For those of you who don’t follow the latest political/entertainment news, Stanford’s very own Dr. Condoleezza Rice will be making an appearance on the Emmy-winning NBC comedy tonight. And it will be awesome.
Why do I think that?
First of all, 30 Rock has already established Condi (the character, not the real person) as the former “neocon inamorata” of network executive Jack Donaghy (played by Alec Baldwin) in the season 1 episode “The Break-Up.” This version of Condi only made an appearance in news footage of her greeting Russia’s Vladimir Putin that was supplemented by additional “footage” of Putin grabbing her ass, leading Jack to suspect that she was cheating on him with the Chuck Norris of Russia. However, she was continuously referred to while Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) struggled with her own relationship problems, serving as a foil of sorts to Liz Lemon’s plotline. Eventually the story arc led to Jack jumping on a corporate jet to make a surprise visit to Kandahar to see her, which leads to their break-up because apparently, she was into roleplay of the Abu Ghraib variety, and he would have none of it. Which is kind of awkward, so I’m not sure if they’ll revisit that territory. But it’s a hysterically absurd version of Condi as the potentially crazy and politically influential ex-girlfriend (I repeat, this is an alternate version of Dr. Rice), and I’m sure she’ll be more than just a throwaway gag.
Which leads me to my second point. 30 Rock has a great track record of making the most of its guest stars, whether they are news anchors or Oscar-winning screenwriters. They do a particularly good job of the people who play versions of themselves, like NBC news anchor Brian Williams (who at this point is basically a recurring character and a comedic force in his own right), who appears every so often to pick up Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan)’s groupies or team up with Andrew Mitchell and slut-shame Liz Lemon, or more recently Tom Hanks, who appeared briefly in the 100th episode to take Tracy Jordan off the A-List, since no one takes you seriously if you do television.
And they do a fantastic job with non-entertainment people, like former GE Chairman Jack Welch, who shows up just to slap Jack Donaghy and tell him to man up, or former Vice President Al Gore, who can be summed up in this clip:
Really, there’s no way Condi’s not going to be funny. So if you like laughing turn your TV channels to NBC tonight at 10:30, or maybe before that, since the Office is having its final episode with Michael Scott (if you’re still into that show) and Community is awesome. Seriously, watch Community.