the Buzz for October 8th, 2008



A pair of fascinating newcomers releasing long-awaited sophomore projects, up against a host of old pros returning to the spotlight, punctuate this week’s (regretfully belated — sorry, Sherry Ann!) record store report.  But don’t just take my word for it:


Her already legendary spot-on spoofs of Gov. Sarah Palin will almost certainly stand beside Dana Carvey’s oafish takeoffs on the elder George Bush in the upper echelon of “Saturday Night Live’s” political pantheon, and if there’s any justice, the enormous buzz generated thereby will draw some much-needed attention to the product of the peerless Tina Fey’s day job, as writer and star of NBC’s enormously funny riotous farce 30 Rock.  Critically adored — the series just swept the comedy Emmys, nabbing acting trophies for Fey and Alec Baldwin (as masterful a buffoon as can be found anywhere on the dial these days), as well as honors for the series itself and for its writing — but a Nielsen also-ran — even as a niche show, this thing’s ratings are paltry — Rock miraculously returns for its third season at the end of the month, and to whet appetites for the series’ imminent return, this week brings the arrival on DVD of the outrageously hilarious Season Two, which features another Emmy-nominated turn from Elaine Stritch (as Baldwin’s ribald mother) and guest turns from, among others, Jerry Seinfeld and Edie Falco.  The textbook definition of eccentric television, this often-demented series is certainly not for everyone.  But it is funny, and given how shockingly short is the supply on that these days in TV land, that’s worth celebrating.