Contributor: Vee Infuso
This one pains me to put on the list, I fetter-tottered with this title for a while. Ultimately i decided on adding this for the fact that the writers ‘fetter-tottered’ with the finales as well. Some of the season’s endings were powerful and motivating… but most just fell short and felt more like stand alone episodes that served little to no purpose in the grand scheme of things. Charmed often felt like they were just trying to put out more content rather then please their audience by giving them a satisfying conclusion to the season. Even the disaster that befell upon Prue; which was obviously one of the more powerful episodes still falls short up until the character’s untimely death. Going into the next Season, after episode 1 and 2… Prue is almost all but forgotten and the inclusion of Paige (while smart/ tactical) almost feels cheap.
4- Everyone Loves Raymond
Everyone Loves Raymond… but apparently their writers didn’t love ending seasons. Almost every season finale following the first are essentially flashback and clip show episodes presumably to coax the audience into remembering the passing season fondly. I loved this show (even if others’ didn’t) but even I have to admit that I purposely skipped the season finales as they just became mundane and repetitive. The finales can also be accused of sucking up any comedic stand alone moments and trying to replace them with sweet sentimental garbage that just came off as cheap.
3- Smallville (The Later Years)
There will be a reoccurring theme with this list, the shows I’ve listed aren’t bad per say, they just didn’t have the most spectacular finales… Smallville might be somewhat of an exception considering their first few seasons with riddled with action packed endings and story arc conclusions. I’m sure I’m not the first to say the show began to fight a downhill battle after Michael Rosenbaum backed out of it, tiring of playing Lex. The following seasons began to become convoluted and as the show continued it’s course it began to resemble that of a superhero soap opera. No example is better then the series’ less then stellar overall finale, in which it’s revealed that we’ve wasted 10 years of our lives just to see a CGI-ed Superman suit on Tom Welling from a distance. Ouch. If there was ever a perfect example of ‘dropping the ball’ … this moment takes the cake.
2- The Office (U.S Version)
The Office was a brilliant show depicting the American (or British; depending on which variation you watched) workplace and essentially performed as both a guide to surviving incessant jobs as well as taking a satirical shot at the different types of co-workers one could encounter. While it certainly isn’t standard to work next to a beat farmer with an undying passion to try and sabotage your job… we all have dealt with a ‘Dwight’ here an there. The Office was a colorful comedy which at times was relatable and at others, absolute zany madness. The Office has never failed in making it’s audience laugh or even at time cringe, but they have fallen short when it comes to meaningful season endings. Toby retiring (only to return the following season), Andy getting his job back (only to lose it again the final season), and Andy and Daryl finding out about some sort of printer conspiracy? Did anyone care about any of that? Probably not. Their season endings were usually undone by the first few episodes of the following season.
I always throughly enjoyed watching Scrubs. It was a brilliant, well written show that hit all the right notes…. or so it would seem. While Scrubs certainly always had it’s twists and turns, it almost seemed like they only came at the halfway point, leaving writers scratching their heads when it came to ending each season. A fact made all that much more painfully obvious when binge watching the show on Netflix; I didn’t know when a Season began or when one ended. This isn’t to say ‘Scrubs’ was a bad show, because it was by no means anything short of well crafted. However, aside from what series creator Bill Lawrence initially believed to be their Series finale (Season 8), there isn’t a single Season close that tries to entice the viewer to come back… aside from the lovable shenanigans that J.D and Turk are already known to get into. Sure, we all enjoyed watching Dr. Cox sucker punch Dr. Kelso, but was it really a strong enough note to end the Season on? Hindsight is 20/20.