40 TV Shows That Didn't Get the Ending They Deserved

Samantha Sutton | Feb 15, 2019 TV
40 TV Shows That Didn't Get the Ending They Deserved

Full House
ABC/Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution

One way to ensure that we'll keep tuning in to our favorite TV shows week after week or season after season? Well, aside from the promise of certain celebrities popping up as series regulars or guest stars, we live for all the suspense. We need to find out how certain a plot points will play out, or how the story in general will be wrapped up in the finale.

Is the couple we're rooting for actually going to get together? Did that catastrophic event end up killing our favorite character? Who is this mysterious figure that appeared in those last few moments?

Tell us, tell us, tell us!

Of course, sometimes, the answers we're seeking never end up coming.

For whatever reason -- whether it's poor ratings, some sort of off-camera drama with the cast and/or creators, or budget cuts -- some series  end up being canceled prematurely, meaning  the major cliffhanger that happened in the last episode is what we have to live with ... forever. (Unless, of course, it eventually gets rebooted.) Years later, we still have questions about what exactly happened, or what was going to happen with our favorite characters. Many times, it's clear that there were big plans underway.

... they just never had the chance to go through with them before the show was pulled.

So, which unexpected and untimely finales left us confused, frustrated, and desperately wanting more? We've narrowed our list down to 40, but we're betting there are a bunch more!

  • 'Full House'

    1

    Michelle lost her memory, and the family rallies around her as she tries to remember. Yes, it's touching, but is it the ending that we pictured? No.

    Thankfully, we ended up getting Fuller House, which promises to wrap things up pretty neatly when it ends after five seasons.

  • 'Girlfriends'

    2

    Sadly, this show was canceled out of the blue following a writers' strike, when The CW had to decide where to best spend the network's money. None of the story lines on Girlfriends were wrapped up, and while we were promised a retrospective-type finale as a conclusion, we never got that, either.

    Reboot?

  • 'Freaks and Geeks'

    3

    Lindsay's parents think she's headed to an academic summit, but she sneaks off the bus and decides to follow the Grateful Dead on tour instead. The setup for something else was clearly there, but we never got to see what it was!

  • 'The Arrangement'

    4

    Yes, the main characters were mixed up in the dramas of Hollywood and a powerful cult, but people were still rooting for them to end up together. Unfortunately, the second season ended with a cheating scandal, and the show was canceled before they got the chance to get back together.

  • 'My Name Is Earl'

    5

    We were left with a "who's the father" mystery and a "To Be Continued ..." at the end of the final episode, but the show was never continued.

  • 'Pushing Daisies'

    6
    Pushing Daisies photo
    ABC

    People came for the pie maker that brought the dead back to life, but they stayed for the relationship between Ned and Chuck -- something the show's creator said wouldn't have been fully resolved for many years, let alone in the unexpected series finale.

  • 'Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles'

    7
    Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles photo
    FOX

    A time jump into the future? There are so many ways that one could have played out, but, sadly, it didn't get the chance.


  • 'Dallas'

    8

    Are we seriously going to leave things off with Elena finding out she's pregnant, and then watching Christopher's car explode?! Seriously?!

  • 'Reunion'

    9

    The whole premise of this show was to go back in time and follow the lives of a group of friends in order to see who murdered one of them. Unfortunately, it was axed before we could find out (but not before we were invested).

  • 'Southland'

    10

    The very end of the final episode showed one of the main characters, John Cooper, shot, and viewers not knowing if he's dead or alive.

  • 'The Secret Circle'

    11

    For the final episode of this magical show, it looks as if four new, mysterious characters are headed to town. We figured we'd find out their story in season two, but to this day, we still have no idea who they are.

  • 'Kyle XY'

    12

    Kyle -- aka the alien without a bellybutton -- finds out at the end that his enemy is actually his brother.

  • 'My So-Called Life'

    13
    My So-Called Life photo
    ABC

    This show barely got a chance, but ended up becoming a cult favorite -- despite all the unanswered questions we were left with. The creator later revealed that Angela would've ended up with Jordan, and Brian gets paired with Delia. But it would've been nice to see it play out on screen!

  • 'Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman'

    14
    Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman photo
    ABC

    What's the identity of that tiny baby wrapped in a cape?

    We will never know.

  • 'Joan of Arcadia'

    15
    Joan of Arcadia photo
    CBS

    God warns her that there's a big challenge coming her way.

    ... and then, the show ends.


  • 'Melrose Place'

    16

    It's a pretty cruel joke to have this series rebooted and then have it end with Amanda Woodward (Heather Locklear) getting locked up.

    What happens next? Anyone?!

  • 'Rome'


    17
    Rome HBO tv show
    HBO

    If there seemed to be a lot going on in the show's second season, that's because money was running out. Ultimately, Rome was too expensive to make, and it didn't come back for a third round.

  • 'Agent Carter'

    18

    Los Angeles was closed, but the fact that a shooter stole a mysterious file on Peggy Carter brought up a whole bunch of questions.

  • 'The Whispers'

    19

    This show was all about an alien force manipulating children as part of their master plan to take over the world. At the very end, the kids are abducted, and Claire (played by Lily Rabe) decides to sacrifice herself in place of her son -- and then we never find out what becomes of her.

