Thursday, May 24, 2012

TV Season Finales: Which Was Your Favorite?

As the regular TV season winds to a close, I've been clearing out my DVR to catch up on everything that's ending in May. So far, a few have stood out:

The Vampire Diaries

Instead of watching American Idol crown a new winner, I played The Vampire Diaries' season finale from May 10. I will refrain from spoilers, but let me just say, this show takes all the risks you don't expect. Characters die (frequently, sometimes multiple times). Many come back, but some don't, unless it's in a flashback. I'm a bit heartbroken at season 3's ending -- a few specific characters I can say I'M NOT PLEASED about. But what impressed me most was the storytelling device of revisiting events that triggered the first season. Glimpses of Elena's life with her parents before the accident, a first meeting with Damon which he wiped from her memory (vampire magic is great for continuity). Elena's memories of the accident interspersed with current action worked beautifully together, enhanced by a haunting Sigur Ros song (premiered on the show) that added another layer of drama. Then, a final scene that really threw me for a loop, and brings a whole new spin to the series.

Modern Family
 For the past 3 weeks I thought I was watching the season finale. First the Disneyland ep, then last week's very funny episode where each character had some issue with another member of the family, pitting them against each other, but resulting in some character defining moments that managed to do so without being overly schlocky (how do they do it?). But last night's was the finale, involving Cam and Mitchell racing to the hospital to potentially adopt a baby boy who was being born that minute. The family spoke Spanish so they brought along Gloria to translate. What followed mirrored a Spanish telenovela as the drama unfolded with the birth family, with Gloria zipping between a hysterical Cam & Mitchell, and the nurses, abuela and a mysterious man in a cowboy hat. The episode ended with a pretty cliche season finale twist, but I won't spoil the surprise. I'm amazed at how this show manages to combine heartfelt moments with total hilarity, and it works.


Castle has ridden the will-they-or-won't-they romantic tension for 4 seasons now. Castle and Beckett need to make some progress, and although I knew a change was coming -- it had to after Beckett admitted she remembered everything from when she was shot last season, including Castle telling her he loved her. But still, the writers pushed it and pushed it until even I doubted they would directly face the issue. This episode had me yelling at the TV; Beckett does every dumb move in the stubborn girl's handbook, including a vigilante mission to track down the man who shot her with only Huertas at her side -- and no back-up, behind the backs of the NYPD. It made for some great action, but come on Beckett, you aren't a superhero! So some inevitable things happen, and some not so inevitable. And again, the final scene is one that was a long time coming, but still managed to be a little different than I expected. It will be interesting to see how the next season unfolds.

I'm still making my way through 30 Rock, Bones, and a few others. What final episodes have you watched that have you excited for next season?


  1. I don't watch any network series anymore. Now and then I'll watch old Seinfeld reruns since I never watched that show when it was on. I am interested in the upcoming J J Abrams show Revolution. The previews look kind of interesting.

    A Faraway View

  2. I love watching these T.V. shows! Some other good ones that I enjoy are Nikita, Scandal, Revenge, House, and Gossip Girl.

  3. If you haven't seen it yet, Person of Interest had a phenomenal first season. For what seemed at first to be a crime procedural, it had a surprising number of story arcs that spanned the entire season, culminating in a finale that was worthy of the build-up.

    This show featured a line-up of repeat baddies that included a wannabe mob boss, a hacker, the son of a mysterious inventor, corrupt cops, a rogue CIA team, a meticulous FBI team, a high-price fixer, and a female government assassin. (Whew!) These are just the RECURRING characters on top of the baddie-of-the-week variety. And to tie it back in to your post, the finale was fantastic, neatly tying up many of the storylines while opening up some potentially huge ones for the years to follow.

    I give my highest recommendation to this show. Plus the chemistry between Jim Caviezel (you know, Jesus) and Benjamin Linus (from Lost) is perfect and often times hilarious.

  4. Castle is always excellent. And second Paul's recommendation of Person of Interest. Great show.
    I'm counting down the final episodes of Eureka which sadly ends soon.

  5. @Arlee - I haven't heard anything about Revolution unless it's the show JJ Abrams is creating with Supernatural creator Eric Kripke. Since these guys have made some of my favorite shows, I'm all in. I stuck through half of Alcatraz this season but when it was cancelled I removed the rest of the episodes from my DVR. It wasn't BAD but it felt like a rehash of other shows Abrams did better.

    @Paul- I will check out Person of Interest either in reruns or when it comes to Netflix. I was rooting for it since the cast seemed so good, but I admit I confused it with some similar sounding shows like Awake, and A Gifted Man, and Prime Suspect. I know Malfoy's dad from Harry Potter was in Awake, and Maria Bello was in Prime Suspect. I couldn't tell you what any of those shows were about!

  6. @Alex: I'm just starting at the beginning of Eureka and also recording the new/last season. I really like Felicia Day and saw she was in season 4 (I think). I saw a glimpse of the new season but it didn't make much sense to me since I didn't have the context.

  7. I agree that Vampire Diaries finale was a strong one. It had lagged for me lately but as ever with Diaries they really brought it for the finale and made me more excited for next season. Am following The Good Wife on More4 and that's limbering up for a good finale! I enjoy Nikita & Supernatural also, and have started Once Upon a Time with C5.

    PS discovered your blog by following a comment of yours elsewhere - looks excellent and interesting so have followed you! Just starting out blogging myself and discovering the great blogs out there.


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