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Best and worst TV series finales, and where does GoT rank? *Spoilers*

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Posted (edited)

I think the GoT ending was a good one, when you look at the show as a whole I think season 8 improved at least a little on the previous seasons which had almost caused me to stop watching. 

I think the ending was fitting, it gave a send off to all of the major characters (I'm pretty sure most of the events will happen in some form in the book) and wasn't quite as rushed as the show has a habit of being. I would rank the GoT Finale amongst the list of good finales, my favourites being:

The Leftovers
Halt and Catch Fire
The Americans
Breaking Bad.

 

(The difference being that those shows didn't diminish in quality as they went on, some improved. GoT got progressively worse, being a very different show at the end to the one that started all those years ago)

Edited by Heartofice

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I know I’m probably asking for it in this thread, but can we spoiler tag GoT stuff please?

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5 minutes ago, DaveSumm said:

I know I’m probably asking for it in this thread, but can we spoiler tag GoT stuff please?

The thread title has SPOILERS on it.

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7 hours ago, Darth Richard II said:

I dunno if I would call Angel’s finale “bleak”, but that a much longer discussion.

It's been a while, but that closing scene has always seemed pretty bleak to me, with a hint of optimism.

GRRM has said in recent interviews that he watches the show.

Probably the only major issue I had with the finale was the choice of Bran for king. Not because it doesn't work as a choice, but because it feels unearned based on Bran's role these past two seasons. He's done next to nothing, and he hasn't really had any interesting conversations that show his role as "the memory of the world" and why that might be important. His absence in the final montage says it all about how little attention he's gotten compared to his siblings.

And because someone reminded me if it in a previous post: add Halt and Catch Fire to the "love" list. That was a phenomenal finale. All credit to the writers of that show, but it again does suggest to me that the very best TV series finales tend to be for narrow shows with smaller main casts and a tighter focus. Which does make Game of Thrones being a very good finale all the more impressive to me.

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First two that came to mind immediately were The Americans and Halt and Catch Fire. They were really well done. Everyone says The Shield and that's a show I still need to see. I liked Breaking Bad and thought Mad Men's was fine. There are so many more but I'm drawing a blank.

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i had difficulty reconciling the principle that i discerned in the seinfeld finale with how i had understood the show, which means that my interpretation of the show diverged significantly from the writers' interpretation.  that doesn't make it bad, or anyone wrong--just that it didn't hit the right notes for me.  it was kinda the same with the x-files, which developed several competing principles as the years went on and the show evolved. maybe trials are kinda not the best ending, either--especially for a show that is about people who can't be held accountable--which is the identity underlying both seinfeld and the x-files, perhaps having some applicability to feudal aristocrats and absolute monarchs.

breaking bad and californication had effective final episodes, but they were part of seasons that seemed to degenerate from the prior standard, rushing, perhaps, or recklessly tacked on, merely cumulation without logical relation to the history of the program, in my reading. 

the BSG remake finale was just kinda wut in some of its unforeseeable and therefore unearned particulars.

the game of thrones finale suffered from all three of these potential defects.  that said, it was still kinda kickass. i dig the stark kid's dispositions.

 

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On 5/20/2019 at 2:54 AM, Consigliere said:

GoT without a doubt ranks down there with Dexter as one of the worst finales ever. The two shows actually followed the same quality trajectory. Seasons 1-4 good and seasons 5-8 shit with season 8 being the worst and a travesty of a finale. 

Best finales: The Shield and Six Feet Under. 

This goes too far. They do have the same arc in the sense that the first four seasons were great followed by four seasons of decline, but GoT has its positive moments still. Dexter is by far the worst ending ever, and there is nothing remotely positive about the final four seasons.

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On 5/20/2019 at 9:28 AM, DMC said:

.About Dexter, I've said this before, but I literally thought when he's carrying Deb's body out in that storm, I was like "this has to be some weird dream sequence."  Nope, just THAT stupid.

Oddly Dexter is the rare show that could have ended in a dream sequence, or at least have it revealed that it was all a dream. It would make the Bateman tie in make even more sense.

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1 hour ago, Tywin et al. said:

Oddly Dexter is the rare show that could have ended in a dream sequence

That's true.

 

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The call-outs here to Blackadder have re-affirmed my faith in the board.  Madmen, Breaking Bad and The Wire all had fitting, satisfying final episodes in weak final seasons.  I think we tend to crave resolution or coherent completion, which is what made Lost and HIMYM so terrible.

