Alec Baldwin

Alec Baldwin’s relationship with ‘30 Rock‘ and NBC is starting to feel like a long, drawn out break-up. Judging by the outspoken sitcom star’s statements to The New York Times regarding the long-running NBC series, it sounds more like Baldwin is talking about a girlfriend than a TV show.

In an interview with the Times, billed as “a candid conversation,” Baldwin talked up the next (and last?) ’30 Rock’ live episode and got surprisingly soft about his touch-and-go relationship with NBC.

“I’m very proud to work for them, specifically,” said Baldwin. He then went on to reveal what he thinks might be best for the embattled network.

“I don’t enjoy seeing them struggle in this way. It’s frustrating – if you work here, you want the network to do well. At the same time, what might be best for the network is for my show to go off the air.”

Which begged the follow-up question, why cancel one of the few shows that performs (relatively speaking) for NBC?

Baldwin’s solution was somewhat bittersweet. “I think that other companies are doing shows that, without commenting on them qualitatively, they’re printing money,” he said. “They’re huge successes in a certain format, and NBC needs to get back in that business of hit shows.”

The keyword there is “qualitatively.” Baldwin is likely referring to CBS’ ratings phenom, “Two and a Half Men,” a show that yes, “prints money” for the network but is largely ignored and/or disliked by critics. To go back to the “break-up” analogy, it’s as if Baldwin is telling his longtime girlfriend she’d be better off dating the captain of the football team than the star of the high school play.

Of course, when NBC was “king” as Baldwin noted in the interview, it was shows like “Friends” and “Seinfield,” both highly rated and critically adored, that kept the network on top.

As of right now, we know that Baldwin and ’30 Rock’ will be on the air for at least one more season. And when the time comes to say goodbye, hopefully NBC will have found that elusive “hit” they’ve been chasing for years now.

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