Jay Leno's big move to 10 p.m. isn't the first time that NBC has brought late-night into primetime. "30 Rock", the moderately-watched but lavishly-praised Emmy darling, did the same thing three years ago. While Leno's transition is an economical retread of old ground, "Rock" star Tina Fey's sitcom foray has been a fresh new look at a familiar weekend tentpole: "Saturday Night Live".
One can't talk about "30 Rock" apart from "SNL". After seven years as head writer and co-host of the best stretch of "Weekend Update" that Saturday nights have ever known, Fey left "SNL" to create, write, and star in the series that has become the face of good TV comedy. She brought a bundle of her co-stars along with her. "SNL" alum Tracy Morgan and 14-time host Alec Baldwin join Fey in leading the cast,
which includes other stars from the variety show's canon -- Chris Parnell, Jason Sudeikis, and Rachel Dratch among them. Lorne Michaels, the man who first culled together the Not Ready for Primetime Players, is executive producer of both shows, and the eponymous address refers to the very studio from which we hear the weekly welcome, "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!"