He suggests that she go on a date with his friend "Thomas", which she initially refuses. When she almost chokes to death alone in her apartment that night, an action that Jack had foreshadowed as "a single woman's biggest worry," she changes her mind. She meets her date in a restaurant and finds that Jack has set her up with Gretchen Thomas Stephanie March , a lesbian. Although Liz and Gretchen have great chemistry, Gretchen is not interested in chasing after a "straight girl".
The next day, Liz chastises Jack for thinking she was a lesbian. At night, Liz gets lonely and calls Gretchen. After sharing their fears as single women, they go to dinner. There, Gretchen expresses that she feels she is starting to chase the "straight girl" and says they should stop seeing each other. Liz attempts to make a pact that they get back together after 25 years and start a relationship then if they are both still single, but Gretchen walks away.
Jack and Tracy Jordan Tracy Morgan join them for the first time. The next day, Jack sets up another poker night. Eventually, Jack and Kenneth come down to the final hand. Jack has more chips and goes all-in. He offers to make the hand winner-take-all if Kenneth bets his page jacket. Kenneth agrees, and Jack's pair of twos beats Kenneth's king high. Liz asks why Kenneth would bet on a hand like that, and he responds that he enjoys living on the edge and was also confused about the rules.
Jack stops Kenneth from leaving, explains that he only made Kenneth bet his job to prove his power over him, and returns the jacket to Kenneth with the expectation that he come in early on Monday.
Production[ edit ] "Blind Date" was written by co-executive producer John Riggi pictured. This episode featured a guest appearance from actress Stephanie March, who played Gretchen Thomas. That season's co-executive producer Brett Baer had a brief appearance in "Blind Date" as a man who hits on Liz after Gretchen leaves.
Instead, the scene was featured on 30 Rock's season 1 DVD as part of the deleted scenes in the Bonus feature. In the scene, Pete comes to Liz's office and tells her about how Jack set-up the TGS stage in which they can play poker. Liz asks him if it would be all right if she brings Gretchen to the poker game. This inadvertently foreshadows the events of Season 7 when Jack personally chooses Kenneth to be his replacement as the head of NBC. Reception[ edit ] According to the Nielsen ratings system, "Blind Date" was viewed by 6.
This was an increase from the previous episode, " The Aftermath ", as it was watched by 5. It is often considered to be a turning point in the series, where the show found its footing and could start living up its potential. Robert Canning of IGN praised the episode for "playing to its strengths", and focusing on the series "most fully realized characters", Liz and Jack.
He pointed out that Tracy had "leveled off significantly from his constant high", making him "funnier in the process". Canning also enjoyed Kenneth's increased screen time and the lack of the Jenna Maroney character, played by Jane Krakowski.
The reviewer also added that Judah Friedlander, Keith Powell, and Scott Adsit, who play Frank, Toofer, and Pete, respectively, "haven't been given enough to do", and hoped that the show would produce funny moments from the writers' room. Warn also enjoyed the episode itself, calling it "one of the funniest sitcom episodes I've seen so far this season".