Big Love, and giving good ending

I guess you didn’t know that I was a fan of HBO’s Big Love. But who doesn’t want to watch Chet from Weird Science grow up and get serious with three women? When I started watching the series, I was intrigued. Three wives? And then the drama and great acting sucked me in. But by last season, my interest was flagging. How much trouble can one man get into? Plus naked butt shots of Bill Paxton just isn’t high on my list of Things To See. So I decided at the end of last season to just drop the series entirely. Until I found out that this season was going to be the last. So I tuned in again, and found myself still disappointed.

Until last night’s finale.

Which was pitch perfect.

For every plot twist that had annoyed and started to bore the bejeesis out of me, there was a satisfying conclusion. Though the word “satisfying” is thrown around a lot, let me just say that in this case the word is apt. The ending had surprise. Shock. Sadness.  Hope. Happiness. And more importantly, the lingering question of: what now? Which is absolutely essential in a good ending. The audience has to care about and wonder what happens next. They have to be left wanting. And despite the many, many pitfalls I’d rolled my eyes at in previous episodes, I got to the end of the finale thinking about this family and what would come next for them.

And that my friends, is the way you give good ending.

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