30 Rock was not expected to be a success. When it premiered in 2006, the off-beat sitcom went head-to-head with a now forgotten, but then highly-anticipated, show called Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. I think we know who won that time-slot war.
That said, 30 Rock ratings are never high, 4.7 million is what they averaged last year, but the Tina Fey creation has found a beloved spot in the hearts of critics, award ceremonies (14 Emmys, thank you), and a cult base of diehard fans. After six successful seasons, tonight the final season premieres.
The show's executive producer Robert Carlock told the Los Angeles Times, "Our No. 1 goal when we started the show was to be allowed to finish it." And so they have.
This season, 30 Rock will continue its time-honored tradition of poking fun at politics. In the second episode of the season Jack (Alec Baldwin) the show's reigning Republican will mourn the news of the loss of Governor Romney's running mate when it is revealed that Rep. Paul Ryan was actually born in Kenya and is ineligible to run. This all takes place while Jack is skyping with Ann Romney's dressage horse, Rafalca. 30 Rock puts all the right Republican weaknesses on the chopping block.
Things continue down the political road when in the 30 Rock world Paul Ryan is replaced as VP nominee by a fictitious Gov. Bob Dunston of South Carolina ... who happens to look exactly like Tracy Jordan.
With the vehemently Republican character of Jack, the show will certainly get a lot of mileage out of this political season. As Tina Fey and her wildly successful concept countdown to the show's finale, smart humor will keep firing away. 30 Rock has gotten to do exactly what they wanted to, stay on air long enough to be "allowed to finish it." If their years on air have taught us anything it's that smart comedy can be successful, and politics are just as hilarious as everyone thought.
The 30 Rock swan song premieres Oct. 4 on NBC at 8 pm ET.