Has the dog that gives you your orders died?

The is indubitably one of the episodes I rewatch most frequently, and, yet, I still find myself laughing aloud. (Does Netflix count which episodes I watch? I’ll investigate.)

Anyway, it’s Valentine’s Day and Frank really hits the nail on the head when he says, “All we want on Valentine’s Day is to know that someone cares even a little about us.” Too true. So that’s our episode’s theme. The plots:

1. Liz schedules oral surgery for Valentine’s Day so she can avoid the whole day. But then the doctor’s office tells her she needs someone to pick her up from her surgery and she’s just as alone as anyone else. After discussing it with Jon Bon Jovi, she decides to pretend to have a boyfriend, and then after the surgery she hallucinates the greatest escorts ever:

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That jacket tho

Sadly, they aren’t real, so Jack rescues her instead. #friendship. When his date, Avery Jessup, questions her on what sort of person Jack is, Liz replies, full of drugs, “Who Jacky? He’s the best one.” What a cute moment.

2. Jack goes on CNBC meets Avery Jessup, who is honestly not one of my favorite Jack love interests. Sorry Avery. Though she objectively is a little too young for him, her intelligence is right there with him and she makes him work to impress her. He even uses the aforementioned Jon Bon Jovi, who is NBC’s artist in residence. This will always be one of my favorite “30 Rock” jokes. Always and forever.

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Anyway, she seems impressed by him (duh), so they’re on their way.

3. Jenna’s stalker has moved on and she’s really upset about it. He has the best weird person name ever, Maynard. Kenneth does not get it, but Jenna explains, “that weirdo loved me unconditionally.” Poor Jenna. There’s a great montage of her stalking her stalker at work and remembering his creepier acts while Sarah McLachlan’s “I Will Remember You” plays. Kenneth stages a fake creepy stalking incident so Jenna will know someone loves her. It’s exactly the right mix of touching and super weird that this show does so well.

So, in addition to being one of the most thematically unified episodes, it’s also just stupidly funny. Everything everyone says is hilarious, but the most iconic moment was probably this one:

Jack: Is that sex Lemon?

Liz: It is the way I do it.

Jonathan is, as always, creepily familiar with Jack, asking if they’ll be exchanging V-Day presents and confiding in him about the one time he hit an old lady with his car and drove away.

If this episode were even slightly less funny, I don’t think it would work. It’s themes would be too sappy. But the humor distracts from the overly sentimental and it all works out. Also, Bon Jovi was there.

Also, maybe the funniest part of the episode was when Dennis, Floyd and Drew appear at the end as dental assistants:

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Bits & Pieces

Avery Jessup was on Maxim’s I’d Rape That 100. Unclear if that’s more or less prestigious than Jenna’s Maxim list.

On Avery’s show, she asks Jack and the liberal bow tie guy who the next president will be. She and Jack say Mitt Romney’s son Jezba, while the liberal guy says Dennis Kucinich. THIS IS THE SECOND TIME “30 ROCK” HAS MENTIONED THIS PERSON. Kucinich is the Michael McDonald of politics.

Kenneth’s gender neutralizing hood is the scariest thing this show has ever done.

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Frank Hat: Dial-Up Access

Character I related to most: Liz, especially when she was yelling about Valentine’s/Anna Howard Shaw Day.

Literally me every year.

Literally me every year.

A ranking of Jack’s love interests from best to worst: Nancy, C.C., Avery, Elisa, Condaleeza Rice, Bianca, Maureen Dowd, Phoebe.

Arguably, Jack and Avery are more compatible than he and C.C., since they have the same politics, but ugh, it’s too Republican for me.

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