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Coming to a column finale

By Samantha Suchland

May 2, 2012 12:30 a.m.

There’s nothing more exciting than a series finale.

While the beginning of May is a little premature to talk about finales, let alone series finales, I do have a point.

Mainly it’s that this will be my last column for the year. The other reason is that I’m obsessed with series finales. So what better way to bring an end to “Remote Life”?

You might be wondering how one can be obsessed with series finales. I promise it’s possible. There’s something about a finale and all the hoopla that surrounds it that has me sitting in front of my TV, popcorn bowl in hand and Wikipedia page opened for a quick refresher course.

After devoting so much time to a television show and generally caring more than is healthy about a group of fictional people, the finale is the episode that has to do everything. It’s got to tie up loose ends, answer the will-they-won’t-they question, throw a few curve balls and give a sense of finality while also providing an idea of where these characters are going in the future.

When I was 9, I counted down the hours to the finale of “Home Improvement” for some inexplicable reason. It was the first time I watched a TV show’s curtain call, where the cast takes a final bow, and I saw the set and the actors for what they were. I also remember being frustrated that I still didn’t know what Wilson’s face looked like. But mostly I remember the finality of that moment.

Finales are led up to with zealous press, fanatical theorizing and the fear that a single episode won’t be able to achieve all you need to say goodbye to the world you’ve come to know.

The finale episodes of “Boy Meets World” and “Gilmore Girls” meant tying up college careers and relationships while also letting us know what these guys and gals would be up to for the rest of their lives. Or until we can convince them to return for a 20-year reunion (I’m talking to you, Ben Savage.)

There are other shows that I haven’t watched for years that I will grow more and more obsessed with as the finale episode grows closer.

I skipped out on the final two seasons of “Lost,” but sat rapt with attention to see how everything ended.

All right, so that’s an unfair example. There were a lot of people who wanted to know the end of “Lost,” but gave up somewhere around “The Others.” Oh you made it past “The Others”? Good for you.

Of course, the best and hardest finales are those for your favorite shows. The ones you’ve stuck with throughout the years and aren’t completely ready to say goodbye to, even though the network or creators are saying it’s time.

These are bittersweet finales, but they’re also the most memorable. They’re the ones we have the most fun watching because we care the most.

On that note, thank you for reading “Remote Life” all the way to these final sentences and for sharing in my unhealthy obsession with television.

I hope that all of your favorite shows have satisfying finales and that none of them cop out with a dream sequence twist.

If you would like to chat about anything television for the last time contact Suchland at [email protected].

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Samantha Suchland
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