‘30 Rock’ signs off with flourish, stuns fans
For one NBC comedy staple, the end has come in a way that seems appropriate. “30 Rock,” created by actress and comedian Tina Fey, follows the production of sketch comedy series “TGS.”
Jenna Maroney, played by Jane Krakowski, chooses to sing “Rural Juror” as her final performance on “TGS” and endures a journey throughout the finale to find a reason for true emotion.
The Emmy-winning series ran for 138 episodes in seven seasons. “30 Rock” got its name from 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City, home to the NBC Studios.
With Kenneth Parcell in a new role as network executive at the National Broadcasting Company, Jack Donaghy must find his place after landing a job as chief executive officer at Kabletown. Jack, played by Alec Baldwin, spent each season as a politically conservative, slick businessman. Kenneth, played by Jack McBrayer, is a quirky, cheerful Southern-born character who loves television.
As a final bow to the show, each character emotionally presented their final thoughts and each comedic personality said goodbye to seven seasons of laughs and banter.
The cast of “TGS” reunited for one last episode after a contractual obligation was overlooked that required one more episode.
For the cast’s final lunch, “TGS” writer J. D. Lutz requests Blimpie and the cast goes to outlandish lengths to avoid eating there.
To prevent Lutz from picking lunch, the cast claims that as a result of the show’s cancelation and brief return, “TGS” is technically in its first episode of season eight.
That would mean Lutz, played by John Lutz, is ineligible from selecting lunch.
The series finale featured guest appearances from Al Roker, Nancy Pelosi, Richard Belzer, Ice-T, Julianne Moore and Conan O’Brien to commemorate the ending of “TGS.” Pelosi’s appearances followed a tradition of real-life politicians having cameos.
There were memorable quotes, as usual, that will be used in the vernacular of long-time fans for a while to come.
Liz Lemon’s life throughout the seven seasons as head writer for “TGS” was far from conventional, but as a character, she grew more fond of her co-workers by the end.
Most significant is her relationship with Jack that reaches a somewhat somber moment by the final episode when Jack realizes his unhappiness with life and decides to quit his new job at Kabletown. Liz comes to the conclusion Jack’s life lessons to her were harmful instead of beneficial.
In one of the more poignant moments from the show, Liz and Jack say goodbye to each other after years of a complicated platonic relationship.
Over the years, the two have shared a tumultuous relationship but remained friends.
As Jack sails away on a boat, Liz and Jack finally express that they love each other.
Tracy Jordan, played by Tracy Morgan, has to endure the realization that his best friend, former NBC page Kenneth, is now unable to carry out his requests and be near him at all times. To sign off, Tracy says “Thank you America. That’s our show. Not a lot of people watched it, but the jokes on you because we got paid anyway.”
The hour-long finale featuring the episodes “Hogcock!” and “Last Lunch” ended the series on a high note, allowing viewers to feel content with what the future holds for the now disbanded NBC show family.
Kenneth’s final appearance in an epilogue alludes to the potential for Liz to return in the plot for an upcoming series that is pitched by her great-granddaughter.
An estimated 4.8 million viewers tuned in to watch as “30 Rock” aired its finale, according to Nielsen TV Ratings.