->''"Hey, let me tell you something. I just finished this show/movie/book, and it's'' '''''awesome!''''' ''It has such a great plot! There are so many great mysteries and secrets in it, and the writing is just excellent... Well, at least for the first bit... I mean, it sort of starts to collapse under its own mythology after a while, and the ending doesn't really answer all the questions it raises, but man... you're in for a heck of a ride! ... hey, where are you going?"''

When people get involved in a story, many have the basic expectation that it will have a satisfactory ending. This, in and of itself, is not unjustified: no matter how good Acts One and Two are, if Act Three is unsatisfying, that is all that the people outside the theater will be talking about.

The thing is, so much conspires ''against'' a satisfactory conclusion.

Maybe the show was ScrewedByTheNetwork and was [[CutShort canceled]] [[LeftHanging before any of the questions it raised could be answered]]. Maybe [[KudzuPlot as time went on, the story collected so many elements]] that [[TheChrisCarterEffect there was no possible way]] that [[FanDislikedExplanation they could do each justice]]. Maybe it was the first part of a series [[OrphanedSeries left unfinished]] by the now-[[AuthorExistenceFailure deceased]] or [[AttentionDeficitCreatorDisorder bored]] author, leaving the long epic unfinished. Maybe the SeriesGoal was [[TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised never achieved]]. Maybe the writers just plain [[SeasonalRot ran themselves out of creativity]] by the end of it, and so much FanonDiscontinuity is claimed, you could swear the fandom was composed solely of historical revisionists. Maybe too many a {{spoiler}} was revealed, and it seems rather pointless to watch. Or maybe you've just heard that the whole thing devolves into such [[GainaxEnding unspeakable]] [[MindScrew surreality]] that it would taint the rest of the experience. Maybe you know that [[DoomedByCanon in-universe material taking place later in continuity]] [[HappyEndingOverride makes any happy part of the ending]] a study in FridgeHorror. An exceptionally bad CruelTwistEnding can also be the cause.

Hearing about all these things makes many people very wary. No one wants to spend time dedicating themselves to something long and epic that will leave them slowly disappointed. Maybe the overall experience would have more than compensated for any supposed deficiencies of the ending, but the potential viewer has been scared off.

This is Ending Aversion.

Now, of course, someone ''could'' make an attempt to keep watching it for as long as they liked it, then turn it off when they didn't. When someone becomes ''too'' attached to the characters and the whole story, however, that's easier said than done. This, then, often results in the viewer [[InternetBackdraft going online]] to complain about what happened in the story... and the cycle begins anew.

Ironically, the biggest contributor to Ending Aversion might just be those who consider themselves the most hardcore fans of a work. Criticism is fun to read and to write and fan discussion will inevitably lead to someone choosing to AccentuateTheNegative of the shows they love: "TheyChangedItNowItSucks." "It was better when [[RiddleForTheAges all the mysteries were still up in the air]]." "It was great when it started, but the last couple of seasons [[FanonDiscontinuity never happened]]", and so on.

And well, it's hard to say that [[TVTropesWillRuinYourLife we're not somewhat to blame either]].

If a work is avoided because of a DownerEnding, that is AngstAversion.

Compare to HypeAversion and TheFireflyEffect (wariness of committing to a new show, as opposed to one that has concluded). See also AwesomenessWithdrawal. Contrast EndingFatigue when the audience starts wanting the story to end.

'''Warning: Ending SPOILERS below.'''

!!Examples and Reasons:

!!!GainaxEnding (It's completely out of left field)
* ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' is infamous for its GainaxEnding, and is, as of now, the show that lead to Creator/StudioGainax being the TropeNamer. The last two episodes make so little sense that some fans might recommend you skip them and go straight to ''End of Evangelion''... except that ''End'' is ''equally as divisive!'' This makes it the rare work that is a clear example of something hit by Ending Aversion, HypeAversion, ''and'' AngstAversion.
%%* ''Series/ThePrisoner''.
* ''Series/{{Lost}}'', what with the fact that the ending chose to go for a more metaphysical angle, with several of the questions being unanswered.
* ''Anime/TheBigO'', due to the ResetButton ending on top of being CutShort.
* While not an ongoing series, ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid2SonsOfLiberty'''s ending has a sufficient reputation for being bizarre and incomprehensible to bring about this trope.
* ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' has gained a reputation of being to VideoGames what ''Series/{{Lost}}'' was to LiveActionTelevision and what ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' was to {{Anime}} (something that was made especially infamous by an interview made with the developers pre-release, which mentioned the former example by name and explicitly promised that the ending wouldn't be anything like that). The overwhelmingly poorly received original ending and resulting InternetBackdraft scared off numerous potential players, although the company [[AuthorsSavingThrow later released]] DLC that seems to have made the endings more palatable and is reducing the effect considerably.
* ''Series/StElsewhere'' was one of the first series to do this, ending with an AllJustADream revelation. The show was notable for lots of other things in its day, but now it's mostly notable for this -- and therefore not very appealing to new viewers.
* ''Series/{{Roseanne}}'' also had a variation of the ItWasAllADream ending which pissed many fans off to no end and has been the biggest barrier of entry for new fans.
* ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}'' got a bit of a negative reputation after word of the ending, which involves [[SadisticChoice either the Lone Wanderer or Sarah Lyons]] [[HeroicSacrifice sacrificing themselves]] to start up Project Purity, got out. The backlash was more or less mitigated by later DLC, though due to not altering dialog the game still mocks the player as a coward for sending in a radiation-immune character to complete the task.
* ''VideoGame/AloneInTheDark2008'' appears to be building up to a climactic confrontation with [[{{Satan}} Lucifer]], when it suddenly shoves that aside and presents the player with a SadisticChoice between which protagonist [[AndThenJohnWasAZombie gets possessed by him]].
* ''VideoGame/FarCry5'' has MultipleEndings but [[DownerEnding none of them]] [[MortonsFork are good]]: Either you walk away and leave [[BigBad Joseph Seed]] with all your BrainwashedAndCrazy resistance buddies in his hands (with further implications that the [[PlayerCharacter Deputy]] is also brainwashed and goes on to kill the friends you ''did'' manage to save) or you resist and [[HopeSpot manage to incapacitate]] Seed, only for a [[NukeEm nuke]] [[DiabolusExMachina to go off behind him,]] proving that all of his apocalyptic rantings were [[TheExtremistWasRight right]] and the entire world is consumed in nuclear fire. By the end, ''[[KillEmAll EVERYONE]]'' is dead save for you and him, and you're both locked in a bunker with each other for who knows how long. Either way, Seed pretty much gets off [[KarmaHoudini completely scot-free]] and many have criticized the nihilistic what-is-the-point-of-it-all endings for rendering the player's efforts throughout the game [[AllForNothing all for naught.]]

!!!MindScrew (It's incomprehensible)
* ''Series/TwinPeaks'': Also suffered from seasonal rot in the second series; [[TheChrisCarterEffect mainly because they had no intention of solving the main mystery of the show]] (Laura's murder). The network didn't like that and forced the creators to come up with a solution, ''then'' added on a new season even though the writers didn't have any plans beyond that. This caused massive amounts of MindScrew, KudzuPlot, and TheChrisCarterEffect.
* ''Manga/TsubasaReservoirChronicle'': Tsubasa basically ends with the Japanese equivalent of ComicBook/TheCloneSaga, which just makes the plot utterly confusing and is a large departure from the originally advertised multi-dimensional adventures through numerous other CLAMP settings. WordOfGod admits even ''they'' [[HoistByHisOwnPetard don't understand what's going on.]] The show is no longer remembered as fondly as it used to.

!!!SeasonalRot (It's not worth the trouble getting there)
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'': Season 4 made some decisions that weren't very popular, though the general attitude is that season 5 got better again. Showrunner Joss Whedon then took a year off during season 6 to focus on the musical episode (and ''Series/{{Firefly}}''), and while people do remember and celebrate the musical episode even years later, this meant that he handed off writing duties for season 6 to other writers, and it showed. Things got moving again in season 7 when Joss came back full time, and the story intentionally built up to the final battle, but many still found it to be little better due to problems with the characterization of much of the cast. There may be a slight aversion about "not being worth the trouble" because those who have heard about the issues with seasons 6-7 can simply stop at the conclusion of season 5, which wraps up most dangling threads and has a definite, and satisfactory although bittersweet ending.
* ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|2003}}'': The first two seasons are great, to the point that it won a Peabody Award during the break between seasons two and three. When season 3 got underway, they started running out of ideas, and it was downhill from there. It didn't help that a large portion of the acclaimed writing staff (but not the head writer) left the show before season 3 got underway, particularly all of the female writers (who also were acknowledged to be the guiding hand in the writing of the female characters up to that point). Though YMMV on if season 3 was where the seasonal rot started - there is also a large contingent of fans that thinks the second half of season 4 was where things started getting bad. And that's not even getting into the controversy over the series' [[EsotericHappyEnding Esoteric Happy]] GainaxEnding.
* ''Series/{{Scrubs}}'': Season 8 ended JD's story (our protagonist and narrator for the entire series) on a high note, and was [[SeriesFauxnale intended to be a series finale]]. Season 9, however, revamped much of the cast (Turk and Cox were still regulars, others were relegated to guest stars), changed the setting, and had a different focus (med school). Series Creator Bill Lawrence initially wanted to rename the show [[SpinOff to make it clear that this was a new beginning]], but this was [[ExecutiveMeddling nixed by the network.]]
* ''Series/TheWestWing'': The first four seasons had Aaron Sorkin at the helm. After he left, it just wasn't the same anymore.
* ''Series/XenaWarriorPrincess'': Season 5 is generally regarded by Xena fans as when the show went downhill.
* ''Series/{{Heroes}}'' - Some people think the rot even began with the season one finale. The problem isn't that the writers never planned out the show... it's that they intended the show to have an anthology-format with a rotating cast. Problem was that the season one characters instantly became popular national sensations, so they were forced to come up with new plots for them on the fly. It didn't help that there was a Writer's Guild of America strike which truncated season 2. Viewers started leaving in droves during season 3 when they started just recycling plots from season 1 (how many times can Sylar flip-flop from evil to good and back?).
* ''Series/StargateSG1'' - They'd sort of resolved all of the main story arc by the end of season 7, and a later episode broke the Fourth Wall to say that fans felt they phoned it in for season 8. Still, it ended with a GrandFinale that took out virtually all major galactic threats for good. The real break was seasons 9 and 10, when they introduced an entirely new set of villains, which to be honest were [[MeetTheNewBoss something of a retread of the earlier ones]]. They were even going to rename the show "Stargate Command" when season 9 began to try to emphasize how different it was, but rather than make a sequel-spinoff the network felt more viewers would stay if they kept the name intact. The actual final episode isn't really a finale at all, so they had to wrap things up with ''two'' DTV movies.
* ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' - Depending on who you ask, the mid-series switch from Kes to Seven of Nine may cause this trope to apply to the early seasons. The finale is also controversial, especially the sudden Chakotay/Seven relationship; old viewers are likely to warn new ones not to get invested in pairings like Janeway/Chakotay and Doctor/Seven for that reason.
