History DownerEnding / LiveActionTV

4th Feb '16 2:04:53 PM talltalltree
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** "River's Edge": A rich tycoon who likes to drug, rape and strangle young women, and was repsonsible for the deaths of three of his victims (as well as a family who were killed on his orders, to cover up one of the deaths) gets away with it - there isn't enough evidence to hold him on any charges, so he escapes back to Canada. A police officer who was [[{{Retirony}} one week away from retirement]] was ''also'' murdered, trying to get justice for the victims while he still could - so his death is completely in vain. Meanwhile, a woman who tried to expose the culprit has her life and career ruined; she ''was'' involved in helping him cover up his crimes, but she'd pretty much been forced into it, and it's suggested that he had preyed upon her too.
7th Jan '16 8:51:40 PM SwimToTheMoon
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A man pulling a Karma Houdini after commiting genocide is a downer ending.
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** Series 4 of (revival) ''Series/DoctorWho''. London is completely war torn by extraterrestrials, Donna has to have her memories wiped because of it, The Doctor allowed his human clone to walk free despite having committed genocide, and he's all alone in the TARDIS.
5th Jan '16 9:52:54 PM mewmdude77
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***Really, in any medical show, there's always going to be downer endings, but it's always more abrupt and memorable when it's in a show like Scrubs, which has more of an emphasis on comedy. They won't always be able to save patients, so sometimes it ends with sending the patient off, like in My Last Words, where JD and Turk sacrifice their night out to comfort a dying man with no family. There's also two episodes, My Catalyst and My Porcelain God, guest starring Michael J. Fox, that has an allegory for Fox's real life medical condition that makes it hard for him to live through life (Using OCD as a substitute for Fox's Parkinson's disease).
28th Dec '15 10:36:39 PM Oddstar6
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* The season two finale of ''Series/TheKnick'', which, at the time of this writing, may be the series finale: Dr. Thackery dies; Dr. Edwards' eye is permanently damaged, ending his career as a surgeon; Dr. Gallinger not only gets away with his evil acts, but gets a cushy and lucrative new career on the lecture circuit to advocate eugenics; August Robertson is dead, murdered by his own son; his son Henry has not only gotten away with murdering him and Inspector Speight, but he has also gotten rich off his subway investments; Cornelia Robertson finds out about this but decides not to do anything about it, leaving the country instead. All in all, a pretty depressing ending.
21st Dec '15 12:52:26 PM Silverblade2
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** Season 2 ended with Buffy alienating her friends and her family, stabbing her lover through the chest with a sword and sending him to a Hell dimension, and then leaving town for places unknown. ** Season 5, and the run of ''Buffy'' on Creator/TheWB, ended with Buffy sacrificing her life to save Dawn.

** And then there's the series finale, where [[spoiler: Spike sacrifices himself, bringing the entire town down with him in a Crowning Moment of Awesome; Xander is understandably grief-stricken following Anya's demise; Andrew is in shock over his survival, and they're all just standing there, on the edge of the crater that was the town a few of them grew up in, wondering what they can do next.]] Even though we later learn that they get through it, even [[spoiler: Spike, who comes back in Angel]], it can still be something of a downer.

