Raise your hand if 30 Rock’s Liz Lemon getting “Solo-ed” by James Marsden when she told him she loved him warmed your Star-Wars-loving heart. Okay, now put your hand down; your boss is going to think you’re having some sort of meltdown and start searching your desk for Crayolas. Now that we’ve taken care of that, get ready for some potentially disheartening news: 30 Rock will end, and that end might be approaching rather quickly.
Tina Fey stopped by The View, and while we hoped she was there to defend the use of bathing suit bottoms as underwear on laundry day and night cheese as an acceptable alternative to psychotherapy, she actually dropped a mini-bomb: “The end of the show is on the horizon.” Blerg.
Fey addressed the comments made by her dapper, yet infamously outspoken co-star Alec Baldwin regarding NBC and the Today Show. After ranting about reporters from the Today Show stalking him at his apartment, Baldwin tweeted “I think I’m leaving NBC just in time.” And that’s when Tumblr imploded: Does this mean 30 Rock is over?
The series has seen declining ratings (less than three million viewers during its April 5 outing) and fans and critics alike have lamented the disconcerting cheery presence of happy Liz Lemon since season six made its first Ikea joke. The good news is, there’s no official end in sight, but Fey’s just wearing her realistic hat: “…you don’t want to see me with a grey stripe in my hair, eating a slice of pizza, going on dates,” she told the the ladies of The View.
But even the most stalwart 30 Rock fan (see: me) has to admit that the series has gone through the appropriate aging stages. It has reached the age when it’s socially acceptable for wildly wealthy people to retire and lie on a beach in Mexico for the rest of their days.
The Terrible (Uproarious, Spastic, Amazing) Twos (Seasons 1-2)
The first two seasons were like babysitting an insane toddler for 30 minutes a week. You fill up your iPhone with video clips, turn their hilarious one-liners into viable phrases in adult conversation, thank your lucky stars that you don’t live with these crazy people, and worry that Liz Lemon might be your spirit animal.
High-Fiving A Million Angels (Seasons 3-4)
While that phrase wasn’t invented until the fifth season, it’s pretty perfect for the seasons preceding it. This is the period in which you finally managed to convince all your non-believing friends that the Cheesy Blasterz song was iPod-worthy and even your Dad started to get into the show. It almost felt mainstream. Screaming “What the what” and “I want to go to there” were like secret clubhouse phrases, except everyone you know shouted them, too.
Gangway for Footcycle (Season 5)
This is when the series began to descend into complete and utter madness. We still picked up quotes like the olden days and enjoyed giggle fits at the hands of Tracy’s bewildered delivery, but then Jack went and got himself locked into a contrived love triangle and Jenna started dating herself. Call it the drunk-uncle-who-still-makes-you-unintentionally-laugh-occasionally phase.
Dance like No One’s Watching (Season 6)
Liz Lemon may have pulled this sage advice from a tampon box and it may ring more true to the veteran series’ ratings than Fey and company would like, but it’s the way it is. This season we’ll see Lemon and co. whip out their old tricks, including another live show, and now that she’s all snug as bug in an Ikea rug, it’s clear that the series is just riding out its last few moments before retirement. And you know what? That’s perfectly fine. It had a good run and television history oft reminds us it’s better to ride off into the sunset instead of being chased off by an angry mom armed with Hulk hands and Sabor de Soledad.
Are you ready to let 30 Rock begin its swan song?
Follow Kelsea on Twitter @KelseaStahler.