Those season finales are coming thick and fast now.
Unlike certain shows I could mention that don’t really do the cliffhanger thing, every season of Smallville ends on a cataclysmic series of deaths, destruction, revelations, and plot wrap-ups. This season was no different.
Despite being one of the strongest, creatively, since the show began, there has been a certain meandering quality to it, with plots laboured past their natural death point, minor reset buttons pushed and so on. I won’t tell you how many of the major cast ‘die’ – they’ll be back, you know they will – but it’s rather a lot and if one in particular doesn’t come back, well, I don’t think there’ll be much point watching next year for its final season.
Explanations, when they do come, are pretty far-fetched, but hey, it’s a comic book – what you going do about it? Superman fans, however, will be delighted by the arrival of at least two characters from the comic books, one expected, and one me am expecting, too (there’s a clue for you), although the origins of both have changed. And there is the possibility that something might finally have changed. Permanently. No going back on it this time.
Tension: 9/10 (1/10 really because we all know a giant magic reset button will be in the next episode, because there always is)
Sorry for the semi-generic picture here, but I’ll spoil things for those of you who haven’t seen the first part of this two-part story, if I show anything else: who’s in it, why they’re in, etc, will be closely guarded secrets.
Supernatural‘s second season was a bit more drawn out than its first, having lost some of its youthful enthusiasm. But it’s also matured, with the writing improving, the cast getting the hang of the omni-present humour and some depth to their performances, with a good collection of cameos and themes sprinkling themselves through the stories. It’s been a tad throwaway, but that’s the post-modern point of it all.
Quite a few plot threads get wrapped up in this one, some new ones opened up for the finally-commissioned third season – although nothing really cliffhangery – and there are a few tragic moments, so not bad in all.
CSI doesn’t often do cliffhangers, but after probably its best season so far (except maybe the first), I’m willing to let it play with me. It also doesn’t really do plot arcs, preferring standalone episodes, but the two that it’s used this year other than the Keppler strand – the Miniature Killer and the Grissom/Sara romance – both get a good airing in a finale that takes full advantage of the traditional strengths of CSI: humour, intelligence, characterisation, darkness, horror and William Petersen. Definitely one to watch from between your fingers and hope it all works out well by the next season, because nothing is guaranteed when actors’ pay packets are being re-negotiated…