  • 'Revolution'

    20

    In this post-apocalyptic show, we finally find out that what's responsible for knocking out the world's electricity is also controlling people's minds, telling them to get to Bradbury, Idaho. Unfortunately, seeing everyone headed there is how the whole thing ends ... although, there was a comic released afterwards to give us some sort of conclusion.

  • 'Mork & Mindy'

    21
    MORK & MINDY - 'The Wedding' 10/15/81 Pam Dawber, Robin Williams
    ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Images

    Mork and Mindy get married, Mork outs himself as an alien, and then they get stuck in a time vortex -- specifically, in the prehistoric age. The fact that we'll never know what happened after that isn't exactly funny.

  • 'No Tomorrow'

    22

    Not only were we left wondering if certain couples would end up together, we didn't know whether or not an asteroid would be hitting the earth! 

    At least the CW released an epilogue of sorts on its website, which really ended up being an extended cut of the last episode.

  • 'Chasing Life'

    23

    Viewers followed April Carver as she battled cancer and were left with the ultimate cliffhanger when things ended right as she contemplated letting herself die.

  • 'Bored to Death'

    24
    Bored to Death photo
    HBO

    If a show has to end with something crazy and infuriating, we guess an incestuous kiss between the main character and the woman he recently discovered to be his half-sister is the way to do it.

  • 'V'


    25

    Aliens succeed at mind controlling the masses ... but now what? Maybe things will get cleared up in the upcoming movie.

  • 'Alf'

    26

    It seems like alien shows have a history of being canceled at the worst possible time. Alf's last moments show him being captured by the authorities, and it's actually very sad.

    The show was later tied up with a TV movie, but no one from the original cast was involved.

  • 'Hannibal'

    27

    Two characters take a dive off an actual cliff, and we don't know if they survive?

    That's the definition of a cliffhanger!

  • 'FlashFoward'

    28

    At the beginning of the show, a blackout causes people to get a glimpse into their future, and the same type of "flash forward" at the end of the series, too -- with the addition of an explosion.

    What does it all mean?! We'll never know!

  • 'Angel'


    29

    They've been beaten, some of them died, but angel is ready to fight back against the demons and dragons in the final episode. However, after he swings his sword, there's a blackout, and we never did find out what happened to him since the show was then canceled.

  • 'Alphas'

    30

    The Alphas are a group of ordinary people who have superhuman strength, and at the very end, they're trying to save New York from an explosion. It ends up happening, and we see everyone, even the Alphas, falling to the ground. But are they dead? Alive but unconscious?

    We need answers!

  • 'Ringer'

    31

    Sarah Michelle Gellar had the chance to play twins here, one of whom takes over her billionaire sister's identity after she dies. But, as it turns out, she's alive and wanted her twin dead. We're still left with the question of "Why?"

  • 'Reaper'

    32

    For a comedy, this didn't really end on a light note. The whole series was about a guy whose parents sold his soul to the devil. And now, he has to help capture other souls who have escaped from hell. There were hints that things were about to get more complicated -- mainly, that the girl he loves will now be working for the devil, too, and that the devil may or may not be his father -- when it all came to an end.

  • 'Invasion'

    33
    Invasion TV show photo
    ABC

    Alien doppelgangers have been replacing people in a town following a hurricane, and it all stems from the glowing creatures that are living the water. So when one of the characters dies, her husband decides -- duh! -- let's place her in the water! We're not sure how that turned out for him.

  • 'Bunheads'

    34

    There wasn't anything close to an ending here -- just Ginny admitting she slept with Frankie and Michelle comforting her. It was a nice friendship moment, but definitely not what fans wanted or needed.

    It is an Amy Sherman-Palladino show, though, so there's always a possibility it could get revived, just like Gilmore Girls.

  • 'Soap'

    35

    It took place in the '70s, but people are still a bit frustrated with the final scene of Soap, where the main character, Jessica, is standing in front of a firing squad about to be executed. We hear the shots, we see her flinch, but ... is she OK? TBD.

  • 'The Tomorrow People'

    36

    Just when we finally discovered what Stephen Jameson's (Robbie Amell) special powers were -- that he can reverse time, and ultimately was able to stop a shooting -- the story was over due to cancellation. So much for seeing what this change really meant for those involved, or what else Stephen was able to do.

  • 'The Family'

    37

    Before the finale, we discovered that the boy we thought was Adam, the son who was kidnapped then returned years later, was actually a totally different kid. In the finale itself, we find out that -- gah! -- the real Adam is alive! And also that the sister offed a journalist.

    Oof.

  • 'Moesha'

    38

    There were plans to resolve the many cliffhangers that Moesha left us with -- an unexpected pregnancy, an abduction, relationship drama, etc. -- in the new series The Parkers, but that never happened.

  • 'Pitch'

    39
    Pitch tv show photo
    FOX

    After excitedly following a story about the first female to play baseball in the Major Leagues, it stinks to end things with that same woman getting an MRI for a potentially career-ending injury. 

    Not cool!

  • 'Las Vegas'

    40
    Las Vegas tv show photo
    NBC

    While we thought the owner of Montecito, A.J. Cooper (Tom Selleck), had died in a plane crash, he later walks into his own memorial service -- and it's such a shocking reveal that pregnant Delinda (Molly Simms) starts bleeding. 

    What's going on? Is the baby OK? We were promised that we'd get some answers with a Knight Rider crossover, but it didn't end up happening.

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