If you have never seen an episode of “30 Rock” before, then the title probably looks like an embarrassing typo … for everyone else, it is part for the course with this show. NBC ended its long-running hit on Thursday night with surprises (Jack pretending to off himself), Pete pretending to off himself, and Blimpie’s getting the worst publicity of all time.
It’s really hard to review finales since you go into them with such a personal connection, but we really think that Tina Fey and Robert Carlock really pulled out all of the appropriate stops for this one. The one thing that they succeeded with fully was priorities: they recognized that Criss is now a big part of Liz Lemon’s life, so he was in the first half-hour; however, the actual “final episode” was focused entirely on the crew at TGS, and how they had to put on one last show in order to honor Tracy Jordan’s 150-episode contract.
The nature of the goodbyes was also brilliant. After so many years of torture from the writers, Lutz finally got his revenge; not only that, and Jenna (who flopped with film, scripted dramas, and theater within the span of the your) also learned that the one thing that she will miss from TGS is the opportunity to look at herself. Tracy just wanted brutal honesty from everyone, and Kenneth strangely seems to be moving NBC in a profitable direction … even if it is at the expense of quality. (Possibly symbolism, anyone?)
Having the show end with a “Rural Juror” performance from Jenna was perfect enough, but then somehow the writers made it perfect-er (yes, we just did that) by flashing forward a year to seeing Pete fail at faking his death, Liz managing to work on a new show with Tracy’s long-forgotten bodyguards, and Jack creating a new business empire with his see-through dishwashers. Then, the show went totally out of the park with a joke about Kenneth being immortal and living long enough to have Liz’s great-grandmother pitch the show “30 Rock” to him. It was weird and wonderful at the same time, and a perfect reminder that this was comedic television at its best and brightest.
What was your take on the finale? Be sure to also head over here to read some more of our personal account of the show’s history.