30 Rock

Season 1 Episode 5


Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Nov 16, 2006 on NBC

Episode Recap

The show begins with Tracy trying to leave rehearsal. Liz catches up and tells him that he has to go and rehearse. She and Jenna would really like him to read what's exactly written on the cue cards. He says he is an improviser – like jazz, jazz that you laugh at.

Meanwhile Jenna tries to convince Pete to let her sing her dance-pop-techno hybrid song, Muffintop. He says she can do the short version on the show.

At a meeting, Liz, Pete and others watch Jack's filmed presentation on product integration. He is basically asking them to use the show to sell stuff. The group starts to talk about Snapple – and all the different flavors.

Later, Jenna and Liz talk about Tracy reading off the cue cards. Jenna questions Tracy's ability to read. Liz tests this idea and asks Tracy to read the cue cards for her. He refuses to read them and leaves – out the emergency exit.

Toofer and Frank decide to play with Jenna's head. They tell her that an actor is going to be fired soon.

Pete and Liz discuss about writing a product integration sketch. Pete says this show isn't a commercial – just then a guy dressed in a Snapple suit comes out of the elevator. Liz then asks Pete about Tracy's ability to read. They realize all his movies don't seem like he's reading a script.

Pete and Liz try to get Jack to play the GE executive in the product integration sketch. Jack has doubts about doing live television but decides to do it.

Later, Liz sees that Tracy doesn't read his mail. Jenna comes up to her about Jack being in the skit. She also admits that she knows one actor is going to be fired. Liz reassures her that no one is getting fired but Jenna doesn't believe here. Jenna says she has her secret weapon – her sexuality.

Liz goes into Tracy's dressing room to bring in the changes to the sketches that he's in. He said he'll read them later. She asks him if he can read. Liz says they can accommodate him so he can get a tutor. He sees it as an opportunity to do less work. He admits he cannot read and leaves work. He gets in the elevator, the elevator closes and opens and she sees him reading a newspaper.

The next day, Jonathan shows Liz and Pete the tape of Jack filming the product integration video. The tape shows Jack stumbling over words, lines, walking, writing and everything else. It took them five days to film the short video.

Jack comes up to Liz and tells her that he's nervous. She says he doesn't need to do this. But he says he likes challenges.

Jack goes to talk to his boss while Jenna decides to seduce him. She sees Jack talking to his boss. So Jenna decides to seduce his boss.

At rehearsal, Jack doesn't do very well. Jack blames the writing for his struggles. Liz gets angry and says it will be hilarious if he did it.

Liz tells Pete that Tracy is lying about his illiteracy. She says he took advantage of her white guilt. Pete and Liz try to get him to confess. They show him a poster that says: Tracy Jordan, the smallest penis in show business. Tracy says he likes it and that he's leaving early today.

That night, Jack calls Liz to come down to the studio. Jack says he cannot act – there is flashback to his childhood. He asks for her help. He wants her to talk him down. Liz tells him that if he can't do this then he's a failure – even Jenna and Josh can do it.

The next morning, Jenna tells Liz that she doesn't need to worry about her job since she seduced Jack's boss. Liz points out that the person she thinks is Jack's boss is the extra that plays his boss in the sketch. Liz makes Jenna realize that Toofer and Frank were messing with her head. Jenna says she'll get back at them with her sexuality.

While Tracy is walking down the hall, he reads the sign: Hot Lesbian Auditions and goes in. Liz and Pete are waiting for him. Tracy confesses he is literate and says Liz is racist. Pete says that Liz is racist but the point is that Tracy still needs to do the work everyone else does.

The next day, Jack repeatedly watches his successful appearance (with one line) on the show.
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