NBC’s 30 Rock stayed true to its hilarious self as it wrapped up its seven year run in a one-hour finale that revisited some of the show’s favorite themes, jokes and characters. The episode offered closure for all of its characters’ stories.
As the hour began, Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) was settling uncomfortably into life as a stay-at-home mom to her two adopted kids. But workaholic Liz wasn’t content with fighting other moms who post hilariously awful comments to mommy blogs. She just HAD to go back to work!
Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin) got all the power he could–he was even reprimanded by Nancy Pelosi on national TV–but found he still was not fulfilled and in the end quit his job. And then he had the idea to kill himself because of the fight he had with Liz…
Kenneth (Jack McBrayer) ended up running NBC and came up with a list of “no-no words” for producers of NBC shows, including “conflict,” “divorce,” “shows about shows,” “New York,” “politics,” “women,” “quality,” “edgy,” etc. Am I the only one who thought this reach was a bit much? I never saw Kenneth as a television president.
With TGS done, Jenna (Jane Krakowski) tries to move forward with her career but she refuses to play a corpse on Law & Order: SVU (my second favorite show!) and a trip to LA ends almost immediately when she steps off the plane and discovers everyone else at the airport is more beautiful (and younger!) than her.
Eventually, the whole gang had to come together to produce one last TGS program, leading Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan) to seemingly speak for the cast of both TGS and 30 Rock when he says, “That’s our show. Not a lot of people watched it but joke’s on you, we got paid anyway.”
Mixed in with the gags — many of which hit their target — are a few heartfelt farewells between Liz and Jack, Liz and Tracy and in my favorite, Jenna and her mirror.
30 Rock has not been a perfect show. It went through stretches of unfunny plots. But despite its imperfections, this last season of 30 Rock was incredible and one of the greatest final seasons of a television sitcom. This season marks how far Fey and her writing staff have brought the show from its darker days, back in season four. 30 Rock’s characters have always been secondary to the jokes, but in realizing the dreams of Liz Lemon, Jack Donaghy, and even Kenneth, the last season has neatly revealed that even if these weren’t the deepest characters on TV, they were still people worth caring about. The 30 Rock finale season pulls in loose ends from the whole run of the show and closed a bunch of storylines fans didn’t even realize they were invested in.
Though I honestly do not think there will be another show like “30 Rock,” I’m OK with that. And as much as I will miss Jenna Maroney — it’s going to be hard to watch TV on Thursdays knowing I will not see her on camerah — I do not want to see her in a “Joey”-like spinoff. I’m going to miss the heck out of the characters and this show, but thank you, Tina Fey and “30 Rock” for the laughs, the new words in my vocabulary, the tears (usually from laughter) and the friendships. Blergh!