30 Rock: Goodbye My Friend

Filed under: Recaps & Reviews

This week finds Liz Lemon depressed about how long the adoption process is taking. After work Friday night, she goes to the 24 hour donut shop across the street to drown her sorrows with a dozen donuts and some skim milk. She had intended to make it a take-out order, but when she sees Becka, the young, pregnant girl working behind the counter with the adoption pamphlets, she decides to stay and chat with her instead. We find that Jack has been hanging around the office later at night to avoid the temptation of other women while Elisa is away in Puerto Rico. That night, however, he goes out too. He goes to a lounge with the writers, figuring that he can get some socialization with them, but without any threat of women hanging around since they are all completely inept socially. During the night at the bar, and then later watching Harry and the Hendersons, he bonds with Frank when he finds out that they both grew up without Fathers.

Jenna is very excited that her birthday is coming up and even more excited for the attention that staff is going to lavish on her at the party they are throwing to celebrate the occasion. Kenneth finds out that Tracy has never celebrated his birthday because he doesn't know when it is. Kenneth thinks that is a horrible injustice and proposes that Jenna's party become a joint birthday celebration for both Tracy and her. She agrees with the idea to look good, but is of course deeply unhappy about it. The time comes to yell surprise and Tracy arrives first. Everyone wishes him happy birthday (although are careful not to actually sing Happy Birthday to sae royalty on royalties). Jenna waits in the wings for her glory to come next, but one thing after another keeps getting in the way. First, Frank announces that Jack has offered to give him a full scholarship to Columbia University to finish law school. He tells everyone that he is leaving TGS to complete the course that he had to abandon when his mother got sick. Then, Cerie bursts in, wearing the EXACT same dress as Jenna, and tells them that her father has given the entire staff tickets to opening day at the New Yankee Stadium. Desperately, Janna emerges wearing a back brace to win back some much needed attention, but by this point everyone is celebrating too intensely to even notice her.

Frank tells Jack that his mother wants to invite him to come over for a home cooked meal as a token of her appreciation for helping Frank return to Law School. Frank's mother is actually very mad at Jack because it turns out that Franks father didn't abandon him at all, rather he is in hiding somewhere in Phoenix. He, like his father before him, were lawyers- for the MOB. Franks mom tells Jack that he must undo what he has done and that Frank must not be allowed to become a lawyer. Liz hires Becka to be a "Youth Consultant" at 30 Rock, mostly so that she can keep an eye on her and convince her that she should put her baby up for adoption and that Liz would be the most logical person to adopt it. She has almost convinced Becka that she should concentrate on her musical interests instead of motherhood when her boyfriend Tim shows up. Liz intercepts him and nearly convinces him to stay out of Becka's life when she runs into Jack. He tells her the tale of George Henderson who did the right thing by sending Harry back to the forest where he belonged, even though it was the most painful thing he had ever done. That corny morality tale, combined with seeing John Lithgow wandering randomly through 30 Rock, eventually convinces Liz that the right thing for her to do is to get Tim and Becka back together even though it means she cant short-cut the adoption line as she had been counting on.

To overcome his reluctance to step up and be a good father to his unborn child, Liz takes Tim upstairs to watch as Jack tells Frank that he should go back to being just a TGS writer. He slaps him and sends him back "where he belongs", dashing Franks dream of law school, but ultimately saving him from potential danger as a mob Lawyer. Liz tells Tim that neither Jack or Frank had fathers in their lives growing up. One look at the pathetic spectacle of frank slinking away in shame while Jack attempts to hold back tears while saying goodbye to his new friend, erases all doubts in Tim's mind and convinces him that he needs to be a stand-up guy for Becka.

Tags: 30 Rock, Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey, Tracy Morgan

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