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"Walk Hard," "30 Rock," "Earl"

By admin Published: November 30, 2007

Walk Hard

Went to a preview of "Walk Hard," the new John C. Reilly movie, last night because Reilly will be in Cleveland for a promotional event and interviews next week. I'm a fan both of Reilly and of Judd Apatow, whose empire is behind the movie, so -- without going into a full review here -- I can say that I laughed, giggled and smiled. It's a stupid-funny movie in a lot of ways but also smart-funny, especially when it comes to the cliches of the music-star biopic. I suspect it will be very difficult to take "Walk the Line" as seriously after seeing "Walk Hard." But that's the idea.

Came home and caught up with "30 Rock" and "My Name is Earl." "30 Rock" was OK in most ways. Tracy: "Practice, meetings, what is this, a marriage?" Followed soon by "Bush! Now, I don't want to go off on a rant here ..." Jack: "It's hard for me to admit a mistake, so I won't." And Frank being gay for the coffee guy was pretty hilarious.

But the payoff to Liz-and-the-coffee-guy was a little weak, and the second I saw his apartment I knew that something was off. (Remember the younger guy's place on "Sex and the City"?) The baseball-team story was also uneven. I liked that Jack simply didn't understand the kids the way Tracy did, but still thought Jack as we know him would have figured out a motivation for the kids instead of using ringers. Still, I tend to forget that Jack is also the guy who did an unannounced fireworks display in NYC.

"Earl," too, had an endings issue. Shawn Hatosy was very funny as the angry inmate, especially in his Prom King rant, and I liked that the show refused to let him become nice just because of the prom. But the payoff of Earl destroying the kid's stuff didn't feel right. Instead of the warden shredding Earl's shortened-sentence certificates, I would have preferred that, after the reconciliation, the warden added to Earl's sentence because of the fire and punching the kid.

Either way, though, it appears that "Earl" realized that having him in jail has been great for the show, and, like the warden, it's reluctant to let him just walk out.

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