The last episode of a series is always the saddest to reach
The last episode of a series is always the saddest to reach, with months of binging leading to the final episode. What is expected of a T.V. show’s finale? Should it move slowly or quickly? Should it be boring or captivating? The tone of a series’ finale depends on the genre of the television show, but the best season finales should answer all questions, reveal all the characters’ secrets, entertain watchers, and leave the audience feeling satisfied.
A show's series finale should not end with a cliffhanger or unanswered questions. Throughout a television series, many questions pop into viewers’ minds, during the final episode all the secrets should be revealed, completing the circle. This not only gives the audience closure, but it also helps them remember important scenes. An example of this is in the show Gossip Girl. During the final episode, both of the Gossip Girl’s name, and all the ways he, Gossip Girl, tricked his friends and family were revealed, that tied up all loose ends and answered all important questions raised during the series, leaving nothing up to the fans’ imaginations. As you can see, when a show reveals unknown information, it makes a good, satisfying final episode.
A worthy final episode should be captivating, by displaying many sad and joyful emotions from its characters and by having unexpected scenarios to shock the viewers. A dramatic episode allows all fans to feel more emotionally connected to the show and its characters. The finale should also have at least one huge plot twist engage the audience one last time. In How I Met Your Mother, the audience finally met the mother of Ted’s, the main character’s, children during the finale, but that was not the twist. During the last few minutes, the How I Met Your Mother fans found out that Ted was telling his children a story from six years ago that ends with his wife dying. In present time, Ted realized that he is and always has been in love with his best friend, Robin. The New York Times said that the finale of How I Met Your Mother “was too clever by half and still wholly satisfying” (Stanley). Not only should the finale be emotional, but also shocking and surprising to fully captivate the audience until the end.
While finishing a series, a sense of closure is needed. Closure might come from seeing old characters and flashbacks. The last episode of a series should have a memorable goodbye, including beloved characters returning or viewing flashbacks from fan-favorite moments. Also all the characters lives should be stable by the time the episode is over. Fans should know where their favorite character is going to be or what the character is going to do next for the rest of their lives, whether it be in a grave or with the love of their life. The website Film School Rejects states that “the audience needs to know that however we leave the characters is how they will remain for the remainder of their fictional days. This isn’t to say that the audience needs to know every single detail, but a general idea needs to be available (or at least the tools necessary to draw a conclusion)” (Channel Guide: What Makes A Good Series Finale?). Obviously, closure and stability play a huge role in making a great finale.
Finally, a series last episode should be above average, and it should leave everyone feeling satisfied. The entire show should have built up to the finale episode. Smallville is a show about the life of Clark Kent before he became Superman. During the finale, Clark gets his iconic suit, marries Lois, and saves the world once again. When any series finale is over, the viewers should feel that watching the show was a journey worth taking, just like it was for the fans of Smallville.
Finales of T.V. shows should answer controversial questions, reveal secrets, keep the audience engaged, and leave fans feeling happy or sad, depending on the genre. The final episode should not leave the viewers on a cliffhanger with big unanswered questions or end with uncertain situations that make the viewers create unknown endings and conclusions for the show. The episode should also be emotional for the viewers, not only because of different, beloved characters returning, but also because of new unforeseen twists in the plot. Finally, the entire show should have been building up to the last episode. The best finales do not just end the story, but additionally they should make the viewers feel more connected to the show than ever before and satisfied with the ultimate conclusion. The writers should reward their audience for their time and energy spent watching the show by providing a worthy last episode that includes, plot twists, character appearances, and heartfelt emotions emitted from the characters from beginning to end; the perfect series finale is out there for everyone to enjoy.
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