Bleats

Every Show That Ends Well Has The Same Thing In Common

It's always best to prepare for your goodbyes.

It’s easy to remember the shows where you were utterly furious about the offensively lousy ending. Hell, we’ve all felt it – we’ve even written about it here before, because we have feelings on the matter.

And every unsatisfying ending is terrible for individual, specific reasons: an abrupt cancellation, a sudden series episode cut causing a desperate cramming of plot into a handful of episodes, a network sell-off, a show that was meant to continue until one of the main actors got #metooed and had their character abruptly killed off-screen – the reasons are as many and varied as the frustratingly truncated shows themselves.

Ahem.

Conversely, there’s one common about the times when a show on TV ends well: they knew it was coming.

It’s worth noting because a bunch of shows are winding up in the next little while, and it’s particularly unusual that they’re being given the chance to go out on their own terms rather than just not being renewed or axed mid-season, as is so often the fate for anything that’s a more of a cult-hit than The Big Bang Theory.

Gloriously over the top crime dramedy Claws is filming its final series, which is almost a relief given how nuts the last series was. Netflix recently announced that the coming series of genius animated series BoJack Horseman will wrap the show up (although according to Aaron Paul apparently it was the network’s call, not the creators).

And two of the biggest series on TV are calling it quits. The last series of The Good Place is currently screening, and promising a satisfying (if almost certainly heartbreaking) conclusion. And Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul is putting a bow on its final series, as we watch Jimmy McGill finally, irredeemably become the amoral Saul Goodman of its parent programme.

Yeah, Kim, you’re probably going to be fine. Juuuuuuust fine.

And this should be noted because it’s actually pretty unusual for a show to end when and how it wants to go out.

A show that’s not doing well might not have the sort of clout required to negotiate their own thrilling conclusion, while a show going well has it even harder because no networks wants to kill a successful show and will throw money at a series to keep it running even if, say, Arrested Development already managed a perfect ending and didn’t need to come back for a fourth series godammit.

That’s why you have zombie shows like The [US] Office or Gilmore Girls staggering on when key personnel have opted out (star Steve Carell in the former example, writer-creator Amy Sherman-Palladino in the latter).

And it’s wonderful when a TV show ends well, and it’s something to be celebrated. A good ending is a rare and beautiful thing.

And look: there’s a lot to be said for going out on one’s own terms. Cheers, team.

The Words That Are Being Censored On The Good Place Are Really Forking Weird

Everything is fine, right? Not according to UK censors.

One of the greatest forking jokes in The Good Place is that it’s impossible to swear in their analogue of Heaven, with any attempt to use profanity being automatically replaced like they’re living in an 80s action film edited for television.

See, dear reader? I wouldn’t steer you wrong.

It’s a legitimately great joke, neatly sidestepping the fact that these characters would definitely swear a blue streak in real life while ensuring that the show would also be able to screen without controversy on mainstream network television.

Or… or so you would think.

It has been claimed on Reddit that E4, the spinoff channel of UK broadcaster Channel 4, has been screening episodes of The Good Place with the “swears” cut out. Which is just bizarre.

And aside from anything else, it makes certain bits of the show inexplicable. For example, the establishing scene where Eleanor Shellstrop – the character played by Kristen Bell – first realises she can’t swear and has this little wrinkle explained to her is presumably missing altogether. How does it even make runtime?

Similarly, the season 3 twist when she and her colleagues finally get to the (actual) forking Good Place, the giveaway that they’ve made it is that they can’t swear. That’s what’s happening in the gif embedded at the beginning of this article and, again, is made utterly unintelligible if she’s arbitrarily announcing it rather than having a sudden glorious realisation based on a thing that’s happening.

Also, the end of season 1 twist. Also, the end of season 2 twist. Also… actually, it happens a lot.

Then again, maybe we’re being unfair and ignorant and maybe “fork” is a proper swear word in the UK.

After all, Australians responded with absolute hilarity when the US president misspelled a very simple word in one of his recent panicked (and then deleted) tweet, in which he replacing “moat” with a very Aussie-specific term for the female front-bum.

I honestly can’t stop laughing at this.

If anything, maybe we should follow The Good Place example and censor all words in all things. It’s the only way to be absolutely forking certain.

Star Wars Secretly Added Gay Characters And You Definitely Didn't Notice

We've got a good feeling about this.

OK, let’s manage some expectations here: if you’re hoping this means Finn and Poe kiss in The Rise Of Skywalker, we’re sorry but that’s probably not going to happen. But the Star Wars universe does now have at least one confirmed gay couple, although you’d be forgiven for not having noticed.

It’s not Luke and Han. It’s not Leia and Mon Mothma. It’s not Ashoka Tano and Barriss Offee, despite the efforts of The Clone Wars shippers. And it’s definitely not C-3PO and R2-D2.

It’s Orka and Flix.

These guys.

Chances are your response is “who?”, unless you’re a pretty solid fan who can reply “Ah yes, those characters from Star Wars: Resistance, the animated series which takes place in the period immediately before The Force Awakens and which is about to start its second season, totally across that.”

And while there’s nothing explicit about their relationship in the show, beyond the small point that they’re doing a fairly relationship-ish thing in taking flowers to Flix’s mum, executive producer Justin Ridge told the Coffee With Kenobi podcast (and the Guardian reported) that “I think it’s safe to say they’re an item. They’re absolutely a gay couple and we’re proud of that.”

It’s worth noting that there have been queer characters in what Star Wars used to call its Expanded Universe of publications, games and other non-movie media.

If you played as a female character in the still-amazing Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic game you could flirt with the warrior-dame Juhani, for example, and there were numerous queer and non-binary characters in the novels and comics.

And just quietly, we like to think that Moff Jejerrod was subtly coming out to Vader in Return of the Jedi.

However, this is the first canonical on-screen depiction of a same-gender couple in the Star Wars universe.

And sure, it would be nice if Disney had been game to show a queer couple that wasn’t a bat and an owl, but you know. Baby steps.

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