By Steve Johnson
So now that Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has been compared across the
Internet to Kenneth the Page, the wide-eyed country boy come to New York
in NBC’s comedy “30 Rock,” the question almost asks itself: How long
before Jack McBrayer, the Second City-trained comic who plays Kenneth,
will be enlisted by “Saturday Night Live” to do Jindal?
We’ll answer that, as best we can, in a moment. First, though, the
comparison. Jindal was looser and more natural in his “Today” show
interview Wednesday morning, but on Tuesday night, delivering the
Republican response to President Barack Obama’s address to Congress, he
did indeed bring the Kenneth: The earnestness. The slow, mannered
delivery. The gee-whiz affect.
What this means is that, with Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin finding her pop
culture doppelganger in Tina Fey, the two Republican front runners for
the 2012 nomination (an important status to have almost four years out,
to be sure) have comic analogues in the “30 Rock” cast.
It could be worse for the Republican Party. Instead of one of the
best shows on TV, its contenders could be drawing comparisons to the
cast of “My Name Is Earl,” for instance. Or “Wife Swap.”
Now, about “SNL”: NBC doesn’t comment about who might play whom on the
show, and McBrayer couldn’t be reached. The show is in reruns this
weekend, when the Jindal iron is hottest.
When the show does return on March 7, the host will be Dwayne “The
Rock” Johnson. But the week after that, the likely host is none other
than Tracy Morgan, star of—are you ready?— “30 Rock.”