* ''Manga/BunnyDrop'' - While the second half of the story introduced a GenreShift and a TimeSkip [[BrokenBase that was disliked by some]], what really turned off a larger portion of the audience was [[spoiler: the inverted WifeHusbandry aspect of the ending, where the female protagonist Rin is revealed to be in love with the man who raised her for at least a decade, [[IncestIsRelative who is her nephew]]. It follows through till the end, and they end up as a couple. Worse, the author randomly reveals they aren't related after all, destroying the central aspect of the series.]]
* ''Series/RobinHood'' ended its second season with the [[StuffedInTheFridge murder of Maid Marian]] at Guy of Gisborne's hands, described enthusiastically by the creators as "a shocking twist" and a chance to "rock the show." Audience reaction ran the gamut from bafflement to disgust, and it became increasingly clear throughout season three that the writers had put little thought into what would happen ''after'' removing the show's emotional centre. The show floundered through a range of [[TrappedByMountainLions unconnected plotlines]] and [[ReplacementScrappy arbitrary new characters]] before being cancelled with all the [[EnsembleDarkhorse fan-favourite characters]] dead, the hated [[TheScrappy Scrappies]] still standing, and [[TheUnsolvedMystery several plot threads dangling]]. Still, it's quite fun telling non-viewers about Marian's death: they'll invariably pull a face and go: "Huh? Why would they do ''that''?"
* The ''Franchise/{{Saw}}'' series. An excellent example of why [[MythArc myth arcs]] and mainstream-Hollywood-strength ExecutiveMeddling do not mix.
* The show ''Series/{{Alias}}'' had two fascinating and complex seasons, but then a series of mistakes on the part of the writers, the producers, a dose of ExecutiveMeddling, and a nasty feedback loop from shippers in the fan community derailed the series in Season 3. Throughout much of S3, the show circled in a holding pattern; then, in S4 and S5, the ongoing, overarching storylines collapsed and the writers even began to lampshade their own failures.
* ''Series/{{Sliders}}'', thanks to some of the most notorious ExecutiveMeddling, lost the intellectual "what-if" in favor of "movie ripoff of the week" and [[DroppedABridgeOnHim bridge dropped]] almost the entirety of the original cast, leaving most fans abandoning ship by the fourth season. A common disclaimer will now say to watch the first two seasons, and [[FanonDiscontinuity pretend the others didn't happen]].
* ''Series/{{Dexter}}'', starting with the fifth season, was heavily criticized for its focus on [[TheScrappy more lesser received characters]], lots of padding resulting in uneven pacing, and often underwhelming resolutions to its plotlines. When the eighth season had concluded, a lot of people would recommend newbies to stop at season 4.
** Just stop watching as soon as Dexter [[spoiler: kills the Trinity Killer]] and turn off the TV. Thus; It ends the way it should be....Dex kills his big enemy and it ends satisfying and happy [[spoiler: and Rita lives]] (One could even use video editing software or write a FixFic).
* ''Literature/ThePendragonAdventure'': Book eight raised some serious TimeyWimeyBall questions and was considered inferior to most material preceding it, and books nine and ten are widely considered to be rot because they fail to adequately explain several plot threads, flat out ignore others, throw in VillainDecay for the series' BigBad, and hit the ResetButton to pair up the author's preferred couple (and drop a bridge on an EnsembleDarkhorse).
* The 1980s hit the Classic series of ''Series/DoctorWho'' very hard. There are lots of wonderful times to be had in the decade, of course, including a couple of mini-golden-ages, but it eventually just peters out in a little speech from the Doctor in a field after the malicious ExecutiveMeddling and [[NoBudget increasingly miniscule budget]] finally choked the show to death. If you're not the kind of person who gets off on watching a hugely popular show get slowly derailed and destroyed over a decade, bingewatching the entirety of 80s ''Who'' is not going to feel good. (Of course, if you're not that kind of person, this may not be the kind of wiki for you either.)
* For ''Franchise/{{Naruto}}'' many fans consider everything following the [[ClimaxBoss Pain Assault]] to be the point where the series JumpedTheShark. The following two and final arcs (The Kage Summit and the Great Ninja War) all [[ArcFatigue bleed into one another.]] Also, not helping matters is Sasuke's BaseBreakingCharacter status and the PowerCreep of the main characters finally reaches it's zenith. The final battles were considered unsatisfying and the epilogue has its own bag of worms due to controversy surrounding the final pairings.
* ''Anime/AldnoahZero'': Season 2 already suffered issues, such as [[CliffhangerCopout everyone surviving the season 1 finale]], Inaho becoming [[MaryTzu even more overpowered]] and Lemrina [[RememberTheNewGuy being introduced out of nowhere]]. The ending itself was controversial for several reasons, [[spoiler:such as Asseylum marrying a completely different guy and Slaine sentenced to life in prison.]]
* ''Anime/YuGiOhArcV'''s ending is generally disliked overall, with complaints about it being rushed, not tying up loose ends, and seeming happy even when it's not to the point that many fanfiction writers have either altered the ending to the series or just mentally erased it in its entirety. The ending has also hurt people's opinions of the series overall.

