Most TV shows either end up canceled before getting the chance to go out on their own terms, or they end up running so long that the quality declines and by the time they end, former fans of the TV show don’t care about it. Luckily for “30 Rock”, NBC has planned for this season to be the last, so Tina Fey and company have plenty of time to work towards a satisfying ending. The show has come off of a string of solid seasons and the premiere of the seventh and final season doesn’t disappoint.
The show revolves around Liz Lemon (Tina Fey), a writer for a “Saturday Night Live” style sketch comedy, working for Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin), the head of television programming for NBC. As the season begins, Jack plots to run NBC into the ground in the hopes that their parent company will sell them off to another company, where Jack would have a chance of promotion to CEO. “30 Rock” is always at its funniest when it relentlessly mocks the network it airs on, and some of the episode’s best material came from the terrible shows Jack creates in order to ruin NBC, from Joe Rogan starring as Nelson Mandela in a sitcom to “Cricket Night in America.”
The cast is still as funny as ever. Alec Baldwin gets to shine when he casts himself as God in a poorly conceived show titled “God Cop”, in which God solves crimes with a human partner. Tina Fey gets to throw a hilariously bad bachelorette party featuring a clown and a police officer warning the guests about identity theft. Tracy Morgan attends an awkwardly dinner party involving medicine for appetizers and a crime scene, and he only manages to make it funnier by bringing his pregnant snake over and demanding it be kept warm in the oven.
“30 Rock” is marching to its conclusion as strong as it ever has been. The original cast is still intact, the writing is as sharp as ever, and the knowledge that this is the final season will allow the show to go crazy. “30 Rock” has never garnered much attention in the ratings, but it’s always been one of the funniest shows on TV, with the critical acclaim and Emmys to back it up. When “30 Rock” ends its run later this year, it will be going out on top.
The Setonian gave this 5 out of 5 stars.
Gerald Prohigh can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.