MASH had a great ending despite using “it was all a dream”.  I dislike saccharine, self-congratulatory endings like Friends or TBBT, although my fuzzy memory is that Cheers pulled it off relatively well.  Perhaps it was just less grating than the other two.

The GoT final montage/epilogue gave fitting endings for the main characters, other than one particular member of the small council.  The episode overall wasn’t great but had some very good Dinklage acting and basically delivered the requisite plot points and fan service with the now typical shortfall in actually earning them.  The conclusion overall was reasonably fitting despite it’s placement in a weak final season(s).

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51 minutes ago, sologdin said:

GoT final montage/epilogue

i'd've much preferred it delivered in the style of animal house.

This is madness!
I also thought there was a small chance that it would happen.

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21 hours ago, Martell Spy said:

The answer is that season 1 was about at 7.5 or a 7.0 out of 10. It has some good characters though. After that they just start churning out 10.0 seasons every time until the end. Definitely watch if you have any interest in the subject matter. They stuck the landing as well.

And yeah, I'd definitely vote for the Shield as the best finale of all time.

The concept of the Wire's finale was fantastic. That the game continues and the players just change with the new generation. But, this was after a final season that was the worst season of their run. And it definitely did not have the punch of the Shield finale.

Black sails finale is excellent, I'm surprised I'd forgotten it. The brilliant thing is that it does go for an ambiguous ending but presents it as unambiguous. There is however another take on it which is much darker and makes the final conversation about the power of story much more interesting.

 

21 hours ago, mcbigski said:

Yeah other than dumping all of there food producing ships into the sun the finale wasnt as horrible as people like to say.

As for GoT was the one good scene LC Brienne and the White Book?  Cause that rang true.

Well the other Galactica problem for me was the following

by setting it 100,000 years in the past it basically means they all died within a generation because even neo-luddites would have had a more profound impact on human history. I'd have been far less bothered if they had landed 10,000 years ago as this would have  coincided with our transition from hunter/gatherer to agriculture. But they couldn't even be arsed to research when in the past would have worked as a landing point. Combined with the suggestion human existence is stuck in a time loop (because it also makes little sense aliens came and interbred with humans) actively does diminish the whole show for me.

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12 minutes ago, red snow said:

Black sails finale is excellent, I'm surprised I'd forgotten it. The brilliant thing is that it does go for an ambiguous ending but presents it as unambiguous. There is however another take on it which is much darker and makes the final conversation about the power of story much more interesting.

I cannot remember that final episode.  I remember getting tired of Flint's constant sermonizing about having the only vision and plan that everyone else would just have to follow on faith, and I recall how the various plot points concluded.  But I don't recall the final episode itself.

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I forgot to mention Soprano's earlier.  I think that ending was perfectly executed (pun of the day!).  And I never understood how some people didn't understand what had happened.  The build up in dread and tension -- for the viewer, to which Tony was oblivious -- over the last few minutes was suffocating and had to climax.

That one probably stands out as the greatest directorial achievement in an ending, whereas most of the other good endings come from the writers delivering a satisfying resolution to the character's arc.

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Got was bad in places and good in others. Lots of wtf and head shaking that I had watched 8 seasons for this ending. There were a few really good bits in it though that made you remember how good the show had been.

My favourite finish to a series is definately Person of Interest. That show is one I keep going back to and it's just as good over and over again.

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23 hours ago, HelenaExMachina said:

House of Cards was a dreadful ending after years of decline

Huh?

Oh, the American version. Yes, that was dogshit, but the show had been pretty much crap since Season 2. The original British series had an absolutely fantastic ending. There's a lesson here in not taking a 12-episode show and extending the same story across (checks Wiki) 73? Fucking hell.

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1 hour ago, Werthead said:

Huh?

Oh, the American version. Yes, that was dogshit, but the show had been pretty much crap since Season 2. The original British series had an absolutely fantastic ending. There's a lesson here in not taking a 12-episode show and extending the same story across (checks Wiki) 73? Fucking hell.

Yeah, US version. I agree it declined since season 2 but the finale really stands out as terrible

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3 minutes ago, HelenaExMachina said:

Yeah, US version. I agree it declined since season 2 but the finale really stands out as terrible

Another example of a great show that really only needed to be a season or two, but us Americans just love dragging out shows for that $$$.

Also, I did not know that HoC was originally a British show. Ya'll should try harder to get things played over here. We clearly love remaking your content, just with poorer outcomes. 

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