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30 Rock Takes a Gentle Poke at Ben Silverman’s Post-NBC Plans

As 30 Rock enters its fourth season, some critics have already begun sharpening their fangs in hopes that the show will jump the proverbial shark. For example, a recent piece by the Onion's "A.V. Club" states a case that the show is "in danger of turning into a slightly funnier Will & Grace." While we don't exactly concur with that assessment, we'll admit that we didn't find ourselves bowled over by last week's season premiere. However, last night's episode saw the show once again hitting a familiar, meta-flavored stride, as Tina Fey and her writing staff tried a "ripped from the headlines" approach and took on recent real-life story lines like the 30 Rock porno and Ben Silverman's post-NBC plans.

While we enjoyed last night's jokes at Jeremy Piven's expense (after a trip to Iceland to film a low-budget werewolf movie, Jenna explained that she got "mercury poisoning from obsessively taking my rectal temperature") and we got some guffaws when the show made non-explicit references to the 30 Rock porn spoof that just hit the shelves, our favorite moment of last night's show was the subtle dig at Ben Silverman's sketchy fantasy company post-NBC venture with Barry Diller:


Funny, that's actually a better explanation about what Silverman's next job will be than what he was able to describe to us!

Photo: Patrick McMullan