30 Rock in Danger of Growing Stale

Tina Fey's show starts new season tonight
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 15, 2009 4:51 PM CDT
Tina Fey, center, poses backstage with the cast of "30 Rock" after winning an Emmy.   (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
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(Newser) – Tina Fey and crew return tonight with the season premiere of 30 Rock, and critics are worried that the show is losing its edge:

  • Todd VanDerWerff, AV Club: "30 Rock is still nowhere near a bad show, but it risks turning into a show where one-dimensional people spend a lot of time shouting at each other."
  • Robert Bianco, USA Today: "As funny as this scattershot sitcom can be, the problem remains that show business (and in particular, GE's business) is a topic of limited long-haul mass appeal. ... It had better up its game. And expand it."

  • Allesandra Stanley, New York Times: A "striking thing about the new season ... is the acting limitations of its star and creator, Tina Fey." She "is one of the funniest comedy writers on television and a gifted mimic (Sarah Palin), and she is at her worst playing a comic version of herself."
  • Alan Sepinwall, Star-Ledger: "The first two episodes of season four fall mainly into the 'collection of gags' category, and they're not even particularly strong examples of that. It feels, at times, like the episodes are trying too hard to be self-referential."