30 Rock: Season 5 (2010 - 2011)

Season 5
30 Rock

Critics Consensus

Liz Lemon continues to fire off tart zingers in a resilient fifth season that maintains 30 Rock's streak of innovative -- if somewhat inconsistent -- gags, pulled off with tremendous heart.



Critic Ratings: 21


Audience Score

User Ratings: 116

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Air date: Sep 23, 2010

Season 5 opens with Jack interfering with Liz's blooming romance with Carol (Matt Damon) in an effort to help her finally win a man's heart. There's give-and-take in Jack's own love life when Avery revamps his apartment. Meanwhile, Tracy copes with Kenneth's termination as NBC page, and Jenna emerges as a new "TGS" producer.

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Air date: Sep 30, 2010

Liz is stunned to discover she's now turning men's heads and uses her newfound confidence to win over a fastidious editor (Paul Giamatti). Meanwhile, Jack is determined to teach Avery's unborn son the ropes of life; Tracy gears up for his wife's delivery; and an enigmatic man takes on Kenneth's page duties. Elizabeth Banks, Brian Williams and Kelly O'Donnell guest star.

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Air date: Oct 7, 2010

Jack goes before Congress, hoping to use his wiles and charm in a discussion of NBC's merger with KableTown. When a congresswoman (Queen Latifah) pushes for more diversity in the programming, Jack turns to Tracy to develop ideas. Meanwhile, Liz butts heads with her writing staff; and Jenna supports Kenneth's return to the page program. Rob Reiner guest stars.

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Air date: Oct 14, 2010

Liz fumes during show night when the "TGS" gang all forget that it's her 40th birthday. Meanwhile, Tracy concludes that it's hilarious whenever an actor breaks character and laughs, so he does just that---all night. And Jack strains in his efforts to cease drinking during Avery's pregnancy. Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Matt Damon guest star. The episode was originally broadcast live.

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Air date: Oct 21, 2010

Jack basks in a perfect day brimming with success and good fortune, so he tries to use his winning streak to save Liz and Carol's relationship. Meanwhile, Jenna and Kenneth enlist the services of one Kelsey Grammer (appearing as himself); and Tracy works on a commercial.

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Air date: Nov 4, 2010

Jack works to set relationship boundaries with Liz to placate Avery. Meanwhile, Liz tends to her visiting father (Buck Henry), who's mired in a life crisis. And Tracy views his own video obituary, then sets out to reinvent himself. Not to be outdone, Jenna produces her own video obit.

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Air date: Nov 11, 2010

Jack rocks the vote, manipulating a congressional election to help a particular candidate (John Slattery), thereby leveraging advantage for the network. Meanwhile, a perfect pair of new jeans gives Liz confidence; Tracy organizes a Golden Globe event with Jenna's help.

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Air date: Nov 18, 2010

When GE's microwave sales heat up without his involvement, Jack tries to find defects in their new design. Meanwhile, a lottery creates havoc, and the writers discover that Jack has lent his virile voice to an online dictionary's pronunciation guide.

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Air date: Dec 2, 2010

When Liz worries that her relationship with Carol is fizzling, Jack suggests that she consult a therapist, but she reaches out to Kenneth instead. Elsewhere, Jenna and Paul (Will Forte) celebrate an anniversary; and Tracy tries to lure Jack into investing in his son's theme restaurant.

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Air date: Dec 9, 2010

Liz and Avery try to persuade Jack to disclose two secrets he's been hiding from his mother, who visits for the holidays. Then, Liz tries to repair Jenna's relationship with Paul (Will Forte); and Tracy tries to block his film's release because it undermines his newly invented serious persona. Alan Alda and Elizabeth Banks also guest star.

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30 Rock: Season 5 Photos

Tv Season Info

Series 5 of the sitcom, which takes place backstage at a network sketch-comedy series, is accented by an episode that, as its "The Live Show" title suggests, was broadcast live on both the East and West coasts. Story arcs include head writer Liz (Tina Fey) flying through some turbulence in her relationship with airline pilot Carol (Matt Damon), whom she met at the end of Series 4; and Jack (Alec Baldwin) struggling with the responsibilities that come from being a new husband and expectant father. In other events, budget cuts impact the staff; a pre-taped disaster telethon goes wrong; and the show is threatened with cancellation. Guest stars include Margaret Cho, Paul Giamatti, Kelsey Grammer, Tom Hanks, Buck Henry, Ken Howard, Michael Keaton, Rob Riggle and Susan Sarandon.