* Series 4 of (revival) ''Series/DoctorWho''. London is completely war torn by extraterrestrials, Donna has to have her memories wiped because of it, The Doctor allowed his human clone to walk free despite having committed genocide, and he's all alone in the TARDIS. ** The third season ending also involved the remnants of the human race, in the year one hundred trillion, having made a desperate attempt to escape the end of the universe by flying to Utopia, trapped at the end of the universe and 'screaming at the dark'. Very little was actually made of that. ** Then there's season 2, where The Doctor and Rose are torn between separate universes and may never see each other again. Thank god for that MoodWhiplash scene.
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* Series 4 of (revival) ''Series/DoctorWho''. London is completely war torn by extraterrestrials, Donna has to have her memories wiped because of it, The Doctor allowed his human clone to walk free despite having committed genocide, and he's all alone in the TARDIS. ** The third season ending also involved the remnants of the human race, in the year one hundred trillion, having made a desperate attempt to escape the end of the universe by flying to Utopia, trapped at the end of the universe and 'screaming at the dark'. Very little was actually made of that. ** Then there's season 2, where The Doctor and Rose are torn between separate universes and may never see each other again. Thank god for that MoodWhiplash scene.''Series/DoctorWho'':
6th Dec '15 8:41:31 PM IncoG5nito
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Bar Rescue
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* ''Series/BarRescue'': Any episode where, after the rescue, the WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue reveals that the bar is still not successful, or has fallen back into its old ways. ** Then there was O'Face, whose owners had so many issues that Jon Taffer (the man that rescues the bars) refused to rescue the bar ''at all''. ** Second Base, a bar that had already been rescued once and asked for a re-rescue. Taffer ended up refusing after the owner who was causing the problems refused to put any of his own money toward the second attempt.
24th Oct '15 6:44:16 PM PhillyDom
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** "Who Mourns For Adonais". Apollo realizes that his late cohorts (the other Greek gods) were right in that "There is no room for Gods" in the 23rd century. Thus, the last of the Olympian gods dissipates himself joining his old comerades in oblivion. Kirk regrets this, noting that the Greek Gods inspired much of the culture, narrative traditions, and philosophy that still live on. He muses about if it would have hurt just a little to "gather a few more laurel leaves?"
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** "Who Mourns For Adonais". Apollo realizes that his late cohorts (the other Greek gods) were right in that "There is no room for Gods" in the 23rd century. Thus, the last of the Olympian gods dissipates himself himself, joining his old comerades comrades in oblivion. Kirk regrets this, noting that the Greek Gods gods inspired much of the culture, narrative traditions, and philosophy that still live on. He muses about if it would have hurt just a little to "gather a few more laurel leaves?"
24th Oct '15 6:41:23 PM PhillyDom
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** Save for Alan Alda, the actors of the series weren't told that Col. Blake would be killed until after they finished shooting the second-to-last scene-- a particularly upbeat one, despite Blake's depatrure. That they weren't told at all is an [[http://www.snopes.com/radiotv/tv/mash.asp urban legend]].
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** Save for Alan Alda, the actors of the series weren't told that Col. Blake would be killed until after they finished shooting the second-to-last scene-- a particularly upbeat one, despite Blake's depatrure.departure. That they weren't told at all is an [[http://www.snopes.com/radiotv/tv/mash.asp urban legend]].
24th Oct '15 6:39:52 PM PhillyDom
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** Paul Sorvino's last appearance. They convict a Colombian cartel hitman but he is shot by the father of one of his past victims. He pleads guilty and is given 2 days to arrange his private matters before he goes to jail. He is then revealed to be also a hitman and escapes. While everyone was busy with him, everyone related to the case dies in mysterious circumstances. The victim's daughter was last seen being picked up from school by her uncle, except she doesn't have one. Who's the leader of the cartel [[Film/TheUsualSuspects Keyser Soze]]?
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** Paul Sorvino's last appearance. They convict a Colombian cartel hitman but he is shot by the father of one of his past victims. He pleads guilty and is given 2 days to arrange his private matters before he goes to jail. He is then revealed to be also a hitman and escapes. While everyone was busy with him, everyone related to the case dies in mysterious circumstances. The victim's daughter was last seen being picked up from school by her uncle, except she doesn't have one. Who's the leader of the cartel -- [[Film/TheUsualSuspects Keyser Soze]]?
18th Oct '15 3:10:55 AM kknizaa
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[[folder:TV Series in general]] * This can happen on several {{Game Show}}s. ## A common form is a contestant who does extremely well in the main game, but loses the BonusRound. ## Any game show where the contestant makes it to the finale of the game where the big prize is within their reach, only to screw up and lose out. ## Any game show that relies on questions and answers in the format used by ''Series/WhoWantsToBeAMillionaire'' will have a downer ending if the contestant gets the final question wrong. ** ''Series/ThePriceIsRight'' has a downer ending if both contestants in the Showcase game overbid on their prizes, resulting in neither of them winning anything apart from the prize to get up on stage and anything won in a pricing game. *** Even more so if they failed to win anything in the game they played. They literally walk away with only the small prize that got them pout of Contestants row. ** ''Series/WhereInTheWorldIsCarmenSandiego?'': If a contestant (A.K.A. a gumshoe) did not complete eight locations in 45 seconds (or 60 seconds if the continent map theme is Asia) on the map round, The newspaper headline cover will show up with the caption that reads: "Carmen Escapes Again!" In Season 4 (1992) and beyond this point on, The newspaper headline illustration will have Carmen Sandiego vanished and leaving just the white shadow of Carmen. The chief would say "Carmen was very tricky today. But don't worry you did capture (one of her allies such as: Vic the Slick, Robocrook, Top Grunge, Double Trouble, Patty Larceny, The Contessa, Eartha Brute, Wonder Rat, Kneemoi, and Sarah Nade...) and you found the loot as well." And gives the contestant a consolation prize (such as a portable CD player and CD's of songs around world, Even a Rockapella CD featuring the show's theme song). [[/folder]]

** That's certainly an understatement. This entire series is one massive downer, and if a season ends with any apparent brightness in it it's going to be bittersweet at best. This goes UpToEleven in the final season: pretty much any character in it who's still alive gets completely screwed over in some fashion by the series finale.
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** That's certainly an understatement. This entire series is one massive downer, and if If a season ends with any apparent brightness in it it's going to be bittersweet at best. This goes UpToEleven in the final season: pretty much any character in it who's still alive gets completely screwed over in some fashion by the series finale.

