30 Rock: Picket! Picket Good

And thus the season begins...

Friday, Oct 16, 2009  |  Updated 8:45 AM CDT
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Reality TV Villains: Biggest Loser Tracy Gone Crazy?

Jack charges Lemon with finding a new cast member who will appeal to "real America" since Tracy and Jenna are, at turns, too urban and too actress-y.

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The Powers That Be hand Jack down a mandate to make the network more friendly. Jenna offers to record a country crossover song for their sports promos, but that's not enough. Jack charges Lemon with finding a new cast member who will appeal to "real America" since Tracy and Jenna are, at turns, too urban and too actress-y.

Lemon and Pete spend the entire episode sneakily hitting up comedy clubs after work, uncomfortably touching knees under teeny tables at said comedy clubs, and ultimately telling the writers that they're "intercoursing each other" in a desperate attempt to cover up the talent search. The reason? Writers hate talent, and talent (ah-hem, Jenna) will do anything to maintain its place in the spotlight, including but not limited to maiming enthusiastic blonde interns.

While all this is happening, Kenneth mistakenly gets hold of Jack's paycheck. This is only a problem because Kenneth had earlier raised some concerns about Page overtime compensation being cut to the Boss Man. Jack claimed there was no extra money to pay the Pages, an assertion disproven when Kenneth laid eyes on a Donaghy-bound bonus check with an eye-popping number of zeroes.

Kenneth mobilized the pages -- plus a blanket union composed of mall Santas, horse whisperers and bucket drummers -- to stage a picket. They thought they'd be getting overtime and more sanitary beards, amongst other things. In the end, Kenneth manages both to outsmart Jack in a game of high-stakes minion chess and to accomplish absolutely nothing in the way of compensation and working conditions improvement for his fellow union members.

And Tracy. We could never forget Tracy. He takes to heart Jack's assertion that money and fame have made him lose touch with his humble beginnings. He goes on an odyssey to break out of his shell, in the process accosting myriad tourists and Rockefeller Plaza employees in the process. When drive-by realness leaves him empty-handed, he joins the ill-fated strike and proves that he knows how to count… up to 18 at least!

Jenna also shows up briefly at the protest after she learns about Lemon and Pete's talent search. When she's not doing that, she's wearing Daisy Dukes or a white hot-pants onesy to record her "Tennis Night in America" country music promo. And then there's Josh, the forgettable actor-writer who plays a supporting role in this episode. He was mentioned and/or appeared at least three times during the episode, and only one of those times did I not scratch my head or consult IMDB. And, to be fair, that was kind of the point, but my apologies to Lonny Ross regardless.

Discuss this episode in our forums, then see why we think 30 Rock needs an NCIS! And check back soon for the full weecap!

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