Shows canceled after cliffhanger episodes [Spoilers]

“My Name Is Earl” was canceled by NBC recently. It may be picked up by FOX, it may be picked up by TBS. But assuming “Earl” is dead, it ended on a cliffhanger episode. Earl is Dodge’s real father, but Darnell might not be Earl Jr.'s dad.

I can think of a few other shows canceled after a cliffhanger.

“Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” kind of ended on a cliffhanger. John Connor ended up in the future before his father Kyle Reese went back in time and conceived him with Sarah. He is a stranger to his Uncle Derek and is meeting Allison Young, the model for the “Cameron” cyborg for the first time. He has not yet become the leader of the resistance, and Catherine Weaver is off on her own mission to find John Henry. So, one storyline was resolved, and a whole new one is open to possibilities and up for everybody’s speculation. I wouldn’t count it as an abruptly interrupted storyline, though, but a brand-new beginning.

“Alien Nation” was canceled by FOX in 1990 and ended with a cliffhanger. Four years later, after new management took over at FOX, a TV movie was produced that resolved the cliffhanger. Four additional “Alien Nation” movies were aired.

“Soap” ended in 1981 with three cliffhangers. A suicidal Chester walked in on Danny and Annie in bed together and threatened to kill him. Burt walked into an ambush set up by his political enemies. And Jessica was about to be executed by a firing squad in South America. However, in the “Benson” episode “God, I Need This Job” Jessica appears to Benson in the form of an apparition and reveals she is alive, but in a coma, and she asks Benson To convince her family she is alive instead of their having her declared legally dead.

“Benson” ended on a cliffhanger itself. In a story line in which Benson ran against Governor Gatling for the governor’s office, the final episode showed Benson and the governor watching the election results together. The show ended just before the winner’s name was revealed.

What other shows can Dopers come up with that ended with cliffhangers?

Twin Peaks ends with Bob taking over a person.

The show Las Vegasended with the character Sam Marquez having been kidnapped. Also, I seem to remember some mystery being played out around the character of A.J. Cooper played by Tom Sellect.

Carnivale had a cliffhanger. They ended the main story but set it up to continue.

Angel ended as a cliffhanger, with Angel and his gang facing a legion from Hell.

I remember reading that they wanted to end Benson by not saying who won the election, so it really wasn’t a cliffhanger, per se.

I am morally certain (by which I mean I speak entirely without evidence :D) that the Benson finale wasn’t a true cliffhanger. They knew the show was ending and chose to have an ambigous conclusion. It’s not exactly a “Lady or the Tiger” bit, but I think the viewer is meant to decide for his ownself what happens in the election.


I am pentecostally certain–by which I mean I believe this in spite of the evidence–that we’re meant to think that Angel and his crew all died in that battle, with the possible exception of Spike. That’s the ending I find satisfying, anyway.

The Riches - the second season was truncated because of the writers’ strike, it ended with a cliffhanger and multiple unresolved plot lines, and then it was cancelled.

This is my most common beef. I complain about it regularly. Usually in relation to dramas rather than comedies. I think the the UK usually does a better job of handling this - they have a fixed number of episodes and leave it at that. I usually won’t watch a drama because it is almost always (not always) canceled before there is closure.

The 4400.

Nope. There is a comic book series called After the Fall that is overseen by Joss and is a canonical continuation of the series

[spoiler]I’ve not read it, but my understanding is that Gunn’s a vampire, Angel achieves Shanshu and is a human, Wesley returns as a ghost in the employ of Wolfram and Hart, and Spike, Illyria, Connor, and Lorne are all warlords in LA after Wolfram and Hart sends the city to hell.

Also, there is a giant talking fish.[/spoiler]

Anyway, even ignoring that, I don’t consider the finale of Angel to be a cliffhanger. The whole point of the show is that evil is never vanquished, and that the fight against it is everlasting. There will never be an end to their mission, and though this looked to be armageddon, it was really just another battle in the eternal struggle between good and evil.

EDIT: I see that **Skald **says he believes his interpretation in spite of evidence, so my post was mostly pointless, but I’ll leave it up there for anyone who didn’t already know.

ALF - The government found him. I had told my parents the TV Guide said “series” finale, but they assured me that there would be another season. There wasn’t.

I think there was a one off movie, though.

That’s what I meant by “believing in spite of the evidence,” Aesirson. :smiley:

I’ve read the series, and what you mention in the spoiler box is pretty much on target. The art atrocious. Moreover

Illyria has mysteriously acquired sizable boobs, presumably on account of the penciller not having dated much in high school.

EDIT: Your post-post edit makes my response to your post as pointless as your response to my post was. However, it does give me the opportunity to reply with a post-post edit of my own and in the process of posting that post-post edit, abuse the the p, o, s, and t keys on my laptop.

My So-Called Life. This one still hurts when I think about it.

I had forgotten about Las Vegas. But you’re only partially right. Sam was kidnapped at the end of Season 4 and was rescued in the Season 5 premiere. If I recall, the series finale had Delinda going into labor in a parking lot.

The granddaddy of them is all is the relatively recent last episode of The Sopranos. Although I guess you could say it was done purposely.

I am unhappy they cancelled Earl,hope someone picks it up.

Dallas, although it had worn out its welcome, ended on a cliffhanger, with JR apparently attempting suicide. Five years later, in a made-for-TV sequel, it was revealed that JR hadn’t tried to kill himself, but was instead shooting at Satan’s minion, who had been encouraging JR to commit suicide.

No thread on cliffhangers is complete without mention of the ultimate anti-cliffhanger episode. In the final episode of the now-forgotten sitcom I Married Dora the title character, an illegal alien who had married her employer to stay in the U.S., watched her nominal husband get on a plane headed for a 2-year assignment in Bahrein. He then got back off the plane and announced the show had been canceled. The final episode ended with the cast and crew waving goodbye to the audience.

Lois and Clark ended with Lois & Clark finding a baby on their doorstep that was supposedly their child from the future.

The Pretender ended with an explosion involving most of the cast. They did, however, resolve this cliffhanger and a few other issues with a couple of tv movies.

If I Married Dora is forgotten, how do you know about it? :cool: