by Matthew Thompson
I was hoping to do a series of posts covering the end of various network shows that wrapped up this month, but I just haven’t had the time. So I decided to just pick out some shows whose endings this season felt noteworthy for one reason or another. These contain spoilers for the shows, so make sure you are caught up before reading any of them.
I didn’t expect to enjoy The Flash as much as I do. I still don’t like it nearly as much as its most ardent supporters, but I can see why for the right audience it is such a hit. I think the parts I really loved were the central time travel conceit and the great villains. I love a good time travel tale no matter how often they seem to fall apart. It is fun to turn the consequences involved over in your head and The Flash delivers plenty of crazy time bending antics to think on. As for villains, Captain Cold and The Reverse-Flash are really only rivaled by Deathstroke as far as Arrow-verse characters go. They also had some fun one-off baddies too.
The finale felt like a suitably crazy ending for the over the top insanity that had been building up over the course of the season. I didn’t care for the cliffhanger. I thought too many people were okay with Barry going back to change history, but the end result was good: his future self waving him off, his exit punch into the time machine, Eddie taking his own life to stop the Reverse-Flash. And I dug all the teases like Barry seeing a vision of Kaitlin as Killer Frost and the hints of Cisco’s future.
I don’t think The Flash is top-tier television, but it was a lot of fun and I can see why my comic book reading friends are so into it. I’m excited to see where they go with it next season.
When Revenge debuted it was the surprise of my television year. Its freshman season still stands as one of my faves from a primetime soap. The show has been up and down ever since and that was no exception in what would be its final season. Yet I felt as Season 4 wound down, it began to head in the right direction. Weeks before it was announced that the show would be ending this year, you could already tell it was moving towards the finish line. This gave it some much-needed momentum as it came down the home stretch.
Still the finale felt a bit overstuffed, like it had a little too much plot to run through to tie everything up. Despite the mad rush to squeeze everything in at the end, I think they did right by the characters. I’ve always rooted for Emily to end up with Jack. That was always the light at the end of the tunnel, my hope for her happy ending after her quest for revenge had ended. We get that here and the new puppy was a nice touch. Ems leaves her best friend Nolan a gift too, giving him a purpose now that their mission together is over and it feels wholly appropriate. The way things ended for Victoria and David worked for me as well.
And of course it wouldn’t be a Revenge finale without some batshit crazy stuff happening. The reveal of Victoria’s ridiculous plan (though I never believed she died in that house explosion), the prison break and final gun standoff as well as the teased heart swap all certainly qualify. It was still really messy this season, but I came away pretty happy with how they brought Revenge to a close.
The Vampire Diaries
Knowing Nina Dobrev was leaving the show at the end of the season, it was hard to not try to figure out exactly how they’d write her out in the weeks leading up to the finale. The show teased a number of ways it could be done, but I can’t say I would have ever guessed the Sleeping Beauty-esque solution they came up with. It seems like an obvious setup to bring Elena back in the series finale, so she and Damon can have a happy ending. I’m still not sure how I feel about it to be honest, but clever twists have always been part of the appeal of this series and they certainly surprised me with this one.
While Elena has had her ups and downs as a character, I’ve always respected the job Nina did as an actress on the show. The doppelgänger angle gave her the opportunity to play multiple roles over the years which along with centerpiece Elena included some interesting characters in flashbacks throughout history and of course Katherine, my favorite character on the show and an integral part of the series’ glory days in and around Season 2.
The show itself has been in a rut for a couple of seasons now. While Nina’s exit could perhaps make things worse, I’m hoping it, along with the flashforward that capped the season finale, might be the shakeup the series needs. I mean this as no dig against Nina, but both brothers have always been more fun when they weren’t with Elena so that could be a plus for next season. And there are some pieces in place from this past year carrying over (Mama Salvatore and her Heretics, the newfound friendship between Damon and Bonnie) that I really liked so I’m hoping they can pay dividends in Season 7. If not at least I have The Originals which was a blast this past season. If you haven’t been keeping up with that and are craving something more at the level of TVD’s earlier seasons, it is definitely worth a look.
That’s all for now. I might be back with some more of these if I get the chance. Thanks for reading!