!!!BolivianArmyEnding (Heroes headed to what may well be their doom)
%%* ''Series/{{Angel}}''.
* ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'': While it's bad enough that the (still living) protagonists are just as, if not more, broken and traumatized despite defeating the Yeerks, the knife twist comes when they decide to initiate what is most likely a suicide attack against [[DiabolusExNihilo an extremely powerful enemy that had only been vaguely alluded to in the previous books and just sort of shows up out of nowhere]].
%%* ''Series/BlakesSeven''.
* ''VideoGame/DeadSpace3: Awakened'' ends with Isaac and Carver returning to Earth after destroying the [[ThatsNoMoon Tau Volantis moon]], only to find the [[EldritchAbomination Brethren Moons]] [[TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt converging upon Earth and their ship]], before the credits roll.

!!!TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised (Instead, it takes place in a different medium)
%%* ''Series/{{JAG}}''

!!!TheChrisCarterEffect (Much of the KudzuPlot goes unresolved)
* ''Series/TheXFiles'', of course. Even attempts at TheResolutionWillNotBeTelevised did not go so well (the series ends with the protagonists "waiting" for a future cataclysm; the second movie was an unrelated plot that preceded this disaster; the supposed third movie to finally give closure languished in DevelopmentHell; and while there was an UnCancelled tenth season miniseries, it started off [[{{Retcon}} retconning]] most of the built-up series mythology [[spoiler: and itself ended on a GainaxEnding cliffhanger.]]
* ''Literature/ASeriesOfUnfortunateEvents''. In this case, The Chris Carter Effect [[InvokedTrope was intentional]].
* ''VideoGame/ChronoCross'' pulls more plot threads out of nowhere in one dungeon than some games pull their entire ''length''. Chronopolis is already considered ThatOneLevel due to its status as a MarathonLevel, a large amount of {{Info Dump}}s from [=NPCs=] throughout the level, and generally difficult random encounters. However, what really seals the dungeon's (and therefore, the game's) fate is the fact that the plot begins to enter full-on MindScrew territory here in trying to properly tie it to the events of ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger''. Few of these plot points get properly resolved, it kills one of the characters from ''Trigger'' apparently [[ShockingSwerve just for the sake of shock value]], and very little of it gets explained outside of the aforementioned info dumps, if it gets explained at all.
* ''Series/{{Revolution}}'' added three more plot elements for every plot point it addressed directly, reminding viewers unfavorably of ''Series/{{Lost}}''.
* ''VisualNovel/ZeroEscape'''s third and final game didn't follow up on that much from the previous game, and it ignored many promises made by WordOfGod.

