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Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Tracy Morgan, Jane Krakowski, Jack McBrayer, Scott Adsit, Judah Friedlander
Writing Credits:

Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin, are back one more time as weird buddies/work spouses, Liz Lemon and Jack Donaghy. As Jack schemes to take control of KableTown or sink the whole company trying, Liz strives to balance her uncharacteristically blissful personal life with the constant chaos of her career.

Rated NR

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1/16X9
English Dolby Digital 5.1
English Dolby Surround 2.0
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 280 min.
Price: $39.98
Release Date: 5/7/2013

• Audio Commentaries for Four Episodes
• Deleted Scenes
• “The Donaghy Files”
• Tina Fey Studio Tour
• Previews


Panasonic TC-P60VT60 60-Inch 1080p 600Hz 3D Smart Plasma HDTV; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.


30 Rock: Season 7 (2012-13)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (October 16, 2014)

All good things come to an end, as we find with Season Seven of 30 Rock. This becomes the series’ finale, unfortunately. I’ll look at all 13 episodes in broadcast order, which is how the shows appear here. The plot synopses come straight from TV.com – thanks to them.


The Beginning of the End: “Liz discovers that Jack is intentionally trying to ruin NBC in hopes that Kabletown will sell it. Meanwhile, Tracy tries to help Kenneth with his relationship problems with Hazel.”

In the past, season opening episodes could seem to try too hard, and that became a particular danger here given the fact that everyone involved knew Season Seven would be 30 Rock’s last. Despite all those pressures and expectations, “End” launches S7 on a terrific note. It sets up a variety of plot lines in a concise manner while it also doles out plenty of laughs. I hope this becomes a harbinger for a high-quality season to come.

Governor Dunston: “After vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan drops out of the race, Liz and Jack agree to keep politics off TGS. When a new politician shows up on the scene, however, Liz struggles to keep her word. Meanwhile, Kenneth has a visit from his mother and her naïve friend.”

The hits keep on coming with a fine second episode. I like Liz’s solution to her intimacy problems, and the thread with Romney’s new VP choice offers easy laughs, but they’re big laughs nonetheless. Two episodes in and I’m happy with S7.

Stride of Pride: “Jack develops a new relationship strategy based on the principles of the movie The Great Escape, Liz tries to prove that women are funny, and a tabloid reveals that Jenna is 56 years old.”

The hit parade keeps coming with “Pride”. I like the age-related revelations shared by Jack and Jenna, and Liz’s continued sexual evolution delivers good moments. Maybe S7 will sag eventually, but so far it’s top-notch.

Unwindulax: “Jenna is confronted by fans from Florida, known for their motto ‘Unwindulax’. Jack tries to influence the upcoming election, swaying the vote towards candidate Romney using money.”

S7 leads up toward the 2012 election in a clever way. It manages to mock liberals, conservatives and Parrotheads alike via a wild, fast-paced show. It even finishes with a cliffhanger that adds to the mirth.

There’s No “I” In America: “After realizing the only statistically undecided voters are those northern Floridians, Liz and Jack both try to get Jenna to sway the entire election vote in the opposite directions with her unpredictable ‘Unwindulax’ fans.”

I’ve always viewed Pete as the series’ weakest link, so an episode with as moderate Pete-focus inevitably hits some snags. Happily, those remain minor, and the rest of the election-based events offer good comedy. Pete’s scenes might impact the overall shows in a negative way, but it remains positive most of the time.

Aunt Phatso Vs. Jack Donaghy: “Jack plans to sue Tracy after his name is used in several of Tracy's movies depicting him as a villain. Liz wants to get surgery for her feet but doesn't think the show can survive without her at the helm.”

While not quite as strong as prior shows, “Phatso” still continues the trend of positive programs. Hazel gets a lot of good moments, and the spoof of Tyler Perry might be easy but it’s entertaining. This ends up as another good episode.

Mazel Tov, Dummies!: “Liz tries to get Criss to want a family once she runs into Dennis.”

With a major Liz life event on display, “Dummies” could’ve turned sappy, but 30 Rock doesn’t really do sentiment, so that doesn’t become a concern here. It handles the subject well and may be a little weaker than usual in terms of laughs but it still carries the story arc nicely.

My Whole Life Is Thunder: “Jack tries to avoid his mother. Meanwhile, Jenna starts to envy Liz and her married life.”

Guest stars rule the day in this excellent episode. It’s always a delight to see Elaine Stritch as Jack’s mother, and we also find the great Andrea Martin. “Thunder” avoids cheap emotion while it wraps up some story points in a satisfying manner.


Game Over: “Liz is still trying to conceive a baby naturally, but has not ruled out adoption. Jack joins forces with Devon Banks in a plot against Kaylie Hooper in order to become CEO of Kabletown. The second feature by Tracy's production company is about Harriet Tubman, but his star, Octavia Spencer, is more like Tracy than Tracy.”

That last element particularly delights, as it’s a blast to watch Tracy confronted with an actor just as irresponsible as himself. Jack’s side also amuses and gives us a lot of twists and turns. Liz’s narrative is less fun, but hey, someone has to carry the story.

Florida: “Liz decides to be spontaneous and goes with Jack to Florida so that he can deal with his late mother's estate. Once there, they find out that Jack's mother may have been in a relationship with someone. Back at the studio, with no other staff members around, Tracy and Jenna are in charge and tackle a lawsuit.”

