¡Qué Sorpresa!

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"¡Qué Sorpresa!"
30 Rock episode
Episode no. Season 5
Episode 13
Directed by John Riggi
Written by Matt Hubbard
Production code 513
Original air date February 3, 2011
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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"Operation Righteous Cowboy Lightning"
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"Double-Edged Sword"
30 Rock (season 5)
List of 30 Rock episodes

"¡Qué Sorpresa!" is the thirteenth episode of the fifth season of the American television comedy series 30 Rock, and the 93rd overall episode of the series. It was directed by John Riggi, and written by Matt Hubbard. The episode originally aired on the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) network in the United States on February 3, 2011. Guest stars include Ken Howard, Vanessa Minnillo, Brian Williams, Richard Belzer, Ice-T, and Elizabeth Banks.

In the episode, Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin) meets with Kabletown's boss, Hank Hooper. Jack doesn't like Hank's tactics of being a friendly boss and, in order to impress him, steals Kenneth Parcell's (Jack McBrayer) idea. Liz Lemon keeps Avery Jessup's pregnancy from relentless reporter Carmen Chao (Vanessa Minnillo). Meanwhile, Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan) and Jenna Maroney (Jane Krakowski) fight over a sweatshirt.

According to Nielsen Media Research, "¡Qué Sorpresa!" was watched by 4.784 million viewers during its original broadcast and received a 2.4 rating/6 share among adults aged 18–49.

Plot[edit]

Vanessa Minnillo guest starred in the episode as Avery's rival Carmen Chao

Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin) goes to the "TGS" set and tells them that Hank Hooper (Ken Howard) the boss of NBC's Kabletown is touring 30 Rockefeller Plaza and tells them all, especially Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan)and Jenna Maroney (Jane Krakowski), to act normal and tells them of his desire to make a good first impression. Meanwhile, Tracy and Jenna receive a gift basket from Hank Hooper. The gift basket contains two of the following: MacBook Air, a watch, and a cellphone. Both are very happy with each other until they see only one Kabletown sweatshirt. Tracy unwillingly lets Jenna have it.

Later, Jack tells Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) to go shopping for baby stuff with Avery Jessup (Elizabeth Banks), who has cleverly hidden her 8-month pregnancy from her co-workers by wearing "fashionable" wizard cloaks. Jack goes on to tell her that Avery's dream career as the Financial reporter for NBC Nightly News would not be possible if they find out about the pregnancy, especially Carmen Chao (Vanessa Minnillo), an MSNBC reporter with an unknown ethnic background who is relentlessly trying to reveal Avery's secret pregnancy. Avery and Liz meet Carmen at the baby store where Liz defends Avery's secret pregnancy by saying that she is pregnant. Knowing this to be false, Carmen schedules an "interview" with Liz about single mothers.

Jenna and Tracy continue to fight over the sweatshirt, so they talk to Liz about it, where both are wearing one side of the sweatshirt. Pete Hornberger (Scott Adsit) tells them lay off Liz because she is "pregnant". As a result, Liz goes on to get the sweatshirt and throws it in the trashcan.

Jack meets Hank, who hugs him at first sight, at the executive dining room (which Hank turned into an "Everyone Dining Room"), much to Jack's horror. While eating, Hank convinces Jack to do an employee pitch day, where every employee can pitch their ideas to upper management. The pitch doesn't go well, so Jack pitches an idea of his own to Hank. His idea is the Voice-Activated remote (or "Vo-Act"). Jack's idea is also unsuccessful as the characters on the TV can also control the television. With no apparent choice, he steals Kenneth's idea: the Blah-Bar, where there is a black bar on the bottom part of the screen which prevents people from seeing anything dirty. Jack tells this to Kenneth and asks him for what he wants, despite the fact that Kenneth wants nothing.

Meanwhile, Liz's plan backfires when the "TGS" staff hear that Liz is pregnant. Jack convinces Liz to keep it that way, but Carmen keeps questioning Liz intensely. To really get the truth out of Liz, Carmen makes her do sexy pregnancy photos. During the photo shoot, Carmen tells Liz that she knows she's not pregnant and tries to convince her to admit it, but Carmen and her cameraman run away quickly when they see Liz grab oil and rub it on her stomach.

Eventually, Jack tells Hank about stealing Kenneth's idea, with Kenneth in the room, apologizes, and files for his resignation. But Hank says that they're "gonna be just fine." And since, Kenneth wants nothing, Hank suggests that they hug, much to Kenneth's joy.

In the end, Avery is moved to NBC Nightly News (to Carmen's chagrin) and her pregnancy is finally revealed. To acknowledge their gratefulness for Liz's efforts to help Avery, Jack and Avery plan to give their daughter the middle name Elizabeth. Tracy and Jenna find out that Liz is not pregnant, so she gives them her "pregnancy" photos as her "punishment".

Reception[edit]

According to the Nielsen Media Research, this episode of 30 Rock was watched by 4.784 million households in its original American broadcast.[1] It earned a 2.4 rating/6 share in the 18–49 demographic. This means that it was seen by 2.4 percent of all 18- to 49-year-olds, and 6 percent of all 18- to 49-year-olds watching television at the time of the broadcast. The figure was a decrease from the previous episode, Operation Righteous Cowboy Lightning, which was seen by 4.922 million households.[2]

Alan Sepinwall of HitFix described the episode as "uneven but funny-enough" and spoke positively about Ken Howard's performance, but opined that "the Liz/Avery/Vanessa Minillo story was underdeveloped and didn't have a good enough payoff [...] and the only good thing about the Tracy/Jenna subplot was how quickly it got back-burnered."[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gorman, Bill (February 4, 2011). "Thursday Final Ratings: 'Grey's Anatomy', 'Vampire Diaries', 'Mentalist' Adjusted Up; 'Private Practice', 'Parks & Recreation' Adjusted Down". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved March 26, 2011. 
  2. ^ Seidman, Robert (January 28, 2011). "Thursday Final Ratings: 'American Idol' Adjusted Up; No Adjustments for 'The Vampire Diaries' or 'Nikita'". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved January 29, 2011. 
  3. ^ Sepinwall, Alan (February 4, 2011). "Review: '30 Rock' - '!Que Sorpresa!': Standing in the white shadows of Kabletown". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved March 26, 2011. 

External links[edit]