!!!LeftHanging / CutShort (The central premise goes unresolved, often because outside forces kept it from doing so)
%%* ''WesternAnimation/CloneHigh''.
%%* ''Series/{{Carnivale}}''.
%%* ''Series/JoanOfArcadia''.
%%* ''Series/TruCalling''.
%%* ''Series/HarshRealm''.
* Alan Moore's run on ''ComicBook/{{Supreme}}''.
* ''Series/LoisAndClark'' - the series was cancelled after the 4th season ended on a Cliffhanger, with [[spoiler: the newly married]] Lois & Clark finding an infant at their doorstop, and a note claiming that the child belongs to them.
%%* ''Webcomic/AModestDestiny''.
* ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' - cut short due to abrupt cancellation at the end of season 4, after they'd ''already'' been told they'd get a fifth season, so they didn't plan it as the final season. The show did later get a finale-miniseries which was intended to be the truncated version of the plot developments in what would have been season 5. Surprisingly, this actually provided good explanations ''and'' resolution for many of the running plotlines, so ultimately ''Farscape'' averted this trope.
** And now it has comics wrapping things up even tighter, including wrapping up the series-long plot point of Rygel wanting to take his throne back from his traitorous cousin (never done on the show because making and operating so many Hynerian puppets would have been impossible).
* ''Series/StargateUniverse'': SGU was plagued with issues from the very start, and the steadily dropping ratings convinced [=SyFy=] to cancel the show after its second season. As a result, the second season ended on a major cliffhanger, since the writers had assumed they'd have a third season or at least a movie to resolve the remaining plot threads.
* ''Series/{{Soap}}'' which ended on three cliff-hangers
* ''Series/TerminatorTheSarahConnorChronicles'' which attempted to save the show by coming up with the biggest twist they could think of, only for it not not to save the show and ultimately drive fans of the show insane. With a completely unrelated Terminator series on the cards it seems fans will forever be in limbo.
* ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'' was given a rushed ending when Creator/KenAkamatsu fought with the editors regarding property rights over the series and decided to [[TorchTheFranchiseAndRun End The Franchise Early And Run]] rather than surrender them.
** The first anime also had a very rushed ending as the creators thought they would have multiple seasons to work with ([[LongRunners as was necessary to adapt Negima faithfully]]) and were disabused of this notion with only 1/3 of the season left to wrap it up.
%%* ''Series/{{Flash Forward|2009}}''.
* ''Series/{{Caprica}}''. Not as bad as some of the examples in that the writers were given time after the series' cancellation to write an epilogue to wrap the whole thing up, but the entire sequence is just one huge sequence of WhatCouldHaveBeen.
%%* ''Series/TheEvent''
* ''VideoGame/SlyCooperThievesInTime'': The game ended on a massive {{Cliffhanger}} that would have been a great SequelHook... except that the company recently stated [[ScrewedByTheNetwork they have no plans to make a sequel]]. An interesting example in that the game itself is very well-liked and considered a worthy successor to the first three games, but since a cliffhanger like that is a major DownerEnding when taken on its own, [[FanonDiscontinuity fans just don't want the series to end that way]].
* ''VideoGame/ArmyOfTwo The Devils Cartel'' : The game had already pissed several fans off by dancing around the fate of a character from the previous two games (I.E. not revealing whether they were alive or just missing) and it's major plot twist halfway through the game (which many felt was completely nonsensical and utterly destroyed the characterization of previously good character for no good reason), and then to top it off the final scene throws out some vague hints towards a sequel, which given the games disappointing sales and it's studio going bankrupt will likely never happen.
* ''VideoGame/HalfLife2: Episode 2'' ends on a major cliffhanger. However, Valve seems to have lost any interest in developing a continuation.
* ''Anime/MartianSuccessorNadesico'' suffers from this due to [[TheMovie ''Prince Of Darkness'']] [[WhatCouldHaveBeen (Which was supposed to be the first in a trilogy)]] bombing from the number of problems with it including breaking from the spirit of the series. Having a Japanese Saturn only game that explains what happens between the end of the series and the movie only made things worse.
** This also happens InUniverse with Akito hesistant to watch the last episode of Gekiganger. In the final episode he did...and he said it sucked due to the massive amount of AssPull included in one episode.
* ''Manga/{{Beelzebub}}'' was cut short during the Fuji Arc, resulting in a hurried FinalBoss readers found unsatisfying (especially as the Takamiya Arc was a similar but longer version of it) and many plot threads about the Solomon Company left dangling. Thankfully the creator did managed to get an epilogue in, but that still left a lot unanswered.
* ''VideoGame/BionicCommando 2009'' has a cliffhanger ending with Spencer falling to an unknown fate after killing Super Joe, and a Morse code [[TheStinger stinger]] telling of the activation of a new Project Albatros[s]. Poor sales of this and the LicensedGame of ''Film/TerminatorSalvation'' led to development studio GRIN [[CreatorKiller going out of business]], and the following (and currently last) game, ''BC Rearmed 2'', was a midquel.
* ''VideoGame/MegaManLegends 2'' ended with Mega Man Volnutt stranded on the moon, and Roll and Tron beginning construction on a rocketship to rescue him. Unfortunately, [[ScrewedByTheNetwork the third game got cancelled and Keiji Inafune left Capcom]], so the story will likely never be concluded.
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'' fell into this for a sizable segment of the fanbase. After a [[ArcFatigue very long, drawn out final arc]], the BigBad abruptly [[YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness kills all his remaining minions]], is himself quickly dispatched with a method that had limited foreshadowing, and for the last two chapters the story [[DistantFinale fast forwards ten years]] to an epilogue that leaves multiple questions unanswered [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking and included some controversial romantic pairings]]. Three months after the conclusion of the manga [[http://tenshiscave.tumblr.com/post/153300055417/kubo-tite-bleach-twitter Kubo revealed on his Twitter]] that he decided to shorten the manga due to health concerns, though the GrandFinale was in fact what he had always intended from the beginning.
* ''WesternAnimation/SilverSurfer'' was cancelled early because of Marvel's bankruptcy in the 1990s. So the show concludes on a major CliffHanger where Thanos the Mad Titan ends all of existence.
* ''Manga/{{X1999}}'' (the manga) went into a hiatus since 2003 with the last scene showing Kamui, lying on the ground with Fuuma, preparing to stab him with his sword. A decade has passed and CLAMP became too focused with other projects, not even bothering to touch the series which made fans of the manga feel that the story will never continue at this point.
* ''Series/DarkAngel'''s Season 2 cliffhanger finale was planned to be resolved in the premier of Season 3, but [[ScrewedByTheNetwork Fox's cancellation of the show]] left it in limbo.
* ''Series/{{Profiler}}'' ended on a season cliffhanger--the Big Bad for most of the final season has been killed by another bad guy, of unknown motives, who is in the middle of carrying out his scheme.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSpectacularSpiderMan'' ended after only two seasons with a real DownerEnding of a cliffhanger [[spoiler: in which Harry emotionally blackmails Gwen into staying with him, [[DidNotGetTheGirl preventing her and Peter from getting together]], the Connors are fired and made to relocate to Florida, and Norman Osborn (aka the Green Goblin) is revealed to have survived his battle with Spider-Man, and is thus free to continue his schemes under a new alias]]. This cancellation resulted from the show being ScrewedByTheLawyers (Marvel extending Sony's film rights to Spider-Man in exchange for the character's television rights), as [[WhatCouldHaveBeen the show was intended to last five seasons]].
* Literature/NotCinderellasType: Part of a series of Fairy Tales set in the modern era, with the natural consequence that this happens a lot. [[spoiler: Turns out, treating a kid like Cinderella is considered emotional abuse in this day and age. Very illegal. No need for the Prince to go through the "ball and slipper" arc when he can just call the police.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/KingArthurAndTheKnightsOfJustice'' ended abruptly after two seasons, with only four of the twelve {{MacGuffin}}s recovered, and the original King Arthur and his knights still trapped in the Cave of Glass.
* ''VideoGame/DinoCrisis2'' ended with a cliffhanger where Dylan Morton and his daughter Paula were trapped in the BadFuture by the CollapsingLair, but then ''DinoCrisis3'' [[AbortedArc discarded the story arc of the first two games]] in favor of a RecycledInSpace plot. [[FranchiseKiller Due to the third game's poor reception, a resolution is highly unlikely.]]

!!!AuthorExistenceFailure (Creator didn't live to finish the work)
* ''Literature/MostlyHarmless'', which gets bonus points for having a DownerEnding.
* ''Literature/TheMysteryOfEdwinDrood''.
* ''Series/{{Riget}}'' - not the author, just around 4 essential cast members.

!!!AuthorFilibuster / AuthorTract (Creator's politics come to supersede the story)
* ''ComicBook/CerebusTheAardvark''.

!!!EndingFatigue (Takes too long to ''get'' to that ending)
* ''Series/BabylonFive'' by way of hasty resolution of the MythArc leading to EndingFatigue until the actual finale.
* ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'', due to being ChristmasRushed, had three of its planned dungeons scrapped and replaced with a lengthy FetchQuest of finding Triforce Charts, and paying Tingle to decipher those to find the Triforce Shards themselves. Luckily, the Wii U UpdatedRerelease simplified this quest so that only three of the Shards require Charts, the rest can be acquired directly.
* ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIVApocalypse'' is infamous for its [[DisappointingLastLevel Disappointing Last Dungeon]], [[spoiler:YHVH's Universe]], being a massive network of teleporters in a dungeon that's not only obnoxiously big but also visually unappealing, with most enemies being simply souped-up versions of previously-encountered demons that can't be scanned and can't be talked to.

!!!NoEnding (Too much is just left completely unanswered or unaddressed)
* ''Film/{{Inception}}''. [[spoiler: Don't bother to watch if never learning whether or not it was AllJustADream would interfere with your enjoyment. Although there are people willing to swear it's clear and obvious for both sides.]]
* ''Series/TheSopranos'' is a particularly controversial example. [[spoiler: The ending ''may'' depict Tony's death but it's left very ambiguous and up to the viewer's interpretation.]]
* ''Literature/StuartLittle''. It should be noted that this only applies to the original book and not the movies.
* ''Literature/ASeriesOfUnfortunateEvents''. The most basic conflict is resolved, but a great many plot threads are simply left hanging.
* In a literal example, ''VideoGame/NoMansSky''. While the game is very open-ended, one of its goals is to get to the center of the galaxy. [[spoiler:Upon doing so, you're immediately teleported to a ''different'' galaxy, with absolutely no reward for your efforts.]]

!!!OrphanedSeries (Creator just didn't finish what they started)
%%* ''Webcomic/RPGWorld''.
* Every DeadFic in existence, by the concept's very nature.
* ''WebComic/KeychainOfCreation'' unfortunately came to an end after the artist ran into severe health issues, effectively leaving the story off at the start of a new leg of the adventure.
* Creator/HiimDaisy left off her Persona 4 comic right after Rise's dungeon, and has stated an active disinterest in finishing it.

!!!DoomedByCanon (Prequel-specific -- knowing what happens to the characters in the original makes it hard to care about their pasts)
* ''WesternAnimation/TronUprising'': We see in ''Film/TronLegacy'' that Beck's rebellion does ''absolutely nothing'' to even slow Clu down and [[spoiler: The BigGood of the series is twisted into TheDragon]]. Add a side of BolivianArmyEnding for good measure.
* ''VideoGame/HaloReach'': "[[DoomedHometown From the beginning]], [[KillEmAll you know the end]]."

!!!KeepCirculatingTheTapes (There's an ending, but good luck finding it)
* ''ComicBook/{{Zot}}'', for quite a while. (The final set of print issues, representing Zot's adventures on our Earth, and often described as some of the best work of the series, had not been collected in trade form until later.)

!!!CruelTwistEnding (also includes HappyEndingOverride and DiabolusExMachina)
* ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagicaTheMovieRebellion'' is infamous for its [[BrokenBase extremely controversial]] CruelTwistEnding.
* ''VideoGame/FarCry5'' plays mostly like its [[VideoGame/FarCry3 two]] [[VideoGame/FarCry4 predecessors]], until you've witnessed [[MultipleEndings all three endings]] and realize there's absolutely no way to bring the BigBad to justice. You either capitulate right in the intro cinematic, let him get off scot-free during your final encounter and assumingly get yourself brainwashed into killing all your friends afterwards, or you arrest him and thus trigger nuclear armageddon ''out of absolutely freaking nowhere'', which means [[TheExtremistWasRight this raving lunatic was right all along]]. Doesn't get much more unsatisfying than that, something that quickly began making its way to prospective buyers from the day after the game's release.

* ''Anime/MaiHime'', for undoing almost all the character deaths and associated traumas, although those critical of the darker tone in later episodes, among others, disagree.
%%* Inverted by ''Naruto Veangance Revelaitons''; most viewers despised the fic, but enjoyed the postscript chapter the author's stepbrother added, in which the EnsembleDarkHorse returns the canon characters to normal, enabling them to kill the DesignatedHero AuthorAvatar.
* ''Toys/{{Bionicle}}'' was hit by a KudzuPlot EndingFatigue which relied too much on {{Shocking Swerve}}s and was LeftHanging due to a massive ScheduleSlip, with only one of the plots wrapped up. Throw TheChrisCarterEffect in there somewhere, along with the post-script revelation that almost all the character deaths have been undone or ''re''done off-screen.
* ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'''s finale is one of the most controversial, love-it-or-hate-it endings on record. [[spoiler:Barney and Robin get divorced after only three years; Barney goes right back to his womanizing ways; Tracy (a.k.a. the Mother) is revealed to have died in 2024; the kids encourage Ted to go after Robin yet again]]. The meltdown among fans and critics was big enough to make the news and is likely to haunt the series for years to come, although some fans have been mollified by the alternate ending released with Season 9's [=DVDs=] (which basically just leaves out the unpopular bits at the very end).
* Creator/DavidEddings':
** ''The Dreamers'' series. It's generally described as a pretty average series, not as good as the ''Belgariad/Malloreon'' or the ''Elenium/Tamuli'', but a decent read overall... ''except'' the ending. There are some fans who loved the whole series, but they are ''vastly'' outnumbered. Why? Well, [[spoiler: the ending had the most powerful gods decide to finally take down the enemy by going back in time and rendering said enemy infertile. Not only was there no reason why they couldn't have done this before, but this had the effect of writing the whole series out of existence, setting everyone back to where they were in the beginning of the series (with some changes- for example, a minor character got brought back to life, though one of the main characters had to stay dead) and making it so that nothing in the previous books had happened.]] Upon finishing the books and realising that the first three books were entirely meaningless, most of the fans ''flipped their shit''.
** To make matters worse, he did the same thing in the standalone novel ''The Redemption of Alathas'': the titular character and his goddess girlfriend go back in time and defeat the BigBad in the past by waiting until he attacked their cabin and kicking him out of reality. Fans were especially upset when he used such a weak ending a second time.
* The finale of the Dwarves' quest line in ''VideoGame/RuneScape'' was controversial for its big twist. Turns out you'd ''already won'' in the penultimate quest and didn't know it, with your victory in that quest convincing the bad guys to give up. The only reason they're fighting you is because [[WhatTheHellHero you attacked them first]] in anticipation of an attack that was never going to come. In the end the two main villains [[DrivenToSuicide sort-of commit suicide]] because you won't leave them alone. Yay?
* Towards the end of ''Film/TheDirtyDozen,'' [[spoiler: our protagonists trap some German soldiers and civilians in a cellar, and then burn them to death]]. This has made some people reluctant to watch the rest of the film, which is generally good fun.
* ''VideoGame/DyingLight'': Both of the endings in The Following result in [[spoiler:either Crane being turned into a volatile and spreading the infection outside of quarantine, or willingly activating a nuclear warhead to contain the infection by destroy all of Harran and its inhabitants]]. Suffice to say, the endings hurt many potential players' desire to play the DLC, or even the original game, for that matter.
* ''VideoGame/MagicalStarsign'''s ending is heavily disliked, as not only does [[ShootTheShaggyDog the person you were trying to save the whole game die]], the epilogue has every character acting against the development they received or getting all-new hopes and dreams. The romance is also left unresolved.
* ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' had the one-two punch of SeasonalRot in the form of the [[BrokenBase Base-Breaking]] Act 6 and a borderline GainaxEnding where only the bare-bones conflicts were properly resolved with a number of side characters seemingly [[WhatHappenedToTheMouse vanishing.]] A number of things, including the fate of the BigBad, are left to speculation. That the heroes' victory was mainly brought on by [[spoiler:introducing a new form of time travel that "retcons" away the old timeline]] does not help. Also not helping is that the comic is regarded to invert this trope as well, with the SlowPacedBeginning being seen as the biggest entry barrier for new readers.
* 'VideoGame/CorpseParty'' tends to have some aversion due to its PlayerPunch endings in Book of Shadows and Corpse Party Bloodcovered, Blood Drive (the game that is in theory the GrandFinale of the Heavenly Host saga, as all manga adaptations and mainline games lead to this installement due to time loops ) takes the cake for not only causing this trope (in the western fandom AT LEAST ) but also [[BrokenBase causing a huge division in the fans]] due to its almost downer ending and being a HOPE CRUSHER. Because despite all trailers and promotional material might suggest... Nobody was revived in Blood Drive, which is one of the main plots of the game. To add insult to injury, not only Ayumi was left in a vegetative state and had all the people's memories of her erased (except Yoshiki, that stayed with her)and the survivors didn't even say goodbye to their dead friends is another common complaint. The kicker to top it all off even more? Dead Patient has expies of characters like Seiko, Mayu... It is literally RuinedForever for some.
* ''VisualNovel/ZeroTimeDilemma'' is considered a subpar ending by fans for multiple reasons, such as a lack of answers, a BigBad whose identity, schemes, and very presence felt like an AssPull, among other problems.
* ''Anime/MacrossDelta'': The finale has the… unenviable position of having to tie up so many loose ends at once, making it clear the production crew was on a deadline. ''Delta'', especially in its second half, suffered from weak pacing, underdeveloped characters and excessive subplots and the finale has to ignore for the sake of the main plot. ExecutiveMeddling is to blame for this one, as it forced Creator/ShojiKawamori to change the plans he had for the show.
* ''Franchise/DanganRonpa'':
** While ''Anime/DanganRonpa3'' received mixed reception before the ending, the last two episodes have been accused of this to the point that many who were defending the anime changed tune after they aired. The penultimate episode saw a FanDislikedExplanation for the Final Killing Game that was widely critisced for raising lot of FridgeLogic and rendering a good portion of the anime pointless, along with making the mastermind [[TheScrappy heavily disliked by the fandom.]] The GrandFinale saw [[spoiler: Class 77-B coming BackFromTheDead]] (which triggered a ''massive'' BrokenBase) and basically [[SpotlightStealingSquad hijacking the plot]] from the rest of the cast. Plot threads the show had built up were left abruptly dropped for rampant PanderingToTheBase, creating a good number of {{Broken Aesop}}s, an {{Anticlimax}} and capped it off with the [[BrokenBase widely divisive]] resurrection of [[spoiler:Kyoko Kirigiri]] in the final two minutes.
*** The [[GagDub English dub]] even has [[spoiler:Kirigri]] [[LampshadeHanging lampshading]] this before they changed it to a more accurate translation by stating [[spoiler:her resurrection]] doesn't make sense.
** ''VisualNovel/NewDanganRonpaV3'' somehow managed to top ''[=DR3=]'' in controversy with Chapter 6 and the final trial. Aside from the mastermind being fairly controversial compared to Junko Enoshima, [[spoiler:it's revealed that [[TrumanShowPlot the entire situation is all the 53rd season of a reality TV show]], and the sixteen students were all normal people with fake personalities implanted in them]]. That in itself is bad enough, but then [[TakeThatAudience it criticizes and lampoons the fanbase]] for enjoying the series and its fictional characters and wanting more killing games. It doesn't help that in Japanese, the meaning behind "[=V3=]" [[spoiler:(the number 53)]] is read as "gomi" or "trash".
* ''Series/GilmoreGirls'''s original ending in season 7, while left things fairly resolved on a positive note, the fact that it (along with season 7) wasn't written by creator Amy Sherman-Palladino left many of the fandom wondering what her true ending was and begrudgingly accepted it for what it was. Come 2016 and Sherman-Palladino revived the series to give it the true story ending that she wanted. Most fans were happy with how Lorelai and Emily's story arcs concluded, but the fact that [[spoiler: Rory ends up pregnant and likely to repeat her mother's mistakes and that Jess may or may not still be pining after her like his uncle did with her mother]] sent most of the fans into a rage and declaring the revival's ending non-canon.
* ''Anime/DragonBallSuper''[='s=] Future Trunks Saga started off strong; fans were glad to see EnsembleDarkhorse Trunks return, the plot was interesting, and the fights were some of the best-animated in the entire ''Dragon Ball'' franchise. But that all came crashing down around the FinalBattle; firstly by playing up Goku's IdiotHero tendencies despite the fact that it '''literally''' put the fate of the world at risk[[note]]The heroes had resolved to use the Evil Containment Wave to seal the immortal Zamasu away, but firstly Goku left the jar inside the time machine (which Goku Black blew up), ''then'' it was revealed that he left the PaperTalisman in the past, meaning the idea was doomed from the start[[/note]]. Plenty of fans were also unhappy with the {{Retcon}} giving the [[FusionDance Potara Earrings]] a time limit seemingly just to bring back Vegito without having to worry about the fusion being permanent. Then came the DiabolusExMachina at the end, where after being killed by Trunks, Zamasu returns as a bodiless energy being and manages to kill ''everyone'' aside from the main characters, followed by the Future Zen-Oh completely destroying the universe, meaning Trunks' efforts were AllForNothing. And the final straw is the denouncement, where Future Trunks and Mai leave for a different timeline (where they'll still have to live alongside the versions of themselves from that timeline) presumably never to be seen again. The general consensus is that the story should have ended one episode earlier, with Trunks' killing Zamasu.
* ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts3DDreamDropDistance'' -- courtesy of its VeryDefinitelyFinalDungeon's barrage of DiabolusExMachina, HappyEndingOverride, and {{Retcon}} [[note]]Sure, the series is no stranger to the latter, but never so many at once.[[/note]] over all of the previous games in the series -- caused quite a few fans to cry RuinedForever and lose hype for ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsIII'' (which ''3D'' was supposed to build up to).
* ''WesternAnimation/SamuraiJack''; The creator, Genndy Tartakovsky, originally intended to create a movie to end the series. However, after the less than stellar performance of ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirlsMovie'', he shelved the idea and didn't return to it until it was revived on Creator/AdultSwim. Season 5 was well received, but became divisive because of its CruelTwistEnding where [[spoiler: Ashi [[RetGone disappears due to Aku (her father) being destroyed before she was conceived]], denying Jack a true Happy Ending.[[note]]While it makes sense that Ashi wouldn't exist if Aku was killed before he could commit the actions that lead to her birth, it raises further questions. Primarily, if Future Jack came back to the past and killed Aku shortly AFTER Past Jack had been flung into the future, how would Future Jack have come back to the past at all? Ashi wouldn't have existed in the future, because Aku was killed, but she was the one who brought Jack back to the past. You end up in a logic loop of "If Ashi exists, Jack erases Ashi's existence, but if Ashi doesn't exist, Jack can't erase Ashi's existence, allowing Ashi to exist.[[/note]]]]
* ''VideoGame/SonicMania''. The game, in a first for the Classic series, ends on [[spoiler:a SequelHook for ''VideoGame/SonicForces''.]] Considering how divisive [[spoiler:''Forces'']] is and the ending having [[spoiler:Super Sonic getting defeated and sent away]], some fans were ''not'' happy.
* While ''Manga/YuGiOh'''s ending is happy overall, many fans ignore or change the part where Atem leaves for the afterlife, with some feeling it's out-of-character for the series, others for just being too sad, and others for [[DieForOurShip shipping reasons]].
* ''Manga/AfterSchoolNightmare'' alienated multiple fan factions with its ending to a degree that they no longer recommend it, for completely different reasons:
** The people who were reading for the mystery arc, who thought that the final explanation was simply too silly and bizarre.
** The shippers, who were unhappy that Mashiro and Sou end up in the real world but with no knowledge of each other or memory of their love.
** The people who were reading for the exploration of ambiguous gender, who thought that the revelation that Mashiro's gender ambiguity is because they are actually fraternal twin foetuses sharing a mind meant that the situation was either reactionary in implication, or too fantastic to have any possible real-world relevance.