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June 29 2011

"Objects in Space" an Objectively Great Series Finale? The last episode of "Firefly" makes The A.V. Club's list of accidental TV finales that worked well as series-enders.

Well, yeah. If you're gonna go out, "Objects in Space" is one of the best ways to do it. Of all the cancelled series that I have liked, I don't know why this is the one that still pains me...

Maybe that's it. It wasn't "like," it was Love. The kind that most likely happens once. (I hope not though. Love is grand.)

Of the listed cancelled shows, the next runner up on my personal pain scale is "Now and Again." It's not a very close second though, even if at the time it was a truly ARRGH! moment for me. The pain has pretty much subsided, but I do still really want to know what happened next. It wasn't a satisfying ending for me at all.

Oh, and wasn't Michelle just so cute back on "The Adventures of Pete and Pete?" : ) I was predisposed to like her as Dawn just because she had been so much fun as Nona.
Didn't know about Michelle as Nona... Here's a Youtube clip:

[ edited by OldSwede on 2011-06-29 13:10 ]
Objects in Space isn't an accidental finale. "The Message" was the last episode, but Joss Whedon decided to rearrange the DVD order so this one became the cap.
What daylight said. joss reordered it as the series finale in 2003.
OMG, I was thinking that the perfect unexpected series ending had to be seeing Gabriel Byrne walk off after his therapy session with Adelle in In Treatment and there it is! I was so enthralled by that show that I remain evangelical about it- 3 seasons of acting at a level rarely see on TV, with actors of such great skill (and Mia Wasikowska, wow!). And when it ended, with Paul walking off to who knows what, it was so unsettling and yet so right- he was so good, but his last few months had shown him he cannot solve problems people do not wish to solve.

But they missed one other perfect last series ending- the final episode of Lie to Me, with Cal sort of acknowledging how much he cares for Gillian- but telling it to his daughter (played by the excellent Hayley McFarland) instead of Gillian. A great ending to the series, which I will deeply miss.

And Objects in Space- so very, very good, and a sad but great ending to a a great series. No matter where it was originally ordered. :-)
I also agree with the article regarding Wonderfalls. Caged Bird is a very well-crafted episode. It brings about the end of so many arcs, and Jewel Staite is fabulous as the villain. It would have been fun to see where they went during the second season, but where it stops leaves a good feeling behind.
My wife and I were hesitant to watch the final episode of United States of Tara because we usually fall in love with shows that don't get proper endings. But, we did last night, and we were very pleased that it worked as a series finale.

Agreed on Wonderfalls, not Firefly.
Can't disagree with most of those. 'Objects in Space' really is great (subjectively at least ;) and Tim Minear's the past master at good endings-that-aren't-endings-but-sadly-are-actually-usually-endings so 'Wonderfalls' is no surprise, nor's 'Terriers' and I'd add 'The Inside' too.

'Veronica Mars' is near the top of my own sublist of that list, Veronica walking off into the rain, nice little scenes with all the supporting players, Logan Echolls' finest hour (and maybe Keith's too though it's harder to pick with him, he had so many), lots to like about the last VM.
saje, re: VM, ITA.
Firefly, Wonderfalls, Terriers, Veronica Mars and Once & Again. Damn, those were some great shows. And I agree with some of the commenters, Sports Night & Party Down could easily have made the list.

I was surprised to see Terminator:TSCC included though, I really have to disagree with them there.
"Not Fade Away" wasn't really a cliffhanger, was it? (Can't believe I'm the first to comment on this)

Terriers was great. The finale was definately a bitter-sweet thing, as I knew it was going to be the last ep, but great indeed.

Veronica Mars' finale was perhaps even better. Perfect ending to one of my all time favorite shows.

Gilmore Girls S7 on the other hand, was downright awful. The finale was okayish, but IMO doesn't deserve to be on any best of anything list.

Recently came across an interview with George R.R. Martin were he basically said the same. I'll look it up and quote it here, because I simply love the fact that Martin's such an outspoken Gilmore Girls fan. That wasn't something that I'd immediately expected as his books can be rather gruesome.

One show that flubbed its ending in almost every important way, in my view, is 'Gilmore Girls.' The show's creator left before the final season of 'GG' and the new person brought in to mop up during that last year just didn't have a good feel for the characters or their world, and after spending six seasons with the people of Star's Hollow, the final season was a trainwreck on a character level. A fairly decent series finale wasn't enough to remove the bad taste that the rest of that unfortunate season had left. Very little of what transpired was true to the vision I'd watched for the first six years of the show.

ETA: I love the Sports Night finale ("Anybody who can't make money off of Sports Night should get out of the money-making business") but I think everyone involved knew it was going to be the last ep. Definately had a series finale feeling to it anyway.

[ edited by the Groosalugg on 2011-06-29 20:53 ]
The blurb says of 'Not Fade Away'

"He just chose to end on a seeming cliffhanger."

It's the 'seeming' that avoided a comment (apart from the fact that it's slightly old ground) since that suggests to me they accept it's not a true cliffhanger but that some see it that way, which seems pretty accurate.

And for me the end of T:TSCC totally deserves to be on there, really great episode (not least for that scene between John and Cameron - kinda icky, kinda hot and kinda sweet all at the same time, perfectly walking the line they'd trod all along with Summer's character) which provided some closure while blowing things wide open.
The Inside is one that didn't work for me as a faux-nale (you're welcome, The English Language). That last scene felt very tacked on, however well it might have aligned with the episode's themes and Rebecca's character arc.

But Objects in Space is just about the perfect series finale, made all the more remarkable by the fact that it wasn't intended as such (at least, not when written). In the parallel universe where Serenity never got made, Alt-Jobo is still completely satisfied with how Firefly ended. But he probably still wants more.
I find it weird that they picked Now and Again since the last episode of that fabulous series (all-time top 5 for me) legendarily was written to be as not-season-ending as you can get, with Glenn Gordon Caron daring the network to cancel it. And so they did.
The Inside is one that didn't work for me as a faux-nale (you're welcome, The English Language).

French, actually. ;)

Couldn't agree more about "Objects in Space". Personally I think a big reason why so many people have held out hope for this show over the years is directly because of how effective this episode is in getting the viewer interested in seeing what happens next, despite the fact that - technically speaking - it doesn't end on a cliff-hanger. People are actually pretty content.
Ahhhhh, can't believe I blew that one. Thanks for the fix, brinderwalt ;) and well said about OiS.
Just remembered the final episode of Pushing Daisies and how they "tacked on" all that stuff to wrap things up--rather unsatisfyingly.

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