lurking in my past that come close to being as embarrassing as the ones Fey included in her book.

The result of my jaunt through all things Bossypants? This column on the seven things I learned while reading Fey's book.

Parenthood Finale

After a really strong, tear-jerker of a season, Parenthood capped its sophomore year with a so-so finale that seemed as though it was earnestly trying too hard to pull together loose ends in the off chance the show didn’t get renewed for a third season.

In my review of the finale, I said I wasn't fond of the apparent quick resolution to Amber’s downward spiral (just because Zeek offered her a tough love tale for about five minutes wouldn’t, in my opinion, just snap her out of her deeply troubled funk), nor did I buy how quickly Sarah went from having her play accepted to be read/acted to being performed on stage. It was what, less than 24 or 48 hours from the first read to the show?

But I did adore the Adam storyline and Peter Krause, who kicked some serious behind as Six Feet Under’s Nate, continued to be wonderful as the stressed out, good guy father of two who works really hard, tries to the do the right thing and yet oftentimes winds up getting kicked in the behind and reacting to situations with genuine human angst and anger. To watch Adam get fired on the same day he learned that his wife is pregnant with baby number three – on top of his 16-year-old daughter who he recently found out is having sex and his son with Asperger’s – was a perfect example of what this show does well. Despite all his flaws, which the writers bravely allow viewers to see, you still root for him.

My fingers are crossed for a Parenthood third season and given that the ratings were strong for the finale, I hope that means we’ll hear from the NBC suits soon.

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