** There was a post-series made for TV movie where he makes some friends in the government by going on a wacky road-trip and gets officially recognized as a citizen of the United States with human rights, though. *** Not a US citizen but an officially-recognized alien ambassador, even though Melmac itself is destroyed (although it's mentioned in some episodes that other surviving Melmacians have established a new homeworld). Oh, and the Tanners are still in Witness Protection, although they may get released after Alf's existence is made public.

** Series/DoctorWho has actually had a surprisingly small amount of these downer endings. Of particular note is the [[TheNthDoctor 3rd Doctor]] adventure "Inferno," where an entire alternate world, filled with people the Doctor knows in the original world and has spent the last 4 or 5 episodes trying desperately to save, winds up being infested with proto-human Zombies. Further, the Doctor's last-second escape leaves him with the sight of those few redeemable people left in the world about to be killed by lava. [[KickTheDog Oh, didn't I mention that the entire world was also coated in insane levels of lava along with those zombies]]? About the only ''good'' thing to come from this adventure is that the Doctor is at least able to prevent it from happening to our own world. But he's still left essentially scarred from the experience in the other world. Hell, "The Mind of Evil" shows that the memory of this is his ''worst fear''.
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** Series/DoctorWho has actually had a surprisingly small amount of these downer endings. Of particular note is In the [[TheNthDoctor 3rd Doctor]] adventure "Inferno," where an entire alternate world, filled with people the Doctor knows in the original world and has spent the last 4 or 5 episodes trying desperately to save, winds up being infested with proto-human Zombies. Further, the Doctor's last-second escape leaves him with the sight of those few redeemable people left in the world about to be killed by lava. [[KickTheDog Oh, didn't I mention that the entire world was also coated in insane levels of lava along with those zombies]]? About the only ''good'' thing to come from this adventure is that the Doctor is at least able to prevent it from happening to our own world. But he's still left essentially scarred from the experience in the other world. Hell, "The Mind of Evil" shows that the memory of this is his ''worst fear''.

** The poor Eighth Doctor's life is all BreakTheCutie, so in "The Night of the Doctor" he's willing to die for good upon realizing that his efforts to stay out of the Time War between the Time Lords and the Daleks, and help rather than hurt others, aren't working because his kind is now so hated. He's convinced to regenerate for the sake of the universe...but having lost all faith in his ability to do good as a ''doctor'', it's into a ''warrior'' (The War Doctor) who blazes a path of destruction on the front lines and ultimately destroys his own planet and billions of innocent Gallifreyans along with the combatants, which ends the war but haunts later Doctors for centuries to come. The closest thing to happiness in this is that Eight will help his other selves ''prevent'' this destruction in "The Day of the Doctor", but he'll never have a memory of it.
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** The poor Eighth Doctor's life is all BreakTheCutie, so in "The Night of the Doctor" he's willing to die for good upon realizing that his efforts to stay out of the Time War between the Time Lords and the Daleks, and help rather than hurt others, aren't working because his kind is now so hated. He's convinced to regenerate for the sake of the universe... but having lost all faith in his ability to do good as a ''doctor'', it's into a ''warrior'' (The War Doctor) who blazes a path of destruction on the front lines and ultimately destroys his own planet and billions of innocent Gallifreyans along with the combatants, which ends the war but haunts later Doctors for centuries to come. The closest thing to happiness in this is that Eight will help his other selves ''prevent'' this destruction in "The Day of the Doctor", but he'll never have a memory of it.

*** [[BlackComedy This was made fun of.]]

*** Actually, the jury is hung, which means he could be tried again. However, in a painful twist of the knife, Adam Schiff decides that, in this case, preserving the peace is more important than justice. Very downer indeed.

** That's something of an optimistic interpretation. The finale reveals that Sam can go home whenever he wants... but he also implicitly realizes that each subsequent leap will be more personally difficult, because the people he's saving need his help that much (in keeping with the DarkerAndEdgier final season). It's not that Sam's never able to get home, it's that he knows that doing so would mean others suffer for it, even if it's not his fault. *** Part of that also means that he can never remember his own wife, who's still waiting for him in the present. Otherwise, he would never continue leaping. Sure, Al could tell him... but it's heavily implied that Al isn't a part of the project in the new timeline, having reunited with his first wife after returning from Vietnam.

*** Or the episode where he failed to prevent the assassination of John F. Kennedy. True, his intervention saved the life of Jacqueline Kennedy, but he had still hoped to change this major historical event.
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*** ** Or the episode where he failed to prevent the assassination of John F. Kennedy. True, his intervention saved the life of Jacqueline Kennedy, but he had still hoped to change this major historical event.
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