The Bittersweet Satisfaction of Finishing a Beloved Show


#1

Open Thread is where Waypoint staff talk about games and other things we find interesting. This is where you'll see us chat about games, music, movies, TV, and even sports, and welcome you to participate in the discussion.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/wjpbab/orphan-black-boardwalk-empire-finale

#2

For me, even though the show went downhill in the last two seasons - The Vampire Diaries.

It was the first show that my partner and I actively watched together. I enjoy campy, and I never thought the show sounded interesting, but I didn’t realize that CW put a lot of money behind it and the production value was better then I expected. Also, I was a huge fan of LOST so seeing Boone (Ian Somerhalder) as one of the main characters made it easier to get into.

Spoilers about season 5 and beyond.


I was a Elena and Damon Shipper, and they way they were together before the actress that played Elena left the show (While the two actors were still dating in real life), made their love feel real…since it was…well…real. So when it wrapped up in the end and the two actors were no longer together - there was no chemistry and it felt horrible. It was hard to see a relationship I loved in the show, and them in real life fall apart, but for the show to put them together after this epic quest to get her back - and just the “meh” reunion hurt.


#3

The first one that does spring to mind right away however is Battlestar Galactica. It was a fantastic journey through so many characters that was both a feeling of accomplishment when I got through it but also being bummed that it was over. It makes me continue to think about it to this day (obviously) even though it was quite awhile ago I finished it.

I admit I am a bit behind the times in regards to actually finishing shows. I start a few of them but rarely get through all of it. I believe this is just due to time constraints mostly, and choose to spend my time more on games and reading books overall.


#4

God, I still remember the feeling of finishing Six Feet Under, as you saw the future of every single one of these characters you had spent 60 hours with and watching them, one by one, die. What a gut punch.


#5

I’ve seen The Wire through twice now, and on this third time through, I can’t bring myself to finish the last season. It’s been six months now. It’ll just have to go unfinished this time.

No show has ever felt more tailor-made for its cast than The Wire. Those performers ARE those characters.


#6

Parks and Rec was a show I fell in love with sooooo hard. Seeing those talented actors alternate from being goofy and funny with each other to real and sincere built up a great show and when it ended with such a great season and finale felt very bittersweet. It ended so well and provided such a great cap off to the main characters, but the show was all about the day-to-day lives of these people that it felt like it could have gone for more years than it did, but even tho I feel that way, I’m glad it ended the way it did.


#7

Twin Peaks was that show for me. I became obsessed with that show during the last season. There was, and is, nothing else on TV quite like it. The Return took everything Lynch has made before and synthesized it into one amazing thing. Post-episode reddit threads became a must-visit. I played the Johnny Jewel- produced soundtrack on repeat for weeks. I can replay every beat of the final scene of the finale like I watched it yesterday. David Lynch hasn’t entirely ruled out another season, but I’m assuming that the show is done, which is fine. Twin Peaks ended in a thematically-appropriate place. I still really miss Dale Cooper though.


#8

I didn’t know you liked Boardwalk Empire, Danielle, I really enjoyed that show, too. Although to be fair, I should have known you liked Boardwalk because of your incredible accents :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:. Since this is an anime-friendly site, the show whose ending has stuck with me after all these years is that of Yu Yu Hakusho, which was also called Ghost Fighter. I’m from the Philippines, and this anime series was a cultural phenomenon during its airing in the 1990s, with everyone from all backgrounds in the country tuning in to watch every episode. The show’s ending is wonderfully personal and intimate, and deviates from the common anime trope of characters just endlessly increasing in power to fight opponents who also endlessly more difficult.

Instead, Ghost Fighter ends in a beach, with the main character Yusuke returning from the Demon World to live a normal life after several seasons of over-the-top battles and apocalyptic challenges. There is a montage of what most of the characters in the show ended up doing, tying most of the plot threads neatly, but the ending is primarily a celebration of friendship. I thought it a touching conclusion for characters that we grew to know and love over the show’s hundreds of episodes.


#9

I’m actually so sad about seeing basically 100% of everything Nier Automata has to show. I just want to be with those characters more. I actually admire Danielle’s decision to not watch the last episode of Farscape up til now, there’s something magical in knowing there’s still a piece of something you love that you have yet to experience.

Also, those last couple of episodes of Orphan Black… holy cow. That show wrapped back around in the best ways and was exceptionally hopeful and extremely sad at the same time.


#10

Okay, so. Tokusatsu.

I’m only a recent watcher of Tokusatsu TV shows, specifically Kamen Rider and Super Sentai stuff. The most recent sentai I’ve finished to completion was Animal Sentai Zyuohger, and it didn’t feel too bittersweet to finish. I was happy because in the end, everyone got to stay together. It also helped that Space Sentai Kyuranger followed quickly, because that’s just how it be with Sentai, I’ve learned.

