There’s nothing like a good TV show to help you escape the stresses of everyday life. After spending years invested in a show, its characters, and their stories, it can be immensely satisfying to see everything come together in a final episode that ties up all the loose ends. Of course, not all TV shows are able to stick the landing, but when they do, the results can be truly stunning. Here are just a few examples of shocking TV finales that left viewers reeling.
One of the most shocking finales in recent memory, Breaking Bad saw protagonist Walter White finally meet his end at the hands of his own creation, Jesse Pinkman. It was a bittersweet ending for fans of the show, who had watched Walter transform from a meek chemistry teacher into a ruthless drug kingpin over the course of the series.
Another unforgettable finale, The Sopranos ended with protagonist Tony Soprano seemingly meeting his demise, as he was gunned down in a restaurant while waiting for his family. However, the final moments of the show cut to black before Tony’s fate could be confirmed, leaving viewers wondering whether he was actually killed or not.
After six seasons of shocking twists and turns, Lost ended with all of the main characters being reunited in the afterlife. It was a controversial ending to say the least, but it provided a sense of closure for fans who had been following the show’s complex mythology for years.
Game of Thrones
The most recent example on this list, the Game of Thrones finale saw Westeros’s ruling monarchy toppled and replaced with a new regime led by Daenerys Targaryen. It was a shocking turn of events that left many viewers divided, but there’s no denying that it was a fitting end to one of the most suspenseful and unpredictable TV shows of all time.
One of the most shocking TV finales of all time, Dexter ended with the titular character faking his own death and going into hiding. It was a bold move that left many viewers frustrated, but it also proved that sometimes, shocking endings can be truly unforgettable.
After seven seasons of build-up, Mad Men ended with protagonist Don Draper finally finding happiness and peace. It was a heartwarming ending to a show that had been defined by its cynical take on the advertising industry, and it provided a perfect send-off for one of TV’s most iconic characters.
How I Met Your Mother
After nine seasons How I Met Your Mother ended with its titular character finally meeting the love of his life… and then promptly dying. It was a shocking and unexpected ending that divided viewers, but it also proved that sometimes, the most shocking endings can also be the most satisfying.
There are plenty of other great examples of shocking TV finales out there, but these are just a few of our favorites. Watchers of these shows will no doubt remember where they were when they watched these finales, and they’ll also remember the sense of shock, disbelief, and even frustration that they felt in the aftermath. That’s what makes a truly shocking TV finale so special – it’s the ability to leave viewers feeling stunned and emotionally invested long after the credits have rolled.