Ode to 30 Rock: A look back on a phenomenal series


30 Roc told the story of struggling middle aged television writer Elizabeth Lemon (Tina Fey) and her unlikely best friend, successful NBC executive Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin). Their televised journey through life entertained for seven sevens.

The end of this month brings with it the end of an era for many lovers of comedy; NBC’s critically acclaimed 30 Rock will air its last episode on Jan. 31.  30 Rock, which stars Tina Fey as Liz Lemon, quirky, smart, nerdy, and kind head writer to SNL-style comedy sketch show TGS, has been in a class of its own for the past seven years.

Based on Fey’s real-life experience at SNL, the show has chronicled Lemon’s struggles to “have it all,” by balancing her work life with her social and personal ones, while still attempting to maintain her sanity.

It is sad to think that the wacky world of 30 Rock is nearing its end.  For the past seven years, Liz Lemon has shown television viewers how to stress eat like a professional and served as the perfect example of what happens when someone’s “workself suffocates [his/her] lifeme.”

Actually, utterly depressing may be a better way to describe the end of 30 Rock.  After Jan. 31, the world will no longer have new encounters with Dr. Leo Spaceman (spa-che-man), a possibly certified physician who once told Tracy Jordan that his “blood tasted like rootbeer,” during a diabetes diagnosis.  Dr. Spaceman is not alone on the list of secondary characters who will be dearly missed.

What will happen to society without new appearances of Dennis Duffy, D’fwan, Angie Jordan, and Suhbas the Janitor?  What will happen to America’s morality without sweet, oblivious Kenneth?

Liz Lemon aside, the character who will be missed the most is Jack Donaghy. Jack Donaghy gives terrific advice and is right about everything.  He understands the appeal to Phil Collins’s music (“I have two ears and a heart, don’t I?”) and truly believes that horses are the only appropriate subject matter for serious artwork.  His guidance, whether moral or amoral, always holds some shred of truth to it.

30 Rock has possessed, since the start, the unique ability to blend laugh-so-hard-you-Liz momentswith the more heartfelt, serious, touching ones.

For example, at the end of season two Liz thinks she is pregnant with Dennis Duffy’s baby and is so excited and adorable, only to find out that her Sabor De Soledad cheese puffs caused the false positive on the pregnancy test.

Liz and Jack end up having a very sweet conversation, which sort of speaks to the fact that Liz works hard and deserves to get what she wants.  At the same time, they bring comedy back into it and the cause of the pregnancy scare (food) is very Liz Lemon.

30 Rock is truly a gem, and will be missed by all.  At least viewers can take comfort in the fact that 30 Rock will always remain in their memories (and their Netflix accounts).