SSK is a fucking show I’m gonna miss. It’s not over yet, but we’re coming up on the end and like… That show has had so much for me that I’ve liked. It had a big strong dude who was a robot furry, it had a really genki robot, it had a dude who wanted to feel feelings, it had a robot who was a romantic. Turns out, when there’s like 12 characters to choose from, there’s basically something for everyone. I’m so upset it’s ending, but I’m so glad it’s going to end happily.

Recently, a friend of mine got me into watching Kamen Rider Agito, and holy shit. It’s so fucking good. I mean, yeah, it has a problem with murdering women and it’s a pretty glaring one even when the premise of the show is ‘a bunch of people get murdered by monsters’. Despite this glaring flaw, it’s a genuinely good and heartwarming show and I was super sad to finish it. I’ve got a lot more to say about it, but it’s late here.


#11

It took me 2 years before I finally decided to finish the last season of Hannibal. It is without question my favorite tv series ever and when the news broke that it wouldn’t be renewed for a 4th season a few episodes into the 3rd season I just… I couldn’t bear watching the rest of it. It is a show that I find to be nearly without flaws, and the second season is probably the best single season of tv I have ever seen. Knowing that the show would be done after it’s third season just hurt so god damn much that I couldn’t bear watching it without feeling so unbelievably sad. Going back and finishing it a couple of years later was a really strange experience. despite the first half of the season being kinda silly and messy, seeing it actually reach its conclussion was still tremendously satisfying and while I am still gutted that the show will probably never get picked up again, it was a satisfying send off to the characters that felt open enough that you still had room to wonder about what a fourth season would actually look like.


#12

Kyuranger’s going that well? That’s good to hear; I enjoyed the first few episodes but I’ve been terrible about keeping up with toku for the past few years. Guess I’ll have to get back to it at some point.


#13

To specify, I feel like it depends on the rangers you attach to most. I absolutely adore Champ and Balance, and they both got really satisfying arcs and look like they’re going to come out of the show in a really good place.


#14

I’m bit ashamed to say, butI have yet to actually finish Buffy… In a weird way, in my mind, if I dont finish something, it will go on forever. I always save something to go back to, it’s always there waiting for me.
I have a habit of doing this with games too. I probably only finish 10% of what I play. I always save that little bit to come back to. Most of the time I don’t go back, because I never want it to end…


#15

I was having a tough time thinking of series I watched that actually got proper endings rather than being cut off and finished in a rush (if they got finished at all), but managed to come up with a couple: Avatar: the Last Airbender and Gravity Falls. Steven Universe kinda counts for me because while it hasn’t actually ended, I’ve watched all the episodes that are up on Hulu twice now and with that show’s weird release “schedule” I have no idea when I’m going to see any new ones.


#16

Yeah, I was very sad to hear about the end of Hannibal, and the final episodes of the third season felt kind of tainted by that, like a lot of things were not given the room to breath they deserved so a sort of conclusion could be reached. Hannibal is by far my favorite tv show of the past five years, probably even of the decade. I wouldn’t say the show is nearly without flaws though. Even accepting to quasi-dream reality of the whole thing, the underlying premise and how the story begins is beyond stupid. Hannibal just kind of ends up working with the FBI because no one really asks what the hell he’s doing there. No clearance, no screening, no nothing, he’s just in FBI offices working on cases and being brought into the fold because… he’s charming?

God what a great show. Now I might have to re-watch the whole thing…


#17

Well, the screening was supposed to be done by Hannibal, to make sure Will didn’t break, which… yeah, that turned out to be a really bad idea. A lot of that also falls on Jack who keeps pushing Will regardless of him obviously not being healthy.

It’s been a loooong time since i’ve watched and you’re probably right that there are things that don’t quite hold up on further inspection. Still though, the highs are just so staggeringly high and pretty much all of the main character performances and their chemistry with one another, especially Dancy and Mikkelsen in the second season, are just so unbelievably good.

God damn, what a show.


#18

Not a TV show but I recently finished the first arc of Adventure Zone and holy shit I am going to miss those dudes considerably. Pretty much got me through the first six months of my son’s life, as something outside of the “I have no idea what is going on, with anything” cocoon I had found myself in. I laughed, I rolled my eyes, I even cried a bit at the end. A time and place thing more than likely, but that whole thing grabbed me in a way I did not expect, and refused to let go.


#19

Oh don’t get me wrong, I was absolutely 100% on board for the ride, it’s just a show that doesn’t stand up to even half a second of vaguely realistic thinking.