Gravity Falls: The Weirdmageddon

My kid has been binge-watching Gravity Falls, a Disney show. I must admit, I’ve been sucked into liking it, too. It is one of those rare kids shows that adults can genuinely enjoy.

It is kinda hard to describe - it is basically about twin kids, a brother and a sister, who spend the summer with their great-uncle, who runs a tacky tourist-trap called the Mystery Shack in the little town of Gravity Falls - however, reality is thin there, and all sorts of weird stuff happens. It is kind of like a preteen animated version of Twin Peaks with a hefty dose of H.P. Lovecraft. Some of the horror elements I’m surprised they got away with, in a Disney show aimed at kids - there are a lot of “getting stuff past the radar” moments.

Anyway, the significant thing is that it is a series written with a definite plot arc, and that plot is ending tonight with the last episode: “The Weirdmageddon, Part III”.

My wife and I like the series too. Haven’t seen the recent episodes - and that’s been Disney’s problem, airing them at varying times and sporadically. 40 episodes after nearly 4 years?

So the show has now ended. The creator (and voice of several characters) Alex Hirsch wanted to end it while it was still good. So we’ll catch up on it, and my wife hasn’t seen some of the first ‘season’ so we can rewatch a bit. It was that good.

I was hoping that in the very last scene they would show the twins parents. Maybe it’s for the best. In my imagination they can be the children of Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable (who changed their last names).

Heh, I think my kid’s head may melt from watching too much of this show. :wink: Awesome cross between H.P. Lovecraft and the Simpsons. :smiley:

I’m 62 but made a special effort to catch the ending (hey, the day one doesn’t enjoy watching a good cartoon is the day you stop living, IMHO). A good ending to an intriguing cartoon that had more than enough to interest adults…albeit I wouldn’t mind a return trip there a couple of years from now, as Zipper and Mabel prepare to enter college…

Now if I can ever figure out what Steven Universe is about…

Favorite little bits from the last episode were the callbacks to previous episodes - like seeing Soos’ girlfriend from “Soos and the Real Girl” episode was working the counter in the Mystery Shack, and of course the return of the wax head in the vent!

One of the best shows on TV and probably the best kids show of all time. What is the deal with only two seasons? This is not the BBC.
My only complaint with the finale is how they made a huge deal of the wheel with all the people holding hands the whole run of the show and then defeat Bill with twin magic.

Unfortunately, a limited run was inevitable with this sort of show, as the whole plot arc had to be thought out in advance so that clues could be planted throughout earlier episodes, leading up to a series of big reveals. Otherwise, you could only do a “monster of the week”-type format.

Though I agree of course I would have liked it to go on longer. The risk though is that planning a four or five season arc may leave a show stranded if it isn’t completed for some reason.

I kinda liked that they defeated Bill with what was, essentially, a con. :smiley:

My only complaints were that ‘Stan being difficult, causing the holding hands thing to fail’ felt a trifle forced (even if it was in character), and that ‘I lost my memory’ sacrifice was resolved in double-quick time - I’d have preferred his recovery only being hinted at as a possibility.

But that’s quibbling - I gotta admit, not many shows are able to pull off an actual ending with such style. The only kid’s show I can think of that went out with such well-planned grace was Avatar: the Last Airbender.

Edit: the alternative can be:

It was great, but they shouldn’t have restored Grunkle Stan’s memory. It’s such a typical feel good ending cliche to not have the courage to follow through with any real sacrifice. I thought they might keep that one since it wasn’t death. Oh well. Was I the only one who waited and bingeg the second half of season 2 before the finale because he couldn’t stand the wacky release schedule?

The “Between the Pines” behind the scenes episode was interesting too. I never looked at the fandom for this show so I don’t know how much of this they already figured out, but it pointed out a ton of clues strewn about earlier episodes.

Does this show really appeal directly to adults? My wife and I loved Avatar and Legend of Korra. Is this also for adults?

I would say so.

Very cool. I hope it hits Netflix streaming soon.

The Avatar series, Gravity Falls, and Adventure Time have large adult fanbases, but they aren’t for adults. They have a general audience appeal.

To me, a cartoon “for adults” would be something with mature content, like Rick and Morty or Archer, or going way back, Aeon Flux. Not to pick on you though, it’s a common phrase.

The line between “for kids” and “for adults” has been getting blurrier and blurrier in recent years. The current crop of top tier “kids” cartoons feels like the writers are trying to balance the sense of wonder and positivity of childhood with the emotional maturity and complexity of adulthood, and the results have been pretty great. I would describe Gravity Falls as a show designed to be accessible to kids, but also to appeal to a wider audience. It’s funny, emotional, creative, and all around well-written in a way that anyone can enjoy. I never felt like I had to excuse its shortcomings “because it’s a kids show”. I’m sorry to see it go, but it went out on a definite high note.

I never went past the numbered chronicles. But I keep watching the hide behind scene on youtube.

Sad that the show is done, glad they went out in good form, frustrated to be so aware that I am only catching a small fraction of the clues and subtle jokes as they fly by. But I respect that.

I came to the show late, so it’s disappointing that it’s ending so soon after I discovered it. But wow, it’s such fun! I hope Alex Hirsch goes on to do something equally as delightful and clever.

In fact, to expand a bit, it is in some ways very reminiscent of Avatar The Last Airbender, which you have already indicated that you liked.

  • Both are shows that, while they are definitely for children, explore universal themes and so can be watched with enjoyment by adults;

  • Both have high quality animation;

  • Both have simultaneously an “adventure of the week” with an overarching plot that wraps up with a definite, planned, and awesome ending in which the big bad is confronted in a spectacular manner;

  • Both venture into darker territory than is usual for kids shows;

  • On the more superficial side - both feature a brother and sister team, who work (sometimes with others) to combat nasties;

  • Even more superficially - both feature as a main recurring plot point a younger boy’s romantic yearnings towards an older girl (though in Avatar, this actually pays off for him! Gravity Falls is more realistic in this respect).

One of my quibbles with the ending as well.

If I had my way, I’d have kept him amnesiac, but willing to go along with Ford, and shown some sort of subtle hint in the closing montage of them on the boat that memory regeneration might be possible at some point in the future.

My daughter loves this show so much. I started watching and it grew on me, too.
I was amused to find out John Ritter’s son was the voice of Dipper.