After seven seasons, 10 Emmys, and countless catchphrases – Blerg! I want to go to there! High-fiving a million angels! – 30 Rock will wrap up its illustrious and delightfully bizarre run early next year. To help us cope with the loss, we sat down with Rock’s creator and star, Tina Fey, for a wide-ranging EW Interview. (Click here to buy the issue.) We arrived on set just in time to witness a scene from the third episode of the final season (which premieres October 4 at 8 p.m. on NBC), in which Fey’s Liz Lemon is appalled to learn a shocking secret about Tracy Jordan (Tracy Morgan). Explains Fey, “I discover that Tracy Jordan has tweeted, “I agree @theRealStephenHawking. Women are just not funny – never have been, never will be. #plotpoint.” (We won’t ruin the outcome for you, but suffice it to say that the resolution involves Lemon dressed in a lab coat and declaring, “Don’t thank me – thank Roe v. Wade!”)
Over the course of the two-day interview, conducted on Rock’s set in Long Island City, Queens, Fey also looks back on her time as head writer at Saturday Night Live (fun fact: one of the sketches she submitted to land a job at SNL had “something to do with a legal trial about pudding”) and her transformation from frumpy behind-the-scenes writer to bespectacled “Weekend Update” sex symbol (“I think you should look back. There are some hair and some teeth problems”); breaking through into film with the screenplay for Mean Girls (“We had a lot of trouble with the MPAA with that movie”); and teaming with Amy Poehler and Steve Carell in Baby Mama (an underrated gem!) and Date Night, respectively. “I liked the opportunity to play a person who was married,” Fey says of Date Night, “as opposed to a rapidly decaying woman going on dates.” And of course we didn’t let her get away without giving us some scoop on 30 Rock’s final season, which will involve a “sexual awakening” for Liz Lemon, a Skype conversation between Jack Donaghy and Ann Romney’s horse Rafalca, and the return of Matthew Broderick as Cooter. “I think it will be hard,” says Fey of ending the series. But there’s hope for us all, Fey fans, as it seems the 42-year-old multihyphenate isn’t done with the small screen just yet: “I would love to get another TV show on the air someday.”
For much more with Tina Fey – including her thoughts on everything from “Mom Jeans” to Bossypants to Sarah Palin – pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on stands this Friday.