S7 stumbles a little with “Florida”, as it comes across as somewhat forced. With so few episodes left, the series needs to wrap up characters and plot lines, which this one does so in a clumsy way. It still comes with laughs, but it’s a lackluster program.

A Goon’s Deed In a Weary World: “Jack sets up a meeting so that Liz can try and save TGS but the entire crew appears to work against her wishes. The adoption agency tells Liz that her adopted children are arriving in a week and Criss offers to prepare the house. Kenneth tours candidates at NBC for Jack's replacement for president.”

While “World” also comes laden with potentially draggy plot points, it manages more laughs than “Florida”. Some of the story areas do sag, but at least the episode generates a fair amount of comedy, even if it does veer toward sappiness at times.

Hogcock!/Last Lunch: “Liz and Jack try to settle into their new lives without TGS. Jack decides to focus on attaining happiness. Liz tries to adjust to her stay-at-home lifestyle while Criss works. Jenna attempts a career as a dramatic actress. Tracy struggles without the aide of Kenneth's advice. After 149 episodes, Kenneth finds a clause that requires Liz to complete one more episode to fulfill her contract obligations. Tracy tries to sabotage the taping. Jack struggles to find a meaning in his life after quitting his job.”

The series’ final episode mixes wackiness with sentiment. I guess the latter’s inevitable, but I wish the show had tried harder to avoid schmaltz. Still, it remains edgy enough to amuse and gives us a fun finale.

The DVD Grades: Picture B/ Audio C+/ Bonus C

30 Rock appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on these single-sided, double-layered DVDs; the image has been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. Expect good but not great visuals.

Overall sharpness seemed fine. Some wide shots could be a little iffy, but the majority of the shows delivered fairly tight and concise elements. Jagged edges and moiré effects remained minor, and edge haloes were also minimal. No source defects marred the presentation.

As usual, the series opted for generally natural colors, and the DVDs showed them in a satisfying manner. The tones came across as full and pleasant throughout the season. Blacks were deep and dark, while shadows seemed decent; some dimness could occur, but those shots were mostly fine. All of this added up to a solid “B” presentation.

A dialogue-focused series such as 30 Rock won’t win any auditory awards, so don’t expect fireworks from the Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtracks. Music showed decent stereo presence, and some general ambience came along for the ride. However, the side and rear speakers didn’t get a ton to do, so anticipate low-key soundscapes across these episodes.

Audio quality remained pleasing. Music was peppy and punchy, while the modest effects came across as accurate enough. A little edginess occasionally affected speech, but the lines usually appeared distinctive and natural. Nothing here impressed, but the audio worked for the series.

With that we head to the set’s extras. Four audio commentaries span all three discs. Here’s the breakdown:

“Mazel Tov, Dummies”: story editor Tracey Wigfield and associate producer Tom Ceraulo. They give us a mix of story/script-related notes, with an emphasis on changes and deletions. They offer a pretty good behind the scenes take on the episode.

“My Whole Life Is Thunder”: TV writer Damian Holbrook and producer Colleen McGuinness. Similar to the “Dummies” discussion, this one goes over a nice mix of episode-related tidbits. Holbrook also throws in some thoughts about his long-time relationship with Tina Fey and helps turn this into an enjoyable chat.

“A Goon’s Deed in a Weary World”: actor Jane Krakowski and producer/composer/director Jeff Richmond. Here we find some general series information as well as thoughts about the end of the series and the episode itself. Nothing great appears here, but Krakowski and Richmond make this a breezy, enjoyable chat.

“Hogcock!/Last Lunch”: producer/actor Tina Fey and executive producer Robert Carlock. For the final chat, we hear about the series’ end as well as sets/locations, cast/performances and various technical nuggets. If you hope the commentaries wrap with a bang, you’ll encounter disappointment. Carlock and Fey finish the set with a sporadically interesting but often bland chat.

A few ads open DVD One. We get clips for Admission, Suits, The Office, and Parks and Recreation.

The remaining extras show up on DVD Three. The Donaghy Files runs four minutes, 40 seconds and provides an animated piece in which Jack needs to find a new halftime performer for the Super Bowl. It’s a fun clip.

A Tina Fey Studio Tour goes for 26 minutes, 19 seconds and provides exactly what it implies: we follow Fey as she takes us through various 30 Rock sets. We get a nice glimpse behind the scenes.

10 Deleted Scenes fill a total of five minutes, 44 seconds. These cover seven episodes and give us short comedic tidbits. Happily, they’re longer than in the past; prior seasons often offered snippets that ran under 10 seconds, while these don’t end so soon. Still, they remain brief and insubstantial, but they’re amusing,

The interface continues to stink. None of the 30 Rock DVD sets ever included “Play All” for the deleted scenes, and that often made then a chore. This season’s aren’t as annoying to navigate, but I never could understand why they left out “Play All” for the deleted scenes – especially since other aspects of the DVD include that option.

With Season Seven, 30 Rock comes to an end, and it does so in a mostly satisfying manner. Sure, the shows got a bit sappy toward the end – a tone that doesn’t suit the series – but matters remain entertaining and funny the majority of the time. The DVDs come with good picture, acceptable audio and a few decent bonus materials. Fans will continue to enjoy 30 Rock during its enjoyable final season.

Viewer Film Ratings: 4 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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