Cast & Crew

Tina Fey
Liz Lemon
Alec Baldwin
Jack Donaghy
Tracy Morgan
Tracy Jordan
Jane Krakowski
Jenna Maroney
Jack McBrayer
Kenneth Parcell
Scott Adsit
Pete Hornberger
Judah Friedlander
Frank Rossitano
John Lutz
J.D. Lutz
Elizabeth Banks
Avery Jessup
Ken Howard
Hank Hooper
Kevin Brown
Dot Com
Sue Galloway
Subhas Ramsaywack
Chris Parnell
Dr. Leo Spaceman
Tina Fey
Executive Producer
Lorne Michaels
Executive Producer
Jo Ann Alfano
Executive Producer
David Miner
Executive Producer
Marci Klein
Executive Producer
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Critic Reviews for 30 Rock Season 5

Audience Reviews for 30 Rock: Season 5

  • Feb 23, 2021
    This show is one of my favourites, this season is great!
  • Feb 22, 2021
    Racism got mad old by this point lmao shocking
  • Apr 10, 2019
    30 Rock remains consistently funny in its fifth season.
  • Jan 29, 2018
    If you like this sorta thing then you'll like this sorta thing and I like this sorta thing!
  • Mar 09, 2016
    Clever, hilarious comedy. A behind-the-scenes look at the the cast and crew of The Girly Show (TGS), an NBC skit-comedy program. Centres on the executive producer of the show, Liz Lemmon (played by Tina Fey), her boss, GE/NBC executive Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin). Created by Tina Fey, of SNL fame, 30 Rock is incredibly clever, especially in its references to topical events and in poking fun at the entertainment industry. Quite over-the-top at times, and delightfully so. The jokes come thick and fast, sometimes too fast - you've hardly digested one and the next one is upon you. If there is a negative, that is it - with the humour being so clever, you need some breathing space to sometimes get the jokes and being so snappy, you can easily miss things. Great performances and perfect casting. Alec Baldwin probably has the toughest gig, as his character is right-wing and capitalist to the extreme and is a living parody of not just the entertainment industry but business executives in general. Also, before this Baldwin was really considered only a drama-movie actor, so this is quite a change for him. He carries it off with aplomb. A classic and classy comedy series.
  • Jul 23, 2014
    Only becoming more daring, more original, and more creative with age, 30 Rock is tying all of its ends together in an unpredictable fashion that has me simultaneously laughing, and guessing, all the way up to its finish.
  • Nov 26, 2013
    Season 5 boasts biting satire, smart pop culture gags and a different direction as this show essentially spoofs the reality TV show in a highlight episode as well as using the Live show format with excellent results. In "Live Show", Liz is disappointed that no one remembers her 40th birthday, and as she attempts to get people to surprise her everybody else has their own problems that get in her way. The format here works perfectly with what 30 Rock is normally like! "Operation Righteous Cowboy Lightning" features more of Tracy and Angie's relationship, as Angie's reality camera crew follow the cast and crew around TGS all day. I loved TGS Hates Women, Cristin Milioti delivers the best guest star performance of the whole show as Abby Flynn, a female comedian who proves a hit with the male crew but finds tension with Liz and Jenna, this whole episode features many quotes, and Frank, Lutz and Toofer steal the show as much as Flynn does. Saving the best till last is Queen of Jordan, the reality style episode that takes all the elements such as soundtrack, camera style, interviews and quotes from the Real Housewives series and coats it in 30 Rock goodness! I loved the characters Defwan, Randy and Portia, and Susan Sarandon as you've never seen her before. I think this series stands tall just like the others, keep bringing more.
  • Nov 15, 2013
    One of 30 Rock's best seasons, 5 shows just how brilliant the show can be, combining a brilliant cast with razor sharp satire and immensely likeable characters. Highlights include: When it Rains, it Pours, Live Show, Reaganing, Operation Righteous Cowboy Lightning, Tom Hanks and Michael Keaton's appearences, Kelsey Grammer's appearence, Condolezza Rice's cameo.

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