TV Finales, I Want Answers!
Last night I finished watching the BBC version of Life on Mars. I missed it when it originally aired so it’s been coming to me a disc at a time through Netflix. Yesterday, I received the last disc with the final two episodes and I could not wait to pop it into the player. If you haven’t seen the series I strongly suggest you rent the DVDs because it is fantastic. It’s a police procedural, but the twist is that the lead character is a police officer from the present who gets hit by a car and wakes up in the 70’s. He spends each episode solving a crime and trying to figure out if he’s alive, dead, dreaming or crazy. After watching 15 episodes I had high hopes that the final one would explain the truth. Yea, not so much.
I wanted something decisive. I wanted to know if good ole’ Sam was going to awaken from his present-day coma or spend his life in the past. I wanted to know if it was all in his head or if he really did manage to somehow pop back thirty years. Yes, this is what I wanted but I didn’t get it. I was a cranky Fangirl last night and I’m still a bit cranky this morning. The only solution may be the series follow-up, Ashes to Ashes, which I’m told does provide answers. This has now been bumped to the top of my Netflix queue, Christmas movies be darned! The let down that was the Life on Mars series finale got me thinking about other series that have ended with central mysteries still firmly intact and how utterly maddening this is to me as a fan.
Now, I know some people are okay with open-ended finales. There’s something to be said for trying to hash out the meaning of a curious ending. What Geek hasn’t sat around debating the recent finale of Battlestar Galactica? There are more theories about the ending and what it meant than there were about who would be the final Cylon when the show was still running. I liked that series. I watched every episode. And I nearly threw the remote at the TV when the ending didn’t really explain, well, anything. I know I am not alone in my frustrations with finales that are anything but final. I didn’t even watch Lost, but I have heard complaints and debate from everyone that it didn’t answer enough questions. So, I have a message for the people out there in television-writer-land…..
Dear Television Writers,
Hello and thanks for writing shows we adore. Please remember that, as your show ends, the fans would like some answers. I know, I know, the show is all mysterious and cool and you don’t want to reveal the mystery, and there could be some kind of follow-up show, but I don’t care about a show that hasn’t even been written yet. I care about this one. The one I’ve watched umpteen episodes of and stuck with through all the twists and turns just to get to the end and have some closure. Some answers. So, when writing your finale, please remember us, The Fans. We haven’t been in the writers room and we don’t know all the secrets. It’s the finale for crying out loud….time to share!
Total Fan Girl