How Did the Mad Men Finale Stack Up to Other Memorable Series Endings?
In the 24 hours since it aired, the Mad Men series finale prompted lots of buzz. Too-smart-to-be-a-secretary Joan announced plans to go into business for herself, Peggy and Stan locked lips and Don disappeared to a commune in California. The final shot of the series showed him meditating next to the Pacific Ocean as the screen faded into a feel-good Coca-Cola commercial.
Monica and Chandler's wishes came true as they became parents to twins Jack and Erica, but we all know what the real highlight of the episode was: Ross and Rachel finally getting back together.
Lost's ending kept viewers talking long after the credits rolled by throwing in a serious plot twist: The question of whether or not the show's characters had actually been dead throughout the entire series.
Among other things, Breaking Bad ended with the event viewers had been anticipating since the show's pilot: Walt's death.
SEX AND THE CITY
In the buildup to the end of SATC, things didn't look good: Carrie had left New York (the blasphemy!) to follow Aleksandr Petrovsky to Paris. It didn't take long for her to see the error of her ways, however, thanks in part to Mr. Big, who (finally) realized he couldn't live without her.
"Made in America," the final episode of The Sopranos, tied up a lot of the loose ends, but it didn't conclude with the big bang that audiences predicted. Instead, the final moments saw Tony and his family sitting in a booth at Holsten's – then the whole thing cut to black as Journey played in the background.
For a show about nothing, Seinfeld had a pretty exciting finale: The gang prepared to head to Paris for one last hurrah before Jerry and George relocated to L.A. to produce a TV show, but their plane went down in Massachusetts, where they witnessed a carjacking. This led to a trial in the second part of the finale – and that landed the gang in jail.
Without the quick-witted duo Amy Sherman-Palladino and Daniel Palladino at the show's helm, the seventh season of Gilmore Girls felt different from the rest of the series. The finale, however, had some sweet moments: A send-off party for the newly employed Rory in the Stars Hollow town square, a Friday-night dinner with the Gilmores and the long-awaited reunion of the formerly engaged Luke and Lorelai.
HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER
Audiences waited nine seasons to see Ted Mosby get his happy ending with the very elusive "mother." And he did – although it wasn't really the end of Ted's story. After Tracy, his wife and the mother of his children, died of a terminal illness, the final moments of the show saw him rekindling his romance with Robin Scherbatsky, with his son and daughter's blessing.
For a series that consistently kept audiences crying, the Parenthood finale was bound to be a tear-jerker. And it delivered: Sarah married Hank, Julia and Joel adopted Victor's baby half-sister and of course, in the biggest Kleenex moment of all, Zeek died.
The controversial conclusion to Dexter had, well, a lot of death. First, Dexter took his sister Debra off life support and dumped her body in the water. While out at sea, he seemingly committed suicide – but the last few minutes of the show revealed that he faked his own death.
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS
The mantra of Dillon's citizens was "Texas Forever" (well, besides "clear eyes, full heart, can't lose") – but that didn't prove to ring true for the Taylor family, who left the Lone Star State behind for Philadelphia, where Tami had a new job waiting for her. This bittersweet moment was coupled with, obviously, a state championship football game.