Warning: this post may contain spoilers
Recently I've been rewatching GIRLS for the umpteenth time. When the series finale originally aired, it was a mini “Game of Thrones finale” situation. Fans were largely disappointed by the final episode, many disliking season 6 in general. It's one of my favorite shows, but usually when I rewatch it I either skip the very last episode, or I skip the entire final season, instead pretending that the season 5 finale was the ending of the show.
The finale of GIRLS hit a lot of marks for controversial finales. A few beloved characters were largely missing from the final episode/season or didn't get closure that people expected. The ending for the main character seemed to come out of nowhere (magically landing a dream job after struggling with employment the whole show,) and her overall arch didn't seem to align with her personality or anything that had happened up to that point. No one really got a happy ending, and the overall message or theme of the show seemed unclear, since many of the characters experienced very little growth over the course of the show, or they did actually experience some growth that was ignored when their conclusions were written.
I thought it might be fun to see if any of you have similar thoughts about any TV shows that didn't end the way you expected, or what you imagine would happen in fantastic shows that never even got an ending due to being canceled early. A few examples that come to mind:
- The obvious - How would you salvage the disaster conclusion of GoT? (I've seen so many takes online that manage to make it more satisfying.)
- I haven't seen Dexter, but I've heard that the ending was unsatisfying and clashed with what people expected from the main character.
- How could HIMYM have ended if the whole show wasn't instantly tranformed into a bait and switch with the finale?
- What would've happened with the characters on Freaks and Geeks, had that amazing show been allowed to continue for another season or two?
I intended to write about how I would want my example show to have ended, but honestly I'm stumped. Writing is hard! Especially if you don't have the luxury of planning the ending ahead of time, which I imagine was the issue for the writers of many of the classic "controversial finales." I'll probably add a comment about it after I come up with something.