WARNING: "30 Rock" series finale spoilers below, so if you haven't watched it yet, you don't want to go any farther than here.
Was it the best comedy series finale ever? Nah … that's a category that includes "Newhart" and the bed, "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and the group hug, and "Seinfeld" and the prison sentence.
But the "30 Rock" series finale was a fitting ending to seven seasons of Tina Fey-led madness, with Fey's alter ego, Liz Lemon, deciding she needed to be her new family's breadwinner, while hubby Criss Cross (James Marsden) stayed home and played Mr. Mom to their adopted kids.
The finale also saw Jack Donaghy find that, after all his sacrifices to get to the top of Kabletown, once he became the company's head honcho, it left him unsatisfied. Even a group lovin' encounter with former loves Nancy Donovan (guest star Julianne Moore) and Elisa (guest star Salma Hayek) didn't turn things around.
[Related: The 15 best '30 Rock' guest stars, ranked]
And a squabble with pal Liz helped send him spiraling into a plot to commit suicide and then, instead, to sail off and find himself. After bidding Lemon adieu and -- almost -- telling her he loved her (but not in the "scale Bone Mountain" with her kinda way), he shipped out. For about 30 seconds. It was then that he realized his next mission in life: developing a clear dishwasher. (Admit it, you want to see one of those now.)
As for other beloved "30 Rock"-ers, Kenneth the page is now, of course, Kenneth the NBC president. And lest we assume the man who once declared he loves only two things ("everybody and television") isn't capable of running the network, he hauls Lemon into his office to tell her she has to make one final episode of show-within-the-show "TGS," because, otherwise, a loophole in Tracy Jordan's contract will force NBC to pay him a $30 penalty.
That provided one last chance to gather the whole crew together to produce the show, though, most of their time was spent punishing Lutz for choosing Blimpie's as their last meal on the company's dime.
Egomaniacal Jenna lined up the perfect post-"TGS" gig, a musical version of the "Rural Juror" that would take her off cam-er-a, and put her back on Broad-way. And in the episode postscript, we find out Tracy finally reunited with his long-lost father, the one who went out for cigarettes 30-some years ago.
In case your DVR retired early or you checked out before that where-are-they-now sequence, we also learned that Pete did fake his own death, but Paula caught up with him while he was jogging in the park; Jenna made an acceptance speech at the Tony Awards, but it was interrupted when the real winner took the stage; Jack returned to GE, with an attractive, female assistant; and Lemon is back in the TV game, producing a new NBC sitcom starring Grizz and titled "Grizz & Herz."
And our favorite moment of the finale came in that wrap-up, when, years in the future, NBC prez Kenneth holds a 30 Rockefeller Center snow globe (a nod, of course, to one of the best, and most controversial, TV series finales of all time, "St. Elsewhere") as he's pitched the idea of doing a "30 Rock"-ish series. The show's creator? Liz Lemon's granddaughter.
Meanwhile, like every one of the 136 episodes that came before it, the "30 Rock" series finale was very quotable. Some of the best lines:
- Jack, ticking off a list of foes he'd irritated: "I pissed off my enemies: Pelosi, Maddow, Baldwin …"
- Liz, setting up a playground showdown with a woman who'd been nasty and judgmental to her on a mommy website: "I'll be the one wearing a purple sweater and wrapping a baby swing around some skank's neck." (P.S.: The "skank" turned out to be Criss, who was complaining on the website about being a working "mom.")
- Liz, to Tracy, while they were -- circling back to the series premiere -- sitting in a strip club: "Working with you was hard, Tracy. You frustrated me and you wore me out. And because the human heart is not properly connected to the human brain, I love you, and I'm going to miss you."
- Tracy to Liz: "The night is young. And neither are you."
- Jack to Liz, who'd joked he was going to go off and play on Tan Penis Island: "For your information, most of Tan Penis Island was destroyed in Sting's house fire."
- Kenneth's list of "TV No-No Words": conflict, urban, woman, divorce, shows about shows, writer, Justin Bartha, dramedy, New York, politics, high concept, complex, niche, quality, edgy, blog, immortal characters, and foreign.
Now, tell us, what did you think of the "30 Rock" series finale? Did the show conclude with one of the best comedy series finales ever? Or did it leave you saying "what the what?!"? What were your favorite moments?
Check out "30 Rock" series finale reactions from Twitter:
Lovely & absurd final #30rock tonight. Was doubled up laughing in places. Leaves a big gap in my week :-(— Steven Medcraft (@smedcraft) February 1, 2013
As much as I will fundamentally miss #30Rock, I can't stop smiling.— jonathan (@jonvox) February 1, 2013
RIP #30Rock. Liz Lemon humanized my irrational love of sandwiches, douchebags in black leather jackets, and the word "jag."— Wendy Hector (@aglio_o_morte) February 1, 2013
I would have a time travel machine to go back in years so I'll have for seven more years of #30Rock— Javier Mangusta (@JMangusta) February 1, 2013
#30Rock stuck the landing harder than any comedy I've ever seen. Amazing. Farewell to one of my favorite shows ever...and Lutz.— Brandon Beck (@hellyesbrandon) February 1, 2013
And remember, it's perfectly normal to be feeling the five stages of "30 Rock" grief, as defined by this official NBC "30 Rock" tweet: