Jan 28, 2013

30 Rock's Final Week

We're currently four days away from the end of 30 Rock. The one-hour finale will air, we will cry, and then it will be over. Unlike other great comedies like Seinfeld, Cheers, or even older comedies like The Dick Van Dyke Show or The Mary Tyler Moore Show (we've got a whole Mary Tyler Moore obsession over here), it's not clear yet what the impact of 30 Rock will be. If anything, it seems like networks are hauling butt in the opposite direction, choosing to develop shows with easily digestible comedy and empty jokes with no relevance to the characters or their motivations. Despite a lot of wonderful comedies on the air right now, it seems like 'smart' comedy is quickly falling away. This season will mark the end of 30 Rock, but also the end of The Office and the possible end of countless others (Don't Trust the B, Happy Endings, Ben and Kate, etc.). More than any other show, though, 30 Rock feels and has always felt like a show created for us: for TV nerds that missed countless sporting events, mitzvahs (both bar and bat), holiday celebrations, and community events so that we could spend more time with our beloved TV boxes, who were always there with a new episode of Pete and Pete or a re-run of Alias just when we needed it. For people that count television among their loved ones and cried during the Friends finale, not because it was really that great an episode, but because it was the end of an era, dammit!

Is this the time to wallow in our suffering, crying "LIZ LEMON!" to the heavens and a vengeful god? Perhaps, but it's also a time for reflection, for soaking in the joy that the show brought us. Regardless of the strength of 30 Rock's final episode this Thursday, there's no denying the brilliant seven seasons that have come before it, nor the momentous final season that we have seen, gifted to us by Tina Fey, Robert Carlock, and all the other amazing people behind and in front of the camera.  We've followed Liz from the lettuce-hating creator of The Girlie Show to the woman that she is now: slightly more put-together, married with two children, still a hater of all things green and leafy, and the showrunner of the (just cancelled) TGS with Tracy Jordan. We've watched Jack wrestle with the contradictory nature of his conservative values and those of the hippie, 'feminista' employee that he loves so much. We've watched Liz and Jack Donaghy's relationship grow from antagonistic to friendly to pseudo-sexual to way-too-enmeshed to whatever they are now. We've seen Jenna go from a fame-loving nincompoop to a brilliant psychopath, hellbent on being famous no matter what the cost. We've been confused as Tracy Jordan does whatever it is Tracy Jordan does (WWTJD? IDK). We've enjoyed Kenneth as he used kindness to be continually fired and demoted, until he finally got the Head of Television for President of NBC title that was his all along (he loves TV so, so much). We've been simultaneously creeped out and overjoyed by the antics of Pete, Toofer, Frank, and Lutz, and we've stared too long at Cerie when we were supposed to be watching something else in the scene. We've cried with Jonathan, we've laughed with Colleen, and we've been shamed repeatedly by Jack's ex-wife Avery. We've even fantasized about astronaut Mike Dexter and considered settling with Wesley Snipes.

Now, more than ever, it's time to look back at the brilliance. We've spent many Thursdays enjoying 30 Rock, and we've spent the last few Thursdays looking at our favorite moments from the show. This week on Tableau Your Mind will be no different. We'll be checking in with old flames, favorite episodes, and missed moments. We'll be looking at Jack's relationships, 30 Rock's indelible mark on product placement, and so much more. Unless we're too busy crying - then we'll just be posting YouTube videos.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...