alec baldwin goodbye to public life Ranking Alec Baldwin's slams of Shia LaBeouf and more in his goodbye to public lifeAlec Baldwin has decided it’s time to leave the public eye. But he’s not doing something crazy, like retiring from acting to start a beet farm. No, Baldwin writes in a lengthy piece for New York Magazine (via Vulture) that he’s lived the public life for 30 years and he’s “done with it.” He wants to go “back to being an actor now.”

That means he’s thinking about leaving New York — it’s too in-your-face, he writes. Baldwin says he now actually prefers what he used to hate about Los Angeles: “You live behind a gate, you get in a car, your interaction with the public is minimal.”

Baldwin also says this is the last time he’ll speak to an American publication about his personal life. So he has decided to go out with a bang, apparently. In his giant kiss-off to the world, Baldwin can’t help but take a few shots at people. Here are his best slams, ranked on the “30 Rock” scale of insults.

The MSNBC lineup

“I watched MSNBC, prior to working there, very
sporadically. Once I had signed a contract with them, I wanted to see
more of what they were about. It turned out to be the same s*** all day
long. The only difference was who was actually pulling off whatever act
they had come up with.”

Level Twofer: It’s not that mean and the extended run-down of different MSNBC shows is fairly intellectual and funny.

Rachel Maddow

“I think Rachel Maddow is quite good at what she does. I also think she’s a phony who doesn’t have the same passion for the truth off-camera that she seems to have on the air.”

Level Parcell: Calling someone a phony is Kenneth’s equivalent of using the naughtiest of naughty words.

Phil Griffin, head of MSNBC

“Phil is a veteran programmer who knows well the corridors and chambers of television programming — and couldn’t give a flying f*** about content.”


NBC News and the Huffington Post

“Paparazzi today are part of a network that
includes the Huffington Post and, much to my dismay, even NBC News, in
their reliance on tabloid reporting.”

Level Donaghy: Jack Donaghy would definitely use the same breath to both compliment Griffin and then take a shot at his level of caring about his network. He also loved making cracks at NBC’s expense.

rip torn alec baldwin 30 rock Ranking Alec Baldwin's slams of Shia LaBeouf and more in his goodbye to public lifeAnderson Cooper

“I flew to Hawaii recently to shoot a film, fresh on
the heels of being labeled a homophobic bigot by Andrew Sullivan,
Anderson Cooper, and others in the Gay Department of Justice. …
[Cooper], the self-appointed Jack Valenti of gay media culture.”

Level Geiss (pictured): It seems that no-nonsense former CEO of GE would belittle Cooper, et. al, by marginalizing them into a sort of “gay mafia” box.

Shia LaBeouf

“There was friction between us from the beginning. LaBeouf
seems to carry with him, to put it mildly, a jailhouse mentality
wherever he goes. … He had that card, that card you get
when you make films that make a lot of money that gives you a certain
kind of entitlement. I think he was surprised that it didn’t work in the

Level Maroney: Under the guise of feeling sorry for the person (which Baldwin expresses about LaBeouf at the end of the piece), Maroney would totally make these rather ironic observations about a co-star.

TMZ founder Harvey Levin

“Harvey Levin exists in his own universe. He’s this
kind of cretinous barnacle on the press.”

Level Colleen: Levin gets the harshest treatment from Baldwin in the piece, which makes sense seeing as how Baldwin says Levin is lying about what Baldwin yelled at the TMZ photographer. Levin says it was “f*****,” Baldwin says he doesn’t really remember, but it wasn’t the f-word. It’s Baldwin’s most straightforward slam, which is what Colleen Donaghy would do — but she would’ve been meaner.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."