Today’s Robo-James topic comes to you courtesy of guest programmer Chaddogg:
What (prematurely) cancelled shows deserve a better finale (i.e. two-hour special, final mini-season to wrap things up, etc.)? And how would you like to see the show end?
I can think of a lot of shows in this category – Veronica Mars (although the 3rd season finale did have some noir-ish poignance), Freaks and Geeks (just to see them graduate – maybe a class reunion?), The Nine (really, WHAT happened?), The 4400 (count me amongst the disappointed it doesn’t get a wrap-up special), and Friday Night Lights (if that was the end, I’ll be REALLY angry…where is the closure, or, at very least, open-ended denouement?)
Well, I’ll bite, Chaddogg. I have never loved a TV show as much as I loved Freaks and Geeks; the cancellation killed me. And yet, as closure went, I wasn’t too disappointed. Judd Apatow and Paul Feig saw the writing on the wall long before the show died, and they managed to wrap up and/or write in a number of planned storylines in the last half-dozen or so episodes, which rank among the best any TV show has done. The final scene of Lindsey skipping out on math camp to follow the Dead may have been a cliffhanger, but it was also a perfect ending moment to a show that was ultimately about her finding her way.
No, the show that I wanted better closure on is a series I liked much less and yet always had a strange hold on me: Carnivale. Did Brother Justin come back to life? Did Sophie become Ben’s rival? Carnivale, frankly, needed a wrap-up movie (or, maybe better, a series of graphic novels) more than the superior Deadwood–historically speaking, we know where that movie ended.
I’m pretty sure I recall that somewhere out there on the Web, Daniel Knauf laid out the outline of where the series would have gone had it continued. But who wants that? It’d be like Tolkien knocking off after The Fellowship of the Ring and leaving a note: Gollum bites Frodo’s finger; Sauron destroyed; big tree guys whip Saruman. Not much majesty there.
Of course, as all the posthumous Middle-Earth novels proved, there’s such a thing as too much closure. But I’m rambling. What are your demands?