8 Essential Lessons from the Jenna Maroney School for Actresses


While the Merritt Wever vs. Jane Krakowski debate rages on (that was a joke, there is no debate. Awarding Merritt that Emmy was just a terrible, horrible mistake), we find our unworthy planet blessed with another year of Jane Krakowski.

Weep not for Miss Krakowski's loss, however. She is undoubtedly swimming through her vault filled with millions of Sacagawea dollar coins that David E. Kelly slipped into her bra during her “Ally McBeal” days. Or maybe she is taking her 2003 Tony for the Broadway Revival of “Nine” to brunch while pointedly not inviting Kristin Chenoweth. She is one quarter of the way to EGOT, as Tracy Jordan would put it. And at 29*, she has plenty of time left to complete her collection.

Though she may have gone to the Tampa School of Acting Tricks (as revealed in the fourth season episode “Black Light Attack!”), Jenna has given enough acting pearls of wisdom to pay off all the ransoms of a much more famous actress. In celebration of the birthday of the greatest supporting sitcom actress of our lifetimes, we have compiled a collection of moments that prove that Jane Krakowski (or at least Jenna Maroney) wrote the book on acting. Literally. Without further ado, below please find the course catalog for the “Jenna Maroney School for Actresses and Only Blonde Actresses,” as illustrated by quotations from the headmistress of sitcom acting herself.

(*she is not 29, and if you were a real actress, Merritt, you would know that an actress never reveals her age. You’ve got a lot to learn.)

1. Lesson 1: Actress Geometry

The surface area of an actress’s face is directly proportional to how important that actress is.

Jack: Lemon is right, Jenna, obviously you can't do both TGC and Jenny Jimplin.

Jenna: I choose the movie. My face is bigger on movies.

Season 3, Episode 14: "The Funcooker" (2009)

2. Lesson 2: Actress Theology

God is dead, but actresses live forever.

Jenna: Oh, I can play dead. I watched my whole church group get eaten by a bear.

Season 3, Episode 18: "Jackie Jormp-Jomp" (2009)

3. Lesson 3: Actress Art History

In film composition, “depth of field” can reveal hidden truths. But always make sure you're center-screen.

Jenna: Do you need a sex tape release? Because I've got a weird one. It's night vision and you can see that his buddy is robbing me.

Seaon 3, Episode 18: "Jackie Jormp-Jomp" (2009)

4. Lesson 4: Actress Linguistics

“Stalker” is Actress-speak for “Accessory.”

Jenna: I'm sorry, Liz, I can't stop now. I just got my stalker's address from his parole officer, and I have to go confront him to find out why he's been ignoring me.

Season 4, Episode 13: "Anna Howard Shaw Day" (2010)

5. Lesson 5: Actress Physical Education

Allow athletes to do whatever they want to you, if they’re hot.

Jenna: It's like I'm in a cage, and not the fun kind where you dance while USC football recruits throw hot coins at you.

Season 6, Episode 14: "The Ballad of Kenneth Parcell" (2012)

6. Episode 6: Actress Philanthropy

Everyone always wants to hear you sing. Everyone. Always.

Jenna: Liz, last night was a disaster. And not the good kind where I get to sing at a benefit.

Season 5, Episode 9: "Chain Reaction of Mental Anguish" (2010)

7. Lesson 7: Actress Philosophy

Life is absurd and devoid of meaning. Not even death can retroactively add meaning, unless people say really nice things about you.

Jenna: What do you mean I don't have an obituary? I'm Jenna Maroney. I played Arts & Literature in the film adaptation of Trivial Pursuit.

Season 6, Episode 5: Gentleman's Intermission (2010)

8. Lesson 8: Actress Acting

You shouldn’t even be taking this advice because there can only be one actress: Jenna Maroney.

Jenna: [Nervously] Are you an actress?

Elisa: No, I’m a nurse.

Jenna: [Relieved] Good. Don’t listen to anyone who says you should become an actress.

Season 3, Episode 10: The Generalissimo (2009)