'30 Rock' celebrates 100 episodes: Which are your favorites?

30-Rock-Brooklyn-Fey-Alec

In her new book Bossypants, Tina Fey gets candid about the decision to leave the comfort of Saturday Night Live and embark on her own with 30 Rock. She explains that while the show amassed critical success, the goal was always to become a hit with viewers (“We were trying to make Home Improvement and we did it wrong”), and 30 Rock‘s ratings left the cast and crew afraid to make long-term plans during the early years.

Yet, somehow (by the hammer of Thor, perhaps?), Fey and her gang have made it through almost five seasons, and celebrate 100 episodes with tonight’s hour-long special. With TGS on the verge of cancellation, Lemon will be pulling out all the stops to ensure she won’t have to stoop so low as to get a job at a magazine, or become the world’s worst hooker. In honor of this milestone for our beloved little show, here’s a look at some favorite episodes from the last five seasons:

“The Source Awards” (Season 1)
Jack’s burgeoning sparkling wine company becomes the sponsor for The Source Awards, causing Tracy and old foe Ridikolus (LL Cool J) to confront their beef with one another.

“Ludachristmas” (Season 2)
The TGS staff prepares for their annual holiday extravaganza and the Lemon family pays a visit to the Big Apple, including Liz’s brother Mitch, who still thinks it’s 1985 (and to the envy of Jack, that Ronald Reagan is still president).

“Reunion” (Season 3)
Jack accompanies Lemon to her high school reunion in White Haven, Penn., where she’s outed as the bully who tormented all of the cool kids, not the lonely loser she thought herself to be.

Dealbreakers Talk Show #0001” (Season 4)
Two words: bad bangs.

Queen of Jordan” (Season 5)
With Tracy M.I.A., the network decides it’s finally time to make things all about his wife Angie, with the premiere of her Real Housewives-esque reality series.

Break out your last bottle of Donaghy Estates and tip up your cup to 30 Rock, PopWatchers. Which episodes are your favorite? And what do you hope to see tonight?

Read more:
’30 Rock’: The great state of Connecticut
Animated online ’30 Rock’: Jack Donaghy as superhero — FIRST LOOK VIDEO
Condoleezza Rice to visit ’30 Rock’: Is Jack Donaghy over her?

Comments (81 total) Add your comment
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  • Davidj

    Actually I thought Queen of Jordan was one of the WORST episodes they’ve ever done. I’m a huge fan of the show otherwise, but I didn’t think that one worked at all.

    • jk

      I honestly think you really have to love “The Real Housewives” shows to fully appreciate that episode. I LOVED it, but I also watch a healthy amount of Bravo. Not that people who don’t watch Bravo didn’t “get” that episode (I’m not trying to be obnoxious), but when I watched it I remember wondering what non-Bravo fans would think of it. I understand why some people weren’t into it.

      • atd

        I’ve never seen “The Real Housewives.” My tv spends about 20 minutes a year on Bravo, but Queen of Jordan is my favorite episode of the year (thus far). I know enough about popular culture and reality tv, just by paying attention, to get what they were going for, and I thought it was genius. I like it when they take risks, step outside the boundaries, push the envelope, etc. I don’t think you need to like reality tv to like this episode. I think you just need to like “different.”

      • jk

        That’s cool, atd. Just venturing a guess as to why some people weren’t nuts about it.

      • Dr. Linus

        @ atd:
        What you wrote is exactly how I feel as well. Loved Queen of Jordan. I thought as a one-off it was superb.

    • jk

      Plus, Sherri Shephard saying “Ham.” Sold right there.

      • Josh

        Exactly.

    • Karate Pants

      Agree. If we’re talking Season 5, gotta go with “Brooklyn Without Limits” (the sexy jeans episode) or “Double Edged Sword” (Avery’s baby almost born in *gasp* Canada and Carol/Liz breakup).

      • Dave

        Double Edged Sword was hilarious! Instant classic for me. Their milk comes in BAGS!

    • Ghost of Pia

      Queen of Jordan was awful. No laughs.

    • Abe Froman

      Agreed. Liked the concept, but a little of Sherri Shephard goes a loooooong way.

    • Ken

      BLACK TIE (Season 1), with Paul “Pee Wee Herman” Reubens as Gerhardt.

      • Cande

        yes!

      • Ana

        Big YES!

      • e4ia

        …with his little hand.

      • c

        all time favorite. Plus you have Isabella Rossellini! What I’d give to see her reaction to Avery and baby.

    • Steph

      Agree, I wasn’t a fan of “Queen of Jordan” either. I thought it strayed too far from the core show. Also, I don’t watch Real Housewives of anything (except “…Late Night” which is my favorite Jimmy Fallon sketch)

  • jk

    Whichever episode where Alec Baldwin did an impression of “Tracy’s dad,” among others, in their shared therapy session. And I thought Chloe Moretz did such a good job in her cameo this season, loved that episode.

    • Alan

      Yes, that one was funny.

      I loved the Olympics episode.

      Every time I think of the clip of Octuples Tennis” I crack up.

      • James

        No Kidding! How did they miss that one???

  • Tracy

    Tracy does Conan is hands down my favorite ep of this show. The crazy pacing and debut of Dr. Spaceman make it for me!

  • MWeyer

    I know not everyone’s fave but I rather liked the live show, if only to see Julia Louis-Dryfeuss as Liz.

  • huzzah

    This season, I think Double Edged Sword was my favorite. “Ow, you’re breaking the extra bone that all Canadians have in their hand!”

  • kellen

    Episode 210 (did they just not want to give this one a plot-associated name?) is my favorite episode with Milf Island as a close second. Season 3 had a string of great ones, specifically Flu Shot, Generalisimo and The Bubble.

    • Nick

      Writers strike was in process so no title was “written” for the ep.

    • atd

      Episode 210 was written without a title right before the writers’ strike of ’07 (and it was the last ep they filmed). They literally could not give the show a title because it was considered writing.

    • Sara

      I also agree with “Generalissimo,” definitely one of my favorite episodes of any show.

    • LostMom

      “The Bubble” all the way!

  • anna

    I actually don’t like the Housewives franchise, but I did enjoy the Queen Of Jordan episode.

  • allie

    sun tea and greenzo are my faves

  • David

    Reunion & Ludachristmas are up there for me, too. I’d have to add the Generalissimo episode to that as well.

  • Karate Pants

    “Reunion”, hands down!

  • no cars go

    i love “klaus and greta” where james franco was in love with his anime body pillow. liz, james, and the pillow emerging from the bedroom was fantastic.

    • Molly

      Kimoko!

  • michellee

    APOLLO, APOLLO FOR SURE

  • Sina

    I loved the one where Jack played Tracy’s father (in a fred sanford voice) and the Latina neighbor. Also Tracy Jr. going off on Jack asking him did he even vote for Obama. Also Jack having that guy pretend to be Bill Cosby on the phone and Tracy getting mad talking about his light-skinned kids. There’s so many funny episodes.

  • Shelley

    My favorite was when Jack was in Washington and listening to voicemails from Liz. She thought she was pregnant and then it turned out to be the chips she was eating. The rare serious scenes between Jack and Liz are my favorite ones.

  • erin

    One of my all time faves has to be the Rural Juror ep from season 1 – the Rural Juror running gag was funny enough on its own, but combined with the Tracy Jordan Meat Machine subplot and an appearance by Rachel Dratch as Barbara Walters, that episode was pure brilliance.

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