“30 Rock”: Good, but not best-comedy-series funny

30rockbaldwinI made a point of taking home the “30 Rock” season preem screener when it arrived earlier in the week.

I wanted the seg to live up to the show’s Emmy win for best comedy. It even boasts Jerry Seinfeld…but the upshot was, I liked it, didn’t love it. That’s kinda how I felt about the show last season, even after friends kept opining how much funnier it became in the second half of its frosh year.

In the sophomore season opener, “SeinfeldVision,” which airs next week, there seems to be a concerted effort to put a wee bit of heart in the show, and to Tina Fey’s Liz Lemon TV producer character in particular.

“I think it’s going to be my year,” Lemon declares at the top of the episode — signaling of course that things are about to go awry.

For me, “30 Rock” is still a little bit too clever for its own good, what with its endless inside-the-Peacock references. Alec Baldwin, however, makes takes the edge off every time he’s on screen. I’ve watched the show more than once wondering if I wouldn’t like it more if Baldwin’s nutty TV exec character Jack Donaghy was the main focus.

The “30 Rock” definitely has its moments. As the network prepares to launch a new season, Donaghy gets the bright idea to use old NBC footage of Seinfeld to digitally insert him into new episodes of shows (“Heroes” and “Deal or No Deal” among them). When the real Seinfeld returns from vacationing in an exclusive European enclave that only super-rich people know about, he takes exception with the “SeinfeldVision” campaign, forcing some fancy footwork by Jack.